How to Solve Issues With Sewing Machine Thread Keeps Breaking At Needle.

Fact Checked By:Aithley Balder

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Sewing Machine Thread Breaking At Needle: Causes and How To Fix Them!

As a novice or veteran quilter, you’ve likely encountered the issue of threads for sewing machines breaking. Even the most skilled sewers may be thwarted from completing a project they are passionate about if their sewing machine thread keeps breaking at needle.

When I sew, why does my thread break at the needle? There are a number of reasons why your threads are breaking at the needle, one of which being the kind of thread you’re using. Fibers including cotton, rayon and trilobal polyester are more susceptible to breaking or fraying.

Sewing gets tiresome and you grow to despise it when this occurs frequently. Why does the thread continually ripping at the needle, you may wonder? Fortunately, some of the possible reasons and remedies are discussed in this article.

Sewing Machine Thread Breaking At Needle

Factors That Contribute to Sewing Machine Thread Breakage

sewing machine thread breaking at needle

You can imagine the sound of your sewing machine’s top thread breaking every few stitches. Frustrating! The feeling you get when something like this continues occurring is well described in this manner.

As it turns out, this is a typical problem with sewing machines in general. Every time this occurs, you have to stop stitching, which causes a delay. Consequently, you’ll find yourself concentrating more on a single task than normal.

Bobbin Lint Build-Up

Broken thread or cotton pieces in the bobbin will cause the sewing thread to break. Lint is the technical word for the cotton fibers that break off during the spinning process and collect in the bobbin as they are pulled through the machine. Due to lint buildup, the needle’s timing is disrupted, causing the sewing thread to be messed up.

Resolving the issue: Do the Sewing Machine’s Servicing and Cleaning.

You may remove the lint from the bobbin by simply cleaning the sewing machine. A little brush may be used to clean the machine. It’s best to study a sewing machine’s instruction manual if you’re not sure what you’re doing. You should be able to find cleaning instructions in your machine’s instruction manual.

If you’ve lost your manual or bought a secondhand equipment, you should get in touch with the company that made it. You may also check out the FAQ section on the manufacturer’s website.

When the needle is inserted incorrectly

Incorrect needle insertion might cause issues. Another problem contributing to the top thread breaking is this.

A second issue is the needle’s attachment screw, which might come free over time. There is a chance that the needle may shift slightly out of position.

It’s possible that you’ll unintentionally loosen the screw if you unexpectedly bump it during sewing. You may expect the thread to break if this occurs to you.

Resolving the Issue: Correct Sewing Needle Insertion Is Key To Resolving The Issue

Always check that the sewing machine needle is inserted appropriately. To avoid breaking the thread, the insertion should be tense and positioned such that it doesn’t hit the bobbin.

The needle should be as snug as possible before you begin stitching. Checking the needle settings might address the issue of the needle becoming loose when sewing.

Use of Damaged, Dull, or Bent Needles

After a few projects, you may find that your needle is frayed or crooked. Almost everyone has experienced it, especially if you sew with a lot of thick fabric. There will be a problem with the needle threader if it is broken, deformed or dull.

As a consequence, the top thread will keep breaking. In addition, the sharpness of the needle has an effect on the success of the cloth piercing. Using a needle that is too blunt might cause the thread to snag and break.

If you keep the needles in for a long period of time without changing them, this issue is more likely to arise.

Resolving the Issue: Constantly Inspect the Needles

Inspect the needles for damage, bends, and dullness before you use them. Inquire about the needle size’s suitability for the cloth. If you notice any problems with the needles, you should change them. The needle should also be changed after each project if feasible.

Cheap Thread Will Frequently Break

When it comes to sewing, the quality of the thread is really critical. Thread-breaking problems are more likely to occur if the thread quality is poor. If you don’t change the thread, the project will be plagued with thread breaks.

Various weights of thread are available. If you tug on any of the finer threads too hard, they will break. Some are so thick that the needle’s eye or tension discs are broken by their weight.

The thickness of the thread depends on the cloth. Thread and fabric weight should always match up, because of this.

Several thread weights, however, are only suitable for hand stitching, not machine sewing. The threads will break if you use them on a sewing machine.

Snags and knots may form in sewing thread as well. These may cause the thread to get tangled and break.

One-time thread breaking is caused by knots. In other words, if the thread keeps snapping, the knots aren’t the issue. The thread must have snapped for a reason.

Fixing the issue: Picking the Proper Discussion Thread

All that matters is the level of excellence. It is possible to reduce the risk of thread breaking by selecting the appropriate thread quality, type, and weight. To conclude, while sewing, be sure to use only the best thread.

The Thread Tension Is Not Equally Distributed

The top thread of a sewing machine might break if the machine’s thread tension is too high. When we use the same tension for various fabrics instead of adjusting it, tension becomes an issue.

Different tensions are required for various materials and threads. Because of this, sewing threads will break if the tension between the top and bobbin threads is not equal.

Resolving the Issue: Adjusting the Thread Tension to Fit Your Fabric Is the Solution.

Changing the tension may be necessary if the thread is constantly breaking at the needle point (see image). Ensure that the bobbin and top thread tensions are same.

Check to see that there isn’t too much tension. The thread will not be overtightened as a result of this. There will be an end to thread breaking at the needle. Eventually.

A broken spring on the take-up lever

Taking thread from the spool and feeding it through the machine’s take-up lever is the function of this part of the machine. It also lifts the thread back out of the cloth after producing a stitch.

Your thread will also break if the take-up lever’s spring fails or bends. Breaking thread occurs nearly immediately as you begin sewing.

Resolving the Issue: Replace a Broken Take-Up Lever Spring to Solve the Issue

It’s difficult to fix a damaged take-up lever spring at home. This might need the use of certain specialist tools and skills. Take the machine to a repair shop if this is the source of the thread breaking.

Threading Error on the Sewing Machine

When the machine is threaded wrongly, thread problems develop. This is due to the fact that the topic has been moved to the wrong place.

Threading will not proceed as intended as a consequence of this. Incorrect threading is evident by a broken thread.

Even if it seems little, everyone may be influenced by it. Even the most expert seamstress may make a threading mistake, no matter how many years they’ve been sewing.

Resolving the Issue: Rethreading a Sewing Machine Is the Solution to the Problem

You should always double-check that you’ve threaded everything properly. Remove the thread and reread it even before you start stitching to be sure you’ve got it properly.

Routinely rethreading the machine may seem like a tedious chore. However, the cloud does have a hole in it. In doing so, you will maintain the thread intact.

The Throat Plate’s Condition

Needles may break when stitching. When they break, nicks might be made in the neck plate (metal cover of the bobbin). When a needle breaks, little pieces fall to the ground and are referred to as “nicks.” As a result, thread breakage and tension problems are possible.

Resolving the Issue: As a solution, correcting the Throat Plate Condition is recommended

The throat plate may need to be replaced if tiny nicks are found in it. To replace a throat plate, all you need is a few bucks. If you’re not sure how to do it, ask a sewing machine technician for help.

Learn about the reasons and remedies for top thread breaking, and you may be able to fix the issue. A comparable solution may be found for some of the problems described above, while others have a unique solution.

How to Prevent Thread Breakage When Using a Sewing Machine

sewing machine needle breaking

Be Consistent In Your Needle Size And Size

Before you begin stitching, make sure your needle and thread are the correct sizes. The smaller the needle, the lower the number on the package will be in both American and European sizes. This is true for both big and small groups of people.

Needles for finer threads like 80wt are smaller than those for thicker ones like 12wt because of this. The thread weight of 40wt or 50wt is often used with an 80/12 needle.

Make sure you have the proper needle for the fabric you’re working with. A denim needle, for example, would be used to sew thick denim material. Another option is to use a jersey shirt and a ballpoint pen as a sewing needle. If you want the greatest outcomes, you’ll need to know what needles you’ll need.

Use of the right needle size and type may have a major influence on your finished product. Thread breaking may occur as a consequence of skipped stitches and tension issues caused by the incorrect needle.

Bobbin thread should be of the highest quality

Lint, fluff, and adhesive residue from lower-quality bobbin thread may lead to machine malfunction. You should check the bobbin’s casing and surrounds since the thread may be caught, tangled, or flowing badly.

When it comes to using a bobbin, we always recommend one that has not been coated with glue or residue. When you touch threads that have residue on them, you’ll notice that they’re a little sticky. Glue is used to hold side-less bobbins together, for example.

Make sure you don’t overwind the bobbin while winding it by hand. Because the machine’s self-stopping technology doesn’t always notice the finer thread immediately away, more delicate bobbin threads make this more accessible. In order to prevent this, we suggest stopping just before the bobbin’s edge during winding.

Ensure that your sewing machine’s tension is set correctly

This is a crucial factor while sewing. Thread breaking may occur if the top or bottom tension is too tight.

It’s usually a good idea to sew a test strip on a piece of fabric before starting a project to check your tension. The top tension is too tight if the bobbin thread pulls through to the top.

The bobbin tension is too tight if the top thread pulls through to the bottom. Bobbin strain must be eased.

The kind and weight of thread, the fabric, the batting, and the stabilizer all need to be taken into account while sewing on a machine. As a result, stitching a test piece and adjusting your tension as necessary is a good idea.

Wound Thread Stacking, or Cross Wounding

A closer inspection of your sewing thread spool will reveal that it is coiled in two distinct ways. Stack wound thread is a kind of thread that is wrapped on a spool in a straight and uniform pattern.

Cross-wound thread, which is coiled at an angle, is the most common kind. If you’re sewing with a stack wound spool, your thread will need to come out of the side of the spool. Using your sewing machine’s vertical spool pin, you can easily do this.

When sewing with a cross-wound spool, be sure to pull the thread out of the top of the spool. Put it on the machine’s horizontal spool pin to do this. The thread will move across the spool if the spool is placed on the incorrect pin, resulting in tension difficulties and perhaps thread breaking.

Protect your threads with a thread guard

If you’re sewing with a speciality thread, you may want to consider upgrading your sewing tools. If your thread is prone to slipping, we strongly suggest applying a multi-purpose thread protector.

You may avoid knotting by wrapping this spool guard around the spool. Thread breakage will ensue if you do this because the tension in your thread will be altered.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

What is causing my sewing machine to break thread?

A. During sewing, the top thread breaks when the tension is set too high, resulting in a long thread that is stretched too far from the spool to the needle. To check if it improves, you may lower the thread tension. When stitching, the top thread might break if the sewing machine is set to the correct tension.

What should you do if the top thread breaks?

A. Check the threading sequence and make sure everything is threaded appropriately. Adjust the tension disc. Needles that are dull or bent should be replaced.

What tension should I use while working with cotton?

A. Tension settings for cotton are normally between three and four, depending on the fabric.

Why is my bobbin thread always breaking?

A. The bobbin thread in a sewing machine may be broken by a filthy shuttle race, faulty thread routing, or inappropriate thread tension. Unplug the sewing machine and follow the instructions in your owner’s handbook for checking thread routing. If required, re-direct the thread.


Your sewing machine’s top thread is frustrating when it keeps breaking and it takes a long time to rethread and fix it. After learning how to avoid this problem, you can now go back to work on your sewing tasks.

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Aithley Balder

Hello there, my name is Aithley Balder from Texas. I am a cookware, sewing, toilet, technology enthusiast and I have been sharing my passion with my friends and likeminded folks for close to 4 years now. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with me via the contact page.

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