The Most Common Complaints about Why Is My Sewing Machine Sewing Backwards, and Why They’re Bunk

Fact Checked By:Aithley Balder

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Why Is My Sewing Machine Sewing Backwards Explained

It is the goal of most sewing machines to increase the speed and ease with which seams may be sewn. However, unexpected and difficult faults do occur from time to time. In the case of a malfunctioning sewing machine at home, there may be a number of things that may be done in order to fix the issue.

What’s going on with your sewing machine? Your sewing machine’s reverse lever is to blame. Using a mechanical level might help when you need to reverse the machine’s direction of travel for your cloth. Make sure to keep in mind that this is prone to malfunctions since it may get caught or damaged inside.

You’re going to discover the implications of having a sewing machine that can only operate in reverse. You’ll learn how to address these issues and operate with a computer that only runs in reverse in this article.

What causes my sewing machine to sew in the complete opposite direction?

why is my sewing machine stitching backwards

There might be a variety of reasons for your sewing machine to abruptly stop working effectively. These problems may vary from being as easy as flipping a switch to being so difficult that they need the assistance of a skilled specialist.

In the worst-case scenario, you may be required to return your equipment straight back to the manufacturer if particular concerns continue to exist. Below is a list of some of the most typical difficulties or glitches that might cause your machine to sew backwards:

Feed Dogs Malfunction

This portion of the sewing machine may be found in the bottom compartment of the mechanism, immediately behind the needle and presser foot, and it is designed to accommodate feeding dogs. This kind of action is repeated back and forth to ensure that the cloth is fed through the sewing machine smoothly and consistently every time.

Unfortunately, merely changing the settings on the laptop will not resolve the problem. It is thus necessary to communicate with the manufacturer and seek assistance from their official hotlines and professionals.

Inability to use the reverse lever

The reverse lever is the portion of the machine that enables the operator to sew in the opposite direction of the needle. It is necessary since it is one of the few ways to be able to secure your stitch at the beginning of the process.

When a user is finishing off a seam, reverse stitching may be really handy. This mechanism is implemented in a variety of ways, ranging from a lever to a button, depending on the model.

If this button becomes stuck or malfunctions internally, the machine will only be able to work in reverse. However, if you do not have significant understanding of the components that are utilized in the machine, it may be preferable to seek expert assistance in order to resolve the issue. Otherwise, if you have knowledge of, or are at least acquainted with, the machinations that are utilized in the sewing machine, then having a look at the issue yourself should be sufficient protection from injury.

Problems with the software

It is possible that software faults may cause your computerized sewing machine to stitch backwards if you have a computerized sewing machine. The onboard computer system is in charge of determining how the machine will behave.

Consequently, if it fails to perform its duty, it may cause issues with the sewing machine itself. When a system software update is delayed, it is common for the machine to sew backward, resulting in decreased productivity and productivity concerns.

If you have a thorough understanding of the software that your system makes use of, it may be feasible for you to resolve this problem on your own. Otherwise, it would be preferable to get assistance and guidance from the maker of your equipment in order to get it back up and running properly.

In addition, there are situations when the issue is not caused by software at all. In this instance, it is possible that it is required to have your hardware tested instead.

There are several ways to avoid back stitching problems:

why is my sewing machine stitching backwards

Sewing Machine Reverse Button Repair

If the spring on a sewing machine reverse button wears out or becomes dislodged, it may be repaired by simply replacing the spring. The traditional hairdryer method could work in this situation. You may free the button by using a hair dryer to blow hot air at it for a few minutes.

For this method to work, it’s necessary to change the grease beneath the reverse button since it may be old or frozen. Only older sewing machines benefit from this hair dryer technique. Structurally complex mechanisms are used to activate the reverse button on modern sewing machines by use of a combination of springs, levers and an electrical activation circuit.

Reattach the spring to the frame

Nowadays, most sewing machines include an internal reverse button mechanism that includes a spring as a component. It is one of the most often seen components in later versions, particularly in Janome, Brother, and Kenmore machines.

It’s also the portion that either holds the reverse button in place or enables it to move freely in its position. Opening the machine and removing the Philips screws will allow you to access this section of the machine for troubleshooting.

To begin, make certain that the sewing machine is totally turned off and disconnected from the power source. Its purpose is to keep accidents and electrocution at bay.

After that, have a look at the cover assembly for the specific model that you will be repairing or replacing. After that, remove the screws using screwdrivers that correspond to the sorts of screws you have discovered.

After that, gently remove all of the knobs as well as the lid from the cabinet. Then, find the reverse button and the spring by following the path of the reverse button.

You may discover that the spring has been loosened from the sides or that it has become stuck due to oil, corrosion, or gum. The problem may be resolved by simply repositioning the spring in its proper location on the spring bracket.

If the mechanism is too oily or rusty to enable it to expand and contract properly, you may also add some oil to it. After that, check to see whether the reverse button has been repaired and is functioning correctly.

Replace the spring with another one

In certain cases, if the spring has been severely damaged or corroded, it may be necessary to replace it entirely. This is a common issue with older devices, particularly those with reverse buttons.

Spring lifetime is much less than that of the majority of the other metallic components of the machine. It is as a result of this that they are subjected to more frequent replacement.

If you’re paying close attention, you can notice a snap or crack right when the reverse button stops functioning, as seen below. In this case, it indicates that the spring from the mechanism has to be replaced.

Additionally, keep track of if your reverse button has lost its tension or whether it requires an unusual amount of effort to be activated. These are also some warning indications that you should be on the lookout for when you may need to replace the spring.

Lubricate the Internal Components

A sewing machine, like any other mechanical instrument, is susceptible to being jammed over a period of time. It is caused by dust and excessive friction, which are the underlying causes.

This is a common issue with sewing machines that employ an internal lever that is powered by gears and springs on the inside. However, to resolve this issue, all that is required is that you open the sewing machine and lubricate the mechanism with more grease and oil to effectively minimize friction. You may lubricate the mechanism and its components and gears by following the instructions in the handbook that came with your sewing machine.

Unhook The Hooking Mechanism

Typically, when it comes to most Brother sewing machines, the hooking mechanism is the source of the difficulty with the reverse button. You will often come across components that have become too tight or too far apart, and as a result, they are unable to detect input from the knob.

To troubleshoot this issue, all you have to do is open the headcover and remove the reverse button. From there, you can observe that removing or tightening the inner screw, which is golden in color, will solve the problem.

Degreasing and Cleaning the Sewing Machine

Depending on how much time has passed, dust and oil may have collected around the various components of your sewing machine. When oil or dust accumulates in your equipment, they may create a slew of issues and failures if left neglected for long periods of time. Make sure to set aside enough time to service and maintain the machine from the outside in, as well as to remove any dust, grease, or gum that has accumulated on the mechanism or its internal components.

If the sewing machine in issue has not been used for a long length of time, this technique is even more critical to follow. You will most likely be able to repair the reverse button while doing routine maintenance and cleaning on the sewing machine if you follow these instructions.

Sewing Backwards

The ability to stitch in reverse is available on almost every sewing machine model now on the market, thanks to an additional knob, lever, or button. To find the reverse sewing toggle, look in your machine’s handbook.

Before you can sew in reverse, you may have to pause and flick the switch on your machine, depending on its model and configuration. Some types, on the other hand, enable you to swap directions as you sew. For example, in order to use the reverse sewing button on an earlier model, you had to stop sewing first.

Machines with a Reverse Button

Stitching in a different direction is accomplished by pressing the reverse button on your sewing machine. This implies that the cloth you’re working on will travel toward you, rather than away from you, while sewing in reverse.

The ability to sew in reverse is a useful one, as it lets you to complete seams, fix mistakes, and produce double stitches without having to move the cloth around too much. For intricate stitching tasks, this ability is necessary.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Why does a sewing machine sometimes stitch in the reverse direction?

Your feed dogs are susceptible to being jammed if they get clogged with debris such as thread, lint, or dust. When anything like this occurs, it’s possible that you won’t be able to stitch ahead, but you should still be able to sew backward. Because of the thread and lint, the feed dogs on your sewing machine may get stuck in the reverse mode.

What is the most prevalent cause of a machine not sewing correctly?

Needle thread breaking is an issue that often arises during sewing. Whether on the bobbin or the looper, the thread broke. When the machine is turned off, the threads will fuse together.

How do I set the timing on my sewing machine back to the factory default?

To make adjustments to the timing of your sewing machine, first loosen the needlebar and then slide it either up or down until the top timing mark is aligned just below the bottom of the bushing on the timing bar. If the needlebar on your machine does not have timing marks, you must first bring the needle all the way down using the hand wheel, and then bring it back up 2.4 millimeters.

What are some other names for the reverse stitch?

There is a class of embroidery and sewing stitches known as the backstitch or back stitch, along with its variations known as the stem stitch, outline stitch, and split stitch. In these stitches, the individual stitches are worked in the opposite direction of the general direction of sewing.

What does it mean for fabric to be reversible?

A garment is considered to be reversible if it can be worn in two distinct ways, which are distinguished from one another by turning the garment “inside out.” However, there is no such thing as “inside out” when it comes to reversible clothing since it can be worn either way and still look stylish.


You should always seek professional help if your machine is sewing backward unless you have substantial understanding of the machine you’re using.

You should examine and minimize damage before fixing damaged components to troubleshoot a sewing machine that sews backwards.

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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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