Why Does My Sewing Machine Keep Jamming: Solutions and Useful Tips

Why Does My Sewing Machine Keep Jamming

Have you ever had your sewing machine suddenly stop working? You’re not alone. There are many reasons why it happens, and it’s essential to know the cause so you can fix the problem at hand.

If you notice that your presser foot is improperly adjusted or if you’ve put the thread through the needle incorrectly, these could be two of the reasons why your sewing machine keeps jamming. But don’t worry! Instead of asking, “why does my sewing machine keep jamming,” continue reading this article to learn about the best solutions.

Why Does My Sewing Machine Keep Jamming: Possible Causes

Presser Foot

Make sure the presser foot is in place and has a small gap all around. The smaller, the better! If you adjust your sewing machine too much, it can cause unwanted gaps between the thread on either side of your fabric, which could also cause issues. Take care when adjusting because too loose can be just as bad as too tight.

You shouldn’t have an issue when using multiple layers or thicker fabrics like fleece (which requires a special needle). But with thinner materials such as silk or satin, you may want to ensure that the sewing machine does not continuously jam.

Bobbin Thread

This is often why sewing machines jam, especially if there’s too much tension on the bobbin thread. In this case, the best thing to do before you start messing with any settings is to loosen the screw that tightens or loosens the bobbin casing.

You’ll see it on top of the machine near where you put in your bobbin. Once it’s loose enough, take out the bobbin and wrap the thread around it a few times until there’s no more slack. Then, put it back in and tighten the screw again. This will help reduce some of the tension, and continual jamming should be less of an issue.

Lack of Tension on the Upper Thread

If you’re using a spool of thread that’s too light, it won’t create enough tension on the upper thread and will cause your sewing machine to jam. This can easily be solved by using a heavier-weight thread instead.

You’ll also want to check the screws on either side of the needle plate (near where your fabric sits) and make sure they’re adequately tightened. If they’re not, this will also affect the tension on your upper thread.

Needle Is Deformed or Broken

This is an easy problem to spot because your needle won’t go through the fabric at all. If this is the case, you’ll need to replace it with a new one. But be careful when doing so.

If your sewing machine is jamming due to the needle not going through, and if you’re too rough with it and break off a piece of your bobbin casing, then that’s another problem entirely!

Feed Dogs Are Not Functioning Correctly

If the feed dogs aren’t doing their job to help pull the fabric through the machine evenly, your sewing machine will start to jam. You can easily fix the feed dogs problem by simply cleaning out all the lint and fuzz built up over time.

You can do this with a small brush or even just use your finger! Once it’s clean, test out your machine again and see if the machine continues to jam.

Low-Quality Thread

Low-quality thread is one of the main reasons why machines tend to jam. If you’re using poor-quality thread, it won’t sew properly and will cause all sorts of problems. Make sure to buy good-quality thread from a reputable store!

Last Resort

You may need to check your bobbin and see if it’s broken in any way (it can have pieces missing or even just not function properly). For example, if you’re using cotton thread, this will cause issues because of how thin it is.

If all else fails, try switching to another type of thread until you find one that works best with your machine. It should also go without saying that if your sewing machine keeps jamming, make sure all parts are clean before attempting to sew again. This includes the bobbin area, where your thread goes in and out. If it’s dusty or dirty, that can cause issues as well.

If you’re having trouble starting your machine, it could be because the handwheel is stuck. In this case, you’ll need to take off the cover plate and see if something is blocking it from turning. It could be a piece of lint or fuzz, or maybe a screw has come loose. Once you’ve fixed whatever’s causing the problem, test out your machine again.

In other cases, the machine could be jammed because of tangling caused by improper threading. This is one of the most common reasons why machines start to jam. If your thread isn’t threaded correctly, it will get tangled up and cause significant problems. You should take your time when threading your machine and double-check that everything is in the right spot!

If there’s too much fabric under the needle, it can quickly jam. This is often caused by using too thick fabric or even trying to sew multiple layers at once. Try adjusting the presser foot pressure or use a thinner fabric instead. If you’re still having trouble, try breaking your project down into smaller pieces so that you’re only sewing one layer at a time.


There are many reasons a machine can start to get jammed, but these are the most common ones! It’s essential to take care of your machine, so it lasts for many years and prevents you from asking yourself, “why does my sewing machine keep jamming?”

Don’t forget about maintenance, such as cleaning out the lint or giving it an oiling every once in a while. This will help prevent any issues from cropping up down the line!


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