While it is said that “a bad workman blames his tools”, cleaning, oiling, and maintaining your sewing machine is a cornerstone of success when you are sewing for business. Basic, but regular, sewing machine maintenance will extend the life and effectiveness of any model.
How Often to Service Your Sewing Machine
The frequency at which you should service your sewing machine depends entirely on how much you sew, and how much fluff is produced by the fabrics you have used. Use your eyes and ears to monitor for odd noises and dust and debris build up.
The best way to prevent build-up is to cover your sewing machine when it’s not in use.
How to Service Your Sewing Machine in Six Steps
- Start by downloading your sewing machine model’s manual for reference.
- To prepare, unplug your machine and remove the bobbin, needle, presser foot, and the needle plate.
- Use a nylon brush or vacuum cleaner crevice tool to clean out all the dust, fluff, and remnants of broken needles that have collected in the nooks and crannies of the bobbin compartment. Do not blow or blast your machine with compressed air as this only wedges the debris further inside. Dust all areas where thread may have shed as it rubs against the machine. (Note: this is another good reason to pay for quality thread as it sheds less fluff.)
- Check your machine for wear on critical moving parts and the condition of the critical screws. Check the condition of the needle plates and feed dogs, as well as the condition of the electrical cable.
- Only use specially formulated sewing machine lubricant oil. Just a smidgen of oil is needed where the moving parts touch, causing friction. Your operating manual will point out where to regularly oil your sewing machine. Turn the handwheel back and forth a few times to work in the oil.
- To avoid oil getting on your next project, use an absorbent piece of fabric to wipe away any excess oil. Reassemble and plug your machine back in, then do some test seams on a scrap of fabric.
Your machine should be professionally serviced at regular intervals at one of our service agencies.