Problems with Sewing Thread Snapping? Quick DIY Solutions


It's so annoying when the thread keeps snapping when you're using your sewing machine. But what could be causing this problem, and how can you fix it?

Cheap, Fluffy Thread

Never use cheap thread in your sewing machine; keep it for hand-tacking. Poor-quality thread often becomes fluffy as it runs through the machine, causing the machine to jam and snap the thread.

Incorrect Tension Setting

A common cause of snapping thread is that the machine tension is incorrect. Before you begin working on a new project, it's wise to test-stitch on a piece of scrap fabric that is a similar weight to the one you're going to use for the project.

Fold the test fabric in half and stitch a line on the bias. Use different-coloured thread in the bobbin and the top of the machine so that you can see which tension needs adjustment. Take each end of the bias line of stitches between your fingers and pull hard until one thread snaps. If the needle thread breaks, you have the upper tension set too tight. If the bobbin thread snaps, the lower tension is too loose.

Bobbin-Winding Issues

If the tension is correctly adjusted, yet the bobbin thread keeps snapping, the most likely cause is that the bobbin has been incorrectly wound. When winding your bobbin, always use an empty one rather than winding over leftover thread. Never wind so much thread onto your bobbin that it won't easily fit into the bobbin case. Ensure that the bobbin is wound evenly in level layers without a large bump in the middle.  

Avoid mixing different weights of thread on the bobbin and on the spool. Different weights of thread can throw the tension out, causing ragged stitches and broken thread.

Incorrectly Threaded Machine

If the sewing machine has not been threaded correctly, the thread can become caught in the mechanism. This can knock the tension setting out and snap the thread.

Remove the top thread altogether and go through the threading procedure again slowly, making sure that no steps are omitted.

Problems with breaking thread can often be solved quickly and easily. Work your way through each potential cause as outlined above to see whether that will fix the problem.

If you continue to experience issues with thread snapping, there may be a more serious problem that requires professional intervention. Ask your local appliance-services firm to have a look at the machine for you and have it serviced regularly as a preventative measure.


5 January 2017

Appliance Repair: How I Fixed My Commercial Refrigeration Unit

Hi, my name is Pip. I work in the kitchen of a large hotel as a chef. Unfortunately, for a few months, the commercial refrigeration units in the kitchen kept breaking down. The manager of the hotel was very slow to act, so I had to figure out how to fix them myself. I searched the internet and read DIY books. In the end, I realised it was a faulty coil which was causing the problem. I replaced it, and the refrigeration unit has worked flawlessly ever since. Doing this inspired me to use my new found knowledge to fix other appliances, and I decided to start a blog to document my repairs