Home > Sewing Machines > Persistent Thread Breaking

Persistent Thread Breaking

By: Laura Farrant - Updated: 16 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Thread Breaking Sewing Machine Broken

Picture the scene – you have nearly finished your finest piece of work. It has taken you months of hard work and for some reason the thread keeps breaking on your machine. You need to get to the bottom of the problem. Let us tell you how.

The good news is that there will be a solution for this annoying problem. The bad news is that your nimble fingers are probably to blame in the first place. In almost all cases persistent thread breaking can be put down to human error. It might be that you haven’t set up the machine properly or that you have chosen the wrong elements – the wrong needle or the wrong thread for example.

What Causes Thread to Break?

Here are some of the most common causes of broken threads. Check out the list and see if any of these might be relevant to your case:

1. Cheap thread
Cheap thread can be a double-edged sword. It might be plentiful but its durability and strength will be poor and will only lead to headaches. It might be that you are on a bad spooI. If you are in the middle of a massive project and have not encountered any problems like this until now it is definitely worth doing this and seeing if it makes a difference. Otherwise, go out to a fabric store and pick up some higher quality thread in the same colour.
2. Badly wound bobbin
If it’s the lower thread that keeps snapping, look to your bobbin. Poor maintenance and lazy shortcuts will catch up with you in the end! For every project you should start with an empty, clean bobbin. Never keep the old thread or old pieces of lint in the case – they will just obstruct and test the strength of the new thread.
3. Unsuitable needles
Look closely at your needle, and particularly, at the eye. It is possible that the eye may be rough, with sharp edges that cut the thread before it has a chance to do its job. Alternatively, the problem may be that the needle is too small for the thread you are using. The more you try and force the thread throw, the more likely it is that it will snap and cause you problems.
4. Incorrect threading
Have a look at the thread path and make sure that it isn’t caught on the spool or any other area of the machine. It should run smooth, without obstruction. If there is anything at all in the way, get rid of it!
5. Incorrect tension
Tension affects how tightly your thread is pulled through the machine and if it’s too high, your thread will snap. Make sure that your tension discs are in the correct position for your thread. If you thread is very wide, they will need to be adjusted so that the thread flows threw when you start sewing.
6. Needle in backwards
You have been sewing for a while and you wouldn’t possibly make such an obvious mistake, but trust us, it does happen. If your needle is in backwards it will cause obvious havoc and will definitely lead to breakage. Just check it and rule it out as a possible cause of snagging.

Recap on the Causes of Broken Threads

There are a host of causes for broken threads. Its important to get to the bottom of this so check everything, and that includes the position of your needle! We can guarantee that the broken thread will be down to at least one of the above!

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • beginner
    Re: How to Mark Your Fabric
    when making a ladies loose cotton top, can I overlock and sew together both fabrics at the same time? Thank You for your help
    17 May 2019
  • Tiku
    Re: Taking Body Measurements
    I am good stitcherbut I do not have confidence in how to cut pattern from body measurement.i only wish to stitch for myself.i prefer…
    22 October 2018
  • pink
    Re: What Equipment Do You Need For Dressmaking?
    Listen here monika it's a positive message please can you stop the negative comments
    11 October 2018
  • nirvanaheaven
    Re: What Equipment Do You Need For Dressmaking?
    IM happy about the tips I will be making my own clothes I will make some money I will get there
    11 October 2018
  • StartSewing
    Re: How to Make a Boned Bodice
    Chazzy - Your Question:I am making my daughter's wedding dress. She is a lovely slim shape with small breasts but I am finding that…
    29 June 2017
  • Chazzy
    Re: How to Make a Boned Bodice
    I am making my daughter's wedding dress. She is a lovely slim shape with small breasts but I am finding that quite a problem in…
    28 June 2017
  • StartSewing
    Re: Embroidery
    Kirstylou - Your Question:HiI'm really looking to start up a little hobby personalising items of clothing with initials :)I am completely new to sewing
    27 June 2017
  • Kirstylou
    Re: Embroidery
    Hi I'm really looking to start up a little hobby personalising items of clothing with initials :) I am completely new to sewing and I've seen online…
    24 June 2017