Sewing Machine Repair: Tension Problems

Sewing Machine Tension Problems?

When a sewing machine gets into trouble, most people would think that the problem is with the machine tension. However, most often, you do not mess with tension settings or tension disks. If true tension adjustments are required, the best help you can get is your machine manual for adjusting the tension settings of your machine.


Tension Disks:

Tensions disks control the amount of pressure applied to the thread for an even feed to the machine needle causing an evenly formed stitch. Always have the presser foot raised when threading the sewing machine so that the disks are not engaged and are open to accept the thread.

Adjusting Machine Tension:

Sewing machine tension is adjusted when the bobbin and upper thread is not even on both sides of the fabric. When sewing two layers of fabric the intersection of the bobbin and upper thread should be between the two layers of fabric.

Righty Tighty Lefty Lucy:

“Righty Tighty, Lefty Lucy” refers to turning the adjustment to the right to tighten the upper thread tension and turning the adjustment to the left to make the upper thread tension looser.


Care of Tension Disks:

  • Refer to your sewing machine manual when you need help so as appropriate steps can be taken.
  • Clean the disks with a soft brush to prevent dust and lint from building up between the disks.
  • Always check for a loose thread stuck in the tension disks when adjustments are not making a difference.



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