How to Fix Sewing Machine Needle Stuck (Helpful Guide)

80% of all problems on a sewing machine are blamed on the needle. While that may be justified or not, the needle is one of the more vulnerable items on your sewing machine. When sewing you have to be careful as you never know when the needle will not respond.

How to fix sewing machine needle stuck: When you need to replace the needle on your sewing machine make sure the screw holding it into place is loosened all the way. That way gravity will take over and help the needle to fall out easily. Just make sure it does not get lost in your sewing machine.

To find out more ways to unstick a sewing machine needle just continue to read our article. It looks at this issue and provides the best answers to help you overcome this problem

My Needle is Stuck in The Sewing Machine


If your needle is still stuck even after loosening the screw, there are a couple of options available to you to get the needle unstuck. First, you can give your machine the old fashioned solid hit.

There is nothing like a good slap to make that machine cough up that stuck needle. Failing that, you can also use a magnet to retrieve the needle. The magnet works well when the needle has broken after repeated attempts to remove it.

Once you loosen the screw, there should be nothing holding the needle in place. If gravity doesn’t do it then it is possible the broken part has fallen out and hid somewhere else in your machine or has fallen to the floor when you weren’t looking.

If there is enough of the needle left hanging below the housing, you can try using needle nose pliers and pulling the needle out.

The Needle Keeps Getting Stuck in a Sewing Machine

There are several reasons for this taking place. It can be a very frustrating problem as there are so many different areas to check. The needle can get stuck for a variety of reasons and they are as follows:

  • The needle was inserted into its holder the wrong way.
  • The needle was not inserted all the way up.
  • Somewhere along the way you did not thread your sewing machine correctly.
  • The needle was not threaded correctly.
  • The needle is dull or broken.
  • The bobbin may be cracked or split.
  • The machine has not been cleaned in a while.
  • The machine has not been oiled in some time.
  • There may be burrs on your bobbin case, sewing hook, along the thread path, a hole in your needle case and soon.

The fixes for each one of these possible issues are different. The best place to get instructions to handle each of these problems is to look in your owner’s manual. That book has a list of problems and the best solutions to handle them.

If you're a beginner some of those solutions may be best left to a qualified repairman as they have the experience and knowledge to get the problems fixed correctly.

Sewing Machine Jams After a Few Stitches


This also is an issue that has several sources. One of the main ones is that you may have threaded the machine with the presser foot down. It has to be in the up position for the machine to be threaded properly.

Another common source is that you have not done regular cleaning or maintenance on your sewing machine. A dirty machine or a lack of lubrication will cause the machine to stop working after a few stitches.

Just clean and oil your machine according to the manufacturer’s instructions and you should be fine. Then the problem could be the needle and 80% of your sewing machine problems originate with the needle.

The needle could be bent, dull, or old. In this case, you should replace your needle with a new one. Or you may have placed the wrong needle in the needle holder. This requires a change to the correct needle size, etc.

Next on the list is the bobbin and thread. The bobbin may be poorly wound or the thread you are using is a cheap, inferior, low-quality variety. To fix these issues you will need to rewind the bobbin or change thread to a higher quality version.

A lot of the problems with the needle are simple fixes that only require a little time and patience to solve.

Broken Needle Stuck in a Sewing Machine


A broken needle in your needle holder is not necessarily a really big challenge. It will all depend on where the break took place. If your needle broke halfway or more from the point then this is good news.

All you will need to do is get a pair of pliers and a screwdriver. If loosening the screw doesn’t do the trick, then the pliers can grab the remaining piece of the needle and give you the leverage to pull the needle out with a little force.

If the needle broke at the point that is hidden by the needle holder, loosening the screw ad gravity should be all you need to get the broken part out. But if that part is stuck, you may want to try a good magnet.

The power of the magnet should be strong enough to handle hidden needle parts. If these solutions fail, then either the needle part came out already and you weren’t aware of it. Try sticking a new needle inside to see if the holder is clear.

If that fails, go to your repairman and let him handle the problem.

Sewing Machine Motor Runs But The Needle Doesn't Move


This is not a pretty sight as the sewing machine motor can overheat if you let it run too long before shutting it down. The source of this issue is not hard to figure out. It just takes time to find the right source of the problem.

The first place to look is your maintenance record. It is a good idea to record every time you lubricate your machine n a piece of paper. That way you can see at a glance if this is the problem or not.

If it isn’t, then you should check the thread. It may have gotten tangled up. Turn off your bobbin winder and inspect your thread for tangles. Go through all your thread lines to make sure there are no hidden tangles and that you threaded your machine correctly.

Another issue may be the hand clutch. This may have become loose and just needs a simple tightening to have your needle moving again. Finally, there is that go-to problem of a dirty machine. Too much leftover lint will cause the needle to stop moving.

When you create your lubrication record, include a maintenance record as well. Three columns will be all you will need. One for the date, one for a check under the oiling category and one for a check under the maintenance category.

This record will help you save time and remind you when it is time to clean or lubricate your machine.

Sewing Machine Hand Wheel Will Not Turn


For some of the Brother sewing machines, there are a few places to check before going to a repairman. First, try moving the handwheel backward and see if it unlocks. Then check the upper thread tension for tangles.

Next, you should remove the bobbin case and try the handwheel. If it turns then re-install the bobbin case and try again. If it doesn’t move then remove the needle plate, etc., and look for debris or dirt.

If there is none, and the hand wheel still doesn't turn, take your machine to your repairman for service.

For other sewing machines, there are similar solutions as stated above except for the inner wheel. Older machines may have an inner wheel that may lockup on you. Disengage the wheel and try your hand wheel again. The positioning of the inner wheel may be the problem.

Like the Brother sewing machine if the handwheel doesn't move freely when the bobbin case is removed, then take it in for servicing.

Some Final Words

While 80% of your sewing machine problems are sourced in the needle, maybe 90% of the solutions are easy to fix and you do not need a repairman to help you get your needle working as it should.

We must stress this again. Keep a record book of your maintenance and cleaning efforts. This helps save you time and lets you know if those areas are a possible problem or not.

Also, create a checklist of different problems and their sources. This too will help you save time and guide your search. If your owner’s manual can’t help you with the fix, the internet may be able to.

If the internet can’t help you talk to your repairman.

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