Why Does My Sewing Machine Needle Keep Falling?

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If you’ve recently purchased a sewing machine and are experiencing problems with the needle constantly falling out of place, it’s time to get to the bottom of what’s wrong. You’ll want to clean your machine before you panic and might need to tighten the needle plate screw.

There might be many reasons why your sewing machine needle keeps falling. The main reason for the continuous needle fall from the sewing machine is the wrong needle size. You need to make sure that you are using the right size needle for your sewing machine. And, also do not forget to check that bobbin is being threaded properly because that might cause an issue also. Other reasons might include using a bent needle and a broken needle threader. If you have not cleaned your bobbin area and the area under the stitch plate then lint and debris might cause this issue.

This post will teach you how to take care of your sewing machine so that it lasts for years to come. It’s a fairly simple thing that most of us take care of in a very nonchalant way, but you’ll be glad you fixed it.

Table of Contents show

What is a needle?

A needle is a metallic object which is used to puncture or pierce an object to make a way for passing thread through it. Needles are typically long and slender, similar to a sewing needle. Needles also can be used in plastic, fiber or metal, but they are mostly made of metal.

If it needs to be done properly then sometimes it falls because the machine tension is not adjusted properly or because of the machine speed on which you are sewing it.

How to put a needle in the sewing machine?

Sometimes your needle keeps falling out of place because the machine tension is not adjusted properly or because of the machine speed on which you are sewing it. How to put a needle in a sewing machine?

This answer is simple. If you have a small hole in your project that you can easily use, then just put your needle there directly. If you have a bigger hole, then take your side plate and place it around the sewing machine.

If the big hole is in the middle of your project, then put your needle there and take a piece of thread with you. Then you can put the thread through the machine and then put it through the fabric.

You can do it in this way: set your machine to “Stop” and move to the bottom of the machine. Then take your needle and move it towards the right corner as you can see in the picture below. Then place your needle on that hole like this.

Which tool is responsible for keeping the needle in place?

The answer is the presser foot. The presser foot helps the needle by keeping it in place, so the needle doesn’t fall from one side of the fabric to another. The presser foot can also be used to hold the fabric down for easy sewing for beginner sewers.

The needle plate screw is an adjustment that keeps the needle plate from moving during sewing. It is quite straightforward to do. You’ll need a flat-head screwdriver and you’ll want to make sure it’s placed in the center of the head.

Why does the needle keep falling out of place?

There are many reasons why a sewing machine needle might have fallen, one of which would be having the needle too long. This is an easy fix and can be remedied by replacing the needle with a shorter one. Another reason could be that you are sewing too fast, this will cause the thread to break prematurely and it will leave slack in your stitch line. To correct this issue try to sew slower or replace your thread with something stronger like polyester or nylon.

If the needle falls out of place, it’s because it’s not properly threaded. It doesn’t have to be that complicated – you just need to follow the instructions we gave in our previous post “How to Thread a Sewing Machine” and all should go smoothly. However, you may have other issues and complications to deal with, like a bent or broken needle threader. If so, then you should pay close attention to these tips.

The most important thing to check is that the needle threader is in order. Are there any bent parts or are they all intact? If a part of the needle threader seems broken or bent, you’ll need to replace it with a new one.

What is the reason for the falling of needles?

There are many reasons why your sewing machine needle might keep falling out, 

  1. Wrong size of needle
  2. Bobbing not threading properly
  3. Damaged stitch plate spring
  4. Broken needle threader
  5. Broken or bent needle
  6. Speed of sewing
  7. Crack in the metal
  8. Dirt or dust from the machine

Wrong size of needle

If you are using the wrong side of the needle, Because of which needle is falling, use the same needle of the same size. Do it immediately after you master one pattern, and make sure that you only use a sewing machine needle that is designed to fit your machine’s mechanism precisely. If not, your stitches will be too loose or tight and the needle, as I said in the beginning, can be the reason for falling. change to a new one.

Bobbin not threading properly

After threading, move the bobbin thread through the needle. If you feel resistance, clean the inside of the bobbin area to prevent the thread from jamming. There is also a possibility that your bobbin case unit is loose from its hook or there is some debris that is caught within it. If you feel resistance just put your hand on the bobbin and move it up and down to clear it.

Damaged stitch plate spring

If you notice that your stitching is not smooth and even, then there is a possibility of having a damaged stitch plate spring. To fix that problem, you need to use a sewing machine needle screw tool or needle adjuster screwdriver which has two attachments. 

If you don’t have one, then you can buy one from any local hardware store. If you have a unit that can be removed, then take it out. You will notice a screw that is also removable. Check it, if there is a damaged one, replace it. This is because this part holds the spring hammer so it doesn’t fall off in use or you can also tighten it.

Broken needle threader:

If you are seeing very little needle threaders and the needle simply falls, then the reason can be because of a broken needle threader. so you should replace it, then the needle will stand like a rock.

Broken or bent needle

The easiest way to make sure you don’t have a broken needle is to be patient and find the perfect size of needle for your machine. You can either buy a new needle or repair it for yourself. Either way, there’s no need to panic. We’ll show you the best ways to deal with a broken sewing machine needle.

Speed of sewing

Another reason could be that you are sewing too fast. If your machine is moving too fast then the needle may fall out of its place. Set the machine to a speed that will be convenient for you to operate. Make sure that your machine is working properly and has been properly adjusted. You also need to check if the needle has been set in the right spot in order not to fall off.

Crack in the metal

If there is a crack in the metal of your machine where to place the needle, then you need to change it with a new one.

Dirt or dust from the machine

It is important to keep your machine clean and lubricated. Dirt and grime can get between the cylinder bars, causing the cylinder not to turn properly, which then causes the needle to fall out while sewing. So after sewing remove all dust and clean your machine with a cloth for removing all dirt and dust.

How to Fix a Sewing Machine Needle That Keeps Falling?

If that happens, you need to know how often fallen needles fall out of place. Of course, it’s very rare! It happens when you are sewing on an extremely thick fabric or leather.

First off, don’t panic! It sounds like something serious is happening to your machine — but it’s not. You’ll want to clean your sewing machine before you try any of these fixes. Don’t worry, I’m here to help keep your needles and gears in tip-top shape.

Sewing machine needles are designed to stay in one place, and it can be a frustrating process to deal with the needle constantly falling out. There’s no need for you to continue putting up with this issue when there are many ways to fix it!

Tighten The Needle Plate Screw

The most common problem that causes the needle to fall out of place on your sewing machine is a loose needle plate screw. By tightening this screw, you’ll help keep your needle and thread stable while in use.

Perfect size needle

You may take the needle to a sewing machine store or you can purchase one directly from your local sewing machine dealer. If you take it to a store they will ensure that it is the correct needle. If you buy it online, you will need to make sure that your needle is within its maximum size range of 8-12 as described on the packaging or in your hand guide. If you’re not sure what size needle to buy, it’s best to purchase a new one.

Realign a sewing machine needle

There are two methods for aligning a sewing machine needle. The first method is mainly used for self-threading the needle. If your needle threader does not fit over the shaft of the sewing machine, then you can put your finger over the thread and very carefully guide it into the eye of the needle. Once you are satisfied that your thread is on correctly, snap in a new needle.

Change the sewing machine’s bobbin

If you have to change your sewing machine’s bobbin, then follow the steps below. Open up your sewing machine and find the tray that holds your bobbin case. The bobbin case is one of four small parts that make up your bobbin case on any sewing machine. The first part is the outer cover which can be removed with a flat screwdriver or handled carefully with pliers.

Adjust the sewing machine’s thread tension

There are two things you want to check when adjusting your machine’s thread tension; one is the upper tension spring, and the other is the bobbin winder. The upper tension spring keeps the upper thread taut while it passes over the feed dogs. While adjusting this spring, be sure to use a screwdriver that fits tightly on it.

Tighten a needle clamp

Use a flathead screwdriver to tighten the needle clamp. The needle clamp can be tightened by turning the small screw on the back side of the needle clutch.

When you should change the needle of the sewing machine?

Before sewing, check your fabric and make sure that it’s not too thick like leather or suede.

Make sure that the needle is not bent or broken and that it is not too long.

make sure the needle is properly threaded and in its place. Use a style for your fabric as it differs from each fabric.

If your machine threads can’t hold a perfect stitch line after you sew, then it’s best to stop sewing and replace the needle with one which will work perfectly, especially if you know how to do that.

If your needle is dull after a long period, it may cause your thread to break and leave loose stitches. In this case, you should sharpen the needle and change it with a new one.

If your fabric is tough and the needle can’t go through, then it’s best to stop sewing because your machine needle may get damaged if you continue using it.

How to pick the perfect size to prevent a needle from falling?

If your machine needle is too long, it will surely stay in one place and it might fall out of place. Don’t pick a needle that is much longer than your machine needle. Try picking one that is less than 1/2 inch longer.

  • Step 1: Unthread the needle by pulling off the little knob at the end of the needle.
  • Step 2: Adjust the tension on your machine so that it works perfectly when threaded on all parts. This will help to reduce tension issues. If you don’t know how to do that, then it is best to check your user manual for illustrations on how to adjust the tension.
  • Step 3: Clean the bobbin before starting to sew again. This is because if there is any kind of debris on the bobbin, you may have problems eliminating it after sewing. So remove the bobbin and clean all parts that are related to the thread and bobbin.
  • Step 4: Be sure that your needle and bobbin are in good condition. If your needle is bent or cracked, then try to replace it with a new one.

Needle size chart

sewing machine needle
Sewing Needle Sizes

Is the frequent changing of needles the reason for falling?

It’s not necessary to change your needle frequently. If by chance you have changed it, then you still need to check why your needle is falling out of place. Make sure for yourself that the sewing machine is not having a problem.

Check the condition of your fabric. If it is too thick, then it is recommended to use a shorter needle size because otherwise, it will fall during sewing.

You need to check whether your thread breaks easily during the process of sewing. If you find your thread breaks easily, then it might be the reason for the needle falling out of place.

FAQ about Sewing Machine Needle Falling

What size needle does a singer simply use?

Singer needles sizes range from number 9-90. The bigger the number, the shorter the needle. Number 52 is the size usually used for normal fabrics and numbers 60-90 are used on heavy/thick fabrics. I think it’s a good idea to have a variety of sizes for convenience

What size sewing machine needle for linen?

The needle for your machine should be a size 22, which is the same as the size 11 point. It is usually used for lightweight fabrics.

What is the fabric weight of my sewing machine?

Your sewing machine will work best with light and medium-weight fabrics. Heavy weight fabrics may not work as well because they may cause the machine to skip stitches or get tangled.

How do I know if my machine is out of thread? 

Some machines have a little hole in the side of the plate where you can see the thread winding up. If you look at this hole, there will be lots of string coming out (this is normal). You should also check for a brass-colored needle that can come out, but this is usually an indication of your machine having an issue with thread tension. The thread may be peeling off from the spool and causing a problem.

Are all sewing machine needles the same?

There are two different kinds of needles you can buy. The first kind is the one that comes with your machine. For example, the Singer sewing machine uses a 70/10 needle while the Toyota sewing machine uses a 65/9 needle. Often these needles are made of high carbon steel and they come with an eye at one end and a flat tapered tip at the other end. The second kind of needle you can buy is commonly called an embroidery needle which many people use to make felt.

How to tell if your sewing machine needle is dull?

If you spend a lot of time sewing, then you’ll want to know how to tell if your sewing machine needle is dull. There are a couple of easy ways to know if your needle is dull. You can lift the presser foot and look at the feeding dog in the throat plate area. If hair-like threads are coming from this area, then this is an indication that your needle has done its job and is ready for replacement.

What are ballpoint sewing machine needles used for?

A ball point needle is a type of sewing machine needle that is used for sewing thick materials such as jeans and leather.
Tip: Don’t forget to check and clean your machine’s bobbin case at least once a year.  Your bobbin case might be full of fluff, lint or even thread ends which may all spool around the bobbin shaft and cause the thread to tangle or even break.

What do the colors mean on sewing machine needles?

The standard color coding of sewing machine needles is Yellow and Purple. Yellow with needle size 10 (the same as a sewing machine needle number 10) and Purple with needle size 15 or 16 (the same as a sewing machine needle number 13 or 14).

What’s the difference between ballpoint and buttonhole needles?

Different kinds of needles are specifically designed to sew different types of fabrics. The main difference between them is the diameter of their shafts.

Is there any universal sewing machine needle?

No, there is not a universal sewing machine needle. Needles are based on the type of fabric they are to sew and on the level of thickness they are to sew. There is no universal needle that works with all kinds of fabrics or machines.

What’s the best silk thread for my Singer sewing machine?

Silk Thread for sewing machines can be purchased at most sewing supply stores.  The bobbins up to size 50 have a metal core. It is best to use a size 10 needle (the same as the size of the needle for Singer machines) for sewing with silk thread.

How to know if a needle is broken or bent?

If you find that your machine is working correctly, but if you notice a problem with the stitches, then this may also be due to a broken or bent needle. You need to change it to a new one immediately.

How many types of needle sizes are available in a sewing machine?

The most common size of needles is 60/8. You can always adjust the type of needle by changing its length or size. Many companies produce needles in different sizes like 70/10, 80/12, 90/14, etc.

Final Thoughts

Sometimes it takes a while before we discover our sewing machine has had a problem. It happens suddenly when we least expect it. Our sewing machine starts to sew more slowly than usual and stops completely once in a while. The needle is flat, and so is the thread. It almost seems like everything has given up on us. 

The needle will stay in one place and spit out thread onto your fabric until it stops completely. This can be very frustrating and it’s an important issue to address immediately if you don’t want to lose a sewing project or even worse, an important item of clothing that needs mending.

Now after knowing how to fix a needle that is falling out of place, you should know how to take care of your machine so that it will last longer. You may also want to know other things about sewing machines, so I recommend some posts from my favorite blogs listed below.


  1. Fixya: My needle keeps falling out of the needle clamp…
  2. Quora: My needle fell into the sewing machine when I was trying to replace it with the old one…
  3. Reddit: My needles keep breaking while I try to sew jeans
  4. Quiltingboard: Needle keeps falling out!
  5. APQS – What’s up??? Needle keeps falling out!
  6. TarotForum – Needle fell from nowhere?



I have been working as a seamstress since I was 12 years old, and I would be happy to teach you what I know. I, along with the rest of my team, investigate numerous sewing, quilting, embroidery, and fabric related how-to guides, and present our findings to you.

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