11 Fixes for Your Biggest Janome Sewing Machine Problems

Sewing machine

Learning your way around a sewing machine can take time, and even experienced sewers can have a few technical blunders. Here are some of the most common issues sewers can run into on their Janome machine, and how to fix them so you can get back to your project ASAP.

Good to Know: Most of these problems and solutions are applicable to all brands of machines, so even if you don’t have a Janome these may help.

Problem 1: There Are Three Threads at the Presser Foot

If you’re seeing three threads at the presser foot instead of two, your machine is still in the middle of a stitch and the “third” thread is not actually a third thread at all — it’s the bobbin and needle threads looping, trying to form a stitch that you’ve interrupted.

Solution: Check the take-up lever (the metal hook that moves up and down at the top of the machine directly above the presser foot area) is in the highest position, then lift your presser foot. Raise the take-up lever manually by turning your handwheel toward you and “finishing” the stitch. Your fabric and threads should pull out of the machine with ease now, as you are at the end of a stitch cycle.

Problem 2: The Fabric Isn’t Moving

Most of the time, when your fabric isn’t moving it’s because you’re trying to sew with the presser foot still in the upright position. The feed dogs can’t pull the fabric through the machine without the foot down on top of them. When they try, it causes the machine to make a loud sound and the thread jams around the fabric, making a big mess.

Solution A: Simply unclog the jam, remove any excess threads on the fabric and inside the machine, then start again.

If your fabric isn’t moving and the machine is making the normal sewing-like sounds, check to see if the machine is threaded correctly. If it’s threaded correctly (and the presser foot is down on top of the feed dogs), it’s likely your machine is set to the “free-motion” or “darning” set, which disables the feed dogs.

Solution B: Refer to your manual for instructions on how to change the machine back to regular sewing, which will engage the feed dogs so they can pull the fabric through the machine properly.

Problem 3: The Machine Comes Unthreaded

This happens all the time with new sewers, and it could be because of a few different issues. For starters, your threads could be too short, or they weren’t under the presser foot upon starting to sew. This would allow the thread to be pulled out of the needle as the machine sews.

Solution A: Make sure the threads from the bobbin and the eye of the needle are 3-4″ long, under the presser foot and hanging back behind the machine.

Another reason this could be happening is because you finished your sewing mid-stitch and the take-up lever is not in the highest (finished) position. When that happens, the machine tries to finish the stitch when you start sewing, sometimes unthreading the needle because it’s in the middle of the stitch’s cycle.

Solution B: When you finish sewing, before you pick up your presser foot to pull out your project, always check to make sure your take-up lever is in the top position. If it isn’t, turn the handwheel toward you and finish the stitch until the take-up lever is as high as it will go. Then pick up the presser foot and pull your project from the machine.

Problem 4: You Have Loose and Loopy Stitches

A probable culprit: the thread has fallen out of the take-up lever, which can happen if the machine is jammed.

Solution A: Check if the machine is threaded properly, both into the tension discs and the take-up lever. If not, re-thread the machine properly and try again.

Your bobbin tension could also be off and causing this problem. If the thread from the bobbin isn’t going into the tension area on the bobbin casing or in the drop-in bobbin tension area, then loose and loopy stitches can happen.

Solution B: Rethread the bobbin, making sure the thread is properly inserted into the tension areas.

A third spot to check is to see if your tension discs are on to the wrong setting on the machine.

Solution C: The tension dial on the machine should be set to the middle “automatic” setting on the machine. Refer to your manual for the suggested setting if you’re unsure what the automatic setting is.

Problem 5: The Thread Is Really Tight

This can be a pesky problem because it can create an uneven stitch. It’s likely that when threading your machine, you accidentally threaded the spool through the bobbin winding tension at the top of the machine.

Solution A: Double-check that your machine is threaded properly. If everything’s correct and you’re still having these issues, try the troubleshoot below.

The other possible issue is that the tension is set incorrectly. Most of the time the machine sews best on the “automatic” setting, but many new sewers think they need to move this dial a lot. The reality is you can totally leave it alone on this basic setting.

Solution B: Refer to your manual for instructions on how to set the tension at the “automatic” setting, then try the stitch again.

Problem 6: Your Machine Is Skipping Stitches

If this is happening — and resulting in an uneven-looking stitch — your needle may be dull.

Solution: Put in a new, sharp needle. As always, make sure the needle is the correct type and size for your fabric.

Discussion
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124 Responses to “11 Fixes for Your Biggest Janome Sewing Machine Problems”
  1. Donna
    Donna

    I have a genome memory craft 9900 and My touch screen won’t change from one thing to another

    Reply
  2. Katy Arrowsmith
    Katy Arrowsmith

    I’m having so many problems only after I ran over a pin. The thread from the needle is getting caught up underneath.

    Reply
  3. leona sylvia hawker
    leona sylvia hawker

    My janome magnolia 7330 buttonhole has never worked properly. I took it back to the store where I purchased it and they said there was nothing wrong with it. But it still don’t work right

    Reply
  4. Rizwana Ahmed
    Rizwana Ahmed

    I have Janome sewing machine, I am facing a problem that bobbin thread is not connecting with needle and not picking up, please guide to resolve the issue

    Reply
  5. Heather A Mattison
    Heather A Mattison

    My Magnolia 7325’s needle up/down function just stopped working last night. Any suggestions? It also seems to become slower as I sew a longer length. Any help would be appreciated.

    Reply
  6. Sharon
    Sharon

    My new janome mc230 touch screen doesn’t work. It lights up and you can see the screen but it continues to be greyed out so buttons don’t push

    Reply
  7. Melanie
    Melanie

    I moved teeth to down Position now they will not go back up even if I move those switch over or back

    Reply
    • shelly jay
      shelly jay

      i find with mine that the “dogs” pop back when you start sewing. try putting the switch back to “up” and then run a spare piece of fabric through and see if that works.

      Reply
  8. Paula Isenblatter
    Paula Isenblatter

    I CANNOT get my machine to sew right. It does not matter what I do. I have had it “repaired” twice, bought the thread they told me to, tried a leader fabric, doesn’t matter. It makes big bird’s nests when I begin sewing. I am going to trade it in if I can’t get it straightened out, and fast.

    Reply
  9. Margaret Hagedorn
    Margaret Hagedorn

    I have Amy style 100. When I see I can be going along fine and all of a sudden the material is pulled down into the machine and I have to take out the bobbin and cut the tread and then carefully try to release
    The material without creating a hole in the material. I can then clean and re
    Thread and it will work for awhile but will do the same thing again. Any suggestions ?

    Reply
  10. Darlene
    Darlene

    My 4014 will not sticky

    My 4014 will not stitch it runs but not stitch I have retreaded several times new needle

    Reply
  11. diana hayes
    diana hayes

    how do I set my sewist 780dc to the “automatic”tension setting? New to sewing and it doesn’t say in my manual. My stitches are very loopy when using the overlock stitch. help!!!!!

    Reply
  12. Deborah Evans
    Deborah Evans

    I have a Janome MC10000. I broke a needle. I have done everything I know to do for skipping stitches: change needle, bobbin, rethread, change thread, repeat x 3. Still skipping stitches. Any thoughts or recommendations?

    Reply
  13. Dee
    Dee

    I have a Janome HD 3000… I hit a pin while sewing 😕 Now my stitching is off. Not sure when I first noticed it. I’ve rethreaded changed thread and bobbin adjusted tension. Stitches are still off. What am I missing?

    Reply
  14. Kate Gill
    Kate Gill

    Thread Keeps Coming Out The Eye of the Needle. very odd have checked eye and no nicks that i can feel if i run thread around it. does 2 stiches and then thats it

    Reply
  15. bob
    bob

    has anyone had this problem on a janome mc 10001 or other machines, in regular stitch mode the thread tension is tight and easy to change, but when in embroidery mode the thread tension doesn’t seem to work, switched back and forth and between the 2 modes and threaded correctly?

    Reply
  16. eugenia
    eugenia

    My Janome 1985 is sewing backwards/reversing. What is wrong with it. I live in Dandenong urgently need your help. Thankyou

    Reply
  17. Andrea Breau
    Andrea Breau

    I have a Janome memory craft 6600 sewing machine which stopped while doing free motion quilting. Screen showing E1 error. Any suggestion on how to fix this? Thanks

    Reply
    • chizm
      chizm

      E1 error on a Janome 6600p is indicative of a blown fuse on the main circuit board. It would be best to take your machine to a reputable sewing machine repair shop in your area. If you have a handy somebody they can replace it

      Reply
  18. Diane
    Diane

    My machine becomes unthreaded after using the automatic cutter.

    Also, I was trying to use the zigzag stitch. It would sew correctly and suddenly sew a few straight stitches and then return to the zigzag.

    I have tried cleaning out the bobbin holder, put in a new needle and completely rethread the machine.

    Reply
  19. Betty Ray
    Betty Ray

    Just sent you a note. I forgot to tell you that I have a Janome 8900QCO. bought from a friend about a month ago.

    Reply
  20. Betty Ray
    Betty Ray

    I cannot get the bobbin out after filling. I have pulled and pulled but it will not come out. I filled the bobbin and when it stopped I pushed to left and tried to remove it.

    Reply
  21. Peggy Collins
    Peggy Collins

    Have set my new Singer MastercraftM35 and after three sets of stitch testing, the needle locked and won’t release. Singer are not open until Monday. Can yoi help?

    Reply
  22. Eva ong
    Eva ong

    I have a janome sewing machine JJ1004G. The presser foot lifter is not working. Any advise? Thanks.

    Reply
  23. alisongibbs@hotmail.co.uk
    alisongibbs@hotmail.co.uk

    My Atelier 7 seems to be getting fussy with thread. With some threads it skips stitches. I have loads of reels of threads it was happy with in the past, now it won’t sew with them. I’ve tried a new, good-quality needle (several times), and I know I’m inserting it correctly. With some reels of thread, it’s fine. I store threads in sealed boxed, so I know they’re not damp or dried out. Anyone else?

    Reply
  24. Karen
    Karen

    Thread jammed between spool and needle inside machine. It’s very taught and I don’t want to break anything by pulling too hard in thread

    Reply
  25. diane rose
    diane rose

    I have a Janome Memory Craft 4800. I have just had a full service about a month ago and am having trouble with the tension. I am sewing on a patchwork square on batting for a qiilt as you go quilt Help!

    Reply
  26. Eunice
    Eunice

    Needle position is stuck in one position and hitting the needle plate breaking needle.

    Reply
    • chizm
      chizm

      what type model dew machine, I would turn it off and restart if it is a computerized version

      Reply
  27. Sue DeS
    Sue DeS

    The flywheel on my machine is difficult to turn. The tech says that because I used it after it had been sitting for a year or so, the bushings were not oiled and now I need new bushings. Is there a way to oil the machine myself? Janome 6260

    Reply
    • Shelley
      Shelley

      Why does my thread keep coming out of the first thread guide on top? (Janome HD 3000)

      Reply
    • chizm
      chizm

      yes there is a service video for techs to oil that machine , I have one and the same exact problem don’t use till fixed, I had to remove all covers and oil with blaster and wd 40 till loose then clean and re oil with sew mach oil till it is wet, otherwise your machine will damage all the components, when ever you have that problem the entire machine needs oiled and re lubed, there is some ppl saying the machines never need oiled false, as mentioned there is a service video for that fix, BTW mine was so bad the wheel would not turn and carriage was stuck too, now smooth working great

      Reply
      • chizm
        chizm

        BTW I have a janome mc 10000 but that fix is for all the embroidery machines

        Reply
      • Diana Miller
        Diana Miller

        Ever use wd40 on a Sewing Machine. USE MACHINE OIL ONLY. Ask your Janome tech for brand.

        Reply
  28. Shirley Steeves
    Shirley Steeves

    My thread jammed up underneath,the light dimmed. so i unjammed it. I then cleraned the machine, rethreaded it, put a new bobbin in . Now it is sewing ok, the thread tensions are ok the stitches look good, but ehen i am sewing the machine is so noisey i don’t like to use it now. why do you think it is so noisey. it never was before. It’s a Janome 6600.

    Reply
    • chizm
      chizm

      most likely debris left in the are after removing the tangled threads, re check area again may have wrapped around something and getting caught

      Reply
  29. Kim
    Kim

    I have a Janome sewist 509. The straight stitch position A leaves small loops under the fabric. When I switch the dial to B it stitches a straight stitch without loops under the fabric. Suggestions? I’ve rethreaded several times and changed the needle same on position A.

    Reply
  30. April
    April

    Hi . I have a singer brilliance. My needle broke . It did hit a piece of metal I did not realised was on back. I took out old needle, but cannot get a new one in. Do you think it twisted the needle holder.

    Reply
    • Kim
      Kim

      Janome 5900 stops working and says Error code 5. The hook hits the needle. The needle seems too far back, not a sideways issue. I am stuck! Can anyone suggest a fix? Repairs shut due to Covid rules I think. Need to sort it myself!

      Reply
  31. Kay
    Kay

    Janome mini sewing machine for parts (not working properly!) Model 525.
    I found two problems with this sewing machine, which are needles keeps falling out and before this happened, the needle didn’t catch the bobbin thread properly.

    Reply
  32. Joann
    Joann

    My bobbin case seems to scrapping on something. Got new bobbin case. The scrappy noise continues.

    Reply
  33. Paulette hutchings
    Paulette hutchings

    My Janome menorycraft 9450 is having uneven stitches. What should my settings be on to use to sew a quarter inch

    Reply
  34. Victoria Turnbull
    Victoria Turnbull

    My Janome My Style 20 cotton reel holder has fallen out – fall into machine. It will not hold when I try to reattach.

    Reply
  35. Valerie McCaffrey
    Valerie McCaffrey

    I like my Janome HD50f. I haven’t used it for a while and it is saying “5P” or “SP” where I need to select the stich. I seem to have threaded it okay and it sews okay when I try to do it manually. Please HELP

    Reply
  36. Valerie
    Valerie

    My machine seems to be working well but it is saying 5P or SP and will not allow me to choose a stich or
    work the machine. What do I do?

    Reply
    • Karen
      Karen

      Haven problems with this machine. The tread comes out of the needle and when I start to see the tread in not going into the fabric. You can just see the holes from the needle in the fabric.

      Reply
    • Julie
      Julie

      I suspect that you have your bobbin spool winder engaged (SP for spool). Slide it back and you should be able to sew normally.

      Reply
  37. Kay
    Kay

    I inherited a Janome Memory Craft 11000. The start/stop button will not work. I have disconnected the foot pedal but still doesn’t function. Can you help me?

    Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Oil only a drop in the center of your bobbin area..the piece of fuzz….don’t take that out. Also unplug your foot pedal and clean out that hole. If you can plug in a different foot control, then you know it is your foot pedal. Take it apart and clean it. If worn out, purchase new one.

      Reply
  38. V Kay Weeks
    V Kay Weeks

    I inherited a Janome Memory Craft 11000. The start/stop button will not work. I have disconnected the foot pedal but still doesn’t function. Can you help me?

    Reply
  39. Lorna
    Lorna

    My Janome 9700 is making clanging noises—sounds like metal on metal. It sews quietly for a while then the noise starts and after some sewing will subside again. It sees well— just this noise. Any advice?,

    Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Oil only a drop or two in the center of your bobbin area..the piece of fuzz….don’t take that out.
      Hopefully, this will help. Let us know

      Reply
  40. Gillian
    Gillian

    Wheel on right of my dxl503 is jammed and the needle cannot be raised. Attempting to sew results in the “lo” symbol as though the machine has tried to ride over thick fabric. This seems to be mechanical rather than computerised. Any ideas please?

    Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Make sure your needle is inserted all the way up and secured with the screw.
      It will do this too, if your bobbin winder is not pushed all the way off after winding a bobbin.
      Lastly out of time will also cause this issue

      Reply
  41. Annie
    Annie

    My new Janome Skyline S5 will no longer wind bobbins tightly. I have used the alternate thread holder to wind bobbins. It worked perfectly once, but won’t do it again. Any suggestions?

    Reply
    • Nicole
      Nicole

      Make sure you are threading it correctly to wind the bobbin. You should hear two little clicks/pops when you thread it. There is a great video on YouTube that demonstrates this. Just search how to wind a bobbin on a Skyline. Good luck!

      Reply
  42. Catherine
    Catherine

    My Memory Craft 6500’s display won’t go on anymore. It stitches all the different stitches, I just can’t see any details.

    Reply
    • chizm
      chizm

      old thread, BTW if it is still going on turn out all lights in room when screen is on, then you adjust the screen brightness if that is the problem

      Reply
  43. Joan Bozman
    Joan Bozman

    I cannot get the tension to correct on my Memory Craft 10000. It is way to tight coming from the bobbin area.

    Reply
    • Brad
      Brad

      If you are talking that is is to tight on the bottom of your material that is a top tension issue. Bad stitching bottom of material is controlled by your top tension.

      Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Rethread bobbin, take the tail and pull. If it is too tight, loosen the screw a quarter turn, try again. Test your stitch. Is your top thread being pulled under?..increase top tension. Since we cannot see the stitch, you will need to decide if the tension problem is the bobbin or upper tension. Best wishes

      Reply
  44. Jacklyn S. Justus
    Jacklyn S. Justus

    My Janome My Excel 4123 is making three parallel stitches rather than a single stitch. It has a pattern for three parallel stitches, but I don’t have it dialed to that pattern. I tried using the zig zag pattern and it did the three parallel stitches with that pattern also.

    Reply
  45. Les and Pam Frampton
    Les and Pam Frampton

    My new machine while using zig-zag option, machine skips stitches regardless of length or width chosen. Machine has been cleaned, new needle, and same thread. It has gotten worst, 3-5 good zig-zag stitches then 2-5 straight stitches, then 1-2 zigzag, then 2-5 straight. Very sparadic. Help please.

    Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      You have to match your needle to your thread. I was at free motion boot camp with a new machine that worked fine, but I chose a pretty new thread for class. Immediately skipped stitches, then broke a needle. The teacher came over, looked inside the cone and it gave the needle size for that thread, changed needle to microtex 90/14 . Worked great.

      Reply
    • Wanda Martens
      Wanda Martens

      My Janome Memory Craft 4800 recently had the bobbin winder replaced, now I can’t get the machine to disengage out of Bobbin Winding into regular sewing.

      Reply
  46. Henry
    Henry

    Problem with my wife’s Janome RX 18S -Fabric is feeding only backwoods no matter in which position
    /spring loaded/ Reverse Stitch Button is

    Reply
    • Lynn
      Lynn

      Henry, did you figure out how to switch your wife’s Janome back to going forward? Mine is also only going backwards and cannot get it to go forwards

      Reply
  47. Barbara alsop
    Barbara alsop

    I am free motion quilting for about 1-2 minutes and then my thread breaks . I have cleaned it getting out the fuzzies, changed my needle and even the thread in both the bobbin and on top has been changed. Is it time to take it it in for service? I have a Janome Magnolia 7330. I have had it for 1 1/2 yrs.

    Reply
    • Nancy
      Nancy

      My Janome 7330 Machine the thread keeps coming off the tension guide- or screw or thread guide. Whatever it’s called. UCD retgresded seceral tines. Adjusted tension. Checked it’s got the holder, placed on thread holder right way. Was working great. Then all of a sudden after 5 months starting falling off. Any help?

      Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Change to 90/14 topstitch needle. Check that your thread is in the take up lever. If it is coming out, thread it from the opposite side and thread machine as usual.

      Reply
  48. Wendy Fincken
    Wendy Fincken

    What happens when you’re in the middle of sewing and let go of the foot pedal to stop but the machine keeps going and starts to go even faster until you unplug it? I have changed needles, a new bobbin, cleaned out the bobbin bin, threaded new thread etc and it was good each try then after about 50 stitches out goes batty again. What do I do?

    Reply
    • Brad Schwarze
      Brad Schwarze

      It sounds like your foot control has worn out. Or a wire inside has become loose and is touching the other wire.

      Reply
    • Elisabeth Schroeder
      Elisabeth Schroeder

      My friends Janome Memory Craft 6500 has been in the shop for 2 months. It keeps running after the pedal stops. The shop says It’s not the pedal something in the machine. Do you have any idea? I would like to get myh machine back. thank you.

      Reply
      • Sue Willows
        Sue Willows

        My janometxl 607. Sews perfectly but the numbers and letters will not sew correctly

        Reply
        • Judy Andrews
          Judy Andrews

          I have the same problem changed the foot pedal but it did not solve the problem . it you know how to fix it please send to my e-mail address

          Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Put a towel on a counter or table. Take your pedal apart. Becareful you don’t loose the spring. Remember the steps you took to take it apart. Clean debris out of it. If you have pets, this could be the problem. Go to you tube for cleaning out your foot m pedal for tips.

      Reply
  49. Jill Kane
    Jill Kane

    My machine JanomeDC 2101 is racing.It sews without pressure on foot pedal.The symbol Fc appears in the window.The manual says that indicates that there is intermittent current.I have changed power points and no difference.What do I do?Also should the machine be oiled.I can’t find any information about it

    Reply
    • Wendy Fincken
      Wendy Fincken

      What happens when you’re in the middle of sewing and let go of the foot pedal to stop but the machine keeps going and starts to go even faster until you unplug it? I have changed needles, a new bobbin, cleaned out the bobbin bin, threaded new thread etc and it was good each try then after about 50 stitches out goes batty again. What do I do?

      Reply
      • Janice
        Janice

        This happens to me on my Janome DC2050. The pedal slips and gets stuck under the bottom of my sewing table. I just give it a gentle ‘kick’ to unstick it. If this is the problem then maybe you could try placing some non-slip matting under the pedal.

        Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Oil only a drop in the center of your bobbin area..the piece of fuzz….don’t take that out. Also unplug your foot pedal and clean out that hole. If you can plug in a different foot control, then you know it is your foot pedal. Take it apart and clean it. If worn out, purchase new one.

      Reply
  50. Lynda Murgi
    Lynda Murgi

    This is my first Janome and I really like the way it sews. I am having a problem with the stop motion knob on the hand wheel. It will not move like it is frozen. Can you please help?

    Reply
  51. Lynda Murgi
    Lynda Murgi

    I can not turn the stop motion knob, the part inside the hand wheel, to turn a bobbin. I’m not sure how to remedy this problem!

    Reply
  52. Claire Narbonne
    Claire Narbonne

    I have been sewing since the age of six. I am now 71. My issues with threading problems are not due to inexperience. This is my first, and probably last, Janome. The machine no longer knots/cuts the thread. The thread continually hops out of the take-up lever. This has never occurred cured with my Singer and White machines. My 6500 is a challenge every time. Very disappointed 😞.

    Reply
    • Rhonda
      Rhonda

      I have a mc6500 and never had any problems with the machine like you mentioned. I love mine! It’s a work horse. In fact I have the 6300,2-6500 ,6600 and the newer one 6700. Live all of them!

      Reply
      • Mary
        Mary

        I have the same problem! The thread must be jumping out of the take up lever. I have noticed if I use cheap polyester thread, it’s floppy or droopy enough (or for some other mysterious reason)to stay on the hook. If I use a nice expensive, cotton thread…well, it just doesn’t stay on the lever’s hook for long. Very frustrating.

        Reply
    • DIANA MILLER
      DIANA MILLER

      Thread your take up lever from the opposite side and thread the rest of the way as usua that will fix this problem. JANOME IS AWARE of this issue…they now put a “lock” on the take up lever on new machines.

      Reply
    • Patti Traviglia
      Patti Traviglia

      I cannot get my new Janome 4120 to pick up the bobbin thread…Yes, my bobbin wonder spindle is back in correct position. HELP!

      Reply
      • Tina
        Tina

        My needle is hitting my bobbin housing as well. Please help. I’ve only had my memory craft P a few months and all I every seem to do is trouble shot. I just keep having bobbin issues.

        Reply
    • Lavonna
      Lavonna

      When I stop sewing the needle thread goes back down and I either have to manually pull it out or I get a couple loops in the underside. I have read manual and retreaded over and over. Time consuming. Tension is fine. Stitches are good. Love my 4120 QDC except for this one thing. I am always cutting excess thread where I begin a stitch. Help appreciated.

      Reply
    • INGRID KANNEL
      INGRID KANNEL

      I have the same problem. The bobbin housing fell apart and I thought that I put it together properly, but the needle stops when it reaches the metal part of the bobbin housing.

      Reply