Tips for Cleaning your Sewing Machine

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My entire family got that nasty flu that was going around this winter and for a couple months straight someone was sick every day. Since then I’ve been working on catching up on all the household chores that got pushed to the wayside while I was busy becoming one with the couch and I’m sad to say that my poor sewing machine has been sitting just collecting dust ever since making my kiddo’s Halloween squirrel costume.

Since faux fur is pretty messy my machine is long overdue for some necessary cleaning and I thought this would be the perfect time to share some tips for cleaning out your machine.

Tips for cleaning your sewing machine

DO

  • Follow your manual. Since every machine is different, this is super important! It will tell you what to take apart and where to clean and oil. If you lost your manual check your manufacturer’s website. They often have them on their site.
  • Unplug your machine before you start.
  • Dust the outside of your machine often. The less dust collecting on the outside, the less that will migrate inside your machine.
  • Take only one part of your machine apart at a time and take pictures so you can get everything put back together in the right order and direction.
  • For dusting small spaces use a Q-tip or the small brush that should have come with your machine. For larger chunks of lint tweezers are handy. You can also use a micro vacuum attachment to vacuum out your machine instead. (I don’t have one yet but that’s something I have on my wish list!)
  • You can use rubbing alcohol to remove stuck on grime. It removes permanent marker too!
  • Use oil labeled for use with sewing machines and follow your manual’s instructions as to where to oil.

DON’T

  • Use canned air. It can blow dust and lint farther into the machine and adds moisture.
  • Oil too much. 1-2 drops should be plenty. You don’t want oil dripping on your next project. I found Q-tips to be handy in soaking up some excess oil when I accidentally got too much in some harder to reach spots.

After the first time cleaning actually goes pretty quick. Take good care of your machine and keep it running longer!

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