Tangled thread on wrong side of fabric

Symptom / Cause


  • The thread becomes tangled on the lower side of the fabric.



  • After starting sewing, a rattling noise is made and sewing cannot continue.
  • Looking under the fabric, there is tangled thread in the bobbin case.


If the upper thread is incorrectly threaded, the upper thread passed through the fabric cannot be firmly pulled up and the upper thread becomes tangled in the bobbin case, causing a rattling noise.



Remedy / Check details


Remove the tangled thread, and correct the upper threading according to the following procedure.


  1. Turn off the sewing machine.

  2. Remove the bobbin cover by sliding it and lift toward you.

  3. Remove the tangled thread. If it cannot be removed, cut the thread with scissors.



  4. If the threads remain in the bobbin case, remove the needle plate, and then remove the threads.
    For details, refer to How do I clean the machine? (Cleaning the race).

    If the bobbin was removed from the bobbin case,  install the bobbin in the bobbin case correctly.
    Refer to How do I install the bobbin wound with thread?


  5. Remove the upper thread from the machine.


  6. Raise the presser foot using the presser foot lever.

    (1) Presser foot lever


  7. Raise the needle by turning the handwheel toward you (counterclockwise) so that the mark on the wheel points up.

    (1) Mark on the wheel

    If the needle is not correctly raised, the sewing machine can not be threaded.


  8. Pull up the spool pin completely.




    If the spool of thread is in the wrong place, or is set incorrectly, the thread may tangle on the spool pin and cause the needle to break.


  9. While holding the thread from the spool with your right hand, pass the thread toward you, in the groove on the thread guide.


    (1) Spring

    Make sure that the spring in the groove catches the thread.


  10. Feed the upper thread as shown in the following illustration.



  11. Make sure you guide the thread through the thread take-up lever from right to left as shown in the following illustration.


    (1) Thread take-up lever

    If the thread take-up lever is lowered, the upper thread can not be wrapped around the thread take-up lever.
    Make sure you raise the needle by turning the handwheel toward you (counterclockwise) so that the mark on the wheel points up.


  12. Put the thread behind the guide above the needle.

    The thread can easily be passed behind the needle bar thread guide by holding the thread in your left hand, then feeding the thread with your right hand.


    (1) Needle bar thread guide


  13. Pass the thread through the eye of the needle from the front to the back.




Drawing up the lower thread


  1. While lightly holding the end of the upper thread, slowly turn the handwheel toward you (counterclockwise) by hand to lower and then raise the needle. 

  2. Pull on the upper thread to draw up the lower thread.
    image (1) Upper thread
    (2) Lower thread


  3. Pull out about 5 cm (2 inches) of both threads and put them toward the back of the machine under the presser foot.


    image (1) Upper thread
    (2) Lower thread

If your question was not answered, have you checked other FAQs?

Have you checked the manuals?

If you need further assistance, please contact Brother customer service:

Related Models

JA1400, JA20, JV1400

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