How often you need to service your machine will depend on it's workload. A machine that is constantly used should be serviced every 12 months, whereas a machine only occasionally used will only need a service every 2-3 years.
Most local sewing retailers will have a service where you can drop off your machine on an allocated day and it will be collected by the mechanic and returned the following week.
Prices will vary from approximately $99 - $120 (AUD) for a basic service which will including adjusting tensions & timing. Parts & major repairs will be on top of this cost. In most cases if the mechanic suggests that something additional needs to be done, you will be notified of the price before they go ahead.
So what can you do in the mean time to keep your machine in great shape and sewing smoothly?
- Most sewing machines & overlockers come with their own little compartment to house a few basic tools including screwdrivers, spanners & a soft brush.
- Make sure the machine is unplugged.
- The most basic DIY machine servicing would include removing the plate that covers the bobbin case with a screwdriver. Either using a vacuum or brush, remove all lint & threads that may be caught up in the crevice around & under the bobbin.
- Open up the needle bar & light cover & clean as above. Change your needle.
- Clean the teeth on the bottom plate on the machine.
- You can add a drop of sewing machine oil to moving parts but don't use to much as it will mark your fabric on the next project. It's best to wipe off all excessive oil with a cloth and then run a scrap piece of fabric through to make sure it sews clean.
Prevention of problems.
- Try to keep your machine in a dust or moisture free area when not in use. A simple cover will help.