Common 3D Printing Problems in 2022

3D Printing is a process that uses computer-aided design (CAD) through a layering technique to make three-dimensional objects. 3D Printing is also called “additive manufacturing.” In 3D Printing, materials like plastics, composites, or bio-materials are layered together to make objects of different shapes, sizes, rigidity, and colors.

What Problems May Arise in 3D Printing?

Problems in 3D Printing can be caused by one of the two things: Nozzle and Filament supply. If you use 3D printers, you’ll often have issues with their filament supply or the hot end (nozzle) itself. It could be as simple as the filament has run out and you need to buy more.

We can categorize the problems in 3D Printing into two categories: technical and non-technical.

Common Technical Problems in 3D Printing

Print seems dangling, and there are strings elsewhere

Simply said, droopy and string prints show that the printer takes in more material than it needs. As a result, it generates more material than is required. It will spill extra print on the printed models.

Basically, your slicing software’s “Flow setting” or “Extrusion multiplier” is set higher than usual.

Check the “Extrusion multiplier” option in your slicer software to solve this 3D printing issue. Make sure you’ve chosen the correct value. If everything seems in order, go to the Flow setting and lower it.

The printer prints nothing

No printing occurs even though you have set up and configured the model in the slicing software. Sending the print over and over again doesn’t work. All you get is a filament spit coming from the printer’s head. Or maybe the model is printing, but the filament extrusion stops. The nozzle keeps going, but it doesn’t print at all.

Filaments are usually visible in the machines, or they can be inside them. It depends on the device. To get rid of the problem, you have to take out the old filament and put in a new one. It’s a good idea to check the filament reel. If there’s no material at all, load in another reel. It will work.

Print comes loose from the print bed, and horizontal cracks are there in the upper parts of the models

The base of the printed object bends upward until it no longer coincides with the print platform. This is called wrapping or bending.

Inevitably, plastics will warp or flex due to their inherent properties. Warping or bending may occur if the plastic cools too soon.

To solve this problem, you’ll need to put the heated platform at a glass transition temperature (this is the point when the plastic begins to melt). Use the slicing software to obtain the suggested filament temperature printed on your spool or package. The initial layer will stay level on the platform if the temperature is adjusted correctly.

The other issue may be the poor calibration of the print platform. The print will be out of level. The only thing that needs to be done to level the pattern is to check the calibration, make sure the bed is aligned, and set the nozzle height to perfection.

The distance between the nozzle and print bed is short

You have worked on the filament, but the printer doesn’t deposit any filament. People might not be far enough away from each other when they print. Your print bed may have been turned away from your nozzle opening by accident. The melted filament will not get out. Your print might skip a few layers, and there are chances that it won’t stick when the filament doesn’t work. As for the worst-case scenario, your printer’s nozzle will have a lot of melted filament, which will make it more likely to get clogged.

You can lower the print bed or uplift the nozzle a little bit to resolve this problem.

Broken or missing internal structures in your print

Having the wrong settings in your slicing software is the most common cause of the prints’ broken or missing internal structure. But a slightly clogged nozzle can also cause this.

Find out the density of the Infill by opening the slicing software. The best value is 20%; if the value is less than this, you’re going to have trouble. If you’re going to print many things, you might want to change this value to make sure that the model you’re about to print gets enough help.

The problematic first layer of the print

This is yet another typical 3D printing problem that many people have encountered. The initial few layers of a print are messy. The most common issues are a non-sticky print or a bottom shell with an incorrect appearance due to undesired lines. Additionally, instead of receiving a fine detail on the bottom of your 3D model, you get a hazy, congealed pattern that does not seem to be the same as the surface design.

When you see hazy and unclear detail on your print, this merely indicates that the print bed temperature is very high. The presence of unwanted lines occurs when the nozzle and bed are too far apart, while blobs are produced when the nozzle and bed are too close together (see Figure 1). Another reason for non-sticky prints is that the mattress wasn’t correctly leveled before the printing process.

Related: The Best 3D Printer Under 2000

Reduce the temperature of the bed. To do this, lower the temperature by five degrees at a time; lower the temperature until you get the required adhesion result while maintaining all of the fine details.

Elephant’s Foot

To figure out what’s going on:

During 3D printing, the base of a model gets pushed outward. This is called an Elephant’s foot. It happens when the bottom of the print bows or curls outward.

Weight from the model’s body can cause it to fall on the base before it has cooled back down to its solid-state.

For the foundation layers to support the upper structure, you must make sure that they get enough cool air. As a result, you need to make sure that you cool the foundation layers just enough. This is because too much cooling can cause them to distort and bend. The best way to deal with 3D printing problems is to lower the temperature of the print platform by five degrees at a time until it’s close enough to the correct temperature to start printing. It could be that your Bottom and Top thicknesses are both set to 0.6mm. You could begin the fan at a slightly lower height than this when you start it.

Melted and out of form print

It’s hard for people to tell when the hot end of their 3D printer is overheating because the filament is very resistant to all kinds of mishaps. The model has been melted down, and on the chimney, you’ll see something that looks like wax being melted.

This is because the hot end is too hot. The temperature of your printer needs to be just right so that the filament can move freely and quickly harden to make things rapidly. This will also make it easier to put the next layer down on a more stable surface. Then, make sure that you have the suitable material set up for your printer before you change the machine’s temperature. If you look at the material settings and everything looks good, then all you might need to do is make a small change to them.

Check to see if the setting for your materials is the right one. Between 180 degrees Celsius and 260 degrees Celsius, the right temperature setting for the material is to be used.

Reduce the temperature at the end of your printer. This can be done with your software or printer’s settings for the hot end. Reduce the temperature by five degrees Celsius, based on how hot the temperature is at the moment,

Taller objects may have cracks

Another problem shared with the 3D printers is that cracks appear on the sides of your models, which is particularly noticeable when you are printing models big in size. Generally speaking, this is regarded as one of the most unexpected complications that might arise throughout the 3D printing process. This is since it is more visible in more oversized prints and that it happens more often while you are not looking.

The root reason for this issue is that the materials cool more quickly in the top layers of your print. The heat created by the print bed does not reach the higher regions of the pattern, resulting in the upper layers being less adherent.

Also read: The Best 3D Printer Under 1000

Increasing the temperature of the extruder by 10 degrees Celsius is recommended. You can find the suggested hot end temperatures on the side of the filament package. Make every effort to maintain the temperature setting on your 3D printer within these parameters.

Common Non-Technical Problems in 3D Printing

Apart from the common technical problems in 3D Printing, a few general issues encircle 3D Printing nowadays.

The costs of products and equipment are skyrocketing

While Printing with plastic is very simple and affordable, metal printers, which are needed by large corporations, may easily cost tens of thousands of dollars each. Even when firms have access to this technology, the manufacturing process is very sluggish and labor-intensive.

See also: Best 3D Printer for Cosplay in 2022

Producing enormous quantities of specific things with 3D Printing is more expensive than conventional production, in contrast to traditional manufacturing. It depends on the number of layers that need to be printed and the printer’s speed when producing an item using 3D Printing, for example (which depends on the rate at which it can extrude the raw material used). Even the most recent metal printers, which employ metal powders, may take days to complete a print since they only create between 5 and 40 centimeters per hour on average.

Increased likelihood of sham 3D models

The more people use 3D Printing, the more likely it is that people will make fake and fake things, and it will be almost impossible to tell the difference in the future. This is a straightforward thing to think about in terms of copyright and quality control.

The limited size of the product

Due to the limited size of print chambers available on current 3D printers, the items created are finite. Anything larger than this will need to be printed in separate sections and assembled when manufacturing is complete. This may result in higher costs and longer production times for more significant pieces since the printer must produce more parts before human labor can connect the parts together.

Environmental issues may arise

3D printing employs plastic filaments to make things. Even though this plastic is high-quality and cheap, the waste that comes from it ends up in the trash. This is against our efforts to cut down on the use of plastic in the world. We can’t rule out the possibility that 3D Printing will be used in the business for a long time. When something is made, it has to be put to use.

Another bad thing about plastic is how much energy it takes to make and use it. It turns out that 3D printers use 50 to 100 times more electricity than injection molding when they make the same-sized item. In addition, it turns out that laser direct metal deposition uses a lot more electricity than other machines that do the same thing.

3D printers of desktop sizes used at home or in the office can release nanosized particles into the air, harmful to people who breathe them. It can be dangerous to use 3D printers that don’t have exhaust ventilation or filters for industrial use. To use them, they must also have good airflow.

Final Thoughts

This article informed you of the common problems in 3D Printing and how to resolve them. Last but not least, every technology has good and bad aspects equally. Scientists and specialists are working their level best to develop 3D printing technologies that are more user-oriented and eco-friendly.

Thanks for reading!

About David Shelton

Besides many test devices, David now has his eighth own 3D printer running and loves to print as a hobby for family, friends, and himself. He has over a decade of experience in 3D printing. He is happy to share his experience with each new article to help all of you regarding your printing queries! In his spare time, he loves to travel and watch obscure cinema. Happy printing!!

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