Since making its appearance in the early 2000’s, the 3D printer has grown in popularity massively. Until recently 3D printers were mostly used by professionals, however, they are slowly becoming a household staple. In order to extend the life of your 3D printer and facilitate your printing, it is important to carry out regular 3D printer maintenance and cleaning!
Remember to check your printer’s status before and after each use. Pampering your printer is the best way to ensure it functions to the best of its ability, and to avoid any future faults emerging.
Not sure how to give your 3D printer some servicing and maintenance TLC? Discover our top tips below to get you started. From lubricating the guide rods to cleaning the trays – with a little help from WD-40® – you will be well on your way!
How to Carry out 3D Printer Guide Rod Maintenance
To kick off your maintenance routine, you should start by maintaining your printers guide rods. For this, our WD-40® Anti-Friction Dry PTFE Lubricant Spray has proven its worth! It’s perfect for lubricating the rods, without leaving a greasy film. Using the Smart Straw applicator, spray all the rods and make sure to place a cloth underneath to stop the product from moving.
How to Check What 3D Printer Maintenance Needs Carrying Out
Once you have successfully cleaned the guide rods, you should check the strength of the 3D printer’s frame. Start by tightening all the screws, which can often become loose due to the vibrations. You can also check the printers tension belts, ensuring they aren’t too tight or loose. Finally, check the connections and wires, which can also loosen or disconnect over time due to the vibrations.
How to Clean 3D Printers Extruder
Maintaining your 3D printer also involves cleaning elements such as the extruder, the nozzle, and the tray. Begin by heating the nozzle to the right temperature and remove all the filament from the printer. Turn the extruder motor manually and clean the grooves of the extruder gear, allowing plastic residues to be removed. Finally, use a compressed air bomb to blow into the gears of the extruder to release any plastic or dust residues that could interfere with the printer’s functions.
How to Clean the 3D Printers Nozzle
Now that your extruder is back in tip top condition, it is important clean the nozzle thoroughly. To do this, heat the nozzle again to the right temperature to melt the plastic. If necessary, pour a small amount of plastic to check that it flows straight. If this still doesn’t work, it may be because your nozzle is congested. To clean this, use a very fine tool and wipe the inside of the nozzle. Alternatively, you can disassemble the nozzle and soak it in acetone to dissolve the clogged plastic.
Clean and Adjust the Printers Tray
Wrap up your printer’s maintenance by cleaning the tray. For a metal tray, simply check the masking tape is intact and change it if necessary. For a glass tray, use a specialised cleaning product, or a simple window cleaner and a cloth.
So, there you have it. A clean and well-maintained 3D printer ready for your next printing job! To find out more about how WD-40® can help maintain your appliances check out our other blogs here. You will be amazed at all the other WD-40® uses from polishing gold jewelry to removing bath sealant!