How to Fix Over Extrusion in 3D Printing? [8 Ways]
In 3D printing, over extrusion is a common issue. However, this problem can result in incorrect dimensions, appearance, and quality of the prints. If not addressed on time, 3D printer over extrusion will increase printing costs and material waste. In this case, it is important to know what causes 3D printing over extrusion and how to fix it. Therefore, this article has delved into the root causes and provided workable solutions to help you achieve better results in 3D printing.
What Is 3D Printing over Extrusion?
Over extrusion in 3D printing refers to an excessive amount of filament emitted from the 3D printer nozzle onto the build bed. This issue typically has something to do with improper settings of parameters in 3D printers, such as printing temperature and speed. Despite its common occurrence, over extrusion often comes with problems like oozing, blobs, stringing, and jams, impacting the size and quality of the printed object. It is worth noting that almost all 3D printers encounter this issue, which is not tied to specific hardware or filament.
What Causes 3D Printing over Extrusion?
As mentioned earlier, the 3D printing setup is the primary cause when it comes to over extrusion of 3D printers. In specific terms, however, three potential printing parameters can directly lead to this issue.
- Excessive Printing Temperature
If the temperature setting of the 3D printer is too high for the filament you are using, it can cause the filament to melt too quickly. In this case, the nozzle can lose control over the flow rate, leading to over-extrusion and oozing.
- Improper Filament Diameter
If the filament diameter is smaller than that of the print nozzle, the filament will be extruded too quickly from the nozzle, causing 3D printing over extrusion. Similarly, if the filament diameter is set up in the slicer incorrectly, it can also result in an improper flow rate and over extrusion.
- Incorrect Flow Rate Calibration
Flow rate denotes the quantity of material extruded per second, determined by factors of print speed, nozzle size, and layer height. Excessive flow rate settings can cause an overload of filament passing through the nozzle, causing over extruding in 3D printers.
How to Fix over Extrusion 3D Printing?
Now that we understand the association between 3D printer over extrusion and printing temperature, filament diameter, and flow rate, it is possible to employ targeted remedies. Hence, this part has compiled 8 workable fixes. Check them all and try to avoid repetitive occurrences of this issue.
Adjust Extrusion Multiplier
The extrusion multiplier setting controls the filament flow rate. Currently, most slicers default the extrusion multiplier to 100% (or 1). To address over extrusion, you can gradually decrease this value by 2.5% to 5% increments. However, considering the material and setting variations in each print, you can also measure the filament to determine the extrusion multiplier. Start by measuring 120 millimeters along the filament from the nozzle top and mark this length. Then, allow the 3D printer to extrude 100 millimeters of filament. After that, measure the filament again. If the 3D printer extrudes 104 millimeters, you need to reduce the extrusion multiplier by 4%.
Lower Print Temperature
To address 3D print over extrusion, it's essential to lower and determine the appropriate temperature. However, the optimal printing temperature can vary depending on the type of filament being used. You can refer to the common filament below:
- For PLA: 190°C ~ 220°C
- For ABS: 230°C ~ 260°C
- For PETG: 210°C ~ 250°C
It's generally suggested to reduce the printing temperature in 5°C increments and ensure not to decrease it excessively, as this may result in under-extrusion, leading to insufficient material flow.
Check Filament Diameter
The common filament diameters are 1.75 mm, 2.85 mm, and 3 mm. If the actual diameter during printing is thinner than the specifications, it can be beneficial to manually check the filament diameter. Take a digital caliper to measure the filament diameter at five different points and calculate the average. Then, enter this measured value into the filament settings in the printer software to calibrate the printing diameter.
Check Worn Nozzle
Keeping the nozzle clean and in good condition is beneficial to avoid 3D printing over extrusion. However, if the current nozzle begins to wear, it is advisable to replace it promptly. With prolonged use, the worn nozzle diameter increases and can cause a higher filament output during printing. This will aggravate the occurrence of over extrusion.
Set Proper Nozzle Diameter
The standard aperture of a 3D printer nozzle is 0.4 mm, and the nozzle can be replaced with different sizes. In general, the nozzle diameter can range from a minimum of 0.1 mm to a maximum of 2 mm. However, the choice of nozzle diameter needs to be considered in line with the filament diameter to ensure smooth and non-squeezed extrusion.
Increase 3D Printer Moving Speed
Slow movement speed can result in defects like blobs and stringing. Therefore, increasing the moving speed of the 3D printer can alleviate over extrusion in 3D printing. However, it is crucial to ensure that the speed acceleration aligns with the aforementioned parameters to guarantee filament cooling. Additionally, the 3D printing speeds for the bottom and top layers often vary and may need adjustments based on actual requirements.
The majority of 3D printers today include a retraction feature. Essentially, the retraction setting reverses the rotation of the gears inside the hot end to halt the extrusion. This helps to relieve internal pressure, preventing excess filament from oozing and effectively solving 3D printer over extrusion. If you haven't enabled retraction yet, consider turning on this feature.
Change a 3D Printer
If the above methods of parameter adjustment and component replacement fail to resolve the 3D printer over extrusion, you may need to think about whether the existing 3D printer is outdated or faulty and requires a new one. When selecting a new 3D printer, it is important to consider precision and stability to minimize occurrences of over extrusion.
The AnkerMake M5 3D Printer and AnkerMake M5C 3D Printer are good choices, both known for their high precision, capable of printing details with accuracy up to 0.1 millimeters. Furthermore, the extrusion flows of both models are 35 mm³/s and 24 mm³/s respectively, falling within the moderate extrusion speed range. This can help you reduce the likelihood of over-extrusion in 3D printing to a certain extent.
Now, you are familiar with the definition and causes of the 3D printer over extrusion, as well as the solutions. But prevention remains the best course of action. Opting for a high-performance 3D printer and meticulously adjusting print parameters each time can significantly reduce the occurrence of over-extrusion in 3D printing.
How to fix over extrusion on the first layers?
In addition to the previously mentioned fixes, such as adjusting print temperature, calibrating filament diameter, and modifying the extrusion multiplier, it's important to ensure proper bed leveling. This will facilitate smooth filament adhesion and help address over-extrusion issues on the first layers. Moreover, pay attention to the height between the nozzle and the print bed, as being too close can lead to 3D printing over extrusion.
Can printer hardware contribute to over-extrusion?
Yes, hardware issues in the printer can contribute to over-extrusion. Problems of extruder wear, poor extruder design, or loose components will cause inconsistent extrusion. Furthermore, uneven print beds, improperly calibrated nozzles, or unstable printer structures can also lead to over-extrusion. Therefore, regular inspection and maintenance of printer hardware to ensure proper functionality is crucial in preventing over-extrusion of 3D printers.
How long does the extruder last?
The lifespan of an extruder is influenced by various factors, including usage frequency, printing materials, printing parameters, and maintenance. generally, with proper upkeep, common extruders made of brass, stainless steel, or ceramic can endure for several thousand to tens of thousands of hours.