Ender 3 Extruder Skipping:Probable Causes with Quick Fixes!

Let’s face it! Ender 3 extruder skipping is a bummer these days, especially when you load the filament improperly into the extruder barrel. So, what should you do when your Ender 3 Extruder is skipping in an unusual way?

Ender 3 has a skipping problem due to extrusion issues, which may occur if you use it too fast or too slow speed. Because of the extremely low or high temperature, extruder skipping issues may appear as well.

Today I’m describing the most common causes along with the perfect solution to get rid of this problem. Any of them can be efficient to help you reach your goal. So, ready to dive in?

Why is My Ender 3 Extruder Skipping – 9 Causes behind It:

Skipping is an issue in extruders that has been a perennial problem for the Ender 3 worldwide and sometimes occurs uncontrollably. Ender 3 extruder clicking can lead to poor quality prints, broken parts, and in worst cases, warping or even melting your print.

1. Very High or Low Temperature 

If the extruder is overheating and the temperature rises, it can cause the extruder to skip in certain circumstances. When you do not use a heated bed, and you are using an all-metal build plate, it may be a common issue.

2. Clogged or Hot Nozzle 

Nozzle is the part of the extruder where plastic goes in and comes out. The nozzle’s safe temperature should be 240 degrees Celsius. Most times, an excessively hot nozzle can skip the extruder. A bad nozzle can cause a print to stick and not come home after slicing.​

If the nozzle temperature is good and the extruder skips when you are done printing, it may be blocking the nozzle. It can cause warping. Nozzle blocks with the extruder by leaving a lot of plastic left in the hotend. If you have a warped print bed and extrude plastic, then fix that with a good bed leveling technique.​

3. Invert Y-Axis Stepper Motor

Your Ender 3 extruder motor that is upside down can cause electrical resistance and friction, causing an extruder to skip on an Ender 3. Make sure your stepper pins are straight if they are crooked. Or if you have a misalignment, it may cause your Extruder to skip.

4. Close or Far Bed to the Extruder

The distance from the bed to the extruder head is highly dependent on the model of the printer. Your 3D printer extruder may skip deforming your print if your bedding is too close when extruding.

If your bed has a minimum gap of less than 4mm, this can cause your hotend to dry out too quickly and cause skipping issues. It may also lead to warping.

5. Extruder Thread Not Properly Engaged

Extruder Skipping of Ender 3 occurs because your extruder thread may not engage properly. Ensure that you plug the motor in tightly and fully plugged into the proper socket. Sometimes motors lose contact with the inside of sockets where there is no wiring, causing them to lose power or not work correctly.

It’s possible that your gear has been damaged and thus causing your printer to skip. If your Ender 3 extruder motor not working, the gears may be either stripped or melted due to excessive heat.

6. Skipped Filaments Cause Warping To Occur

When you skip a lot of filaments from a spool, it could cause warping issues or damage the hotend. Forcing material inside with such pressure over a solid block can harm an extruder and cause extruder clicking Ender 3 problems overall.

7. Extruder Arm and Spring Spacer Issues 

Some Ender 3 owners have reported that their extruder arms are missing the spacer between the arm and spring. It can cause your spool holder to become distorted, causing an issue with your filament feed. You can make a new spacer out of PTFE tape or build one yourself.

8. Extruder Spring Problems

The extruder needs to have a strong spring to ensure that it can push back. It can happen when the filament has pushed through the nozzle. If you have to skip issues, try taking out your spring and seeing if that fixes skipping issue.

It may lead to some filament jamming as well, but at least you will know if this is related to your skipping issue or not.

9. Stepper Driver Issues

Make sure you have set Spindle Speed correctly and use the correct stepper drivers for your specific USB port. If there’s still plastic in your hotend when you’ve completed the printing, it is most likely an issue with your extruder. 

How to Fix the Problems?

Before attempting any fixes, follow these ways carefully. If some ways fail, try another way:

Level Your 3D Printer Bed

Move the extruder to the side of the print bed and use a flat, level surface. Level your bed, such as a sheet of paper, to align it correctly over your print bed. If you have not leveled your printer, you may need to adjust the plate’s height by tightening or loosening screws.

Adjusting Extruder Height

You should adjust the extruder height. The distance between the hotend nozzle and print surface should be less than 0.06 mm to 0.2 mm. If this distance is greater than 0.2 mm, your hotend may dry out, causing your printer to skip and warp upwards. 

When your plate is not level with your printer’s build plate, you can adjust it by loosening each of the 4 bolts until the tray touches one corner. Once you solve it, re-tighten each bolt until it touches all four corners. You can now re-install the extruder and continue printing. 

Clean the Nozzle

To fix this issue, you first need to ensure that there isn’t any debris stuck inside your nozzle. You should do this about once a week. Disconnect your printer from power and the computer.

Remove the filament and replace it with a new filament setting it up. Clean the nozzle with a wet cloth or alcohol paper towel when it is hot.

Print In a Standard Speed

If you have a DLP or SLA printer, you can use a standard or normal speed of around 20mm/s to 35 mm/s. when you need to speed up, you can allow a maximum speed of 720 mm/s. It can help avoid filament from getting caught while traveling through your extruder and ruining the print.

Make Voltage High of the Stepper Motor 

If you have some issue with the voltage of your stepper motor, you may not have adequate power. It prohibits the coming pressure needed while extruding. If you face it, you have to go to the control panel and find the connection to the extruder motor with the mainboard. 

Then you should open the connector and observe that the resistor may look like the head of the screw of Phillips. When you turn it clockwise, it will increase the voltage to the motor.

Furthermore, it will help you with juice to force the filament out. Don’t try it first as the motor is calibrated well, so you can try this method when nothing works.

Check the Temperature

If you are using a heated bed, then the temperature of your bed may be too high. Skipping can occur because the extruder may preheat the plastic, which will cause poor 3d print skipped layers to lay down on the print. When feeling the temperature is too low, try to increase an additional 5 degrees Celsius temperature until getting a better result.

Replace the Extruder

If you have tried all the extruder skipping steps and still have an issue, then it is time to look at your extruder. When you simply want to replace the old extruder with a new one that does not require any modifications. 

But if you have made some modifications to your new extruder, like an aftermarket one, you may just need to re-calibrate your configuration. By adjusting the thermistor settings, you can do it.

Insert New Gears

If your extruder does not work, then your gears may need replacing. The easiest way is doing a test print. If you are using an aluminum extruder, you will want to ensure that your filament comes out perfectly straight with no gaps.

Set your printer’s temperature to 200 degrees celsius and add some oil where the gears are supposed to start up against. It is just a basic guide on troubleshooting most issues when your printer won’t work properly. If you do not have an accurate result, you should insert a new gear. 

Replace PTFE Tube

To fix this, you can just remove it from its place by pressing down on each side gently with a screwdriver. Then, gently pull it out from the top until you can see the small hole at each end. Use some pliers to remove any clogs or other materials that might be stuck in there. It includes any parts that may have dislodged or fallen off during shipping.

After doing this, simply press down on both ends of the PTFE with a screwdriver until it sits flush against your nozzle again.

Wrapping Up!

The Ender 3 extruder skipping issue is a real problem you are experiencing. But luckily, this article has provided you with enough information to troubleshoot and fix the issue yourself. If you’re still unable to fix it, contact the manufacturer or any technician, and feel free to reach out for help.

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