How to Change Filament on Ender 3 3D Printer, Step-by-Step Guide

If you’re using the Creality Ender 3 to come up with 3D printed items then you’re probably wondering if you can print using different filament colors. Let us show you how to change filament on Ender 3 especially the steps on how to remove the filament from Ender 3. By learning these crucial steps, you can use this 3D printer more efficiently and safely.

How to change filament on Ender 3

Ender 3 is a pre-assembled, low-cost 3D printer that can produce high-quality prints. It is open source so you can use it to print almost any kind of project and design.

Related: PETG vs PLA

Learning how to change the filament on a 3D printer like the Ender 3 is a basic task. But you need to do this quickly and efficiently especially if your filament has snapped or you want to switch filament types.

  • Turn your Ender 3 printer on
    Power on your Ender 3 3D printer. You will know that the printer is on when you see the printer menu. The Ender 3 has a small LCD screen where you can see the menu and settings. You will know it’s ready when you can see the menu.
  • Choose the correct temperature settings
    From the menu, choose Temperature and then Nozzle. Set the nozzle temperature at 200 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the best temperature to melt the PLA inside the extruder end.
    Click to set the temperature. You can tell that the extruder is heating from the LCD screen.
    Take note that the bed does not heat up as you only set the temperature of the nozzle. 3D printers like the Ender 3 have separate controls for the bed and nozzle temperatures.
  • Give the extruder lever a tight squeeze
    Soon, the nozzle will reach the desired temperature. When this happens, squeeze the lever tightly. The extruder is designed to hold the filament so, pull it out gently from the nozzle. Take note that the end of the filament and the nozzle are very hot and this allows you to pull the filament out of the printer extruder.
    Never pull the filament when the nozzle has not reached its optimum temperature. If you continue pulling, the nozzle may become damaged and the filament might become stuck. A damaged nozzle may not heat up properly and hence will only damage the mechanism.
  • Pull the filament out of the extruder
    Once the desired temperature setting has been met, try to pull the filament from the extruder nozzle.
  • Place the new filament end through the spool holes
    Place the end of the filament through the holes of the spool. After this, you’re ready to top up your Ender 3. Filaments are kept in spools and are carefully packed and vacuum-sealed to avoid water damage.
    Always read the filament temperature changes which are marked on the filament spool. The Ender 3 can work with filaments with 190-230 degrees Centigrade nozzle temperatures and 30 to 60 degrees Centigrade temperatures on the printer bed to enhance adhesion.
  • Feed the filament into the extruder

How to load filament into Ender 3?

Take the end of the new filament and feed this through the extruder. Place the spool on a spool holder to mount it. Locate the extruder clip and hold it down so you can install the new filament. Pass it through the holder and continue until you reach the Teflon Bowden tube. You will know that you’re in the right place when you feel some kind of resistance when you push. When this happens, the filament is now very close to the nozzle and is ready to move through.

Related: Ender 3 Filament Guide

Purge the old filament through the nozzle
Let the old filament pass through the nozzle by going through the settings: Change Filament. Press Change Filament under Prepare on the menu. If there is no menu to automate change filament, go to Move Axis and adjust from 1 mm to 15 to 20 mm to remove old filament more efficiently.
The change filament setting will automatically heat your nozzle to 200 degrees Celsius. The old filament will be purged out and the new one is fed through the extruder. You are now ready to use a newly-changed filament in a 3D printer.

What happens when you run out of Filament Mid-Print?

When you run out of filament during mid-print on an Ender 3, you can pause the printing and replace the old filament with a new one. Just purge any remaining old filament and place the new filament end into the extruder nozzle.

You might also be considering changing the filament color during mid-print. A mid-print switch is done quickly and immediately so there are no noticeable changes, just the color, on the project.

The process is still the same. As you get to the point that you want to change filament colors, pause printing and change the filament. The Ender 3 heats the nozzle to Change Filament. The old filament color is purged and then the extruder begins to feed the new color into the nozzle.

You will know that the new color is passing through the extruder when you see the filament change color. It takes a bit of experience to flawlessly perform quick filament color changes but in time, you’ll be doing this flawlessly.

Comparison Review: Ender 3 vs Ender 3 Pro


Here are the most frequently asked questions about changing the filament on an Ender 3.

How do you deal with an Ender 3 clogged hotend?
To fix a clogged hotend, make sure that the nozzle is set at the right temperature. This will clear any clogs from the hotend.

Where can you purchase Ender 3 nozzle replacement?
You can buy replacement nozzles from authorized Ender 3 dealers and retailers. You can find these dealers online and order a replacement nozzle directly.

Can you use any kind of Ender 3 load filament?
The Ender 3 is compatible with almost all types of load filament. PLA is the most commonly used as it is efficient, versatile, and won’t produce toxic fumes.

Now that you know how to change filament on Ender 3 3D printers, you can quickly and efficiently do this on different tasks. Always use good quality filaments for your Ender 3 and follow these steps closely to get the most out of your 3D printing projects.


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