Facing problem due to improperly leveled bed on your ender 3/V2/Pro? Having a properly leveled bed on Ender 3 is essential for successful 3D printing. If the build plate isn’t level, the filament won’t stick to it properly and the print will be of poor quality. The good news is that leveling the bed of an Ender 3 (Pro or V2) is relatively easy to do. There are a few different methods that can be used, which I will discuss in this detailed Ender 3/V2/Pro bed leveling guide. With a little patience and some trial and error, you should be able to get your Ender 3 bed perfectly calibrated and produce high-quality prints.
The most common issues that can cause problems with leveling the bed are X Axis sag, bed wobble, and a warped bed. One should also know what to do when bed gets warped, how to level the print bed, etc. on Ender 3 printers. These are common problems that arise while printing with Ender 3/V2/Pro 3D printers.
Let’s get started.
What Does Leveling of 3D printer Bed Consist of?
Making the bed level consists of adjusting how far the nozzle is from the bed surface across the whole build area so that it is always at the same distance. This will help to make sure that the first layer of your print is consistent.
The leveling process itself is simple: you just need to make sure that the bed and the nozzle are at the same distance across the entire bed surface. Ensure that the nozzle isn’t too far or too close from the bed. This is important because if the bed is not level, then the first layer of your print will be incorrect and could cause problems with the rest of the print. Once you have leveled the bed, it’s important to keep an eye on it and periodically adjust it as needed.
How to Level Ender 3 Bed?
Leveling the Ender 3 bed is undoubtedly the hardest part of the 3D printing process, at least for those who are new to it. This is because the print head needs to be level with the build platform in order to produce accurate prints. The first time you level the bed, it may take some trial and error to get it right. But once you do, you’ll be able to do it quickly and reliably.
Note: Before you begin the bed leveling process, it’s important to heat up the bed. The heat will cause the bed to expand, which is something you want to take into account when leveling. If you level the bed cold, it will expand once it heats up during the printing process and get closer to the nozzle. This can affect the height you’ve set it at, so it’s important to level the bed while it’s heated.
Before leveling the bed, always preheat it to the temperature that it needs to be at for the entire printing process. This is important because different materials require different bed temperatures. For example, PLA needs a bed temperature of 60°C, while ABS needs a bed temperature of 110°C. By preheating the bed to the correct temperature, you can ensure that the material will print correctly. Also, remember to re-level the bed every time the bed temperature changes. This will help to ensure that the print quality is consistent.
Below are the steps to Level Ender 3 Bed:
- Firstly, lower the bed to its extreme by adjusting the wheels in counter-clockwise direction.
- Press the knob located next to the Ender 3’s display and go to the “Prepare” menu. Then select “Preheat PLA.” Selecting this option causes the bed and nozzle to get preheated.
Note: The Bed & Nozzle temperature values are determined by the type of filament you are intending to print. So set the temperature values specific to the type of the material.
- Bring the printer to its default home position by clicking on the “Auto Home” option under the “Prepare” menu item.
- Remember to select “Disable Stepper Motors” under the “prepare” menu option. This enables the free movement of the hotend and the bed.
- Next, bring the nozzle exactly above the front-left of the printer. This can be done by moving the bed and the hotend.
- Now bring a small piece of paper and place it on a bed underneath the nozzle.
- Now turn the adjustment wheel clockwise until the paper feels tight enough that it’s slightly gripping the paper, but not so tight that it keeps the paper stuck in place. You’ll then need to move the paper back and forth under the nozzle until you find the spot where it’s tightest. Once you’ve found that spot, you can loosen the adjustment wheel slightly until the paper moves freely again. Repeat this process until the entire bed is level. Once the bed is level, you can begin calibrating the nozzle height.
- Start by sliding the hotend to the right and placing it right on top of the screw on the right corner. Then, place a piece of paper between the bed and the nozzle and turn the wheel counter-clockwise while moving the paper until you feel it gripping slightly.
- Repeat this process for the other two corners on the back of the bed.
- Now re-check the entire bed level once again by going back to the first corner and checking the paper gripping distance between nozzle and the bed.
- Repeat this process on all other 3 corners of the bed and your Ender 3 bed is ready now for printing.
Warped Ender 3 Bed: How to Fix this Common Issue on Ender 3
Most Ender 3’s ship with a warped bed, which can cause many problems. The bed leveling method which I described earlier, will go around the corners only. This leaves the center of the bed lower than the outer portion, which can cause issues.
There are many ways to fix it, some come for free while others incur some cost not high cost.
Level only the “Printing Area” on the bed
The best way to ensure good bed leveling is to imagine a small square in the center of the bed where your object will be printed. Make sure that the bed is level in that area and that the nozzle is the proper distance from the bed. By taking these extra steps, you’ll be able to achieve much better results with your 3D prints.
Simply follow my above bed leveling steps but do this by moving the nozzle to the center of the bed i.e, the smaller area in which the object will be printed.
This bed leveling method is only useful while printing the small objects that occupy only the central surface of the bed.
This method will miserably fail while printing the larger objects as the outer surface of the bed is at a different level as compared to center of the bed. This squishes the first layer of the filament deposits and leads to foundation failure.
Manual Mesh Method Of Leveling The Bed
Manual mesh bed leveling is a process of creating a mesh model of your bed in order to compensate for an uneven bed surface. The mesh model is created by lowering or raising the nozzle while printing the first layer.
This can be done in the firmware by changing the Z Offset value. The downside of this method is that it can be time-consuming, and it requires you to have a good understanding of your printer’s firmware. If you’re not comfortable with making changes to your firmware, it’s probably best to stick with another leveling method.
However, manual mesh bed leveling can be a useful tool for experienced users who have an uneven bed surface.
Use A Glass Bed
If you have a 3D printer, then you know that having a level build surface is essential for getting good prints. Unfortunately, many 3D printers come with subpar build surfaces that can warp over time, making it difficult to get consistent results.
One solution is to install a glass bed. Glass is much more durable than the standard build surface, so it won’t warp as easily. In addition, glass provides a smoother surface for printing, which can lead to better results.
The only downside is that you will need to adjust the Z offset after installation, but this is a small price to pay for the improved print quality.
The next thing you want to do is install a glass bed. I recommend using borosilicate glass because it has a low expansion rate and thus warping won’t be as much of an issue. It’s also very strong and can withstand high temperatures, which is essential since we’ll be heating the bed up to around 100C.
Another advantage of using glass is that it provides a flat surface to print on. This is important because if your build surface is warped, it can cause your prints to come out deformed.
I have had great success using this glass bed, but there are a few things you need to be aware of before making the switch.
First, the glass bed will add a couple millimeters to your build surface, so you’ll need to adjust the Z offset by manually moving the Limit Switch Plate up.
Second, the glass bed can make it challenging to remove prints, so I recommend using masking tape or painters tape on top of the glass. Printing on tape will also help with adhesion.
Finally, be sure to use a Pyrex or borosilicate glass for your glass bed – regular glass can shatter when heated. If you keep these things in mind, switching to a glass bed can give you much better results.
Make Use Of Bed Leveling Sensor
Installing an automatic bed leveling sensor, like the BLTouch, is a great way to improve the quality of your prints. The sensor will check the distance between the nozzle and the bed at multiple locations and use that information to set the distance accordingly throughout the entire build surface. This means you’ll never have to manually level the bed again and reduce the number of failed prints and make it easier to get consistent results. If you ever decide to go this route, you won’t regret it!
How to Simplify The Bed Leveling Process and Make it Easy?
There are a few ways to make bed leveling easier.
One is to change the springs on the leveling screws. The stock springs that come with the Ender 3 aren’t very stiff and need to be replaced. Yellow springs work well and only need to be changed once every 20 prints or so.
Another way to ease the bed leveling process is to install an automatic bed leveling (ABL) system. This will take all the guesswork out of leveling the bed and ensure that every print is of the highest quality.
Be sure to check that your Ender 3 printer is not suffering from any other issues that could affect bed leveling, such as a wobbly frame or uneven feet. If everything else looks good, then your next step should be to change the springs underneath the bed. This will help to keep the bed level for much longer.
Finally, when removing a print from the bed, be sure to do it gently so as not to throw off the entire bed level. By following these simple tips, you can keep your Ender 3 running smoothly and produce high-quality prints.
Whenever you want to relevel the bed, start in the corners and then work your way toward the center. This allows you to fine-tune the distance between the nozzle and the bed, which is essential for getting a good print.
Another option is to get an Automatic Bed Leveling sensor, which will take care of this task for you. Whichever method you choose, bed leveling is an important part of maintaining your Ender 3 and ensuring that it produces high-quality prints.
I am Ganesh Divte. I work as a Quality Assurance Engineer at Dhruvtara WireTech PVT LTD. I have experience in SLS, DMSL, FDM, and SLA additive manufacturing processes. I am very enthusiastic about additive manufacturing and its potential to change the way we manufacture products. I believe that Additive Manufacturing has the potential to revolutionize the manufacturing industry and make it more efficient and sustainable.