A 3D printer failing to turn on is one of the most frustrating issues you can face. Before you panic and assume the worst, it is important to understand that this may be due to several reasons. That is why I wrote this article to help you troubleshoot and fix a 3D printer that refuses to power up.
To fix a 3D printer not turning on, leave it plugged in and turned on for a while, set the voltage switch on the Power Supply Unit correctly, and replace faulty power cables and plugs. If this fails to solve the problem, reset the firmware, change the MicroSD card, and replace the Power Supply Unit.
This is a basic explanation. I will provide more details in the article, so continue reading to learn more.
How to Fix 3D Printer Not Turning On
Below are some of the methods to fix a 3D printer that fails to turn on:
- Use a different socket or replace faulty sockets
- Leave the 3D printer plugged in and turned on
- Set the voltage switch on the Power Supply Unit correctly
- Replace faulty power cables, adaptors, and plugs
- Replace a blown-out fuse
- Get a new Power Supply Unit
- Reset the firmware
- Replace a corrupted MicroSD card
- Check the mainboard
1. Use a Different Socket or Replace Faulty Sockets
Using a different socket is one simple way to fix your 3D printer not turning on. Most people forget that a faulty socket cannot deliver power to your 3D printer. So, before tinkering with your 3D printer, plug it into a different power outlet to see if it will come on.
If your printer comes on in the new outlet, it indicates that the previous socket was faulty. However, if it doesn’t, you can focus your troubleshooting efforts on the printer.
A user said that having a faulty socket might cause your 3D printer to fail to turn on. He said you could test if the socket was functional by plugging in a lamp. If the socket is faulty, you can switch to a different one.
2. Leave the 3D Printer Plugged In and Turned On
Sometimes, electronic devices, including 3D printers, experience power surges or temporary glitches that can cause them to become unresponsive. A surprisingly effective method to fix this is to leave your 3D printer plugged into your power outlet and turned on for a few minutes.
This will remove any residual charge and allow the 3D printer to reset, resolving minor power-related issues.
One user said two of his printers were not turning on. He left the switch in the ON position for a long time as he went to grab a spare power supply. However, to his surprise, both printers were on when he returned.
He said both printers probably needed time to build up power and recommended anyone with the same issue to leave their plugged in and turned on.
3. Set the Voltage Switch on the Power Supply Unit Correctly
Another way to fix a 3D printer that doesn’t turn on is to set the voltage switch on the Power Supply Unit of your 3D printer correctly. Depending on your region, 3D printers normally allow you to switch between 115/120V and 220/230V.
Setting an incorrect voltage can prevent the 3D printer from turning on or even damage it due to less or excessive power supply. So, you should ensure that the voltage switch is set to match the power supply in your region.
One user couldn’t get his Ender 3 Pro to turn on, no matter what he did. Several people advised him to check his mains power supply switch and set it to 115V if he was in the US. This is because turning his printer on with the wrong setting could potentially damage things.
Another user who couldn’t get his Ender 3 V2 to turn on was advised to use a flathead screwdriver to adjust the voltage selector in the back from 230V to 120V if he was based in the USA.
Check out this Craftsman Flathead Screwdriver set that you can find on Amazon.
Here is a video that shows how you can set the voltage switch of an Ender 3 to 110/120V to fix turning-on problems.
4. Replace Faulty Power Cables, Adaptors, and Plugs
Another method of fixing a 3D printer that doesn’t power up is to replace faulty power cables, adaptors, plugs, and connectors. These damaged components disrupt the power supply to your 3D printer, causing it to fail to turn on.
Inspect the power cables and plugs for any visible damage, and if any of them are damaged, replace them to restore a stable power connection.
One user just set up his first printer, an Elegoo Neptune 3 Pro, and after plugging it in and turning it on, it failed to power on.
However, after replacing the printer’s power supply cable with a PSU cable from his old computer, it worked and turned on his printer (both cables had the same voltage and ampere ratings).
5. Replace a Blown-Out Fuse
Replacing a blown-out fuse is crucial to getting your 3D printer to turn on. This is because the fuse protects the 3D printer against power surges and electrical faults. The power supply can be disrupted without it, preventing it from turning on.
The fuse is normally located near the power input of your printer. To check it, unplug the printer and carefully remove the fuse holder. A broken or disconnected wire inside the fuse shows that it is blown out and needs to be replaced with a fuse of the same rating.
A user with an Anycubic Vyper said it failed to turn on after his last print. He tried changing the power cord, using another socket, and checking the voltage, but it didn’t help.
Someone told him to unplug the fuse and see if the bridge looked broken or if the terminals that plug into the board looked burnt or off-color. If so, he needed to replace it with a new one from Amazon.
He added that a power surge could blow the fuse if you don’t use your 3D printer for a week. Additionally, he recommended a surge protector to prevent the fuse from blowing out in the future.
Check out this Power Surge Protector with 13 Outlets on Amazon, which would be perfect.
This video demonstrates how you can replace the fuse of an Ender 3 Max.
6. Get a New Power Supply Unit
The Power Supply Unit (PSU) is responsible for converting the incoming power into the correct voltage levels for your printer’s components. So, if your 3D printer refuses to turn on, there is a good chance it has malfunctioned and needs replacing.
Installing a new compatible and functional PSU will ensure your printer has the power to turn on.
One user said the CR-10 he bought failed to turn on. After opening it up and investigating, he realized the power supply was broken and failed to put out the proper DC voltage. He ordered a new one from Amazon, and that fixed his issue.
Another user whose Ender 3 failed to turn on was advised to check the power supply terminals using a voltmeter. If the power supply wasn’t putting out a steady 24V, then it was broken. He recommended getting a Meanwell Power Supply on Amazon.
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This video shows how you can replace the stock Ender 3 power supply with a Mean Well Power Supply from TH3D.
7. Reset the Firmware
If you’ve established that enough power is getting to your 3D printer, then the next thing you should do to resolve your problem is to perform a firmware reset. This is because corrupted firmware will prevent your printer from turning on correctly.
To reset the firmware of a Prusa MK4, go to the LCD menu > Settings > System > Factory Reset. You can also reinstall a different firmware that is not outdated or more compatible with your 3D printer to fix issues of your 3D printer not turning on.
One user with an Artillery Hornet 3D printer said the screen went black and failed to turn on. Someone advised him to reset the firmware because a good factory reset could fix weird bugs that prevent the printer from turning on.
8. Replace a Corrupted MicroSD Card
A corrupted or damaged MicroSD card can prevent your 3D printer from functioning properly. To resolve this, replace it with a new or working MicroSD card to enable the printer to properly access and execute the firmware.
One user said that inserting a corrupt MicroSD card into the printer could cause your printer to fail to turn on. The solution would be to replace it with another one, load the firmware afresh, and plug it into the printer.
9. Check the Mainboard
If all previous troubleshooting steps fail to resolve the issue, there might be a problem with the mainboard, and you may need to replace it. One indicator of a failed mainboard is the power supply fan spinning but other components failing to switch on.
You can begin by unplugging your printer and visually inspecting it for any signs of damage. If you find any obvious physical damage, note it, as it may need repair or replacement. Ensure all the wires are securely plugged into the appropriate ports on the mainboard.
If you find any damaged wire, replace it because it might prevent power transmission to the 3D printer. For a switched-out or loose connection, reseat the wires correctly and secure them in place.
To perform more in-depth testing, you can use a multimeter to identify any breaks in the circuit and determine exactly where the problem is.
One user whose Anycubic Vyper wasn’t powering up said that after replacing the mainboard and power supply, his printer started to work like a charm.
While replacing the mainboard, he noticed the connections glued onto the mainboard had some residue that had leaked onto the board.
Another user said it was worth noting that the wires that go into the mainboard use screw connectors that need to be in an “open” position at the top before inserting them.
He added that many people incorrectly insert the wires into these types of terminals over the years (they trap them underneath rather than on top), and this causes them to malfunction. A user with an Ender 3 that couldn’t turn on applied this fix, and it worked great.
Check out this tutorial by Creality After-Sale on how to do an Ender 3 S1 Pro mainboard replacement.