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Shoppers considering a premium printer may wonder what does a heated bed do on a 3D printer. A heated build plate provides improved bed adhesion and 3D print quality, especially for high-end 3D printers. The increased ambient temperature prevents warping, but that’s not all. Keep reading to learn why heated bed 3D printers are useful for your 3D printing setup.
Before worrying about 3D printer heated beds, you need to make the bed level for successful prints. So, check out our guide to what size feeler gauge for a 3D printer. Without an even print surface, your 3D printing performance will suffer.
If your desktop printer doesn’t feature a heated build surface, a basic glue stick will increase the level of adhesion for your prints.
Your equipment and maintenance are important, and it’s one of the reasons people wonder why is 3D printing so expensive. The truth is 3D printer technology has a wide price range, and 3D printing culture encourages DIY solutions to save money on supplies and basic filaments.
If your 3D printer stops extruding mid-print, the issue likely isn’t the heat bed temperatures. That said, the ambient temp from a heated bed will help extruded filament remain somewhat soft.
3D printer users can install a heating pad to their print surface, or they can buy a high-quality printer that already has a heated print surface. You can also adjust the 3D printer settings to suit a wide range of temperatures depending on the filament you choose.
If you’re wondering why are my 3D prints not sticking, investing in a heated print bed might resolve the adhesion issue.
A heated printing environment prevents the extruded filament from cooling too quickly, so the first layer has time to flatten. Assuming the bed is at an ideal temp for your filament, the imperfections on the first layer will have additional time to completely adhere to the bed.
The temperature difference between freshly extruded filament and the lower layers can cause the print to warp inward. Additionally, a heated bed keeps the filament somewhat soft, preventing the corners and edges from curling upward.
If you do not have a clean printing surface, your 3D printing materials will not adhere to the bed and may warp.
Once the printing process finishes and the heated bed cools, the lowest layer can contract a bit faster. The contraction is a good thing because it makes the print-removal process a bit easier.
STAT: A Global EY study showed that US-based manufacturers increased their use of 3D printing technology by 12% between 2016 and 2019. (source)