Estimated 20 hours of use and the air filter is already clogged

I was so excited to get my glowforge Pro in the beginning of July. I was spending so much money to begin with I thought what the heck I paid $1000 more for the air filter. After what I estimate is about 20 hours of engraving and cutting mostly wood. The filter is already clogged. I don’t see anything out there on how to clean this filter to get some more extended life out of it. But I believe $250 for only 20 hours is incredibly excessive. It wasn’t till after I made my purchase but I started to see in the communities how awful people’s experiences have been with this filter. How can a company that prides themselves on such a well designed product a fantastic interface and usability decided to give us this piece of crap add-on for $1000. Currently in the middle of a project that should only take a half an hour but the unit keep stopping every two minutes to cool down. It smells very smoky I’m starting to get the filter beep and the smoke is not evacuating the machine very well. Purchased an in-line fan and will be connecting it and renting it out the window. (Again an additional cost) Id love to send this unit back (The air filter) This particular add-on reflects very poorly on your company.

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Filter use time is standard across the industry (and you’ll note that no manufacturer gives you an actual time - some use sensors, some just say “when it smells bad change it”). There’s no way for them to tell you how long it’ll take because they cannot know what you are cutting. If you cut mostly acrylic your filter will be good for WAY longer than any sort of wood.

You can spend $5000 on a filter, and still have to replace the cartridges in 6 months presuming you do maintenance constantly.

Honestly unless you absolutely cannot vent to outside there’s no reason to use the filter.

Clearly you needed to do more research, but you’ll probably find that the choice is WAY more money up front for a little more time on the back end.

Presuming you read the manual and are keeping the filter running after your cuts are done for the recommended amount of time these are the estimates :glowforge: provides:


I have read the manual and have been following the recommended procedures… I think $5000 on a filter for a $6000 machine??? Really. I didn’t come at this on a budget. I bought the pro and the filter. For the first three weeks or so I almost felt like coming to those who are complaining but I’ve had absolutely no problem with mine and it was working wonderful. But I have a sneaky suspicion that this would come back to bite me in the butt. I understand how no manufacture can give you data on how long your filter will last because as you stated they have no idea what you’ve been cutting and how much you say you’re putting through it. But 20 hours is ridiculous. And yes I definitely have the option of renting out the window. But I was attracted by the claims that it helped reduce noise. Watch the video with the CEO and his praise of how much quieter it is. Again the glow Forge is a well-designed beautiful looking machine of which it’s ease-of-use is paramount over any other laser device. You can’t tell me the air filter and all of the problems so many people have had is not tarnishing the reputation of the company. (P.S. Our family are huge Anaheim ducks fans!!!)

This is the reality of cutting or engraving material by vaporizing it. Airborne particles clog filters. It’s not a Glowforge issue. The filter works exactly as intended. They even sold a third-party version before theirs was available, and theirs performs slightly better.


Get it… I get all the technical aspects of this. But here’s “MY” reality, I bought a $1000 add-on accessory to my Glowforge. (Branded and sold by the company) Considering it only lasted three months with only 20 hours of operation I’m looking at over $1000 a year just to keep that filter running. I know that you read a lot of the social media forms out there, I am certainly not the only one who has been completely unsatisfied with this product. I know I am incredibly fortunate that $1000 doesn’t put me in a place of financial hardship. (That’s not necessarily the case for a lot of people) You say this is not a Glowforge issue. I say anybody who buys from Glowforge whether it’s a printer, supplies or add-on parts that is unsatisfied with the performance of that product is definitely a Glowforge issue. At this point I’m not willing to just settle for it being a life lesson, $1000 boat anchor or spend $250 every 2 to 3 months. I will install my Infiniti in-line fan tomorrow morning do a thorough cleaning of my printer and Hopefully get back to "making magical things at the push of a button. I do think both of you for your thoughts and feedback.

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Lots of folks have had to deal with this problem. If you avoid Oak, and any thing with MDF you can get many times more use out of it. Nothing is actually magic and particle build up when using HEPA filters is universal and they are not cheap per area no mater what you get.

I got a Blu-Dry that is made for clearing a building after a fire, and due to sheer volume the machines are cheaper by a bit, but the HEPA filters are still $250. and while the are capable of handling the volume of a Glowforge the opening is 12" and you have to size that to 4".

On the plus side you can probably sell yours, either to someone else with a Glowforge, or anyone on the west coast with a house full of smoke, If the fires are now dying down they will be back next year. The Glowforge filter is way quieter than the Blu-Dri.

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@Bmundy Thank you for bringing your concerns to our attention. Since this has to do with your personal account, we will follow up with you through email. I’m going to close this topic.

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