Vibrating Sound When Printing

Have had my Glowforge for a couple years now, it’s been a great machine with no problems. On my last print though, it just started making this sound , any ideas would be appreciated, thanks.

Sounds like there is something possibly stuck in the exhaust fan on the back or it is damaged. You can eliminate it as a source of the noise by clicking the 3 vertical dots on the top bar of the dashboard and toggling the glowforge air filter attached option on, that will disable the rear exhaust fan. If you run a small print at zero power and the noise is gone that is where i would look.


thanks much! I’ll give that a shot

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Also make sure the fan that sits right behind the print head is clean. When mine got really dirty it would make the whole machine vibrate with all kinds of crazy sounds.

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Hope it works out and you are able to track it down, Luckily if it is the fan you can just remove or disable it then install in inline fan so the loudest part of your machine will then be the steppers :slight_smile: assuming the warranty is no longer around that is.

Yeah it seems to be the rear exhaust fan, I unhooked the hose and it was pretty dirty so cleaned it out and also put the shop vac over the opening to remove any debris. Still the same though and I did tried disabling the fan by toggling the glowforge air filter and it was quiet during that. So wondering if this part can be replaced or other ideas to try like can it be removed, maybe I need to get in there and clean it?

What model of machine do you own? And if it was me and the machine was out of warranty i would probably remove that fan and install a inline fan in the exhaust hose for ease of maintenance and the reduction in noise. Took my machine from the usually jet engine taking off to so quiet i can be in the room on the phone and have there be little to no noise on the other end of the phone. Looking at how your machine is situated might make that an issue tho because you have such a direct route outside, most in line the fans take up ~8 or 10" of length


it’s a Glowforge basic, I have it right next to a window and just have the typical 4" flex hose going straight out the window. I reached out to Glowforge support for any ideas but yes if no luck there, then may need to give this a shot, thanks so much for all your advice!

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If you’ve already gone through the support doc’s fan cleaning process and the gunk is still there, you might try @jules’ fan cleaning process ( linked below). For a basic, the process is a lot easier because the fan is not blocked by the pro’s heat sink.


Being a basic you are in luck :slight_smile: if you wanted to change out that fan is it quite easy compared the the pro. i’m sure you could get a replacement form glowforge as well

hey @alinke2000

I see that the community has provided some good advice on the next best steps.

I have a method you can use to clean your fan.

First, you’ll need to obtain a can of 3M Novec Electronic Degreaser, which you can purchase from Amazon or Digikey.

That page will walk you through the cleaning process. Brief summary:

  1. Turn off and unplug your unit and move it outside. Make sure it’s in a location where it has power and Wi-Fi

  2. Using the fan maintenance page, you’ll be able to turn the fan on

  3. Following all manufacturer’s safety instructions from 3M, spray the degreaser into the fan while it’s running for approximately 5 - 10 seconds, or until the fan is clean.

  4. When you’re done cleaning, turn off your unit to stop the fan, and return it to its usual home. You should now see considerably better performance from your exhaust fan!

Please let us know if you have any questions!

It’s been a little while since I’ve seen any replies on this thread so I’m going to close it. If you still need help with this please either start a new thread or email