What are Your thoughts on Glowforge service?

Is Glowforge Service Up to Par?

I am starting this thread in the hopes of having a discussion to hear your thoughts about Glowforge customer service and if it really is at par for the price we pay for these printers?

Without being overly long winded, I belive that a Glowforge is a mid-high end product. I have reached this conclusion due to 2 reasons:

  1. The price point falls between the cheap chineese lasers and the more expensive ones growing businesses buy

  2. The Glowforge is purchased by people from many walks of life, unlike a Ferrari or Bugatti. Hence it is fair to state that for a vast majority, dropping $2.5 - $6k on a purchase is a notable purchase.

Given the price segmentation of the product into a mid-high category, one would only hope for ‘premium’ customer support, especially for a company based here in the USA.

From reading posts on the forum, social network groups and through personal experience I am left with the impression that service is lackluster at best. There is no number to call, emails go unanswered for long periods in between and there is no option to ‘message’ or ‘chat’ live with an employee. The exception ofcourse is if you want to buy a Glowforge, the business has certainly prioritized customer outreach to leads and getting on a call with someone is only a few clicks away.

In my experience, my Glowforge business had taken off recently and given that the product is my means for creating product and then selling, having the printer go down is basically like closing my doors (albeit temporarily).

I contacted support about the Glowforge on this forum, and even pro actively made videos and troubleshooted to save steps when i finally got a reply. Initially I was pleasantly surprised to see a response from none other than Dan Shapiro himself. The team reached out the next day and we have had Several emails back and forth between now and then. But responses are painfully slow and there is no way to tell if or when someone will respond.

Loosing a source of income can be terrible, but loosing it during Covid with the loss of jobs around the country and it makes it that much more devastating (what about people that lost a job and this was now their primary source of income till it broke).

Not only is our Pro (only a few months old) being replaced by a refurbished unit, but it is clear that the company puts cases like ours on the ‘back burner’. I say this because the other day someone posted about ordering a GF on Monday and it showing up on Wednesday (virtually overnight).

Its easy to tell that Glowforge is doing well and i would be the first to say that i am glad for the success they have built because it truly is a Magical product but the catch is - it has to work. As someone with experience managing teams that respond to customers through various forums round the clock I can tell you its never easy, but its always worth it. You can replicate a product, but never the ‘quality of service’ a company delivers, its an obsessive focus on a customer and their experience that sets companies like Apple and Amazon apart from the pack .

Language like this is popular on many company websites - Head of People, Head of Customer Success all talk to the focus a company would ideally like to place on the customer, and many times companies try but what use is it when their method of execution falls so far behind?

As a contrast, 2 days ago my Smart Oven failed and i contacted the company. 3 minutes later i had a response. The company stated they are sorry for my trouble, the error is unfixable and despite my oven being over a year out of warranty they will either ship me another $550 oven or give me a check for the same (again - this was out of warranty for over a year). 30 minutes and 3 emails later we decided to go with the refund (i strongly believe there is an upgraded model around the corner). But guess what, when it drops - i am going to be the first in line. My simple experience with this company has made me a customer for life.

Is Glowforge trying? I have no doubt. Service was polite, friendly and showed a desire to help. But a week later i am still printerless, the doors to my business are still shut loosing me hundreds of dollars a day and all i know is the person that placed their order on Monday got theirs faster than i got some of the responses via email. Your move GlowForge.

What about the rest of you? What have your experiences been like? What do you think about their lack of support options (phone, messaging) and their quality of service?

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FWIW, my understanding is that when someone orders a new GF, it comes from their factory in texas. when you get a refurbed unit, it comes from a completely different supply of units and location (Washington state). It’s not surprising that the stock and turnaround time may be different.


I guess I don’t understand what you are trying to get out of this?

The forum is full of discussions about people’s support experiences, I know I certainly had a lot to say when my machine went back to the mothership. I don’t really want to go into it again.

Anyway, there’s no one answer to this, and unless you’re trying to get ammo for a class action suit or something I don’t really understand what there is to gain about rehashing support experiences for you here.


I would just like to hear about the experience of others, to try and better understand if maybe my experience is similar to others or if i am missing something. Also, to figure out why GF is so far behind in its support protocol.

Thats good to know, thank you !

So read through the support forum? There are hundreds of threads about this. People get chatty when their machines are down, so the support forum is particularly noisy.

You’re assuming they are. They don’t have a firm SLA with us. I will say that if it takes several days to get a reply it’s worth prompting them because sometimes things fall through cracks.


Read the forum. It is a historical review of three years of experience. Just remember, when things are going great, nobody posts that info.


Who starts a business relying on an external source without an SLA (Service Level Agreement)?

Someone who doesn’t know better and someone who assumes the risk. In situations like this (no SLA), it is best to have a backup solution(s). A lot of entrepreneurs jump into the water without a life-vest and no knowledge of how to swim. Some businesses make it; some businesses do not. I do not mean to be harsh, I just see this a lot in my line of work, and I try to do what I can to help new entrepreneurs.

But when someone demands that other people help them because they overextend themselves or made a poor business decision, it annoys me when they blame everyone else for their own poor judgement.


I believe they all come from the same location, I am waiting on my 6th replacement in less than 12 months and half have been referbs and the rest have been new because it has happened so much to me, and I believe every single one came out of Texas. I wish they came from Seattle because I am in Kent WA, about 20-30 mins from their headquarters…

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That’s an interesting point of view . If I worked at Glowforge, I would look at feedback like yours to validate my lack of good service .

What annoys me is when people are gladly willing to accept terrible service - no number, no messaging or chat service and no SLA.

With feedback like yours, why would Glowforge strive to invest and improve in this department ?

That’s shocking and scary . Why do you think you have gone through so many ? Is it cheap parts and a poor build ?

It seems like bad quality control and I think stuff gets damage during shipping also. Their customer support drives me crazy only being by email. You really should be able to call and get it fixed immediately.

That explains a lot about how you look at things.

What annoys me is when people do not do research on product before buying, and then blame that product for not changing fast enough. The customer support of a small company is not even going to come close to the enormous companies you compare them to. Let alone a small company that is in the growing pains of becoming a medium sized company.

Glowforge’s customer support did not change when you bought it. It has actually gotten quite a bit better from the historical posts I have read and people I have talked too.

Sounds like you wouldn’t. I am glad you do not work for Glowforge. Everyone I have talked to at Glowforge has done all that they could to make sure I was happy with their service. I felt surprised if they responded to my email or posted a reply to my message outside of business hours or on the weekend. I felt like they really cared. You clearly feel different.

My words are not going to change how you feel. Your feeling are not going to change mine. I am okay with that.

Some people try to look at things from another’s point of view. Some assume everyone is out to get them because that is what they would do. Some people only care about themselves. And some people really just want to help, and others cannot comprehend that.


I’m pleased with Glowforge’s service. I have had several warranty replacements and the turn around was pretty good. I do know the opaque nature of the delivery system can be frustrating.

I wonder how many issues are caused by shipping. They have tweaked the packaging a little, but they are running at the end normal shipping with this size and weight.

It’s a small company. They need to build out customer service, but not overbuild. I remember reading some things about Gateway Computers. Their services call centers grew huge quickly. It’s not like you can over design it and then respond to volume at a moment’s notice. I know nothing about the economics of customer service, but I can guess that the customer’s needs are important, but still only part of the equation.

They build a quality machine, but one that has a few pinch points that color the whole discussion. Lid cable, carriage wheels, wifi tech, exhaust fan design. Lid glue. Then there is the long road to full feature rollouts for the passthrough.

Then there is the whole filter pivot.

I do not understand how an email isn’t answered by a person within 24 hours. I do understand that once the thread gets going, email still is a tedious process for back and forth. I do understand that they just can’t justify setup up a call center. It would have to be quite large and would never make up for the loss of business or customer satisfaction with email only support.

I have my car in the shop for an HVAC repair. I chose not to go to the dealer the first time the air conditioner went out because it was just too difficult to manage the 60 miles to the dealer during lockdown. I went with a local service shop. They fixed it. Lots of money was spent. Two weeks later it went out again. This time took it to the dealer. Oh, yes, your evaporator leaks again. That is because somehow you missed a service bulletin that would have reprogrammed the HVAC control not to freeze up and crack your evaporator. And we will make this a warranty replacement. Sorry, our bad. I can’t imagine the cost of something like this for these 2017 Impalas. Oh, and the dealer had the same issue. They ordered the part and when it came in, it was the wrong part. Just like the local service station. Somehow the system was pulling up the wrong part and they didn’t know in both shops until they went to try and put it in. I guess a giant company can factor in all these losses. But man, it’s got to be hard.


If you read my post in its entirety , a company providing much cheaper smart ovens , presumably smaller or the same size as Glowforge is providing significantly better customer service . So it’s hard to understand why a company selling $6,000 printers can not do the same .

It’s simply about standards and adapting to change . The forums, social groups are littered with negative posts about customer service and the company falling behind . Being a part of the solution is not about accepting what is available (when it is lackluster) but demanding what is standard even with companies smaller than GF.

I’m glad you enjoyed their service , your right though neither of us are going to change our opinions here and we should agree to respectfully disagree.

That is exactly the point of this post . I don’t understand why they want to be in a more premium segment and provide CS over email with no real SlA

I did read your post in its entirety. You never named the company. You only assumed they were the same size. The only companies I saw named were Apple and Amazon.

Do you feel that I have been anything other than respectful?


You’re going to get a lot of pushback from people who have been on this forum since the Mesozoic, not necessarily because Glowforge support is on fleek, but because we are just so weary of this topic. It is a running joke at this point. Mah business! Dan owes me for my downtime! I have a $5000 paperweight/doorstop/boat anchor! I demand to speak to someone in charge, on the phone, stat!

You may even be right, but you are not original. And if I were head of customer satisfaction for Glowforge, maybe I’d give a darn, but honestly if they have a problem and they haven’t gotten the message by now, one more thread with almost the exact same words as the last 50 isn’t going to turn the tide. Use the search button if you want to see what other people think. There’s no shortage. Or take the time to hang around here, read all the topics, like and comment, help people out. That’s what the folks arguing with you have been doing for the past 3 years. Maybe you’ll have a more nuanced view when you’ve read over 40,000 posts like bill.m.davis has.

There’s also the possibility that it isn’t that bad. They’ve sold a lot of machines. We only hear about the bad experiences. Mine was a day 1 hour 1 preorder. It was one of the first non-prerelease machines to arrive. I have never had the slightest problem with it.

It’s not fair of us to be so dismissive of your negative experience. But it’s the nature of bringing up the same topic at a party that’s already been discussed to death. At best, people will roll their eyes and walk away.



Scale. The Glowforge company is a relatively tiny company with a relatively high price, complex product and low margins. Your oven manufacturer is a relatively large company, with a relatively cheap, simple product, and high margins. They can afford to hire more people, meaning faster response times. They also can provide free replacement products more easily without affecting the bottom line since they have more income coming in due to higher margins.
Glowforge still takes care of their customers, it just takes longer.

As far as using a Glowforge for a business, anyone who chooses to do so with the information freely available and who also chooses not to have a backup plan is asking for problems. No one wants to hear it, but businesses always have to have backup plans. Either it means a second machine that is only used when the first goes down, even if the business will expand to fill capacity, or it means a policy on how to communicate to customers in the event the machine goes down, and a savings account for when that happens.


Sorry to be blunt, but you got your machine in May. This forum has been going on since 2017 or earlier. A phone number would be great. We all want to be heard immediately. We all want perfection.

Don’t make people repeat themselves. People have posted their thoughts on Glowforge service. Read them.