Changing Filament Ender 3 – How To & Must-Know Things

One of the most common things to do when having an Ender 3 printer, changing filament Ender 3. This task is one of the things that have less joy and is quite annoying. Still, it is a certain thing for the Ender 3 to work properly. Also, replacing materials involved many printing techniques. Which we will discuss shortly.

Since the Ender 3 printer has evolved so far and reached out to so many people. Yet, some of us still have the idea that replacing the materials is a challenging and time-consuming task. Not quite, for many reasons, this task does not have to be boring as we thought. As a result, I have done some homework freely so I can share it with all of us.

So, in the following text, we’ll discuss some noticeable information, tips and tricks, and how to load filament Ender 3. Plus, a simple step-by-step instruction that will deliver an easier changing and replacing materials process. So, shall we begin?


Types Of 3D Printer Filaments

How To Load Filament Ender 3

In terms of definition, 3D filaments are a special type of plastics called thermoplastics. Unlike the normal 2D printer that uses liquid ink. The 3D printer will heat the filaments to the right temperature, make them flexible, then extrude them via a nozzle. This flexibility allows the printer to sculpt the filaments to create the desired shape. But this process has to happen in a very short time to prevent the filaments from cooling down.

Because there are lots of 3D printing materials floating on the market. Consequently, some people will get confused in choosing which one to work with. Not mentioned, some materials are banned or illegalized by governments for some safety purposes. And as a result, here is a list of some printing materials that can be easily found on the market.

1. ABS Plastics:

This is one of the most common and reliable replacement filaments Ender 3 for good reasons. ABS plastics are built with sturdiness, impact-resistance yet still have enough flexibility. Moreover, this one will cooperate with the printer’s nozzle quite well. This means the heated materials can be easily extruded, which makes them very easy to work with.

Replace Filament Ender 3

A 3D printed object made out of ABS plastics

In terms of use, ABS plastics will be a good choice for printing automotive parts, kitchenware, or even toys. Many people choose this material to print Legos for good money. Despite all that, there are still downsides existing. Being a plastic material, it will need a heated print surface. And as you may know, a heated surface can be quite costly. More than that, the printing process can create unwanted smokes, which can be inconvenient for some people.

2. PLA:

This one is also popular for both amateurs and professionals for its great property. The main thing that makes it a good choice is it will not produce toxic fumes in the printing process. Sometimes you can even find a sweet smell because this one is sugar-based. This means it is safer to work with if being compared to the ABS plastics.

PLA 3D printed elephant

PLA 3D printed elephant

At this time, the idea that PLA will be a perfect solution in changing filament ender 3 may appear in your mind. Not yet, there is some downside of this filament that you will need to carefully consider. First of all, PLA has a way lower melting heat than ABS plastics. This will reduce the overall sturdiness of the final product and make it weaker. Sturdiness plays a big role if you are working on printing moving parts or exposing parts to high temperatures. If those are not your problems, then this material will be a good choice for your project.

3. PET Materials:

PET – Polyethylene Terephthalate, is a common and popular material in many industries. You may have noticed the name quickly because almost every plastic bottle out there is made of this PET plastic. At its raw nature, the PET has no color and it is crystal clear. But if it makes contact with temperature on both high and low, it quickly changes to a non-transparent state. The only downside of this material is it can be a bit of a challenge to work with for beginners.

PET materials

Examples of the PET materials

This material can do both stability and safety greatly, and it will not produce an unpleasant smell in the printing process. Plus, this one is recyclable, which means it is harmless for the planet Earth and its tiny humans. This also means you can use this filament to print objects that will contact the food directly. Cups and plates, or even lunch boxes are also included.

4. Nylon Materials:

Polyamide or also known as nylon is another popular choice for both amateurs and professionals for good reasons. Being a synthetic polymer filament means this one is stronger and has more durability than both ABS and PLA. Plus, this one can be re-melted so you can use it again with no worry of bonding loss.

Yet, before considering changing filament Ender 3 with nylon, there are things you should notice to prevent wasting your time. Firstly, this filament will need very high heat to melt (210°C – 250°C) and will produce a toxic smell. This means it will not be safe to print with no protection and obviously, it is not food-friendly. Furthermore, this filament is very easy to absorb moisture, so you will have to properly store it.

Changing Filament Ender 3 – Step-by-step Guide

Load Filament Ender 3

1. Removing Current Filament:

Before loading the new filament in your 3D printer, you will need to remove the old one.  Firstly, you will want to reheat the nozzle to the melting temperature. This temperature depends on which filament is currently filled, you can find the needed information about it on the spool.

Turn on Ender 3, open the menu by clicking on the control button. Get to the control settings section, click the temperature button, and then select nozzle settings. Wait until the hotend gets to the desired temperature, then extrude the remaining filament and pull it out. At this time, the Ender 3 is now ready for the new material.

2. Load New Filament:

As you have emptied the nozzle, you can now insert a new one. The first thing to do is sharpen the material spool with an angled cut. This will make it easier to feed into the extruder. The second thing to do is carefully insert the sharp end to the Ender 3 extruder. Push it until you feel a slight resistance, this means the material has reached the end of the nozzle and you can start printing now.

Changing Filament Ender 3 – Frequently Asked Questions

1. How To Load Filament Ender 3 Pro?

Loading filaments on Ender 3 pro is the same as the normal Ender 3. In case you have skipped the guideline above, here is a super shortcut to the instruction. First of all, turn on the printer and heat the nozzle, and extrude all current materials. Secondly, cut the new material sharply, then insert it into the printer and you are good to go.

2. Can you change filament mid-print Ender 3?

In case you want to have a multicolor 3D printed object or something like that. Changing filament in the middle of the printing process sounds like a good idea. All you have to do is pause the printing process at the moment you want to change the color firstly. Secondly, pull the extruder lever and then pull out the current filament. Thirdly, insert the desired filament and just continue the printing process.

3. What Will Happen If You Run Out Of Material In Mid Print?

How To Load Filament Ender 3 Pro

The answer to this question will depend on which type of 3D printer you’re using. If your printer comes with sensors such as the Ender 3 and Ender 3 pro. Then, the printer will instantly pause the printing process and only continue when you insert more materials.

Besides, the sensors can also detect and automatically pause the printing process if the filament is stuck. Sounds good? So, what will happen if your 3D printer doesn’t come with sensors and runs out of the main mid-print? This does not sound good, let’s find out!

A printer with no sensors can not know if the filament is out. As a result, it will keep printing and moving the nozzle like there is material to extrude until the finishing phase. As a result, your object’s shape will stay at the time the materials stop coming out/restarting the printing process is a must.


Since we have learned a bit about some common materials on the Ender 3 printer and changing filament Ender 3. Hopefully, this writing will help you out in the 3D printing game and also helps in preventing troubles while printing. But this is not all, there is still lots of knowledge and things we must know for a better final result. Which we will learn in the future.

Further Reading: