What Causes CNC Machines To Malfunction?

Common problems with CNC machines can be traced to user error and improper maintenance. Fortunately, most of these issues are avoidable and may be resolved with CNC machine repair. However, new users can have difficulty diagnosing these problems because they are usually within the user’s control. Inexperienced employees can also cause problems by selecting the wrong cutting tools. Proper training will help you get past these problems quickly.


Inadequate Cleaning

One of the biggest problems with CNC machines is that they need to be cleaned regularly. Lack of cleaning results in dust and other materials building up on the machinery, which can negatively impact its output. Specifically, the dirt and debris on the machine’s moving parts can interfere with the machine’s ability to provide precise instructions and reduce accuracy. As a result, errors and other issues can arise. Regular cleaning is the key to preventing these problems from arising.

A dirty CNC machine can cause many problems, including reduced precision and accuracy. A dirtier machine can also damage the spindle, resulting in overheating. It can also cause excessive vibration, affecting the quality of the piece and its dimensions’ accuracy. Insufficient lubrication also compromises the tool’s life and durability. It results in poor output and higher repair costs. Therefore, regular cleaning is also important to maintain the performance and life of your CNC machine.


Improper Lubrication

You must perform routine cleaning and lubrication when you use your CNC machine. If you don’t, parts may stick together or may not operate properly. It will negatively impact the accuracy and precision of the manufacturing process. Improper lubrication may also lead to overheating or damage to machinery. 

Improper lubrication can result in the workpiece slipping out of the chuck or insufficient oil flow. In addition, improper lubrication can lead to overheating, air blockage, and material displacement. When using a CNC machine, you want it to be as smooth and consistent as possible. Improper lubrication will also make the machine less responsive and affect the quality of the fabrication.


Inexperienced Employees

One of the most common problems of a CNC machine is programming errors. Employees who don’t know how to use the machine properly might enter incorrect codes and cause problems. These errors are hard to spot, especially when the employee is new to the job. Inexperienced employees might also not understand the process and enter the wrong codes, not realizing their mistakes. In these situations, the machine’s accuracy is compromised.

Inexperienced employees often fail to understand the CNC machine’s process properly. When new employees begin working on the machine, they may not fully understand how to program it. If this happens, they may accidentally enter the wrong code or even power it off. It may temporarily fix the issue, but the underlying problem remains. The only way to prevent this problem is to train your employees on how to perform CNC machining.


Wrong Cutting Tools

One of the most common CNC machine problems is incorrect cutting tool settings. Choosing the wrong cutting tools can result in damaged final products, such as raised edges, rough corners, and visible cutter marks. Additionally, if the tool is not calibrated properly, improper cuts can result in improper material finishes. The best way to avoid such problems is to plan and calibrate your CNC machine properly. Unfortunately, a common mistake new users make is choosing the wrong cutting tool.

Choosing the wrong cutting tool can lead to poor finishes, damage the tool, and ruin the part. Likewise, improper feed rates and speeds can result in the wrong shape or material. Proper tool selection and proper toll dimensions are critical to avoid such problems. As with any machine, proper attention and care should be taken to set the right cutting tools and material settings. These issues can be easily avoided by performing regular maintenance on the machine.


Overloading the Motor

Overloading the motor is the most common problem with CNC machines. It can damage the motor and cause tripping of electrical circuits. The motor must be checked for overload by clamping a meter to avoid this. If the motor tripped, reduce the load as soon as possible. Other signs that the motor is overloaded include intermittent power supply, excessive voltage, and short-circuited conductors.

The most common fault is overload, leading to a temperature rise in the motor windings. Hence, it’s vital to prevent overload by using an overload protection relay. The fault is usually due to the overload protection relay, which senses overload and interrupts the power flow to the motor. It also protects against overheating, winding damage, and phase imbalance.