General Maintenance for CNC Routers

MDF is one type of material that is frequently used on a CNC router. Unfortunately, MDF is notorious for being dusty. This dust can end up in many parts of the CNC router and cause component failures, and more seriously, it can be a fire risk when not removed regularly. Therefore, we cannot stress enough the importance of regular general housekeeping on your CNC machine.

Daily, we recommend the following housekeeping on your CNC router:

  1. Clean the bed regularly, ideally after each job.
  2. Ensure the CNC router is clean from dust and grime.
  3. We recommend cleaning collets and nuts and check the tooling is not too worn. 
  4. At the end of the day, switch off the machine and check there are no loose parts. If so, tighten any loose screws and bolts.
  5. Ensure lubricating stations are at the correct level.
  6. For water-cooled spindles, always ensure the chiller has the correct level of water. Be careful of very low room air temperatures; adding a small amount of anti-freeze to the chiller may prevent freezing.

Monthly, we recommend the following checks:

  1. Monthly, lubricate and clean the rails; this prevents the bearings from being compromised by dust particles.
  2. Vacuum pump filters should be checked and free from dust.
  3. Clean the inside of the control box from time to time. Always ensure the CNC router is switched off at the wall at all times when carrying this out.

To summarise, a routine should be in place either daily or monthly for general housekeeping. Educate your machine operators to appreciate the importance of good housekeeping. Also, we recommend daily checks for most housekeeping, primarily if the machine is in use for long periods. The housekeeping will reduce the potential for breakdowns and subsequent downtime. Not carrying out the maintenance on the CNC router or laser machine can also affect the warranty.

Having an annual service on your CNC router or laser cutter can also reduce the risk of breakdowns. However, this should always be in conjunction with regular maintenance.