Are you wondering when you should replace your Cricut blade?
The Cricut blade is the most essential part of the machine, it is the part that cuts and scores your designs and it the main key to a fast and simple production line and should be replaced often.
As a general rule of thumb, you should replace your circuit blade every 6 months – 1 year. If you feel your blade cannot be cleaned or reused, replace it. Use separate blades for different materials to make them last longer.
There is a tonne of information about Cricut machines and how to fix them and different projects but there isn’t much information on when a Cricut blade should be changed.
So I decided to put together my own research to find out a few things and break it fown for you to help you make your blades last longer and have enough time to save to buy a new one.
What Makes A Cricut Blade Go Dull?
A Cricut blade can go full for a number of reasons, some are easy to fix and some are a little more tricky. These are the main reasons we are going to cover below.
The first way a blade can go dull is by using it on a variety of materials. Different materials require a different level or sharpness to cut.
For example, fabric scissors should not be used on anythign but fabric as they require ultimate sharpness to be able to cut the weave of fabric.
Whereas paper doesn’t require that level as paper is easy to tear with your hands.
Cricut blades are the same, so if you use paper on a blade and then try use fabric you may struggle after so long the blade will be dull to the paper standards and not able to cut fabric in a clean cut.
Another way your blade could be getting dull is due to using it on the wrong materials. Some blades are designed for specific materials and projects.
The last way your Cricut blade is getting dull is due to the tension. You can adjust the tension through your settings to be lighter or deeper into the.
If you haven’t ever touched your settings or you have and never changed them back, this could be a reason for your blade becoming dull.
How To Make Blades Last Longer
There are a couple of ways in which you can make the life of your blade longer and sharper. Much like fabric scissors, Cricut blades can be sensitive to cutting certain materials and can become dull quickly.
The first way of prolonging the life of your circut blade is cutting tin foil on your machine.
Load up your mat with a sheet of tin foil and cut away – remember you may need to adjust your tension as to not cut your mat or cut too deeply. Pick any design and let the blade glide through the tin foil.
The next way is t sharpen and clean your Cricut blade, start by removing your housing with your blade in from the machine. Take your blade out of your housing – here is a tutorial by Cricut on how to do this.
Then gently stab the blade into a ball of tin foil. This will help scrape off any remaning fibers and glue and will sharpen the blade as it goes. Do this repeatedly for around 30-50 times. Then place back in the housing.
The last way to ensure the life of your Cricut blade is long and fruitful is to change your blade for specific materials. If you are using 2 or 3 main materials for your projects look at having a blade specific to each one.
One for paper and card, another for vinyl and one for fabric. Colour code each blade or mark so you remember which is which. This way the blades don’t get dull or pick up any glue or fibers from the other materials which will help to keep them sharper for longer.
How To Know When To Replace a Cricut Blade
There are a few signs you probably are already away of and one of them has probably happened leading you to search for a solution.
The biggest sign you will notice is that your blade will start to miss cuts, ruin designs and generally make a mess.
We have had it a couple of times where it just hasn’t liked what we were trying to do. This doesn’t always mean that you need to replace the blade, first try cleaning the blade in a tin foil ball.
If that doesn’t work try altering the tension through the main management systems area of your Cricut dashboard.
Another way to know if you blade needs replacing is if it struggles on certain materials. If like me you use your Cricut to make a variety of projects from vinyl to cardstock then your blade might be fine cutting one but not the other.
Over time blades can wear down and still work but not on certain materials. Small nicks and scratches of damage on the blade wouldn’t quite disrupt a cut on paper but might be noticeable on vinyl.
As the materials are different and they have a different effect on the blade this could be the cuase of the problem. A solution is to have a blade for paper (the original blade) and a new blade for vinyl. Colour code them so you don’t end up using the wrong one!
The last way you may notice that your blade needs replacing is your machine may make a groaning style sound when the blade is cutting. We have experienced this a few times and at first thought nothing off it.
Then I realised it could be the blade really struggling to get through the cut due to it being a little dull and so it is dragging instead of gliding through the cut.
Again we used the cleaning methods above to see if it was a build up of glue from the vinyl or just age.
How Often Should You Replace Your Cricut Blade?
Honestly, no one really knows.
But as a general rule of thumb go for anything from 3 – 6 months up to 1 year. If you feel your blade cannot be cleaned and reused, replace it. Use separate blades for different materials to make them last longer.
There is no rule to this at all. If your blade isn’t dull or having any trouble then don’t change it.
Some people trade out their blade every couple of months and some have had their blades for 1 year. I would personally swap after a year even if to just solely use it for paper or card.
There is no definitive answer unfortunately as it all depends on two things;
A – how often you are using your machine, daily, weekly or every so often.
B – What range of materials you are using, if you are using the same blade for vinyl, paper, cardstock and more then it may dull your blade faster.