Filament humidity range  

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john.h57
(@john-h57)
Eminent Member

I was trying to search to see if anyone had some general 'good' ranges of humidity that you should try to keep your filaments at either during printing or just in storage. I couldn't find anything, so does anyone know what is an ideal range for filaments? And I assume maybe different kinds might require different levels? (PLA, PETG, ABS, etc).

I run a couple house hold dehumidifiers which keeps the house around 45% (that's what my sensor in my filament feed shelf is reporting and within my printer cabinet it usually starts out at that level but goes down to about 33% during a printing (and the cabinet temp I try to keep from going above 87degrees.)

Posted : 01/09/2018 2:14 am
nikolai.r
(@nikolai-r)
Noble Member

30-50% is perfectly fine. Some people are trying to store below 30% but it's a waste effort in my opinion.
So far best practice for me is to store the filament in boxes in case of rainy days and because of the dust. In case of wet filament, I put it in dehydrator.

My 1 year old PLA is still perfectly fine without any issues.
My 1 year old ABS is also ok but sometimes dehydrate helps to improve printing quality.

Often linked posts:
Going small with MMU2
Real Multi Material
My prints on Instagram...
Posted : 01/09/2018 2:49 am
MaximeL
(@maximel)
Active Member

Some people are trying to store below 30% but it's a waste effort in my opinion

I'm one of these people and it's not that much effort. I store my filament in a big plastic box, I just filed the box with 1kg silica gel for humidity. I've got a small reader (not sure how precise it is) that reads somewhere between 30% and 50/60% on rainy days in my room, and in the box it reads 10% constant.

Now is too low humidity bad for filament ? Or as low as possible is fine ?

Posted : 01/09/2018 10:33 am
technical liked
RufusClupea
(@rufusclupea)
Reputable Member


I was trying to search to see if anyone had some general 'good' ranges of humidity that you should try to keep your filaments at either during printing or just in storage. I couldn't find anything, so does anyone know what is an ideal range for filaments? And I assume maybe different kinds might require different levels? (PLA, PETG, ABS, etc).

That is correct. This is because the different polymers have different hygroscopic properties. AFAIK, Most PLA seems to do well at normal household humidities (<=50%) OTOH, PETG can absorb moisture in that range (see: Print gets bigger the higher it comes

For some filaments, I've read 5%-10% is recommended.

There's a LOT of good information out there on this subject. I would make use of google for both general and filament-specific articles/vids. In general, I prefer sources that don't have something to sell you (because it's cheaper and not that difficult to DIY). The first link below does have such products to sell, but you can skip over that part; the rest is (for me) easy-to-understand explanations/information.

Beat Moisture Before It Kills Your 3D Printing Filament
How moist filaments will screw up your 3D-printing
Thomas Landerer has a number of videos on this subject--most are filament specific--search his site for moisture or humidity

That's "MISTER Old Fart" to you!...
Posted : 01/09/2018 1:07 pm
RufusClupea
(@rufusclupea)
Reputable Member


Now is too low humidity bad for filament ? Or as low as possible is fine ?

I would say as low as practicable, and if you're getting 10% that's probably good, but again, it's polymer-specific; each type (and formula) of plastic is different.

That said, just putting spools in a bin full of desiccant isn't going to get the job done. From the first link I posted above:
First, it’s important to dispel a common myth. You cannot effectively dry filament out by storing it in an airtight container with desiccant. You can keep filament dry this way, but in order to properly and thoroughly dry it once it has been saturated, you need to actively dry it.

I've heard the same from a fair number of sources. 😉

That's "MISTER Old Fart" to you!...
Posted : 01/09/2018 1:18 pm
MaximeL
(@maximel)
Active Member

I'm not trying to dry my filaments, just to store them in a good environment. Once I receive a new spool it goes directly into the box, and I get out only what I need to print with. Better to avoid problems than to fix problems.

Posted : 01/09/2018 3:10 pm
nikolai.r
(@nikolai-r)
Noble Member

There are tons of solutions how to keep the filament dry. It's everybody personal decision.
But you can also even keep it outside. It will still be usable after you dry it.

I keep mine inside boxes because of the dust. It's not that simple to clean it up.

Often linked posts:
Going small with MMU2
Real Multi Material
My prints on Instagram...
Posted : 01/09/2018 6:14 pm
brims
(@brims)
Eminent Member

To add to this: I used Hatchbox translucent PLA, from the day I broke the seal it was always very brittle and would snap at the slightest bend and printed horribly. When trying to remove it from a bowden style extruder, it would always leave behind 150mm+ of inside the tube. Once I ran it through a dehydrator for 30 minutes at 70C it printed very well and didn't snap at easily. Some of my other PLAs seemed to print much better after a run in the dehydrator.

Posted : 02/09/2018 1:08 am
john.h57
(@john-h57)
Eminent Member

Thanks all, that gives me a lot of information. I haven't made a dry box yet, that's next on my list. I appreciate all the comments and suggestions. I'll check out some of the links that were posted.

Posted : 02/09/2018 5:58 am
peter.l22
(@peter-l22)
Honorable Member


Thanks all, that gives me a lot of information. I haven't made a dry box yet, that's next on my list. I appreciate all the comments and suggestions. I'll check out some of the links that were posted.

A super-cheap and simple alternative to a drybox is to buy a bunch of one-gallon Ziplock freezer bags. They're exactly the right size to fit most filament spools, and are as airtight as any drybox you're likely to find anywhere else.

I've got over 50 opened spools of filament in my collection, and I just put them in Ziplocks with a dessicant packet. There's no way I could handle this many spools of filament with any reasonable set of dryboxes.

Posted : 02/09/2018 6:46 pm
john.h57
(@john-h57)
Eminent Member


A super-cheap and simple alternative to a drybox is to buy a bunch of one-gallon Ziplock freezer bags. They're exactly the right size to fit most filament spools, and are as airtight as any drybox you're likely to find anywhere else....

Thanks, I may just do that at the start, that does seem the easier way to do it.

Posted : 03/09/2018 5:26 pm
RufusClupea
(@rufusclupea)
Reputable Member


I've got over 50 opened spools of filament in my collection, and I just put them in Ziplocks with a dessicant packet. There's no way I could handle this many spools of filament with any reasonable set of dryboxes.

What kinds of filament are we talking about? Minneapolis isn't exactly what I'd call a "filament-friendly" environment (though I don't know what kind of indoor climate control you have...). 😀

That's "MISTER Old Fart" to you!...
Posted : 03/09/2018 6:49 pm
peter.l22
(@peter-l22)
Honorable Member



I've got over 50 opened spools of filament in my collection, and I just put them in Ziplocks with a dessicant packet. There's no way I could handle this many spools of filament with any reasonable set of dryboxes.

What kinds of filament are we talking about? Minneapolis isn't exactly what I'd call a "filament-friendly" environment (though I don't know what kind of indoor climate control you have...). 😀

PLA, ABS, PETG, PVA, TPU, and HIPS.

Minneapolis isn't the worst place. Summers can be humid, but the rest of the year there's pretty much no moisture in the air.

Posted : 03/09/2018 6:50 pm
RufusClupea
(@rufusclupea)
Reputable Member


Minneapolis isn't the worst place. Summers can be humid, but the rest of the year there's pretty much no moisture in the air.

Summers would have to be underwater to get those kinds of annual averages! 😉 😀

That's "MISTER Old Fart" to you!...
Posted : 03/09/2018 6:54 pm
peter.l22
(@peter-l22)
Honorable Member



Minneapolis isn't the worst place. Summers can be humid, but the rest of the year there's pretty much no moisture in the air.

Summers would have to be underwater to get those kinds of annual averages! 😉 😀

Well, this is the land of 10,000 lakes.

Posted : 03/09/2018 6:56 pm
RufusClupea
(@rufusclupea)
Reputable Member


Well, this is the land of 10,000 lakes.

I see it's closer to 12,000, but then Alaska claims over 3 million. Gotta wonder what some peoples'/places' definitions of "lake" are. (Like the one in my backyard all spring and for up to a week after a moderate rain... 🙄 )

Although promoted as the "Land of 10,000 Lakes," Minnesota has 11,842 lakes of 10 acres or more. The 1968 state survey found 15,291 lake basins, of which 3,257 were dry. If all basins over 2.5 acres were counted, Minnesota would have 21,871 lakes. --Wikipedia
Alaska has about 3,197 officially named natural lakes,C[›][1]B[›] out of over 3,000,000 unnamed natural lakes,[2] approximately 67 named artificial reservoirs,C[›][3] and 167 named dams. --Ibid.
(I didn't find any size criterion.)

I wonder how many she can see from her house.... 😛

That's "MISTER Old Fart" to you!...
Posted : 04/09/2018 5:39 pm
andrew.r39
(@andrew-r39)
New Member

There are conflicting opinions on the perfect humidity level for your filament but it should be safe anywhere between 10-15% humidity mybkexperience.

Posted : 26/01/2019 11:18 am
chocki
(@chocki)
Prominent Member

This humidity thing has got me thinking, what do they do at manufacture?, because when they extrude it, they run it through a bath of water to cool it!
Look at 1:42 https://www.google.com/search?q=printing+fillament+manufacture+process&oq=printing+fillament+manufacture+process&aqs=chrome..69i57.8607j0j8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#kpvalbx=1

Now if that is not 100% humidity, I don't know what is!.

So I would be wary of new filament, because if it has been rushed out the door, it may actually still be wet!.

Normal people believe that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Engineers believe that if it ain’t broke, it doesn’t have enough features yet....
Posted : 29/01/2019 10:35 pm
Spacemarine
(@spacemarine)
Estimable Member


This humidity thing has got me thinking, what do they do at manufacture?, because when they extrude it, they run it through a bath of water to cool it!

Of course, but this only for a few seconds. A few seconds at 100% Rh is probably the same as a few minutes at 80% or a few hours at 60%. So I wouldn't worry.

Posted : 01/02/2019 1:42 am
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