Cricut machines are used for a variety of creative projects, including vinyl cutting. These machines come with a pre-installed blade that can be used until it becomes dull. However, these blades don’t last forever.
A Cricut blade lasts 6-12 months when cutting vinyl. This is determined by the frequency of use and the type of vinyl used. Using a Cricut daily may wear out the blades faster.
The rest of this article will tell you everything you need to know about Cricut blades and vinyl cutting, so you can take the best possible care of your machine and keep producing high-quality projects.
A cutting blade is the part of your Cricut machine that’s used to cut a broad range of materials, including paper, fabric, cardboard, and vinyl.
However, using your Cricut regularly can cause these blades to grow dull over time and essentially cause the quality of your projects to slide downhill. You might find your vinyl being cut with rough edges, uneven cut lines, and frustratingly incorrect pressure levels.
Here’s how you’ll know if your cricut needs a new blade:
- The blade isn’t cutting correctly.
- The material isn’t being cut completely.
- The edges of the blade look dull.
- The materials chip or break.
Let’s take a deeper look into what each of these signs mean.
One sure sign that your Cricut blade needs to be replaced is a decrease in cut accuracy. Your machine may appear to struggle when cutting through certain materials, which can be an indication that it’s time to change out your blade.
As this Reddit discussion thread points out, pilled edges and torn materials indicate that your Cricut blade is dull, so be on the lookout for these signs.
If your Cricut cannot fully cut certain materials, this can be an indicator that your blade is dulling and needs to be replaced.
There may be instances where the vinyl doesn’t break apart completely after cutting, leaving the cut material still attached in some areas. This can affect the overall look of your design and in some cases ruin your project entirely.
With continued use, the blade’s edges begin to dull and become more challenging to make precise cuts with. This may lead to less-than-stellar results when cutting certain materials such as vinyl, which requires sharp edges for detailed designs.
When your blade begins to get duller, it can cause thicker materials like silicone or plastic to break or chip. This can be signified by small cracks and missing pieces. Replacing the blade can solve this issue and allow your machine the ability to produce quality results.
While dulling is unavoidable for Cricut blades, there are some things you can do to prolong the life of your blade and keep it sharp for as long as possible.
Here are some maintenance tips for your Cricut blade:
- Clean the blade often. Use a dry towel to wipe away any dust or debris around the blade’s edge after each use. This will help reduce wear and avoid unnecessary strain on the machine that may cause the blade to become dull over time.
- Protect your machine. Be sure to place the machine on a steady surface where nothing will touch the blade or other moving parts of the unit while it’s in use. You should also avoid leaving your machine running unattended.
- Adjust the settings when switching materials. Always adjust the material knob when switching out materials. This will ensure that your machine is cutting the right materials on the proper settings.
It’s so important to take care of your Cricut blades. Without proper maintenance, the precision of your blade can degrade – and so will the quality of your projects.
Can You Sharpen a Dull Cricut Blade?
You can sharpen dull blades if you are in a bind and don’t have time to wait or can’t make it to the store to grab new ones. The best way to sharpen a dull Cricut blade is to remove the blade carefully from the housing and take a ball of aluminum foil and poke the blade into the foil over and over again.
This will extend the sharpness of the blade for several cuts, when it starts to pill or tear product then you need to replace the blade. It is not recommended to sharpen more than once due to possible thinning of the blade.
As a rule of thumb, it’s best to use original Cricut brand blades. Using non-Cricut blades may cause damage to your machine and void any warranty on the machine itself. Besides, Cricut blades are known for their high quality and can produce superior results.
Here’s a rundown of the mentioned risks:
- Non-Cricut blades can cause damage to your machine. A non-Cricut blade may have a duller edge, leading to more strain on the machine and a higher risk of burning out the motor. In worst-case scenarios, using a non-Cricut blade may even damage some internal components in your Cricut machine.
- Using non-Cricut blades voids the warranty. Using non-Cricut blades will void your Cricut machine’s warranty. You’ll want to be sure not to take any risks and only use the proper blades that came with your machine.
- Non-Cricut blades may result in poor quality results. Non-Cricut blades may not cut as precisely as Cricut blades, which means your end product won’t look as good.
Key Takeaway: Even if you do use Cricut blades, you may need to replace them eventually. If your blade is damaged or defective, you’ll want to always use proper Cricut blades to maintain the quality of your materials and ensure that you won’t void any warranties.
Also, it would help to note that Cricut doesn’t offer warranties on accessories, so ensure you take good care of your blade by following the maintenance guidelines I mentioned previously.
The Best Cricut Blades for Cutting Different Materials
Cricut sells several blades designed for various materials and purposes. You can check out this post on Cricut Blades Explained to find out which blade is best for your project.
The Cricut Premium Fine-Point Blade (available on Amazon.com) is best for vinyl. It’s made of high-quality German carbine, which was designed for greater wear resistance and is a lot more durable than standard silver blades.
While Cricut blades don’t last forever, they can endure up to 12 months of frequent use with proper maintenance. Regularly cleaning your blade is a great way to prolong replacement and keep it cutting precisely, so you can keep your creative projects at the best possible quality.
Be sure to check out some other nifty functional craft ideas through our other posts here on Craft-ILY as well as checking out some videos on DIY and How To’s over on YouTube. Look for “Crafting Unedited” or just click the name in blue to see!