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Heat Printing Equipment Maintenance Tips

Extend the life of your heat printing equipment.

The following tips will help you keep your heat press and vinyl cutter producing high-quality merchandise and ensure consistent production of quality products.


Test the Pressure

To test the pressure, place a piece of paper at each corner of the lower platen. Lock the lower platen into place, then try to remove the sheets of paper. If any sheets slide out easily, you have uneven pressure.

Clean Upper Platen

Wipe down the upper platen of the heat press machine after each project. Excess ink, adhesives, and other residue can build up and transfer to the next job. Wiping the platen while hot with a clean, dry cloth usually is sufficient.

Replace Cutting Strips

The cutting strips on a vinyl cutter should be replaced once per year or more often when cutting higher volumes.

Check Temperature Accuracy

Make sure the heat press is maintaining heat and is heating evenly throughout the upper platen. Use a heat press test kit to check the accuracy of the temperature.

Cover Lower Platen

Use a Quick Slip Lower Platen Protector on the lower platen. It provides the ability to slip garments on and off of the platen more quickly and also extend the life of the silicone rubber pad on the lower platen.

Use Dedicated 20 Amp Outlet

Stahls’ recommends a dedicated 20 amp outlet for all heat press machines to avoid maxing out your electricity or blowing fuses.

Keep a Clean Work Area

Clean the work area and equipment before and after every job. Lint, hair, and other debris easily can be transferred to the substrate when heat pressing any adhesive-based material.

Perform Test Cuts

Determine if the vinyl cutter or print/cut system blade needs to be replaced. If the proper settings are used and material is not being cut through or has jagged edges after being cut, the blade needs replacement. On average, blades should be replaced every 3 months or more often when cutting thicker materials like twill, vinyl, or reflective on a regular basis.

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