everhack Stuff I've been messing with, or just thinking about.

8Feb/12351

Cricut Repair Info

Cricut Repair Info

One way to get yourself a cheap Cricut machine is to buy a busted one off eBay. Try searching for both "broken cricut" and "defective cricut". Often you can win one for as low as $0.99 plus shipping for a Personal or Create model, or somewhat more for an Expression.

Where to get one

The main dealer of these machines, "websbestdeals," must have some exclusive arrangement with PC, because they seem to have a pretty inexhaustible supply of broken machines to sell.

Have patience and don't get carried away with your bid, it seems there will always be more listed within a few days.

Read the seller's description carefully to see what is included. Usually (but not always), they only include the power supply, but sometimes it comes with everything, cutting mat, blade holder, power adapter, cartridge, overlay and even the manual and warranty card. Once in a while they'll sell two for one, but missing one or both power adapters.

Sometimes the seller's description will tell you exactly the issue, as in the case with a dragging blade. I'm not quite sure yet what it means when "the blade makes a lot of noise", but the broken limit-switch wires definitely cause a horrible noise on startup. Many times they simply say "it has no power," which so far often (but not always) indicates a power supply or broken trace problem.

Mine didn't come with a cartridge!

If you don't have a real cartridge, you can make yourself a "Fake George" to at least get a machine with the stock firmware to start up fully. More details here. Basically, you just need to (carefully!) make something that will short together pins 4, 6, and 10 (or 11, 15, and 17) on the cartridge port, to fool the machine into using its own built-in "George and Basic Shapes" cartridge.

Here are some close-up photos of what a real "George" looks like inside.

Removing the Side Covers

Don't rush to take the sides off the machine. Many times this won't be necessary, and it's hard to get the trim pieces off without doing at least cosmetic damage.

The way I do it is to use a thin bladed putty knife to get in between the trim and side cover (from the outside edge inwards), while pulling outwards with your other hand, to depress the little fingers that clip the trim piece on, one at a time. I've broken off quite a few of them with poor technique, but don't usually bother putting them back on anyways.

Once the trim piece is off you can get access to the 5 or 6 phillips-head screws holding the actual side cover on.

Accessing the Motherboard

Usually all the action happens in the bottom of the machine where the motherboard is located.

To access it, all you need is a long #1 phillips-head screwdriver. Roll the machine onto its back on a towel or something else soft, and remove the 8-or-so most obvious screws around the outside of the bottom cover. Then, tip the cover down and towards yourself like opening a panel. If you carefully tug a little on the wires leading up into the side covers you can get just enough slack to be able to rest it flat on the table while the machine is still on its back.

Problems and Solutions

Here are some of the things I have discovered so far while fixing a bunch of these machines:

Schematic

I don't have a schematic drawn up for these, but one of my Creates is an older model with only a 2-layer board. This makes the circuit far easier to figure out than the 3-layer boards that came later. The Expression board is nearly identical, so this should be of assistance for figuring out those issues as well.

Here are close-up photos of the full front and back side of the 2-layer Create board.
create_front_full

create_back_full

Broken Dials

It seems the dials are pretty easy to break if the machine falls onto its front side. The size dial is expendable if you use Make-the-Cut or other cutting software on your PC, but if you cut with cartridges or the pressure dial is broken you may not have much choice but to try and find a replacement dial.

Bad Power Supply

An Expression I got with a bad power supply would constantly turn on and off, like a turn signal on a car. On, off, on, off. Replacing the power brick with a known-good one from another machine solved the problem.

Broken Inner-layer PCB traces

So far, two Create machines have been suffering from broken traces in the middle layer of the circuit board. Fixing these can be challenging since you can't see the inner layer to know where it was supposed to connect to.

Fortunately, I have a working older revision of both Personal and Create motherboards that are only 2-layers, and there were virtually no changes to the parts connections or positions when PC switched to the 3-layer boards. This means you can visually trace the connections on the older board, and verify those connections on the newer (broken 3-layer) one.

I will be adding specifics here to help with this process for anyone who doesn't have the benefit of a 2-layer board for reference.

1) One machine's power button would light up when you turned it on, but nothing else would happen. This was isolated to two broken inner-layer traces leading from the 5V regulator to two nearby parts.

Replacing Drive Belt in Cricut Expression machine. (contributed by Derek N)

I successfully found and replaced the belt on my “warrantied” machine that the company had me cut the drive belt. It was simple, took about 20 mins.

Purchase the belt by the meter @ http://www.robotdigg.com/product/22/MXL-Belt,-6mm-Width-Open-Ended. You need to email the company before ordering online and they will send you a paypal payment request. You need 2 meters. Delivery took 20 days from China.

How I did it:
With the cut belt still in the machine, I took the cut side and stapled (with several staples) the new belt in the same alignment as the old belt. I then pulled the belt through very carefully because you do not want to have to open this machine up. After I had the belt fed through I disconnected the metal clip that attach the belt to the cutter. I did one side first, then hooked it to the drive. After this was done I pulled it tightly so I could determine the length that I needed on the other side. Once I completed this I then made a judgement call, I wanted the belt tight (to were I had to give it a little tug to fit it to the drive mount). I then temporarily affixed the other metal holder to the belt (leaving a couple inches of slack as a just in case I needed to make adjustments) and test fitted it. Once I determined that I took all the slack out I crimped down the metal pieces and hooked that side in.

This again was simple and could be done at home quickly. The total for shipping and 2 meters of this cord was $7.40.

This cord is a about 30% narrower than the original cord and does not have nylon on the teeth part. So far I have made several cuts with no issues, other than that some of the cartridges still do not read. But for a free machine, it works!!!!

Plus I still have enough belt for one more repair….

Edit 3/27/2014:

This page continues to have a steady stream of traffic and comments, thank you all for posting your problems and solutions alike!

Although I haven't done much trading in machines and parts, I've gotten a lot of requests for a few in particular, like the knobs and the plastic hinged arm from the cutter carriage, which I've mostly been unable to help with.

In order to try and help with this, whenever I find them out, I'll put up "known compatible" replacement part number/source information. I'm sure that the toothed belt, USB port, voltage regulator, and carriage end-stop button are in this category.

Secondly, if you have a broken machine, if you're not near Austin, Texas, I probably can't fix it for you.

But, if you need a specific part, or if you have already replaced your machine and want to get rid of the old one, send me a note and I'll see if I can help.

Offers of free or cheap donor machines and parts are always welcome. I don't do this as a business or to profit in any real way.

Unfortunately I only can deal with the "old" Personal, Create, Cake, and Expression machines. The Imagine and later generation machines like Mini and Expression2 are completely different and I cannot help aside from encouraging people to post any repair tips they may have about these.

In other news..

Last night I managed to ruin an Expression that I was trying to fix, one of the last in my "broken" pile :( My two already-working Expressions are currently out on loan and I needed one so I decided to see if I could finally get this one going.

The 5v regulator was fried, and got very hot quickly and smelled bad after turning the power on. I'm not sure why, but I did find (and fix) a pinched (and broken) ribbon cable for the display - perhaps it caused a short, causing the other issue. We'll never know.

Anyhow I misunderstood the part number when ordering and replaced it with an adjustable regulator of the same part number, which only output 1.2v since it wasn't configured properly. In trying to figure out my mistake, my multimeter probe shorted two pins together which sent 32v (or nearly) through everything it was connected to :(

The CPU now has a nice bulge in the middle and just gets hot instead of working at 5v. I considered trying to replace it, but the chip alone is about $13 and who knows what else is fried. :( The good news is I can take it apart and find new homes for the surviving (practically brand new and unused-looking) remains.

Just for fun, I might try removing the old CPU and making some kind of adapter so I can plug in a Teensy 3.0 running Freecut as a replacement.

Moral of the story: the PROPER 5v voltage regulator for the Expression and Create (probably the Personal as well) is the LM2576−5 (5v fixed) and NOT the adjustable one.

Edit 4/28/2013:

At long last, I took a photo of the repairs for the "broken inner-layer traces" issue.

First photo shows the front of the board. The broken traces connect one of the inductor leads (circled) to the 5v voltage regulator and to the large capacitor below it.

Minolta DSC

This next photo shows where the jumpers were placed. Your mileage may vary, but this got mine working.

Minolta DSC

2) Another Create model would power up and boot fully, but the display would be either blank or show only a single line of pixels. Swapping out the display for another known-good one did not have any effect. This turned out to be a broken +5V power supply line to the OLED display connector. (pin 2, counting from the end with the red stripe). I repaired this one by adding a jumper over to the +5V power supply line on the keyboard connector an inch away.

Disconnected Cables

One expression, when you pushed the power button, would light up, but instead of booting would just beep three times and halt. This turned out to be simply a disconnected keyboard cable. The fix was simply to plug the cable back in to the motherboard.

Broken Limit Switch wires

Two different machines had this problem - they would start up okay, but when the carriage would slide all the way to right, it would crash at the end and make a horrible grinding noise. This indicates a problem with the button located in the right-side hidey-hole or the wires leading to it.

Upon removing the right-side cover, I discovered in one case that the pair of wires from the limit switch had been severed by the sharp edge of the metal motor bracket inside. Repairing the wires solved the problem. In another case, one of the wires had simply fallen off the switch, and I was able to just plug it back in.

Broken Solenoid wire

One Create would operate normally, except the cutting blade would not go up and down at all. Removing the carriage cover revealed the problem to be a broken solder joint at the top of the cutter solenoid. Space is pretty tight, but I was able to solder a short length of wire between the broken lead and the stub on the solenoid to fix this problem.

Blade Dragging

This problem seems to be one of the most common, and the easiest to fix as well. The machine seems to operate normally, except that the blade drags in some places, cutting where it shouldn't, and hangs up in some places, not cutting where it should. Normally, the blade holder should move smoothly up and down. You should be able to push it down with no friction detected, and when released, it should move smoothly and freely back upwards.

In some cases, the lower of the two leaf springs in the cutter solenoid mechanism can get bent, causing a slight misalignment, which creates friction that causes the observed "dragging" behavior.

The fix for this is about the simplest of all: remove 3 screws covering the cutter carriage, and simply pinch with your fingers the upper and lower leaf springs together at the right hinge point. (Where the red circles are in the photo below). This should straighten the bent lower leaf spring and free up the movement.

Replacement Parts

The power brick is an 18v 2.5A switching power supply with a pretty standard cord end, so you could probably find something compatible, but you can get the real thing from PC itself for $9.99.

If you're looking for used parts, Here's one place you could try, or Here's another

I'm not 100% certain, but the US Cutter Refine carriage looks identical from the photo.

Unsolved Machines

I have several machines that I have not yet repaired.

One is a Personal model that will often fail to boot, and show only dark squares on the LCD screen. It was described this way to me before I got it, worked fine upon receipt, but then stopped working again soon after.

Another is an Expression that, when powered on, the power light comes on, but nothing else, and the 5V regulator starts to get very hot. Although replacing the regulator may be the solution, I want to be sure the problem wasn't caused by something else. (see the 3/27/14 update where I toasted this one trying to fix it).

(two other Personals have not been checked out yet).

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  1. Oh I’m so glad you wrote this! But unfortunately my problem isn’t on here! My imagine powers on but the LCD doesn’t work. Any ideas on how I can get it fixed? Or do you know anybody I can pay to fix it?
    Thanks do much for any help you can provide with this!
    Nikki

    • if the machine seems to work normally aside from the screen, make sure the cable is plugged in securely at both ends… If it’s powering on, but not completing the startup sequence with a beep, then you have other issues, probably power related.

      • Hey there!
        Im having the same thing…it powers up but lcd screen doesnt light up. I tried a new plug but same thing :( any ideas of what else i can try?

        • Mine is the same, I’ve only used it a handful of times and now I can’t get the screen to light up. It works fine for connecting as I can sync it with no problems with my computer, just the screen on it is blank. :(

          • If you’ve already checked that the cable connecting the screen to the motherboard is securely fastened, the other possibility is lack of proper power to the screen. Remove the bottom cover of the machine (carefully, lay the machine on its back on a towel and protect the power cord), unplug the cable to the screen, and turn the machine on. Connect the black lead of a multimeter to a good ground (theres one at the lower left of the motherboard that is labeled GND), and probe the screen connection’s pins for power. There should be at least one with 5v dc and one with 12v dc. Turn the machine off, and switch your meter to the Ohms (resistance) setting. Leave the black lead connected to ground, and use the other lead to verify that at least one screen connector pin has a good ground (meter will read 0). I believe the power and ground pins are at opposite ends of the connector.

      • My machine will power on and the lcd screen comes on but that’s it. It doesn’t beep nor does the menu screen come up. Any suggestions??

  2. I’m thrilled someone can fix these, however, have you fixed one that says “Cartridge comm error”? PC says only THEY can fix it… great. Frankly I don’t know even who to take one to, it seems its a software issue.

    Any help would be great!

    • Nope I sure haven’t seen that.. The message appears on the cricut screen?

      Maybe there’s a problem with your cartridge, cartridge slot, or the cable connecting it to the motherboard?

      Will it let you do a firmware update using Design Studio (trial version)?

      • I also get the same error. When I turn it on a takes awhile and the bar rolls slower and the start noises are slower. It takes a long time then beeps and says cartridge comm error. I have tried all of my cartridges and none of them work. usually if I turn the machine on and off a bunch of time I can eventually get it to turn on correctly, but now it stopped. It always has the error and is moving slow. Any thoughts?

    • Hi Penny,
      I just happened across your post. Did you ever figure out your problem with the cartridge? mine does the same thing and still have yet to fix it and don’t know who I can take it to to get it fixed.
      Thanks for any help you can give me! :)

  3. Great Site! Lots of good info for those of us who won’t take ” Oh well, guess it’s just broken” for an answer. How about info on an Expression that boots up fine but won’t load a mat. It’s like it somehow is slipping in the drive mechanism. Haven’t had a chance to take it apart and look, but thought I would ask….

    • Did you find a solution to your mat not loading. I was having the same issue and (DUH!) realized I was using the wrong power supply. The one I had accidentally used belonged to my EHD, lower voltage than the cricut needed. I plugged mine in using the correct power supply and bingo it worked perfect.

    • I have also been having this problem and no matter what I try it has not resolved. Updated firmware, reset, rolled three times down and then up, etc. Looking forward to any helpful info!

      • Hi there,i am Tony from the United Kingdom,i too have had this problem.I found by taking the top of my imagine off, i could see on the right-hand side, that the large cog connecting to a smaller cog on the motor had in fact slid back on its spindle thus not engaging with the smaller cog from the motor.Just by pushing the big cog onto the spindle tighter,it engaged the smaller cog,i then tested the imagine and found that it then loaded the mat properly.I then applied some glue onto the spindle and cog so they were fixed more permantely,as it has been made without any securing washer whatsoever.After doing this i reassembled the cricut and have not had any more problems of it slipping.I think provo craft should have a fixing circlip attached to metal rod of this assembly on all their machines as i think this is a design flaw..
        I have also noticed another design flaw in the Imagine which is,on the metal bar that the insert mat plastic guide is that there is quite a bit of side to side movement that can effect the calibration and final priciseness of the cutting out of printed images.You need to push the plastic guide to the left and then fit a spacer onto the metal bar to take up gap that is there between the plastic insert mat guide and the washer by the spring.In doing this ,you take up the gap so there is no chance of sideways movement by the plastic insert mat guide so when you calibrate it stays calibrated properly thus given you a more precise cut around your images….
        Sorry a bit long winded but i hope this helps…
        Tony…

        • Hi, Tony, I live in UK and my Cricut personal cutter has died on me. It will not switch on, though power seems to be going through the regulator (at least the little green light is on). I cannot get it to do anything. Is there anywhere in the UK where I can take it to get it fixed.

          • I have no information on any places that will repair them, although sometimes people will report that local generic tv/radio repair shops will try. Do you mean a green light on the power adapter or the power button on the machine lights up? I have had them die with the power button lighting up and nothing else. In several cases this was a failure in the 5V section, see the “broken inner layer traces” section in the FAQ.

  4. Have you ever repaired the port in the back of a Cricut Expression? Mine is broken and just past the warranty, and of course, Cricut (ProvoCraFt) doesn’t repair them. Or if you know of someone who does repair the port, that would be very helpful. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  5. I have the same problem as Jennifer. The port on the back (DC 18 V – 2.5 A) that accepts power from the power supply pin/cable has cracked into many pieces. I took out the pieces after gaining access by unscrewing the 7 screws from the bottom of the Cricut. This appears very fixable if I could just get that little part. Is this the “power brick” you refer to above? Where do we find these? Thanks!

    • I found what looks like the USB port part itself for about $2 on DigiKey, you may be able to desolder and replace it if the board hasn’t broken underneath it..

      http://www.digikey.com/scripts/dksearch/dksus.dll?FV=fff40016%2Cfff802e4&vendor=0&mnonly=0&newproducts=0&ptm=0&fid=0&quantity=0&PV28=873

      • Same here, just discovered my port is broken. When I click on the link I see many different parts. Is one on that list better than others? Could you recommend maybe where to take this to? For instance could I take it to a computer repair and they could possibly replace the usb port? Called cricut and they said no go with them.

        • I’m sorry, most repair places won’t want to deal with this kind of repair.. The digikey link would only be useful if you were thinking of trying to attempt the repair yourself or maybe had a handy friend. Sadly, otherwise, selling a broken machine on ebay and replacing with perhaps another used one is likely to be your cheapest solution.

          • My husband took it to a local computer repair store and they did indeed fix it! Took a couple of days but I am back to cutting! They gave me back the broken part so for those wondering it isn’t soddered (sp) on. It is possible I may have been able to do it but out of my comfort zone. For the others my same issue, it is worth checking with a computer repair store. Ours said if they could fix it they would charge us, if not no charge. Was worth the shot, glad we took it! Thank you for this blog, I never would have thought it was replaceable without it!

      • How do you access the USB port to remove it? My port seems busted. I want to try to fix it. I’m devasted that I can’t use my Gypsy and other software.

  6. Mine is just past warranty pink expression and does the dragging thing Cuts the shape weird and makes a graiting noise whilst trying to cut. Not the blade or the housing tried in in my bug. I think it may be the one you have listed above. The easiest to fix. Thanks so much. Hope it works.

  7. So my cricut fell :( sad day… the size dial broke. I kind of understand how you say to fix it but not really. Do I need to buy one for parts and do it my self? Do I take it somewhere? What do you suggest?

    • I have seen at least one place that advertises repair services, but it’s really cost-prohibitive once shipping two ways is included. Your best option is to buy the part and replace it yourself, I linked a couple of possible places you can get a replacement from. Once you get the #@#$ trim strip off, the end cap comes off easily with a few screws, and the broken part can be removed with a few more and some careful wiggling to get around the front door hinge. You’ll also need to open the bottom compartment to unplug the old part and plug the new one in. Always be very careful of the sharp metal edges, both to avoid cutting yourself but also to avoid pinching wires which can also easily be cut.

  8. I have a Cricut Personal that I bought off of Ebay last year. It works great except I can not cut the images from any cartridge that requires the Shift key. The Shift key beeps and lights up, but it will not cut the images from Layer 2. Any suggestions? I am thinking of an Expressions purchase but leery after reading of problems on Cricut help site.

  9. My carriage unit came off of the track and I can’t get all the wheels back on. Do you know how to put it back on? Provocraft couldn’t help me at all. Do I need to unscrew somewhere and then put it back on? Any help would be greatly appreciated since it is no longer under warranty!

    • I’m having the same issue. I can get the wheels back on but it forward, when it’s on & tries to go into the little cave thing it makes a horrible noise.

      • Were you able to fix it? I’d really like to use my cricut!

        • Nope no luck yet. You?

          • My brother helped me figure it out! If you take the cover off of your carriage there is a small screw most likely with red paint on it below the top wheel, unscrew it & the top wheel will move down far enough for you to place the wheels on the rail. Once on the rail the put screw back into the spot you took it out of!! If you tip your machine back a little it’s easier to get the screw in. Place the carriage cover back on & it should be fixed! Any questions please email! Jennifer.rose112@gmail I’ve cut with mine & it works great! It’s the first time I’ve used it; I got a few months ago as a Birthday present, my mom has an imagine so I’ve just used that. So excited to use my pink expression tomorrow! I hope this can help, especially if the warranty isn’t valid! Good luck & Pls email to let me know if it works!

      • I have the same issue! Did you fix it?

  10. Hello–I dropped my Expression 2 last night. The roller bar that feeds the mat in and out is now off–The pressure is uneven and the mat slides around during cutting. When a cut is finished and I eject the mat, it gets stuck on the cutting blade and won’t come out. My husband could attempt to fix it if he knew what he should be doing…Any help would be appreciated!

  11. My wife’s cricut expression won’t cut anymore. It powers up and moves around but doesn’t cut unless I push the blade down by hand. We did the standard reset but no luck. The blade doesn’t seem to go up and down. I ripped it open and checked the connectors and power does get to the mechanism (I applied power directly and the blade then went up and down) I traced the cable all the way back to the right hand side of the device(I took the side off and it was fastened securely to the board) Anyone have a solution on how to fix this. Is there maybe a hidden fuse or something that can be easily fixed.

  12. Maybe you can help me!!! My cricut expression won’t cut from day 1. It powers up and moves around but doesn’t cut unless I push the blade down by hand! How can I fix the problem? How do I open the machine? You seems to be the only one who know something and might be able to help!! Thank you ! Avital

    • If the blade holder moves down when you press on it and bounces up again when you let go, then I would first remove the bottom cover and check that all the cables are securely attached to the main board (and not loose or completely detached).

      If you don’t find anything obvious there, try taking the cover off the cutter carriage and inspect the wires that bring power to the carriage and make sure those connections are secure.

      You can test for continuity between the terminals on the carriage and the other end where the cable plugs into the main board.

      • im having the same issue and cant get my *?&%ing this to cut! There are no loose wires, the blade housing moves up and down freely. I’ve done the reset and pinched the ends of the springs together…and updated the firmware and…NOTHING! Pleae help! i have used it so few times, I still have the original blade on!!

    • Any luck with fixing your Cricut?? I’m having the same issue and have tried everything else! Thanks!

  13. Hello. My Cricut Expression wont load/unload paper. The roller barely moves when you turn it on, but doesn’t budge at all when you load/unload. I called support, they say to buy a new machine. I did their reset. My husband also downloaded the firmware updates. Still no luck. He is taking it apart now to look at cboard, but I was hoping you had some suggestions, or have run into this issue before. Thank you!!

    • Does it make any noises when the roller bar is SUPPOSED to be moving but isnt? Does the motor inside the left cover hum like it’s trying to turn?

      • Hi and thanks for this site. This is what mine is doing. It makes a horrible noise when the paper feed mechanism should be turning. What do you suspect the issue might be? Thanks in advance.

        • Do you have an expression? If so, try taking off the left side cover and see if there’s some problem with the belt connecting the feed motor to the roller bar, or perhaps the roller itself is jammed?

          • Thanks for your quick response! When I pinch the belt, the roller turns. Do you think it’s as simple as replacing the belt?

          • Can you tell if the belt is loose because there’s not enough tension, or are there missing teeth? I don’t believe there’s any adjustment possible, so as long as you find something actually wrong with the old belt, and check that the roller doesn’t bind up and cause the belt to strip. I wouldn’t expect it to just fail for no reason, so always best to try and understand the original cause..

          • Thanks again for the quick reply. There does seem to be a bit of play in the belt. No teeth missing. I will see if I can find a similar belt, likely at a vacuum repair shop. Provocraft doesn’t seem to have that part listed.

      • Yes the motor hums, but is VERY hard to get mat to load. There is some sort of sticky strip in front of the rollers that appears to be peeling up. Wonder if this could be the cause of loading problem. If so, how to I replace that?

        • There shouldn’t be any sticky strip in front of the rollers. I bet anything this is your problem.

          How about just peeling it off?

  14. I have a Cricut Expression. When I connect to power and turn on, only the “Power” button lights up, the remainder of the keypad and LCD are off. I had the power relay on the keypad circuit board replaced and the problem remains. I now think that this machine may have broken inner-layer traces as described above.
    Thanks for the tips.

    • Hi Jean,
      My wife’s Expression, which she has had for years now and has always worked fine, is experiencing the exact same symptom. Power light illuminates only, the rest of the machine is dead.
      We’re you able to identify the problem?

      Thank you, George

      • my cricut is doing the same thing! one minute it is working perfectly fine, the next minute it won’t do anything. the green light on the power button lights up, but that’s it. helllpppp…. i have it all take apart, but i don’t see anything obvious.
        karenc

    • Hello. Did anyone got this problem solved? I have a Cricut Cake with the same problem, just the on/off button lights up, keypad and lcd are dead.

    • My has just startedt this same issue. Sometimes I when I turn it on it is fine but other times only the power button lights up and nothing else happens. Can someone tell me what the issue may be?

  15. I have a cricut mini & the plastic cradle holding the blade has broken. Can anyone tell me if this part is interchangeable from machine to machine. I can not seem to find a broken/defective mini for cheap but there are plenty of Expressions. If I knew the part off the expression would work, I would buy it and use it to replace the part on my mini. If anyone could help me with this I would appreciate it very much!!

  16. Thank you! I did run across this the other day. I read that the baby bug and expression are interchangeable but I just wonder about the mini. I might just try it anyways because I am finding them on eBay for around 20 bucks shipped. If it doesn’t work then I haven’t wasted a lot of money and maybe I can use your tips to get it running instead! Thanks for you help and this website is def getting favorited!

    • So everyone knows, the blades on the Mini and on th expression/baby bug are Not interchangeable, HOWEVER, with a couple passes of electrical tape you can very easily (and inexpensibly) make it fit snugly enough to cut! This was a quick 5 minute fix and it has held up great so far and cut perfectly!

  17. Do you have any guides to fix the Cricut Expression when it powers on but just clicks and then only a few buttons light up and LCD is completely dead?
    Thanks!!

    • This sounds like the “broken inner layer board traces” problem I’ve fixed a few times and described in the FAQ. It requires a little detective work and skill with a multimeter & soldering iron, but should be fixable.

  18. Wondering if you have ever run into this problem…I have a cricut expression that is dragging the blade just enough to scratch the paper, but not cut it, in the areas that the blade is supposed to not be making any marks at all. In the places that it is supposed to be making a cut, it is only scratching the paper also, and not cutting it, not even a weak cut. If I press down gently on the black arms that hold the blade housing, it then cuts through. I checked with FAQ on the provo craft website and it says that if you have this problem, that your machine needs to be replaced, but my guess is that they would probably say that for most of the problems you seem to be able to solve. Do you have any ideas how I could fix this problem? Thanks!

    Rhonda

    • Read the repair section on the “blade dragging” issue and see if this seems to be your issue. Just a phillips-head screwdriver and your pincer grasp is all it takes to fix if that’s the problem,..

      • Hey there,

        I already tried the “blade dragging” repair you mentioned above, and it is not helping it. It seems to be a bit of a different problem…even the opposite problem. The cutting mechanism will not go down far enough to make a cut, it only scratches the paper, so it’s not really a “dragging” issue, where the blade will not lift high enough and makes cuts where it shouldn’t. Could it be some kind of connection problem with the “pressure” button? I have it set on MAX, but it is definitely not giving me MAX pressure. Any thoughts? Thanks.

        Rhonda

  19. I am trying to replace the blade, the old blade came out okay, but when I put the new on in, it wont go in its like something is blocking it. can i buy a new blade housing. Thanks you

    • Hi Karen, sometimes this happens to me…if paper slowly gets stuffed up there it blocks the opening. I bang mine on the table a few times. you would be surprised what falls out.

  20. Hi
    I want to thank you because you have saved me a whole heap of money :) My mum sent me her cricut create when she upgraded. It worked fine before being sent to me so I guess the postal service damaged it when they chucked it over the fence. Anyway the blade housing refused to go up and down and so I have spent months trying to get some resolution from Cricut/Provo. I tried resetting the machine, buying new blades, new housing, new mats etc etc and in the end provo told me it was not repairable. I came so close to throwing the thing out.
    Then yesterday i came across this page and figured why not give it a go. I squeezed the 2 springs together as suggested and whadyaknow the machine is now up and running perfectly. Thank you sooooooo much.
    And to think if I had followed provo/cricut advice I would have purchased a new one all because of such a small problem easily resolved. Provo/Cricut need to stop ripping people off and be honest about fixing these things.

  21. Hi. Do you know of anyone who just does maintenance on the machines? Mine runs 24hrs/ 7 days a week. I have had it for 2.5 years, nothing seems broken just seems to be slowing down…

    thanks

  22. How much do you charge to repair machines?

  23. Hi, my cricut won’t turn on. There is power to it but when you press the on switch, absolutely nothing happens. Any suggestions?

    • My machine will not turn on either, just like Denece’s post. No help from provocraft except to say I can always buy another one. Can someone help here? It is not the power brick and I am frustrated. Thank you!

    • I have this problem too. Just bought a used cricut original for my daughter las Sunday. It worked fine until Monday night. We tried to use the Craft Room and connected it to the computer. When I turned off the cricut and then tried to turn it on again it would not go on anymore. You press the on button and absolutely nothing happens. There’s power to the machine because the little green light is on on the power transformer/adaptor, whatever that thing is called.

    • Me again. OK, so I took the side of it off last night, following instructions on this page and others around the web (it put up a good fight) and checked it. There was absolutely nothing wrong inside. Nothing was loose, nothing was out of place, everything was doing what it was meant to do. I used the reset button, I prayed over it. Nothing. Completely dead. This morning I pressed the power button more out of habit than anything, and lo and behold, it turned on! I sincerely cannot take credit for having “fixed it” as I truly didn’t do anything except push things in that were already properly pushed in. Maybe my prayer was answered, or maybe these machines are just hugely temperamental. I don’t know.

  24. Hi, I recently purchased a cricut expression machine and it came broken. The machine is jammed. The part where the cutting blade is attached is not properly aligned. One wheel is on the track and the other is not. I am a bit afraid to try and take it apart but I beleive it is an easy fix and it is a brand new machine. I am under warranty but they ran out of the machine I bought and want to send me another one. I would like to fix mine if I can. Any tips?

    • check some of the other comments, I bet you can get it back on there yourself!

      • Hello, I have the same problem with my new expression, where the blade unit is off tracks and it make a horrible noise when it tries to go back to its starting position. I noticed that the little white wheels are out of the tracks, Cricut told me that i need to replace the part, but i think it can be fixed. Can someone helps me please!

        • Check out Jennifer’s comment above from October 12th, 2012 – 02:00. She explains how to get the carriage back on the tracks (remove the carriage cover, loosen the screw with the red paint on it, and the wheel should move enough to get it back on the track, then tighten the screw back to where it started).

  25. Hi I just brought my machine off of ebay and I never do that again. The problem with my machine is the screw that tightens the blade in is broken I have no way of keeping the blade in to do any cutting. Do you know were in quees n.y I can get it repaired I’m open to any self made tricks you may know of to hold the blade in.Thank you very much

  26. The symptoms of my Cricut Personal are described exactly in the section Broken Limit Switch wires. I got the right side off, and all the wires seem okay. However, there was a spring rattling around loose: about 3/8″ long with a loop at each end. It looks like it would fit on a moving latch-like part, but it wouldn’t create any tension. Any clues for me?

    • I just thought of something (haven’t looked inside mine yet to check) but is the loose spring used to keep tension on the drive belt? A loose belt would probably make the same grinding noise as a limit switch problem..

  27. when I use my design studio and push cut it says that the cricut was not found and to check my usb cord and see if its turn on.

  28. The USB port on the back of my cricut broke. It fell off the table. One of the prongs is broken off. I am womdering if I can find a replacement part I emailed the one link for parts you had listed and the other I plan to call tomorrow (the headphones site). Wasn’t sure if you had another source. Or if a computer shop could repair. Thanks!

  29. Do you know where I can just find the carriage arm for the cake cricut. Mine broke last night and I am so upset. Still got Christmas gifts to finish.

    • Unfortunately I don’t, but I’m working on it!

      In the meantime, I don’t know a workaround for you… Perhaps if you have some basic woodworking tools you could try making one from wood.. Or maybe some Shapelock? It’s a kind of plastic that gets soft enough to mold by hand when you drop it in boiling water.. http://blog.makezine.com/2011/09/28/the-many-uses-of-shapelock/

      • Another suggestion, I bet you could make a serviceable replacement arm from HDPE plastic, aka garden-variety white plastic cutting board. You can buy them in 1/4″ thickness, then rough out the shape with a hand saw and drill for the pin hole. The plastic is quite strong and has enough flex that I bet it would hold up well.

  30. I just fired up my cricut to make a Christmas present as well and wanted to cut some vinyl. It seems the pressure dial is stuck on high and there is no changing the setting. I’ve tried the “re-boot” and still not change. It doesn’t even recognize I’ve have moved the dial. Speed dial works as normal. Everything worked fine the last time I used it … a few weeks ago. Any help would be appreciated.

    • I don’t have any suggestion about the pressure dial, I know that they do fail occasionally for no obvious reason. If the machine falls over on its front can break it as well.

      For the moment, I bet as long as you set the blade height shallow enough not to cut through the backing paper, you should still be able to cut your vinyl just fine…

      • I tried to adjust the blade height down to 1 and it still cuts through the vinyl backing. Wondering if I open the machine if I can find the problem.. ?

        • Rats. I’ve never fixed a busted pressure dial. If it’s not broken, but merely dirty, perhaps you could take off the left side cover and spray the guts of the knob really well with electronic contact cleaner, or maybe even just air?

          • I will have to try that. I tried using heavy cardstock w/it stuck at the pressure it’s at and it cuts all the way through even that. I guess I should be happy that at least it will still cut things for me… I had to make Christmas gifts with larger detailed vinyl letters because the extra pressure makes the small vinyl pieces tear.

            Do you happen to know what firmware came on the 2009 models that were sold on Black Friday? I haven’t had any luck finding out. I thought about trying a reset but because of a program I use with it, I can’t afford to have it revert backwards to an older firmware or the program will no longer work with it :(

          • There’s no way a reset will change your firmware version. You can only do that with PC’s Design Studio program, so go ahead and try!

            I’m suspicious, you say even with blade depth 1 it still cuts all the way through heavy cardstock?

            I don’t have this at all, if I reduce the blade depth to 4 or less mine won’t cut card stock cleanly even on the highest pressure.

            Can you try a different blade? How far does it protrude on blade depth 1 vs 6? Perhaps theres some paper fluff or junk makign the blade stick out too far?

  31. Before I pull apart my “Bertie” (Expression) I just wanted to check if his symptoms together mean anything different. He is scratching the surface when cutting, the blade appears to have the usual spring back as normal. His other symptoms are that the dial size will not change and is stuck on 2 1/2″ and the pressure and speed dials only show ‘min’ and ‘low’. The ‘clicking’ increments in the pressure and speed dials have delays – one click usually changes to the next depth or pressure level- when starting at the lowest ‘min’ setting and changing up I am getting one blank click and then a change to ‘low’ then the dial continues to turn until it stops but no change to the setting. (Sorry, trying to describe it best I can). I have changed blades and checked housing, tried other settings like fit-to-page and he adjusts the size to suit that function but still scratches the paper. I have adjusted the blade depth on the blade housing with no luck. I have tried the recommended reset from Provo Craft ( more than 6 times) and also the firmware update using Design Studio trial as I don’t have the full DS. Still nothing. He cut a sheet of stars and then immediately afterwards when a new mat was loaded, began the problems above. He is just shy of 2 years old and out of warranty. I have 3 new cartridges on the way and won’t be able to play if he doesn’t respond to treatment. Thank you for your suggestions above, I will try these if Provo Craft is no longer able to help.

    • An update, after leaving ‘Bertie’ switched off and unplugged for a week, reset again, I now have the speed and pressure dials working to medium – although medium is as high as the dial goes with non-registering spacing between. The size is still stuck on 2 1/2″ but hopefully by using Craft Room I’ll be able to get around that.

  32. I just received my cricut for christmas… the gray circular thing on the roller bar is ripped off of one side… Do you know how to replace it or any ideas?

    • Do you mean the little rubber o-rings? You should be OK if there’s at least one or two contacting the cutting mat. To replace the ring, you will need to remove the roller bar and install a ring from another donor machine. I might be able to send you one if you need. The process to remove the roller bar is a bit involved but not terribly difficult; Can you get away without replacing it?

      • If you can take the broken o-ring (or one of the good ones) to a plumbing supply place (Ace, Lowes, Home Depot, etc), you may be able to find a match. Haven’t had issue with Cricut but did with my 6-needle embroidery machine and replaced all my rubber o-rings with ones found at Ace & Lowes. The color is different but who cares? I was so happy to find them—to drag this 80 pound machine in & then have to pay to have them put them on…well, solved for under $5 (and I have spares).

  33. I have a Cricut Imagine that I bought off of Ebay. The carriage for the ink cartridges will not drop down in order to insert ink cartridges. Provo Craft walked thru the update and that did not work. Would you know what the problem would be?

  34. On button comes when power pack plugged in, but will not turn off, Can’t upgrade to the craft room for my expression

  35. Thanks for all your time with this! I have a problem that I did not see listed (unless I some how missed it in my break from reading). Here goes … I have a cricut expression that the housing in the machine makes a grinding sound when it returns to the start position. It is a ‘new to me’ machine, and was lightly used before. I made just 3 cuts to try it out and it seems to cut fine. I am just worried that this grinding noise is going to wear the machine out or break/stop cutting soon. Thanks for your time.

    • Sounds to me like a problem with the button inside the carriage’s hidey-hole in the right side of the machine. Try taking the right side cover off and checking that the wires are securely attached to the button, and that they haven’t been cut by sharp sheet-metal edges. If these look ok, try removing the bottom cover and unplug/replug the cable into the motherboard.

      It may work because it assumes the carriage has homed itself after a certain amount of time even without the signal from the homing button.

  36. I just got a cricut create machine which I ordered on line from ebay and it doesn’t have the tightening nut to hold the blade housing closed. I was just wondering if I can find something at the local hardware store or if I should order the part on line?

    • I’ve wondered the same thing, but haven’t yet heard of a good substitute, please be sure to post a follow-up comment if you are successful!

  37. I have an Expression. I bought it two years ago. I hardly had time to use it. Now that I’ve used it for the 4th or 5th time, I load the mat, the carriage moves or it starts to cut, then it just shuts off. I’ve checked the plug, used a similar plug w/same amps & voltage. Still just shuts off. When I turn it on, then when the carriage moves or the machine jolts, then it just shuts off. Sometimes after it shuts off, I go to hit the power button and it goes on and clicks off. This machine is practically new. My husband, engineer by trade, could probably replace the parts if he had an idea what the problem is. Thank you!

  38. I purchased a used Cricut Imagine that looks like new. I had a small cricut for years and a lot of cartridges. when I put the cartridge on left side, it reads out that I need a update. I tried to update but it would not load from computer to machine(they tried from cricut to help me) Every thing comes up on screen and seem to be find. I follow instructions to cut out something, I put mat into machine it will take mat and then pushs mat back out. The lady from cricut say it could be a bad port. What do you think? Also if you think it is, where could I purchase one? My husband say just scrap it. What do you think? Thank you so much if you could help me, I would really like to fix it

  39. Thank you! I had the horrible grind upon startup, cartridges and gypsy not recognized and it wouldn’t load paper. I took the right side off, and one of the leads had dropped from the reset button. Plugged it back in, powered it up and voila – everythign was working! Taking the silver trim off and on was actually the hardest part! Thanks for the information!

  40. The vibration of my Imagine caused my Gypsy to take a tumble. The port that connects my Gyspy to my Imagine has disconnected. When calling Provo Craft they simply told me to buy a new one. Any idea where I could get a replacement USB port and how to connect it?

  41. I have an expression. It fell off a table and know when you turn it onanistic the blade moves to the right it makes the awful grinding noise. It won’t recognize cartridges and the LCD screen stays on the copyright screen. None of the other buttons are lit up either. I have taken it apart and all the wires seem to be plugged in and everything looks ok. Is there something else to look for or am I not seeing something that could be wrong?

  42. Highly descriptive blog, I loved that a lot.

    Will there be a part 2?

  43. I have included a repair I did, that I didn’t see covered here. Just thought I would address the motor bounce and cricut not cutting through material issue. No matter what setting. Thanks
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7LJnfPdd08
    Good work with this article.

  44. I have a cricut mini, about 2 months old. I am having difficulty getting the mat to load in the machine. The rollers don’t catch the mat soon enough so that when it is finished loading, the mat is about an inch or more off of where it should be. Are issues with the roller easy to access and/or fix?

    Thanks for your time, you have some really great information here!

    • Is this a new issue? Could there be some gunk on the rollers preventing them from grabbing the mat?

      • I have tried to check the rollers carefully and do not see anything on the top rollers, the bottom is hard to see. If I apply pressure to the mat, either a light push or pull, it moves with the rollers. But obviously, not very accurately lol

  45. My daughter have a circuit create machine and and last week when we turned it on It started to make that loud noise when the blade motor moves from left to right and the noise stops when it reaches the far right .i appreciate it I you have any idea what could be causing that loud vibration noise thank you

  46. hi, just want to thank you first for this website…what a kind thing to do for others!! I have a cricut that is just past the warranty. It does not power on at all. I tried a friend’s power cord that we know works and it still does nothing. What should I try now?

  47. I have a cricut personal cutter that will work fine sometimes but then in the middle of the cut it just shuts off (although the power light is still on). I borrowed my sisters power cord thinking that was the problem and that didn’t help. I’ve gone through the standard reset and that doesn’t help. Sometimes if I push the cutting piece back and forth real fast the machine will kick back on and then work for a couple of minutes but then shuts down again. Have you had any experience with this or any idea of how to fix it? Any suggestion would be helpful as I am out of warranty. BTW I love this blog!

  48. My cricut won’t do anything. I can move the motor and make it light up but that’s it. Provocraft says it may be a short but won’t fix it. It’s new pleaae help.

  49. Can’t thank you enough for this site and the help I received here. My baby bug was
    cutting across and ripping and tearing anything I cut. I reset it many times with the result that it would be ok for big simple cuts for a few hours. Every other site/blog that dealt with cutting issues said I needed a new machine, that nothing fixed this problem. Best day ever when I stumbled across your site giving clear instructions and photos showing where to press. Can’t believe that just by pressing on the spring thingie made such a difference! Thank you thank you. I don’t have the money to spend on a new machine and I am so pleased that my baby will work.

  50. Does anyone know how to fix a gypsy device? I purchased a new one, but would like to know how to change the serial number from my old one to the new one? Worst case scenario I have to send them both back to the company to do this. But takes 2 weeks and a bunch of worrying about where it is and when it comes back!

  51. My Cricut has come off its tracks how do i fix it?

    • Do you mean the belt has come off one or the other of the guide wheels on the ends?

      You can take the side covers off by prying off the trim rings and removing the phillips head screws. The drive belt has a metal ring at one end that hooks over a slotted pin on the backside of the cutter carriage. If you unhook the end of the belt, you should be able to get it back over the drive sprockets before re-hooking it on the post. (take the end covers off first to see whats going on there)

  52. Hi, I have a Cricut expression which seems to be mis aligned. It is very noticeable when cutting rounded objects for example when cutting letters like O or e the centre circle is lopsided and has little threads where the cutting hasn’t started and finished in the same place. Also when my cartirdge moves from right to left when loading or placing it in different positions of the cutting mat it is extermly noisly almost juddery (not sure if this is related to the cutting lopsided problem). Any have any tips for resolving this?? Thanks

    • Hi there- I’ve seen a number of complaints over time about issues like this (oval O’s), and just had a couple of ideas so far.

      Ive seen this myself a few times when doing fairly small O’s and I think mostly due to the blade offset as it swivels.

      But, if you’re saying that even large circles are oval and the machine is unusually noisy, I would look for some kind of problem with the drive belt(s), or a loss of tension or maybe some missing or broken belt teeth.

      The inaccuracy would come from the motors losing steps while moving by being unable to turn, or the belt’s teeth skipping on the rollers.

      Try to wiggle the belts, see if either one feels sloppy. (The Expression also has a small belt for the paper feed inside the left cover, but the Personal and Create paper feeds are connected directly to the motor so no second belt.).

      If the belts seem tight enough, try removing both side covers and examining the teeth inside the belt, looking for any messed up ones, also just look over the end wheel mechanisms checking for anything loose or sloppy. Try to wiggle the carriage left & right and move it all the way left & right, and see if the belt slips any or skips on the rollers.

      Let me know if you find anything!

      • thanks for your response :-)

        There is slight play in the belt that the carriage is attached to (not sure how tight this should be?) Also i have moved the carriage all the way to left and right and doesn’t skip to jump or skip but it doesn’t feel smooth. Not sure how to explain it sort of feels abit sort of juddery like theres abit of resistance and then not and so on (again not sure if this is normal?)

        I will try the other suggestions and also try cutting larger items and see if i have the same problem (can’t at the minute as I have just my mats to make sure they are all free of paper debris as seen suggestions on cricut forum that this could be the cause but doubt it as these mats are fairly new). And also I cut a butterfly and both antenna’s should be identical yet the right one was barely there as it cut it so thin, this can be down to mat or blade surely.

  53. My partner has looked at my machine and said that the play in the belt doesn’t seem accessive and has took the sides off and nothing seems amiss there (no teeth missing etc) He seems to think it is something on the rollers at the back of the carriage. Do you know how/if you can take the carriage off or the top of the machine so I can get access to the rollers?

    • Certainly.. See my blog post entitled “How to Remove the Cricut Expression Keyboard and Use Full Length Pens” at http://everhack.blog.atxhackerspace.org/2011/05/19/how-to-remove-the-cricut-expression-keyboard-and-use-full-length-pens/

      This will give you some additional access, and unhooking the belt may give you enough wiggle room to get the carriage off to inspect the wheels for junk. One of the wheels has a spring loaded pivot and I think you can get the carriage off if you can retract that pivot a bit. I have not personally tried this yet, but another person reported being able to re-install one that had fallen off the track.

      Be careful of the solder joints on the leads to the solenoid, its hard to access where this wire is plugged in and just unplug it.

  54. Good morning. I have an Expression like the one you described above stating:

    1) One machine’s power button would light up when you turned it on, but nothing else would happen. This was isolated to two broken inner-layer traces leading from the 5V regulator to two nearby parts. (specifics TBA)

    I would like to have the “specifics” on this to provide to my handy DH to see if he might be able to make an easy repair so that it is working again. Thanks for any insight you can provide.

    • Well DH took it completely apart but couldn’t find anything loose, disconnected or broken inside. As a result, I have now a Cricut Expression for sale for its parts (I told him not to worry about putting it back together!) No big loss on my end. This one had been sitting on a shelf for a couple of years not functioning anyway. Plus, i have moved on to bigger and better cutters as well. If interested in the parts let me know and I’ll ship it out.

      • Hi Melanie, so sorry for the long delay in responding! I have edited the post to show the details of this repair. Hope it helps!

  55. I just bought my Cricut Expression 2 from Craigslist, and the belt that moves the blade is broken. I don’t know what it’s called, and I need to replace it. Any suggestions?

  56. My cricut is only 6 months old and all of a sudden, it started cutting wrong sizes. If I want a tree at 4 inches, it cuts at one. Tried to cut the baby in the moon on baby steps at 3 inches, and it cut at 6 or 7 inches. I haven’t seen this type of problem on web….any ideas???

    Thanks so much for your site….gives me hope for this temperamental machine.

  57. I have a cricut imagine, i used it maybe 4 times and now it will not power up at all. Has anyone had this problem and if so did and how did you fix it or what was wrong with it????

  58. You have done an awesome job helping people and given some great information you can’t find elsewhere. I have a personal edition that powers on fine but the screen has random characters that you can’t make sense of as to what it is doing. I did a reset and then did the firware upgrades but all that did was change it from question marks and slashes to black squares. I know I read somewhere that you have one that is acting similar to this and had found the fix to be a jumper you connected. Is what I describe similar to what you had or do you thing it is something else. I just didn’t want to randomly tear this machine apart so I was just looking for a little clarification. Also I can use the keyboard to cut some letters but it doens’t always respond. I also can make it cut by connecting it to my pc and using MTC software but it does not always respond to commands their either. It will cut perfectly then it may say that it can’t be found or it’s froze up. Which I can then reboot the cricut and it will usually cut. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Nancy

  59. I have a Cricut Expression that I bought off a local website. When I plugged it in, it seemed to be working until I tried to load paper. Didn’t know what was wrong with it so I took off the bottom to inspect the inside. Found the belt that makes the roller roll was broken. Do you have any extra belts or suggestions to replace it with? I tried a vacuum belt, but it was just a tad too short to fit around both rollers to work. Any suggestions would be great (No other machines around to “steal” the belt off them either).

  60. Your efforts were helpful and much appreciated. Thank you!

  61. Hi, I have a cricut create which will not power up, the on/off button just clicks, I have tried to reset but no joy – also size dail is just spinning round will this be the problem many thanks

    • It seems like there are quite a few machines out there with power problems. Unfortunately I have only fixed one of them so far, and I doubt they all have the same problem (see the section on “broken inner layer board traces”). The only way I was able to get mine figured out was to have a spare (working) board to compare against, as well as referring to the “typical usage” circuit in the 5v regulator datasheet, not to mention a smart friend to help me when I got stuck. Wish I could be more helpful. I highly doubt the size dial is the reason it won’t power up.

  62. I have an Imagine that just quit cutting. When it powers up, the carriage makes a grinding noise. I called Provo craft and they had me reset and update my machine. Now it’s worse. I can’t get past the calibration screen because it won’t cut. Provo craft has no answers. Anyone else have this problem? What can I try? Thanks. You have a lot of other info that may come in handy in the future.

    • I Fixed It!!!! By keeping reading other people’s blogs, I can’t across someone with the grinding problem. There is a red reset button inside the right hand side of the machine. While it is off, move the blade carriage to the left and pull out the reset button. The grinding stopped and it allows the cricut to cut so it got past the calibration screen. I just had to play with the blade to get it to cut right by following instructions above(for a dragging blade) . Why didn’t the support people mention any of this???? Disappointed in customer service, but happy for others that post their results. I hope this helps someone.

    • I was looking at an Expression for my sis that was completely dead. No lights. 18V supply was all I had that fed up to keyboard. On that board I found a shorted surface mount transistor Q2. Apparently the relay driver. It’s an NPN transistor. I had one on hand and after replacing, unit fired right up.
      (I used an RCA 215495) Maybe this will help someone.

      ron

  63. I recently bought a cricut machine from a yard sale. When I try it it seems that the metal bar holding the cutter will not stay in place. I realize it is supposed to go up and down a little, but once it goes us it does not come back down so only half of my design is being cut. Anyone else experience this?

    • Try taking the side covers off and checking the roller bar tension spring..
      I think it’s in the right side. See if it has fallen off or broken or something.

  64. I just bought a cricut mini from someone and it worked great for a week. Now the blade is dragging acoss the page. It cuts everything. It won’t lift at all. I called the support people and they said I’ll have to buy another one because i don’t fall under their warranty. Anyone have any idea’s on how to fix it on the Mini??!!!

  65. I have a cricut expression 2, from day 1 it won’t do anything. The screen lights up, power button lights up, but no sound, or anthing. Just blinks about every 5 seconds or so. Hope you can help

    Thanks

  66. I am getting so frustrated with my create! It was working great, I unloaded paper and reloaded another color and it stopped cutting (yes within a few minutes!) I have taken it apart, finding no loose wires or connections, it still smells new! I still have the blade it came with on!(yes I have tried changing blades, did the reset, pinched the springy things, did the online firmware upadte, nothing works!) The blade thing goes up and down freely too (very springy)Please tell me you have something else for me to try?!?!

    • So many people are reporting this kind of problem and it kills me that I can’t really help you. If you’re willing to send me the machine I can take a look at it, but can’t offer any guarantee.

  67. the weight of the machine shpping to a far place may be more expensive then what the machine is worth:(

  68. my cricut got damaged while it was in a checked bag. the cutter carriage is of track. how can i get it back on the tracks; top and bottom.

    • Check out Jennifer’s comment above from October 12th, 2012 – 02:00. She explains how to get the carriage back on the tracks (remove the carriage cover, loosen the screw with the red paint on it, and the wheel should move enough to get it back on the track, then tighten the screw back to where it started).

  69. Our Expression took a power hit and wiped out the +5 volt regulator which I replaced and it now powers up and the cutting blade lifts to the upper position and homes. My problem now is that when it goes to cut there is no reverse voltage on the blade solenoid to drive the blade down. The pressure knob has no effect and the voltage drops to zero at the solenoid. I thought it was Q21 (JFET) but in the absence of a real schematic it is trial and error. Do you know of a source for a good replacement bd or at least a schematic?

    • You can try the used parts contact I referenced somewhere in the writeup. Can I probe something for you on one of my working expressions?

      • Yes. Please measure the voltage across the red and blue wires on the connector in the lower right corner of the bd. These go out to the solenoid. I would like to know the voltage when the machine is just powered on and for each of the pressure dial setting.
        Thanks.

        • Okay, sorry for the delay.

          At all pressure settings, when idling, I measured 3.6v, with the positive lead on the blue wire, and negative lead on the red wire. When measured against ground, the blue lead reads 4.44v, and the red lead 0.76v.

          While cutting on “min” pressure, I read -1.67v (blue 0.69v, red 2.39v).
          At “low” pressure, -2.84v (blue 0.73v, red 3.6v)
          At “med” pressure, -5.36v (blue 0.77v, red 6.13v)
          At “high” pressure, -8.44v (blue 0.82v, red 9.26v)
          At “max” pressure, -11.75v (blue 0.86v, red 12.72v)

          Hope this helps!
          David

  70. Ok here is a question for you, we just purchased a broken cricut from eBay and we have had much success with simple repairs. This one has me stumped. It powers on fine. But nothing moves. The rollers do not spin, the carriage does not travel. I do not see any signs of damage to the motherboard or any of the wires to all the various components. (Nothing pinched, cut, worn, or melted) When I trip the limit switch for the cut head it thinks its ok and will think it loads a mat and even cut. I did notice that the belts that turn the rollers and cut carriage move fairly free but while it thinks its cutting they become more difficult to move. But when it finishes “cutting” it goes back to the less resistance. What are your thoughts?

    • Have you checked the supply voltage to the steppers? I believe they should have 18v showing at the left and right-most pins on the stepper plugs.

      Each of the stepper transistors is connected separately to ground, so those don’t seem likely to be at issue..

      • My apologies, I haven’t had time to mess with this as I’ve had bigger issues to deal with. Anyhow the steppers seem to be ok but upon removal of the mother board it looks like someone has already tried to fix it maybe? Some of the solder points don’t look like factory and there is a jumper wire soldered underneath. I have photos if you would like to see. Not sure where to go from here.

        • I’ve found rework and jumpers a few times myself. It could be post-production, but I have a feeling the original build quality was so bad that some had to be fixed before they ever left the factory. Whatever jumpers you find shouldn’t change the diagnostic process.. I won’t be able to fix it from a picture but maybe we could at least identify what the jumper was for.

          • How do i get the pictures to you? it doesn’t seem to like a drag and drop, nor do i see an email. or maybe i just missed it?

  71. Thank you for this forum! I received a BRAND NEW Cricut Expression as a warranty replacement for my previously broken Cricut Expression. Due to a family change, I no longer had time for scrapbooking. Now, over 17 months later, I finally pulled the machine out of the box for the first time. The machine will power up, but the LCD screen is completely blank. I have seen others mention that this is a problem as well. This machine has never even been used one single time. Are there any solutions known to resolve this? The warranty is long gone :(.

    • (replied privately previously, posting on the blog in case this helps anyone else. please do reply again with any further developments!)

      Are you handy enough to use a screwdriver and voltmeter?

      Couple suggestions for you… look at my blog post titled “how to remove your expression keyboard and use full length pens”, follow the instructions just to check that the display cable is secure at the keyboard end.

      Next, remove the bottom cover and make sure the other end of the display cable is securely plugged into the motherboard.

      Last, try to turn the machine on with the bottom cover removed, and probe the keyboard connections with your voltmeter. You should be able to find at least one pin that reads 5v and one that reads 12v. I don’t remember which offhand, but I can get back to you with that info if you need.

  72. hello,
    my size button always turned around sitting on size 2 fixed, can I make this?
    thank you

    • I think the only possibility is to replace the potentiometer (the part connected to the knob). These things are pretty fragile. Did your machine fall on its face? You might try contacting the parts source I linked to in the blog post to see if you can get a replacement knob-board.

  73. Thank you for you very helpful site! My Expressioin had the broken limit switch wires symptoms (grinding noise and not reading cartridges). When I opened the right end I found the red/black wire hanging. The black piece had broken in half. Just superglued it and it is working great! Thanks again.

  74. My friend got a cricut from another friend and we are trying to fix it. The only thing that is wrong with it is the the belt is broken. Anyway to fix this??

    • Well… I don’t know! You might try Grainger or robot part supply places for the belt. I’m not certain how you would hook the ends to the carriage, but if you figure it out I’d love to know!

  75. My roller bar of my cricut has problem, I dont know what can i do. The roller bag is bad,

  76. I bought a brand new expression a few years back and just decided to open it for the first time. Went to turn it on and the LCD screen didn’t turn on and only half the keyboard lit up. Any idea’s?

    • Not offhand, but the first thing I usually tell people is to make sure all cables are plugged in firmly at both ends. The upper end of the display cable can be squeezed just under the left side of the keyboard, no tools required. The lower end requires removing the bottom cover of the machine, its a gray ribbon cable at the left side of the motherboard.

      Since the keyboard is lighting up partly though I’m suspicious that there may be one or more broken traces on the keyboard itself or the motherboard underneath.

      Does the machine give any signs of working otherwise (I know it’s not “usable”) but I wonder if you are able to load an unload the cutting mat or move the carriage around with the cursor keys?

  77. I have a cricut expression and all five keys in the third column do not work when selecting a character to cut. I have tried removing the keypad overlay and pressing hard, it doesn’t make any difference. All other keys work, it’s just this one column of keys. Any idea how to fix??

    • I’m going to guess one of the shift registers (chips) or more likely a broken trace on the keyboard is to blame. This is something I might be able to diagnose myself. I’ll contact you directly with more info since you should be able to remove the keyboard and send to me easier (and cheaper) than sending the whole machine assuming you’re interested.

      • Hi, I am having this same issue. Everything is fine in the machine except the forth row of keys will not work for any of my cartridges. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

  78. My wife has a perfectly working Cricut Expression (the 24″ one). A friend gave me another Expression which has the grinding sound as mentioned in the “Broken Limit Switch wires” section. I removed the right side and the wires are in good condition. I tested the switch with my meter and it is also good. I tried manually shorting the pins to no avail.

    I then took the mainboard from my wife’s original machine and replaced the mainboard of the malfunctioning machine and that made it work fine. Therefore I believe the problem is on the mainboard itself. Replaced the original mainboard and it grinds again.

    Any thought on what I could check in the main-board to make sure this isn’t something I could fix myself?

    • I don’t believe there are any components on the mainboard between the processor pin and the limit switch other than a resistor. Most likely a break in that trace. Take a look at the large image I posted of the two-layer Expression board and see if you can identify the processor pin and resistor. It also could be that the ground or power connected to the other pin of the switch has become disconnected as well (actually this may be more likely). On your good expression board, probe both pins of the switch connector while the machine is on and see which one connects to ground (or +5) and check if your bad board does as well.

      If you’re still stuck let me know and can determine for certain the answers to these two questions.

  79. Hey, I got the cricut expressions 2 and it has a broken belt and the company sent her a new one, but I was hoping instead of buying a new one that maybe you would know where I could get a new belt or how to fix the broken one? Cricut told me that they don’t sell replacement parts, so that is a pain! Thanks

  80. Wow – thank you a million times for your kindness to all us Cricut owners with ailing machines. I plan to bookmark this and share with friends in my online scrapbooking club!

    I read from top to bottom and didn’t see my machine’s symptoms addressed, so here goes: When I turn my Expression on, the Unit powers up, lights up, but when I insert a cartridge and try to insert the paper, it tells me that there is no cartridge or that there’s a communication error and to restart the machine. Taking the cart out and re-inserting it only rarely fixes this; usually I have to turn the machine off and start all over several times. My carts work okay in the machine at my local Mikes, where I go for monthly crop nites and it does this with all of them so I don’t think it is the carts themselves that are bad. I am wondering if the part the cartridge is inserted in is worn out or something has gotten loose in there? Is it replaceable if I get another machine to cannibalize? Or would there be wires running to that part that might be loose, or broken, or ??

    Then, once it finally recognizes the cart, and accepts the paper — I am usually good for several cuts (It seems to prefer single cuts to multiples) but then it will just STOP in the middle of a cut, and none of the keys on the keypad will work. I have to shut it off, turn it back on so it will unload the mat, and start all over, moving the cutter away from the original cut and resetting the paper size. By which time it may not recognize the cartridge again. I have wasted a lot of time and paper this way!

    The machine worked fine when I bought it (“gently” used) about 2 years ago. It has never been dropped since I bought it, and I keep it in a C-gull case when not in use, so it isn’t left out to get dusty. The power cords all seem to work with other items my husband plugged into them. Can’t think of anything else I should be telling you …

    Any help you can offer will be appreciated. I am not sure I can go beyond easy-peasy fixes, but would be willing to hand info off to our computer dudes. They’ve been up for the challenge when we’ve taken our laptops in with “real” problems!

    • Hi, Everhack – is the lack of a reply from you to my 6-20-13 post an indication that you are as stumped as I am?? I had hoped you could tell me what might be causing my machine not to recognize the cartridges, or what is making it stop dead in mid-cut… I’ll check back again… Thanks in advance for any suggestions! – LCJ

      • Im so sorry I did not respond sooner. It sure sounds to me like the metal fingers in the cartridge port are not making solid contact with the cartridge. With the cartridge removed, look closely at the fingers, see if any of them are obviously bent. Perhaps all of them are a little loose. You could try a test, make yourself a “fake george”, which shorts together 3 pins on the cartridge port and makes the machine use its built-in cartridge. You might be able to bend the fingers outwards a little so they grip better, perhaps with the tip of a tiny flathead screwdriver. If the fingers are just dirty, you could try spraying some “DeOxIt” on it, (available at Radio Shack, Frys, etc).

        Let me know what happens! I do have another cartridge port in case its actually broken, they’re easy to replace.

        • I’m glad I found this post. I have a similar issue with my cartridge port on my cricut cake (same as expression). I decided to make a George cartridge without success. I got the error messages. Well after trying I inserted another regular cartridge (happy hauntings) and it read on the screen that George and basic shapes was inserted. I tried other carts and they all read George. . So now I have George and NOTHING else! I’ve tried resetting, updating, cleaning the port and no luck. Did I short out something? I need my cricut functioning ASAP…do u have any suggestions. If not what about a replacement port? Thanjs in advance !

          • Wild! Okay.. The only thing I can think is maybe you bent one or more of the pins in the cartridge slot?

            Try looking at the pins in the cartridge slot and see if maybe you bent one a little so it doesnt make good contact anymore?

            If so you might -very carefully- re-bend the some of the pins out a little so they fit a little tighter?

          • Thanks for responding. I forgot to include that I have looked to at the pins…they all look the same. Using a paperclip…they all move the same (not jammed). I’m stumped there’s visually nothing wrong. I blew it out to make sure there was no debris in there. It otherwise works fine but the problem is half of my cartridges are already linked so I have to insert them to use them. Some I am able to cut using the cricut online software. Go figure I JUST bought a bunch of cartridges and can’t use all of them now :s And I bought it on ebay a month ago and obviously I did something to it (I’m the one in hundreds that the fake cart ruins the port).
            my other option would be to replace the port with one from another cricut, but all the broken cricuts on ebay r selling for $70 and up! Because u have taken the machines apart do u know if that is even possible? This is the only post that’s even come close to addressing these issues and of course customer service was useless.

          • I tried making fake “George” and damaged my Cricut, too. I have successfully fixed several Cricut Expression machines, and have many parts laying around, so I tried different cartridge ports and even tried the non-working board on working machines. No matter where I put the board, I would always get the same issue, “George” no matter what I inserted. On the board that only read “George”, there was a little (I don’t know what the part is called) that was black, like when a fuse blows, while all the others were white. I think I fried something on the board. I also had a board with a cartridge comm error. Again, it didn’t matter where I moved it, I always got the same error for about 1/2 of my cartridges.

  81. Hi, I didn’t see my cricut’s issue on here. All seems to be working fine, except it won’t cut. I’ve changed both settings and the blade multiple times. What I noticed is the blade housing does not go up and down to cut. If I push down lightly on it, it will cut. Any thoughts?

    • Try taking off the cover on the blade housing, and look closely at the wires to the top of the solenoid, maybe a broken solder joint or wire? If that all looks OK, try removing the bottom cover of the machine and look for loose connections in the plugs at the right side of the main board.

      • There was a wire disconnected at the top, under the blade housing. We soldered the wire, and it works wonderfully now. Thank you very much for your help! I’ll keep your website bookmarked for future reference.

        Thanks again!

  82. Please help! I have the cricut personal cutter (with the little green screen) when I plug it in and push the power button the screen just flashed on and off over and over again until I turn it off. It also makes a little clicking sound every time it blinks. Please help :)

    • This sounds exactly like when I had a bad power brick. Do you have any friends you can borrow one from to test? This is one of the few replacement parts PC does sell. (or at least used to). Its an 18v 3amp if I recall correctly- you might also check the local thrift shop to see if they have any laptop power bricks which might work as well.

  83. Hi there! Thanks for your blogs and posting information for Cricut Machines. Do you happen to have any pictures of where/what I should be looking for when checking for a broken limit switch? I pulled the side off and the front off the carriage but not exactly sure of what I am looking for. Thank you :)

  84. I have a Cricut Imagine and it will print but not cut. I have gone back and forth with PC and they now state there is “nothing further we can do, we’ve done everything we can and since it is out of warranty…” basically your screwed and you will need to purchase a new one/refurbished which we have at good prices online. Are you kidding me!!!! Any ideas on what to do to fix this problem of not cutting.

    thanks:-)

  85. Well, it looks like I have a problem that hasn’t been posted yet. I have an older “Personal Electronic Cutter”, model CRV001 with the dual-layer PCB. The unit has quit – the power button does not light up at all. I have visually inspected all the solder work on the bottom of the board and resoldered a couple of places that looked questionable. I pluged in the power adapter and am getting a green light coming on there. With my voltmeter I checked where the power connector is soldered to the board and am getting a clean 18 volts at that point. I traced backward from the power switch and found that it connects to the main PCB at the 4-pin plug identifed as J12. Assuming that black is ground, I am getting 18v at this plug also. This leads me to think that it’s in the small board where the switch is located. I can see a switch, a capacitor, a diode, a small IC package and a larger relay, part number HJR-3FF-S-Z. Have you encountered any units where something on this board has gone bad? Any ideas as to where I should see voltage and under what conditions? Thanks so much for your helpful advice!

  86. I have a cricut that will not allow me change the size of the cut. The roll knob sounds like it broke inside. Not sure how to get to it. Do you have any ideas on how to fix this.

    • hi there- the knobs break pretty often. you’ll need to replace the part, but I don’t know the exact part you’ll need. you might try the sources I listed for used parts though.

  87. Update on my broken Cricut (post from July 14). It appears that there was a cold solder joint on the small (1 inch by 1.5 inch) circut board that the power switch is mounted on. After removing the switch and board, I examined the back of the board and resoldered many of the joints on it. After checking to see that I hadn’t shorted between any traces, I put things back together and all is working normally now. I noted during troubleshooting that the quality of the solder work on my Cricut was not too good. My suggestion to readers who have tried everything else on their “dead” Cricuts is to get access to the back (solder side) of these circut boards and check them very carefully for bad solder joints.

  88. I have a cricut imagine I believe the last time I used it was last year. My daughter wanted to learn how to use it. I went through it with her and getting ready to cut and the mat went in and the machine read that it couldn’t read the mat. But yet it grabbed it and took it in and stopped. I hit retry and it came out the other end. This thing is brand new and barely been used. I’m so frustrated. Can you tell me what the heck is wrong with it or talk me through fixing it. I’m thinking the infra red light is jacked up.
    Please help :(

    • I’m sorry, I’ve no experience with the Imagine at all.. maybe someone else will come along with an idea? I always tell people the first thing to do is check the connections and so on, if there’s an infra red sensor perhaps the wires have gotten pinched or abraded and are shorting out or cut somehow?

  89. My machine will not turn on , No light no sign of life anywhere. No help from provocraft except to say I can always buy another one. Please Help. Thanks for this web site.

  90. I have a Cricut Personal that powers up but the roller bar is not working. I have removed the bottom and both ends. All connectors are intact. Any idea what the problem could be? If motor, can it be replaced ?
    Thanks for all your input.

    • Very doubtful that the motor itself is fried. I’m going to take a wild guess that the power rail to the stepper driver transistors has a bad connection. While it’s powered up, try checking for good ground and positive voltage to each of the transistors for the affected motor. Flip the board over and check for solder points that are dull in color. Reflow suspicious ones with a soldering iron. As a quick check of the motor itself you can swap the connectors for the two motors (plug each one into the other’s socket).

  91. Hi! I have a Cricut Cake machine that has worked perfectly until today. The power button turns and lights up but nothing else works. I’ve checked all the cables and tried different cartridges and pushed the red reset button but no luck. Also, I tried to update the firmware and it says it’s not connected. Any ideas??? :(

    • This generally means there’s a problem in the power circuit. I’m assuming you also hear a relay click inside when you press the button. See the solutions posted for “broken inner layer traces” or the comment someone left about a fried transistor in the keyboard if I recall correctly. Do you or any of your friends know their way around a multimeter and soldering iron?

  92. Hi! so I THINK my problem is in the rollers. My screen is just fine, the mat loads, and it will cut…. BUT the mat does not move properly forward/back and side to side. One roller seems to be off. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    • I didn’t quite understand what you meant about the mat not moving properly side to side, or that a roller seems to be off. Do you mean, one of the rubber wheels is missing, or that the wheels are not getting enough traction on the cutting mat?

      My first inclination is to se your finger and try to lift the roller bar. It should be very tight against the bottom roller bar. If it’s at all loose, try taking off the right side cover and checking the tension spring that keeps it tight against the bottom roller.

      • I had a machine that would pull the mat in just fine, but once I started cutting, the mat would twist because there was no tension on one side of the roller bar. I opened up the end on the side that had no tension, and found that the roller bar was not seated properly behind the bracket the spring is attached to. I removed the spring and loosened the screw holding the bracket. Using a flat head screwdriver, I carefully pushed the roller bar back down and into place. Once it was seated properly, I tightened the screw and replaced the spring. Everything has been cutting fine since. Word of caution, be careful not the get the lubricant on the belt.

  93. Hello I just bought a used expression 2 and it would let me get pass the firmware I have spoke to tech support and they have tried everything. So the outcome was that the motherboard has went out. Can it be replace or repaired.
    Desperately seeking help.

    • I’m sorry, I don’t understand what you mean about “let me get pass the firmware.” Are you trying to update the firmware?

      Unfortunately I’ve never actually seen or used an Expression 2, so at best I could only make guesses.

  94. I had a lightening strike close to the house, which affected quite a few electronics, including my circut imagine. At first I thoug it was just a power cord issue like my computer. So I got a new power cord yesterday and plugged in the cord and it appeared to resolve the issue until I tried to connect it to my computer through cricut craft room & USB cord. I received a message stating I needed to connect the machine, which was connected via the USB cord. I tried another USB cord but without success. I then tried to use a cartridge directly. It would recognize both cartridges, but once I clicked the next button for the cutting section it would display an hour glass for a minute or two and then just reset.
    Any ideas?

    • Does the machine work when not connected to the computer? Do other USB devices work on the computer still?

      • I tried to use a cartridge directly, with out the computer. It would recognize both cartridges, allowed me to choose an object, but once I clicked the next button for the cutting section it would display an hour glass for a minute or two and then just reset.
        I tried 2 different laptops/USB cords and neither were able to detect the machine. I also tried a friends machine with both computers and everything worked fine…ie the USB cord and Computer connection.
        Thanks!

        • I have a feeling that the resets are caused by a fluctuation in voltage to the machine’s processor. It seems that your reset occurs right when it starts trying to run the motors that drive the carriage (perhaps both at the same time).

          Have you tried using a different power supply on the Imagine? Perhaps it can no longer deliver enough current to drive everything at once.

  95. hi feloow cricutters.. I have two expressions machines. both with the same problem. It comes on, but then it sort of stutters…. The head does not move more than e few millimetres and stutters again. Any advise..? PLEASE???? Kind regards, Liz.

    • I suspect a problem with the limit switch inside the carriage’s cubbyhole at the right end of the machine.

      Here’s a quick check that doesn’t require taking anything apart: With the machine off, move the cutter carriage left with your hand until its near the middle somewhere. Turn the machine on. See if it moves all the way right and stops, or if it instead “crashes” into the right side and “stutters” as the drive belt starts skipping.

      If it does “crash” and “stutter”, turn the machine off, and take off the right side cover. Inspect the wires leading to that button and see if there’s any kind of cut in the wire, or maybe its just fallen off. Failing this, look inside the bottom cover and check the other end of that wire, make sure it’s still plugged in.

  96. Hello,I’ german. My cricut problem is as Amy describes it:the mat slides to the left,right,backwards! Needle stops. Also rips the paper.I have been using pressure and deep trying! No success.

  97. Sorry , I have a new cricut Expression 2 from Amazon .de without guarantee

  98. Thank you for your kind reply. I am not too sure where the limit switch is…. i have opened the right cover and i dont see any loose or disconnected wires. I have tested the head of the machine by moving it to the middle manually. it does not moeve back, in fact it hardly moves at all! Please can you explain which wires i should check under the right cover of the machine? Could it be something on the circuit board? I am very dissapointed indeed. I live in South Africa, apologies for the time when this is posted. kind regards. Liz

    • If the carriage is not moving, then I doubt the switch is the problem. The limit switch is a little pushbutton located in the carriage’s hideyhole at the right end of its track. You can see it without taking anything apart, just by moving the carriage left and looking in.

      Sounds to me more like perhaps a power problem to the motors. Can you load and unload the mat OK? Does the machine finish the self-test and think that it is OK? The motors run off a separate power circuit from the processor itself.

      • I cannot load a mat at all. The machine comes on, the head stuutters and thats it. The rest of the green buttons come on for a second or two and then dies, only the power button stays on. If i move the head to the middle, it does not move to the right, it stays where it is.

        • I bet anything the 18v supply to the motors is hosed, some problem with the voltage regulator circuit. Try looking at the inductors near the power regulators at the right side of the board inside the bottom cover of the machine. They look like little black heat-shrink covered cans. See if any are loose or toasty looking.

          • I will do that for sure, thank you. I read on the cricut site that one has to updat your software on the machine regularly via cricut sync. Do you think it could have somethinh to do with that perhaps? At this stage, I feel like thowing it in the trash can…

          • I don’t think your problem has to do with firmware update..

  99. Hiya I have five cricut create machine-all faulty.A couple of them have blown inductors( I think that’s what they are called) On one board it’s L4 and the other board it’s L5. The others light up and don’t boot. Tried Provocraft but they don’t want to know tried selling me more machines If you can help I would appreciate it.
    I’m in England

    • Make sure the inductor is actually blown rather than the trace to it from the power regulator. Check for continuity between the inductor leads (OK) but continuity to the power regulator (not OK). This is at the heart of the “broken power trace” problem I posted photos of. Look at the photos of the 2-layer board I posted and see if this helps.

  100. Hiya,
    Thanks for quick reply the inductors are blown in fact they are now non existent.
    They were burnt and when touched just crumbled. I checked out the “broken trace” before I asked your advice. Do you think there was a power surge to blow these parts? Any idea what value they are, they look almost impossible to swap. I was thinking of taking some of the other boards. There is continuity to the regulator, I think I shall try swapping with one off the other boards.
    Thanks again for your help. Great site.

  101. Help My cricut expression wont turn on I have power to it Husband checked there is power all the way to the start button but won’t come on it was on then shut itself off I pressed on it come on then right back off now won’t do anything

  102. I took a Cricut Cake out of the box for literally the first time. (gift for mom, but she hadnt used it) I plugged it in and the green power button lights up, but absolutely nothing else works. The digital is blank, the blade assembly doesnt move-nothing. I switched out the power cord with the one from my Cricut, but it didnt help. I did the reset twice, still nothing. Suggestions please?????

  103. I came into a machine and the power cord works as it was tried on another machine. however when plugged into the machine the machine won’t turn on? suggestions where to start?

    • the power circuit is pretty flaky. if the power button light doesn’t even come on, suspect the button or relay. if it comes on but nothing else happens, suspect the 5v regulator or the inductors and their wiring.

  104. My cricut imagine sounds stuck in the boot up sequence. It does not make it past the startup screen and repeats a looping clicking sound. I have tried a factory restart but that didn’t work. Any ideas on how to fix this issue?

    • I have no experience with the Imagine, but I have had a bad power supply brick once that caused an endless rebooting/clicking like you describe. Do you have any way to try another power supply?

  105. When I try to start my cricut up the lights come on and the feeder spool spins, but when the grey housing unit moves to the right to prep for cut it sounds like it’s stuck and makes an awful grinding noise. The display screen sticks at the boot up page with software version, etc. Costumer Service says that it can’t be fixed but I have read that PC encourages people to throw product away. I feel that it can be fix they just don’t want to deal with it. Can someone help?!?

    • This sounds like the “broken limit switch wires” problem described in the article.. Try taking off the right side cover and checking that the wires are securely connected to the button, and that the connector is securely plugged into the board.

  106. Tonight the roller bar or feeder bar, locked up on my Expression. I used it and it cut beautifully, then went to do another cut, and boom, nothing. It will not roll the mat to load it. It makes a bad noise when I first power it on, but soon makes it’s normal chirping sounds.
    Any ideas will be helpful, thank you!

  107. I have a cricut expressions and the usb port was broken. I ordered a new port and while I was desoldering the old one I pulled out the metallic tubes with the pins. I don’t know if they can be put back in or not…any thoughts

    • Ouch. Im not sure what the tubes are you are talking about. The only problem I can see is if the tubes are connecting the port to inner layer traces on the board, which won’t connect anymore after you replace the port. If you get the new one soldered on and it doesn’t start working, you might take a look at the 2-layer board photos I posted to see where those traces lead to and add jumpers.

  108. I have a cricut expressions 2 and the mat moves while cutting and causes inaccurately cut images, can the roller bar be replaced?

    • Are the rubber rings slipping on the mat? The bar could be replaced if you are handy and bought a broken machine to steal one from.

      You might check that the tension spring on the roller bar hasnt fallen off or broken first. I have not seen inside an expression 2, but in the older models the tension spring is in the right side of the machine.

  109. please my Cricut expression 2 has been stuck on the main screen for a bout a year now help!

  110. I couldn’t be more frustrated with my machine. I’ve been so careful for the almost 2 yrs that I’ve owned it, and now it won’t stay on unless I am pushing the power jack into the connector. I suppose that I could pay someone to hold it into place while I man the machine. haha.

    Anyway, I’m sooo glad that I found this site after a quick search. I’m hoping that I’ll find a solution, here. So far, I read that I may have to replace the power supply. I hope not. I mean…just…out of the blue it started doing this! I’m certainly not going to send it off for repairs b/c I haven’t even got the return on my investment, yet. Wish me good luck! -Stephanie

  111. I bought my Provo Craft Personal Electric Cutter at a rummage sale and everything I try to cut gets cut in pieces, almost like the blade doesn’t lift up when it gets to the end of a job or the end of a line to start a new line. So all the creations are cut in half or have 3 or 4 pieces to it. Any suggestions on what to look for to fix this? thanks in advance.

  112. Hi
    Please, where can i buy the mini cricut toothed belts? Do you know any site that sell this? My cricut belt lost the tension and doesnt pull the paper. Thank you
    Danielson

    • I don’t know which exact belt to order.

      But, I bet if you remove your old belt and measure it, you could get a new one from a dealer like this:

      Belts for Anything

      The problem is the metal ends, I don’t know whether you could really remove the ends from the old belt and transfer them to a new one.

      You can remove your old belt by removing both end caps from the machine. Slide the carriage to the middle and remove the cover (3 phillips screws).

      Using a pair of slip-joint pliers, grab the metal part of the belt end coming off the right side and hold securely.

      Unhook the belt from the notched post on the back of the carriage and it should come off, and unthread the belt from the machine.

      Where it attaches on the other side of the carriage I don’t remember offhand if you’ll be able to detach it without removing the carriage.

      To remove the carriage, note the position of the long tensioner screw and spring, take a picture or something, so you’ll know how far to put it back together. Unscrew it most or all the way.

      You should be able to now lift and pull the carriage off its track. – but, be careful of the cutting solenoid wires. they are known to break at the solder joint.

  113. Is there somewhere i can get a replacement usb port for the cricut cake? I tripped over the cord and it is lose. When I plug it in it will blink usb active several times and then back to the main start up screen. It won’t read the usb.

  114. Hi, I have a 4 year old Expression and the stepping motor is not working properly anymore. I tried to order a new one but this one is made especially for Cricut (I think). Now someone offers me her broken Cricut Imagine. Do you know if the Imagine has the same stepping motor so I can switch it into mine and got mine working again?
    I have to pay something for the broken machine and also for shipping so if I’m not sure it will work it’s a big risk.
    Monique

    • Hi there- unfortunately I have never seen the inside of an Imagine – but, the other bugs all seem to have the same motors. So, chances are they are the same. The biggest risk in my mind is whether the problem lies in the motor or the control circuitry.

      • Hi there, I’ve taken the motor out of the Imagine. It’s the same as in the expression. But my machine still has the same problems. I think I give up and by another machine.
        Anyway thanks for your support and your fantastic website.
        Monique

  115. Hello, I have a cricut expression and the area to plug in the USB cord in the back of the cricut has broken. Is there a way to replace that plug in area?
    Thanks!

    • This must be one of the most common issues I hear about. One or two people have reported that they were able to get theirs repaired locally by generic tv/radio repair shops, but I don’t have any information regarding the proper replacement port. Removing the old USB port to replace it can be tricky as well, but certainly possible in the right hands.

  116. Everhack, thanks for all the info here. Great stuff.
    I’ve got a question for you that I can’t find an answer to. I’ve got a brand new Expression (Pink) machine. It all powers up fine and everything, loads paper OK, but the cutter can’t move side to side. When I press the arrows on the machine, the up/down arrows force the mat to move in and out of the machine but when I hold down the left arrow, the cutter just kind of vibrates but stays pretty much in the same position.
    As I said, it is a brand new machine and I can certainly get warranty on it but it will cost me a FORTUNE to ship it back to them. Have you got any ideas of anything I can try?

    • Unfortunately I don’t have much good news for you..

      I suspect belt issues..

      Is the belt attached to the cutter carriage? If you move the carriage side-to-side by hand, does the belt slip at any point? Does the belt seem to be loose in any way?

      Unfortunately, to fix any of these things, you would need to find a new belt (which I have not yet found a source for) and/or to remove the right side cover of the machine, which would doubtlessly void your warranty.

      Tragically, shipping is the single main reason why repairing the machines is not really a financially viable option outside of finding someone in your local area that can handle it.

      • Yes the belt is definitely attached to the cutter and it does not seem very loose at all. With the machine turned off and using some pressure, I can move the cartridge side to side. When it’s powered on though, it is very difficult to move. Is the stepper motor controlling this belt in the right side of the machine? Maybe I can open it up to see if there is something obvious?

        • Hmm.. All that sounds pretty normal. The motor is in the right side, yes. It’s hard to pop off the trim ring without damaging it though. Perhaps if you have a thin plastic shim to pop the latches, like a strip of credit card. I’ve never learned how to do it properly and never bothered putting them back on after.

          Another possibility is removing the motherboard from inside the bottom cover and inspecting for cold (they look matte-silver rather than shiny) or broken solder joints to that stepper; perhaps the motor voltage is too low for some reason or the ground is not good. It should be getting 18v.

          • (Sorry pictures didn’t show up in last post)
            Thanks very much for your suggestion. I tore it apart last night and fixed it!
            Here is what I found (if you would like to use these pictures on your blog or anything, please go ahead):

            https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4254662/ForumPics/CricutMobo1.jpg
            You can see a clipped lead that got left in there and was shorting out a couple of transistors. Easily fixed by pulling it out with some tweezers. Luckily the short didn’t permanently damage the components.

            https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4254662/ForumPics/CricutMobo2.jpg
            Here, you can see the terrible quality of PCB assembly in this product. Bent over leads are nearly touching each other, bad solder joints in general. I believe they used both standard flux and no-clean flux and did not clean the board at all.
            I reflowed all of the thru-hole solder joints on the board and cleaned it properly so that it now looks like this:
            https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4254662/ForumPics/CricutMobo3.jpg

            Powered it up and it all works like a dream.
            Thanks again everhack for your very useful Blog post!

          • TOTALLY AWESOME!

            Congratulations and thank you Very Much for the comprehensive update, with photos even! Sadly, the poor quality assembly of your board is pretty much standard for the three “old” models.

            I’ll edit your post and pull the content into the blog entry to make it more visible.

            It is Such a fantastic feeling when you pull something like this off.

  117. There’s an Expression on eBay that won’t go past “insert cartridge”mode. Any suggestions on if it would be a good buy/easy fix?

    • I’m sorry, there’s just no way to know for sure what the issue is. If you’re pretty handy with a soldering iron and an ohmmeter, you might have a good shot at it. I have not run across a machine with this particular issue before. Perhaps it’s as simple as a bad solder joint, or broken or disconnected wire or connector. Or, it might be something completely different. If you’re feeling lucky, go for it, but I wouldn’t pay more than maybe $5 for the machine, on top of the $20 shipping. They rarely come with a blade holder or cartridge either, and will be necessary once you figure out the issue.

  118. my cricut only cuts half of the mat. One side cuts fine but the other half it only seems to score it. Any suggestions?

    • Check with your finger whether the blade holder moves fully down and up without resistance, and that when you let go, that it springs all the way back up.

      Check the solder joints where the wires attach at the top of the carriage, and make sure they are secure.

      Is your cutting mat warped or bent? Are the rubber rings on the roller rod all there? Does the rod grab the mat securely when it rolls in and out of the machine?

  119. I am been trying to repair an Expression 2. The USB port was broken and I repaired that easily enough but now the device comes back as “unknown device” when I plug the usb cable into my computer. Anyt thoughts on what I might be able to try?

  120. I am having a problem with my cricut. It won’t cut. I changed the blade, I changed the pressure setting and set the blade to max depth and it barely touches the paper. Any idea what I need to do to fix it?

  121. Hello, my cricut broke today and it sounds like your description under the broken limit switch wires…do you have any more information on this? I am trying to figure out how to get to the inside of the machine and have only been able to take the bottom off. Will I need to get the sides off to attempt this repair? Thank you!!

    • I replied to hastily, I see I need to remove the right side cover, but do you have any other pix of what I should be looking for? Thank you!

      • I think it might have to do with the reset switch, when I took the side off and touched the back side of the reset witch the piece broke apart…what is it called, do you think I could replace it? I have a photo of it.

        • I do think you could replace it, the button doesn’t look very special to me, but I’m not certain where to get one. You might try Radio Shack or Fry’s. I think any button with the same approximate dimensions should work.

          If all else fails, let me know and I will send you the one in the photo.

          • Thank you very much! I have a few places to try locally (upstate NY) and I will keep you posted!

          • Do you have any idea what it might be called, the switch? It looks like all the local electronics repair places have closed and the guys at my radio shack are not well versed in switches…they told me to search the website..I just don’t know the proper term to search for. Thank you, again!

          • I think it might be one of these two:

            The only question is whether it’s a “normally open” or a “normally closed” switch – that is, whether pressing the button connects the two wires, or disconnects them.

          • i believe pressing the button connects the wires based on the broken parts insides..

          • Thank you so so much!! It is fixed and working again. :)

      • Ah yes, here you go: http://everhack.blog.atxhackerspace.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/0323012355.jpg

        It’s on the right side, just in front of the right end of the carriage belt. In this photo the button is red, and has red wires coming off it. But, I’ve also seen black ones with black wires. If the right side of the machine is facing you, it will be to the left of the carriage belt.

        If you move the carriage out of its hiding spot and look where it was, you will see the front of it.

  122. Hi there,
    I recently purchased a cricut on eBay and when I received it there was a broken piece. I found the place of it but was wondering how hard it is to take apart cause its right on the top cover piece and its what helps the machine to open when the power button is pressed. It’s the piece that helps the cover lift. Like right on the cover down the side of the button where it has those two pieces that fit into each other snuggly.

  123. I have a Personal that is stuck in update mode, of course Provo is of no help and blames me. Do you have a fix for that?

    • I have the same problem hope someone can help us!!!

    • I don’t have a fix for it, but could there be a problem with the keyboard, acting like the “update mode” button (I forget which one) is permanently held down?

      As a shot in the dark, try checking that all the keyboard cables are securely connected on both ends maybe?

  124. Ive got a cricut expression… at first it wouldnt run the lights would come on but that was it….i read your solution on he broken inner PCB traces and it helped but now i have to turn the cricut on and off three times before it will run right….it acts like it needs a kick start before it will run and it takes a minute before the screen comes on the first time any suggestions??

    • wow like its really slow. Im going to just guess, maybe you missed a bad connection (reflow the solder joints), or maybe there’s a fried component in the power circuit? check the voltages in various places, maybe they’re high, low, or fluctuating

  125. Have this Cricut Imagine the wife bought off EBay. Well, it has not worked yet. I have pulled it apart, checked wires for signs of damage, and all connections. the problem is, not cutting. operations look normal, mat loads, comes back to ya for cutting, cutting head comes out, then does not do anything. mat spits out , machine says cutting done. Pulled cutting head out and disassembled. checked for continuity at all points, found no breaks, so I have reassembled and still acts the same. Not sure how to test the coil the proper way for shorts in the winding. Any Idea what going on with this Machine ??

  126. DO YOU HAVE A REPLACEMENT DIAL FOR AN EXPRESSION?

  127. Hi, my cricut expression do not open, 2 months ago it made a click sound turn the light on and turn off (about 2 secondes), but now it just doesn’t open no sound no lights on… I called cricut and sent me an new cable but still the same… is it the mother board or is it simply dead :( Cant you make a video how to open my cricut expression I did read your instruction but can’t open it… or send a link of a video how to make it I search everywhere and didn’t find anything. Please help me I can’t buy a new one… :( please please

  128. My screen when on only shows one line across the screen, when using machine the line moves to middle of screen then top then back down to bottom pls help

  129. I have an Expression 2 and the belt that drives the blade housing has started to peel. I am wondering if there is any place to purchase just the belt. I cannot find out what it is called or any other information on what this black belt is about. Please help me as I love my Expression 2 :). Thank you in advance for your help.

  130. i have a pink cricut personal that powers on fine but the keypad isnt working correctly! for example i may press the letter c and it will unload the mat! it does seem like the left side is working somewhat but not like it should. i took the bottom off everthing was connected and nothing appeared to be broken. do you have any suggestions. i have also updated firmware several times and done several resets

  131. I did a reset on my cricut create and now it wont turn on…do you know why and have a solution?

    • A reset? As in the “press the button for X seconds, wind the knobs up and down a few times, and turn on again?”

      Its the first time I’ve heard of this..

  132. Also…my display screen is pixilated when I turn on the cricut create…this was after I updated to a firmware for expressions rather than the correct update for a create.
    do you know how to fix the display screen? or is this a software/firmware issue? Of course, this is when I tried to reset the cricut and now it wont turn on at all….. previous comment :(

    • ouch! im surprised it let you update with the wrong file.

      will it turn on in update mode still, so that you might try updating again with the proper firmware? (ie turning on while pressing the correct button)

  133. hey, i have a cricut personal and it does not turn on at all. when i got it it would turn on but the feed would just keep spinning. i went to go move the cutter and it turned off. now nothing turns on but when i slide the cutter all the way to the left i see some of the buttons light up. I even got a new power supply, still nothing. any ideas on this??

  134. Hi, i wonder did u manage to change the regulator? Did it work? Cos mine is exactly the same problem as yours. :)

  135. I have a Cricut Expression 2 that won’t feed the cutting mat. I hit the feed button and I get a picture of the egg timer that pops up and goes away and nothing happens. Any ideas how to repair that?

  136. Okay so I tried the solution to the blade dragging and now it doesn’t cut anything. It just goes through the motions. HELP!!!!!!

    • most important thing is to make sure the blade holder moves smoothly throughout its travel, and springs back when you let go. there should be NO sense of anything “rubbing” at all. if this is all good, perhaps check the wires at the top of the housing to make sure you didnt perhaps dislodge a weak connection. The solder joints on the wires break often – perhaps when you did “the pinch” one of them came loose?

  137. I can’t get my personal cutter to power up. I bought a new power cord but still nothing. The weird thing is, when I first turned it on, it came on. I left the room to get some paper and when I came back it was off. I’ve not been able to get it to power up since. It’s out of warranty, but I’ve probably only used it 12 times. Any ideas?

  138. I just bought a brand new cricut so it came in the mail I take it he check it over it looks fine plug it in put in the blade start it up okay if ur in the front of the machine the Carrie goes to the right it’s supposed to go all the way to the end in the back of the housing or cover I guess and mines don’t go in that thing.. It gets stuck right there it’s just too far out.. Lot doesn’t stop there so I turn it off and put the cartridge in and turn the machine on it also doesn’t read the cartridge… It makes me sad I’ve waited a long time to purchase one and now this… I got like 8 brand new cartridges a tool kit and lots of new scrapbooking paper… I don’t know what too do about this problem… I don’t have a receipt cause I bought this odd of ebay. Help me pleez I need some direction.,,

  139. I have a problem and hopefully you can help. My imagine powers on but the screen is black. I noticed that the connection from the machine to the LCD is cut in half. I think this happened from opening and closing the door too often. How can I get it working again???

    • If the ends of the cable aren’t too exotic, you or someone handy might be able to make a new cable with bits & pieces from a place like Frys ELectronics or possibly Radio Shack.

  140. Some how the back arm that holds the cutter in place has cracked and snapped off of my Expression. Can this piece be replaced or should I just buy new machine. (I have a person cricut for parts) Not fond of the E2. Please advise if you can.
    Thank you so much

    • Im pretty sure the carriage is exactly the same between the three “original” Cricut machines. If you remove the carriage cover, and loosen the screw that tensions the spring (but dont completely remove it). It should allow you to remove the carriage. You’ll probably need to cut the wires at the solenoid and re-solder them on the expression.

    • Mr Everhack – resolved problem! Very easy actually and with my hubby’s help all went smooth.
      Pressed the pin out of the broken arm, pressed pin out of my personal cricut (parts machine) good arm, pressed back in. Think it took longer to get the cover back on the cutter motor. (which really did not have to be removed to preform this fix)
      Anyway, all fixed.
      Thank you for being here and helping all of us solve problems that PC should be helping us with. Appreciate all you do.
      Holly

  141. This page is Awesome! My problem is my needle housing wont go up and down so I took it apart, and found a yellow and black wire both hooked up but I found a red and black that was not hooked to anything, I tried hot glueing the black to black and red to the yellow but no luck. Do you have any idea where these wires should go, or should I have to solder before the hot glue, not sure why they hot glued but that’s what I took off before I tried it again

    • The solenoid wires should be soldered to the cutter coil (the round metal thing) on top, you’ll find two metal contacts there. Solder the wires first, then the hot glue is supposed to go afterwards. The glue helps keep the moving of the wires from breaking the solder joint over time (in your case, I guess they failed!)

      The yellow and black I believe are extras for some never-released accessory that would plug into the bottom of the carriage.

  142. I purchased an imagine machine on ebay, and it cuts wonderfully, but unfortunately it needs to be updated, and the usb port on the back does not respond. I would like to take it apart to see if I can fix it, since I have checked with computer repair places locally and no one will fix it. How do I take off the cover, and can the usb port be fixed or replaced, so I can update my machine.

  143. My Cricut Expression is less than 18 months old and used very little. When I was using it recently it stopped loading the paper. My husband opened up the machine and found the gear drive belt shredded. Does anyone know where to purchase a new drive belt? Have tried our local vacuum retailer/repair store, but he wasn’t able to help.

    • measure the belt dimensions and try an industrial supply like Grainger or online robot supply sites. If you find a match, let me know, I would be most grateful!

  144. Hi! I am Brazilian and bought a cricut cake in new ebay.
    She’s not pulling the rug inside.
    What can it be?
    Please give me a help!
    Thanks!

  145. David~ I’m trying to figure out how to fix the size dial as mine just keeps spinning. I read you post but don’t see anywhere mentioned what the size dial is hooked up to or what wire needs to connect to where. I did open the side panel. As I’m looking into it, I don’t see where the size dial wire needs to be wired into. I do see the wheel is spinning and the spinner is connect to a blue little square thing. Is this the problem I need to address? If so, what do I do with it? Please help me, I want my machine back :(

    • Im not sure what you’re saying. Is the wire disconnected? The other end plugs in to the circuit board in the bottom of the machine. When you say the knob keeps spinning, do you mean the setting in the screen keeps changing by itself?

  146. I bought an Imagine on the secondary market. It prints but does not pull the paper back in to cut. I’ve done the steps that Provo Craft suggested but still no luck. Do you think this is a fixable issue?

    • Pretty much all issues are fixable, but Im afraid I have no experience with the Imagine. Hopefully someone else will see your message and respond.

  147. i have a new cricut and found that the housing blade holder that came with the machine wasn’t making cuts. i changed to a deep blade housing and now it cuts but everything i cut has to be on the highest setting. but at least i can cut. small items don’t cut as well.

  148. Does anyone have a solution to the mat moving when cutting while using an Expression machine? I just purchased my expression off ebay, new in the box. It worked great for the first few cuts, but now when I cut the mat moves back and forth. I contacted Cricut CS and she said to push down on the roller bar to push it back in place. Wanted to see if anyone else had any luck fixing this problem. Thanks!

    • You might try removing the right side cover and checking for a problem with the roller bar tension spring. If you try and lift the roller bar at the right end with a finger, does it come up easily? You should not be able to lift it at all with just a finger.

  149. My Cricut won’t load the mat, it makes the grinding noise and the rollers won’t turn. I went through the reset process and also tried pulling the red reset button out, since some people said they can get stuck in the depressed position. Unfortunately, the red button came completely out. It has an inch-long stick on one end, so kind of looks like a golf tee. I believe when it first came out, there was a spring on the stick part, but after I tried putting it back in, I couldn’t find the spring. The grinding and not taking the mat still exists.

    Any ideas?? Can I get s replacement reset switch and/or the spring that it may or may not have?

  150. i bought a used cricut expression and was told it worked fine. come to find out, there is ONE small problem. the pressure dial doesnt do anything and the speed dial changes both. if i adjust my speed up, then the pressure will also go up. if i adjust it down, the other goes down. if my speed is 3, then my pressure is 3 and so on. so i can not cut at a low speed because my pressure will only be on a 1. ive tried resetting it and nothing changed. any idea on how to fix this? i have been working around it, but would love for it to work right!

    • I can’t say for SURE, but if you or anyone you know is handy with a soldering iron, I would remove the left and bottom covers from the machine. Remove the little board with the two dials on it, and maybe try “reflowing” all the solder joints on it. (That is, heat each solder blob up with the iron until it re-melts). Look especially for solder points where the surface is “matte” instead of “shiny”.

  151. what a great site thanks so much for your effort. I bought a cricut cake from e-bay but the speed dial wont work ,the pressur dial and size dials don’t work either. size dial just spins . everything else seems ok , please can you help

    many thanks nina.

  152. Hi, I have a pink expression that the size dial is not working, so I took it apart and sure enough the (I have no idea what it’s called) thingy that the size dial is connected to is broken it two! I really don’t want to buy another whole cricut (for parts) and pay the shipping on it, for the little part. My question is, do you ever sell your extra parts?

  153. I have a barely used Expression 2. I went to use it today and it comes on. The screen says Cricut Expression 2 but it never changes. Also, the carriage light comes on but it nor the load bar moves as it should at startup.

  154. Unsolved Machines

    I have several machines that I have not yet repaired.

    One is a Personal model that will often fail to boot, and show only dark squares on the LCD screen. It was described this way to me before I got it, worked fine upon receipt, but then stopped working again soon after.

    For this error remove Q62 transistor S9013. Then boot and it will boot fine.It causes a dead ground.I am testing to see what it effects if you leave it out.
    so far it passes all internal tests will have to try cutting.
    Great Web-site Keep up the Good work.

  155. Update It all works great without Q62 or S9013 transistor removed.

  156. Replacing Drive Belt in Cricut Expression machine.

    I successfully found and replaced the belt on my “warrantied” machine that the company had me cut the drive belt. It was simple, took about 20 mins.

    Purchase the belt by the meter @ http://www.robotdigg.com/product/22/MXL-Belt,-6mm-Width-Open-Ended. You need to email the company before ordering online and they will send you a paypal payment request. You need 2 meters. Delivery took 20 days from China.

    How I did it:
    With the cut belt still in the machine, I took the cut side and stapled (with several staples) the new belt in the same alignment as the old belt. I then pulled the belt through very carefully because you do not want to have to open this machine up. After I had the belt fed through I disconnected the metal clip that attach the belt to the cutter. I did one side first, then hooked it to the drive. After this was done I pulled it tightly so I could determine the length that I needed on the other side. Once I completed this I then made a judgement call, I wanted the belt tight (to were I had to give it a little tug to fit it to the drive mount). I then temporarily affixed the other metal holder to the belt (leaving a couple inches of slack as a just in case I needed to make adjustments) and test fitted it. Once I determined that I took all the slack out I crimped down the metal pieces and hooked that side in.

    This again was simple and could be done at home quickly. The total for shipping and 2 meters of this cord was $7.40.

    This cord is a about 30% narrower than the original cord and does not have nylon on the teeth part. So far I have made several cuts with no issues, other than that some of the cartridges still do not read. But for a free machine, it works!!!!

    Plus I still have enough belt for one more repair….

  157. Hi- what a popular place for us crafters. anyway, I started to look through the comments to see if my question was there- but my husband said “don’t get sucked down a rabbit hole babe.” SO I will just ask- my Expression machine is starting to get really loud. like embarrassingly loud. Do you have any idea what this could be? Thanks in advance.


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