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How will low humidity affect my DTF printing?

Updated: Aug 10, 2023

If your work environment has a humidity level of less than 40%, the friction between the film, garment and the printer will cause static electricity. Static electricity can affect your work in quite a few different ways, for instance:

  • When the PET film sheets are sent through the printer, these two objects can generate a static charge, causing the sheets to cling together and causing your printer to jam.

  • Static electricity causes ink drops to stick to the printhead, eventually clogging nozzles and causing printhead damage.

  • Accumulated dust and lint on substrate, printer or film will be attracted by the static electricity, causing flaws in the print.

  • Static electricity can attract the ink to the wrong spot or fail to adhere to the proper place. Or it can repel ink away from the desired spot. White DTF ink is more typically affected due to it composite ingredients (see the illustration below):

If it is affected by static electricity, the ink will spatter slightly when it comes out from the nozzles, and when the powder is applied to the print, the powder will stick to those tiny spattered ink drops around the print.

A little experiment: Before troubleshooting, try this easy experiment to make sure that the static electricity is causing your problems.

You need to print two copies of the same picture, one just with colour, and the other just with white colour. Then sprinkle powder on both and cure them.

Now, if more powder sticks around the edge of the white print than the colored print, it means that the static electricity is causing this, as the white ink has the tendency to spattered more than the colors in such environment (because of what chemicals are in it).


Note: There is no way to eliminate static electricity completely, but proper humidity control and proactive measures can make a huge difference when combined.

There are a few ways to reduce the static electricity:

  • humidifiers, static removal rods, Install a floor with conductive or dissipative pavement, etc.

  • reduce the white ink output.

  • connect the conductive materials or objects to earth via wires, clips or cables to remove the excess charge by transferring electrons between the object and the earth.


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