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- Sharpener Does Not Work At All or is “Dead”
- Sharpener “Hums” but the Cutter Does Not Rotate
- Loud Grinding Noise or Electric Motor is Running but the Blades Do Not Rotate
- Severe Off-center Sharpening
- Rough Sharpening or Broken Pencil Leads
First, check to be sure that your power outlet is working by plugging in another appliance that you are certain is operational. If this does not solve the problem, then unplug the sharpener and check the power cord for any frays, cuts, or shorts. Do not use a sharpener with a damaged cord, as this can create a fire hazard. Instead replace the cord.
If the cord is not the problem, then your pencil sharpener’s sensor wire may be at fault. To learn how to replace your sensor wire click here.
If your cord and sensor wire are not the problem, then your pencil sharpener’s electric A/C motor may be the cause. Learn how to replace your electric A/C motor here.
The humming sound indicates that the motor is getting electric power, but is mechanically blocked.
The shavings holder may be overloaded to the point where the shavings are obstructing the movement of the cutter blades. Try cleaning out the shavings holder to fix the problem.
A foreign object has jammed the cutters. To fix this, unplug the sharpener, pick it up, and carefully look inside for any foreign object jamming the cutters. Carefully clear the foreign object out of the cutters using a paper clip or other small tool, then plug the sharpener in again and test to see if the problem is fixed.
A previously overloaded shavings holder may have left behind residual debris that is blocking the cutters. To resolve this, unplug the sharpener, remove the shavings receptacle and use your hand to tap the sharpener while holding it over a garbage can. If this still does not solve the problem then unplug the sharpener, turn it over, and use a paper clip or other small tool to clean around the cutter.
The loud grinding noise is most likely an indication that the gears are worn or need replacement.
See this guide for help replacing the gears.
Your off-center sharpening may be caused by a worn or dull cutter.
Cutter replacement instructions can be found here.
First, check to see that the cutters aren’t blocked by a foreign object. Sometimes pencil lead can get stuck inside. To do this, first unplug the sharpener from the wall. Then, take a sharp narrow object (i.e. a paper clip or similar tool) and ensure that there is nothing blocking the pencil bore.
Similar to off-center sharpening, the rough sharpening may be caused by a dull or worn cutter. Find out how to replace the cutter here.