Why Is AutoCAD Not Printing to Scale?

Why Is AutoCAD Not Printing to Scale?

If you are an AutoCAD user, you may have encountered a frustrating issue where your prints do not come out to the correct scale. This can be a major problem, especially when precision is crucial for your designs. Let’s delve into some of the common reasons behind this issue and explore possible solutions.

1. Incorrect Page Setup

One of the most common reasons for AutoCAD not printing to scale is an incorrect page setup.

Make sure that the paper size, plot area, and plot scale are set correctly in the page setup dialog box. To access this dialog box, go to the “File” menu, select “Page Setup Manager,” and choose the desired layout from the list. Double-check that the paper size matches your intended printout and that the plot area encompasses all necessary elements.

2. Improper Plot Scale

Another possible cause for incorrect scaling is an improper plot scale setting.

Ensure that you have specified the correct scale factor in your page setup or plot dialogue box. If you are unsure about which scale factor to use, consult your project requirements or talk to your supervisor or client.

2.1 Scaling Issues with Viewports

In some cases, you may encounter scaling issues specifically with viewports within a layout tab. If this happens, make sure that each viewport has its own individual scale setting by double-clicking on it and adjusting its properties accordingly.

3. Anomalies in Printer Driver Settings

The printer driver settings can also play a role in incorrect scaling during printing from AutoCAD.

It is essential to use an up-to-date printer driver compatible with your version of AutoCAD software. Visit the manufacturer’s website or contact their support team to download the latest driver for your printer. Once updated, configure the printer driver settings to ensure they match your intended printout requirements.

4. Drawing Units Mismatch

If you have imported or referenced a drawing from another source, the units used in that drawing may not match your current AutoCAD settings.

This mismatch can cause scaling issues when printing. Double-check that the drawing units are set correctly by going to the “Drawing Units” dialog box under the “Format” menu. Ensure that both the insertion scale and paper space units match your intended output.

5. Graphics Card or Display Issues

In some cases, AutoCAD may not print to scale due to graphics card or display problems.

Outdated or incompatible graphics card drivers can affect how AutoCAD interprets and prints drawings. Update your graphics card drivers regularly from the manufacturer’s website to ensure compatibility with AutoCAD and smooth operation.


AutoCAD not printing to scale can be a frustrating issue, but with proper troubleshooting, it is usually solvable. Ensure correct page setup, plot scale, and viewport scaling within layout tabs.

Check for anomalies in printer driver settings and make sure that drawing units are consistent throughout your project. Lastly, keep your graphics card drivers up-to-date to avoid any display-related issues.

By addressing these potential causes, you will be well on your way to resolving any scaling problems you may encounter while printing from AutoCAD.