How To Speed Up Sketchup

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Looking to speed up sketchup? Sketchup makes it so easy to model you can often find you’ve modeled so much that the program will barely run. What’s worse still is that you’ve still got more to model! Sketchup currently can’t handle the same kind of information as something like a Revit, but I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to throw in the towel and you can salvage the work you’ve already done. Below are actions you can take to make sketchup run smoother.

Components and Groups

Everything you model should be either a group or a component. Ungrouped faces are huge resource hogs and will significantly increase your file size.  Don’t believe it?  Check out this study we did or try it out for yourself.

Display Style

Under …View set your Face Style to Shaded and uncheck Shadows if they’re currently on. Set your …Windows>Style to one of the defaults. If you want to see your model with a particular style and/or with shadows set up a scene with those properties.  Make sure to also set up a ‘working’ scene so you can toggle between the two.  Doing this will significantly increase your workflow and speed up sketchup.

speed up sketchupspeed up sketchup

Purge

Every time you model a component sketchup saves that component inside file. Even if you delete it, it saves in a library for you to recall whenever you want. This is great but can make your file size incredibly large, especially if your importing components from the online 3D warehouse. Periodically go to …Window>Model Info>Statistics>Purge Unused. Watch your component count and file size plummet and feel sketchup instantly run smoother.

 speed up sketchup

Layers

Put detail items that you don’t need to see all the time on their own layer. That way you can toggle them off while your working on your broader modeling strokes. The first time I tried to use layers it was a complete disaster so be careful with this one.  I recommend modeling everything on your Layer0, group up like items (thank Reckonerz for that tip) using the outliner tool  (see item 4 on our ‘5 Unconventional Sketchup Tips you may not be Aware of ‘ post to learn about that) and manually change items from layer0 to your desired layer using the entity information tool bar (…Window>Entity Info).

speed up sketchup

Hidden Geometry

Toggle …View>Hidden Geometry on and check to see if there are any hidden geometries you can get rid of.  Hidden geometry will show up with a crosshatch infill.  Getting rid of these hidden geometries will certainly help speed up sketchup.

speed up sketchup

Last Save with Minimal In View

To make sure your file can open quickly, make your last save count.  Make sure shadows are disabled and any extraneous layers are toggled off.

If you found this helpful, our tutorials page will help you learn more about sketchup.

Hope this helps! Smooth modeling!

Have your own input on how to speed up sketchup modeling? Leave a comment below!

7 Comments

  1. Tony June 29, 2017 at 7:23 am #

    Deciduous trees should only be used for shade (especially in temperate climates). Deciduous trees lose their leaves in the fall and will have little protection against wind in the winter when it is most needed. Likewise, the leafless trees allow solar heat gain in the winter when it is desired, and shade in the summer.

    Coniferous trees are only to be used to block wind and views. Since they don’t lose their needles, they work great for these two items year-round.

  2. Shahid Logan June 28, 2017 at 4:50 pm #

    Hello. My name is Shahid. This comment is for anyone who would like to reply. On the Siteplanning test. To block the wind, can you use a Deciduous tree or must you use a Coniferous tree?

  3. Mike January 4, 2017 at 11:04 am #

    Hi Tony,

    I need to take 5.0 PPD & PDD. Do you plan on posting notes such as “Caroline’s Notes” that you had posted for the various 4.0 exams for either of those sections? I found those notes to be some of the best resources in studying for the 4.0 sections. If so any idea when? Thanks

  4. Stephen October 17, 2016 at 9:30 pm #

    Hi Tony,
    Any updates on the SS exam ? If there’s an expected release date ? Thanks

  5. DesignerHacks October 4, 2016 at 12:11 pm #

    Paige,

    We are releasing practice exams for the SS exam later this fall.

    Best,
    Tony

  6. Paige October 4, 2016 at 11:34 am #

    Will you have SS questions on here at some point?

  7. Daniel September 9, 2016 at 8:47 am #

    Great post, very helpful with the lists of suggested materials, I just passed CDs in July and am taking PPP in November so I definitely needed the list.

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