What does 'too expensive' mean in Minecraft?

Too expensive (Image via Minecraft)
Too expensive (Image via Minecraft)

Anvils are one of the most useful blocks in Minecraft. It is usually used for repairing and enchanting tools, armors, and weapons. Doing anything on an anvil will cost gamers their experience points.

When an item is enchanted on an anvil for the first time, the players will have to pay a certain amount of XP levels. However, as they start adding more enchantments to an item, the cost will begin to increase.

At one point, players won't be able to repair or enchant an item as the cost will become too expensive.

Why Anvils display 'too expensive' in Minecraft

In Minecraft, players can use one item only six times on an anvil. When an item is used on an anvil, it gets one anvil use. After getting six anvil uses, the anvil will show a red text saying "too expensive".

In creative mode, they can use an item 31 times before it shows 'too expensive', as, after that many times, it crosses the 2^32 limit set in the game code.

In survival gameplay, players will get 'too expensive' after the XP cost exceeds 40 levels. This happens when an item is used on an anvil six times.

How to bypass 'too expensive' in Minecraft

The 'too expensive' warning can sometimes be annoying, especially when a player is trying to repair their enchanted gear without mending. After enchanting or fixing an item a few times on an anvil, the game won't allow them to repair/enchant it.

Minecraft remembers how many times an item is used on an anvil. The only way to bypass the 'too expensive' warning is by resetting the enchantments. Players will have to remove all the enchantments by adding two of the same items in a crafting grid.

After resetting the item, players can again enchant it with enchantments. They can easily avoid the 'too expensive' warning by only applying enchantments at their maximum level.

How to avoid 'too expensive' warning in Minecraft


Using low-level enchantments is one of the common reasons why players get the 'too expensive' warning. Early in the game, some would settle for low-level enchantments. After making some progress, they would soon ditch those enchantments and upgrade them to a higher level.

However, the game remembers how many times an item is enchanted. Even if a player is upgrading the same enchantment, Minecraft will treat it as anvil use. Instead of getting low-level enchantments, they can wait for better enchantments.

Players should also focus on getting the Mending enchantment. Items enchanted with Mending are repairable using experience points. They won't have to use an anvil to fix their gear.

Quick Links

Edited by R. Elahi
1 comment