Many of us take our hard-working printers for granted, until they stop printing. Often all it takes is a little maintenance and a few tricks to avoid the paper jams and other common printer errors.
Following the steps below may prevent an expensive service call.
Solve Common Printer Problems
Printer won’t print – Check the power; make sure the printer is on. Make sure all cables are securely connected. Check to see that the printer is installed on your computer. (Click the “Start” button, and then click Printers and Faxes. You should see your printer listed there. If not, follow manufacturer’s instructions to re-install your printer.)
Page prints blank – When a page prints blank after installing a new cartridge, it usually means the protective shipping tape that prevents leakage during shipment has not been removed. If you are using inkjet cartridges, remove ink cartridge from printer and make sure the clear protective flm covering the printhead area has been removed. If using a Laser printer, remove new laser cartridge from printer to confirm the
protective strip of plastice has been pulled and removed.
Printer paper jam — Your printer will let you know it has a paper jam. Following manufacturer’s instructions, open the printer and gently remove any trapped paper. Keep an eye out for any small paper pieces that can tear off when removing the jam which will clog the paper feed and cause a second jam during the next print cycle. You can help prevent paper jams by fanning paper before placing it in the tray and keeping both the paper and the printer in a cool, dry place. You can also use compressed air or a vacuum to remove trapped dust and debris that could cause paper to jam.
Many times frequent paper jams can be due to either a defectve/broken paper tray or the type of paper you are using. Inspect the inside of your paper tray for cracks and conftrm the paper guides are in place and secure. If no defects are found, try changing the brand of paper you are purchasing to see if it resolves the problem.
Poor print quality – Faded, blurred or otherwise unacceptable printouts are often easily repaired. Remove and inspect ink cartridges or toner cartridges. Low ink or toner levels can compromise prints, particularly photos. Install new cartridges, taking care to use the correct model number for your printer, and be sure they are seated correctly.
Smears and streaks can also be caused by a dirty print head if you are using an inkjet printer. If your printer has a self-cleaning application, you can find it on your computer by hitting “Control”, “Printers” and selecting the drop-down menu for your printer.
If necessary, most print heads are easily accessible and can be cleaned with a small bit of water or isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol to remove excess ink. Let the printer sit overnight, then run the self-cleaning utility again. Refer to your specific printer manual.
Poor copy quality could be a sign that it is time to do routine maintenance on your printer. Many laser printers require the fuser unit and other maintenance parts to be replaced after printing a certain number of copies. This number will vary depending on the model of your printer and can be greatly reduced when regularly printing on high density, images or full page coverage. Please refer to your printer manual under maintenance to find the manufacturer's recomended maintenace schedule.
Can’t find you’re manual or have questions? No Problem, give us a call and we can supply you with the information you need. If you are purchasing your toner from us, we can help determine whether or not maintenance should be needed by reviewing your purchasing history..
If it is time to replace these parts, we have them in stock at very competitive pricing.
Getting into the habit of wiping down your printer will keep dust and other trouble-making matter away, and will extend the life of your printer. Even so, printers have moving parts, and the most durable machines will need parts repaired or replaced after repeated use.