Having a printer at home is an extremely convenient necessity… until something goes wrong. Here are some common and puzzling issues that can arise, and what you should do to fix them.
Fix Common Printing Issues
First of all, it may sound obvious, but make the sure the printer is on. If your LCD or printer status lights are flashing, try checking the paper. You may be out of paper or a sheet has jammed in the mechanism. Open it up an look inside. Even the smallest scrap of paper can cause an issue. If this is the case clear the jam and hit the resume button or the enter button on the front panel, depending on your printer.
If your printer is not responding at all check to be sure your printer is connected to your computer. If it’s via USB, try another USB port if you have one available. If your printer is running wirelessly from your computer, be sure you are on the same network. If your laptop automatically picks a network, it may have joined somewhere different than your printer was set up with.
If you’ve recently downloaded a new program or an update of a program and now your printer is not responding. You probably need to download a new driver onto your computer. This is like a translator from your computer to your printer. Go to the website of the program and search for their printer drivers. Usually you can find the most recent driver compatible with your make and model of printer. Delete the old driver from your computer and install the new one. If you’re still having trouble try restarting both your computer and the printer.
Your printer works, but there are lines in the images or through the text. This problem typically has to do the ink cartridges or their alignment. Most printers have options to clean printer heads and align cartridges. Check your manual or try the setup or utility functions on your computer or printer. Run both of these functions. This should solve the problem. You may also be running low on ink. If the problem continues, try removing the cartridge and shaking it to distribute the ink, or try a new ink or toner cartridge. If your images are coming up very light or dark, check the settings. You may have a fast print, economy print or something similar set. This is for quick printing and designed to save time and ink. However, it causes the quality to be low. Another problem may be that the lightness/darkness option is set too light.
If there are ink smears across the paper or the ink comes off when you rub the paper you may have a faulty cartridge and it may have leaked inside the printer. In this case you will need to clean it out. If the cartridges seem fine you may have a problem with the fuser assembly. In this case it will probably cost more to fix than the printer is worth. Best to try a new cartridge first.
If you have problems beyond these. Do an online search for your type of printer and the problem. Chances are someone else has had the same issue and there is a discussion on some bulletin board about it.
This article was produced on behalf of PrinterInks – suppliers of printer cartridges and toners throughout the UK and Europe.