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The 10 Most Common Printer Faults

The guide below identifies the main problems that occur with your printer, making it easier to understand what can go wrong with the machine reducing the amount down time that occurs as a result of these faults.

1. Paper jam

A paper jam has to be undoubtedly the most frustrating and common printer fault and it seems to always happen when you are in a hurry to get to a meeting or have a deadline. You find yourself opening every door to find where the paper is located but really paper jams are due to worn rollers and dirt deep inside the printer. Other causes for this include excessive build-up of paper dust on the rollers and faulty fuser unit and other consumables like a ripped transfer belt.

2. Poor print quality

Check your toner levels are not running low or empty, then make sure the printer is not running on Eco mode, Toner save or Grayscale. Finally take the toner cartridge out and give it a gentle shake. Replace the toners to eliminate it is not the toner.

3. Ghosting

This is where you see either repeated fading images or the words are blurred. Check the drums, transfer belt and fuser unit for visible faults. If there are no visible signs of damage to the transfer belt or fuser, then change the drums and toners until you eliminate the fault. If this fails, you may have an issue with the laser scanner unit or power supply.

4. Image comes off the paper, smears and is powdery

If this is happening on any part of your print that has come out into the tray then your fuser unit needs to be replaced. The fuser unit heats the toner powder so that it sticks or fuses to the paper if the print is coming off to touch then this is because the fuser is not heating or is not getting hot enough. The fuser unit normally needs replacing every 50,000 prints.

5. Marks on prints when I copy but not when I print

If you are getting marks on your prints only when you copy the most likely cause will be dirt on the glass scanner. Check the glass for dirt. Some adf units will have an adf kit where you change a plastic film. If the dirt is on the inside of the glass it is advisable to get an engineer to do this job.

6. When I print I get blank pages

Check that you have removed and pulled the tape seal from the toner cartridge if it has recently been changed. If you still having issues, then you will need an engineer to look inside the printer.

7. My printer is making a loud rattling noise

Toner drums can sometimes cause grinding sounds if they are faulty. Replace the toners or drums and if the problem still persists then and engineer we will have to have a look at as it is probably a cog that is worn.

8. My Printer is not printing

If you have no error messages pointing you to a fault, you need to check the printer is connected. If you are using a USB connection or are on a network, check the cables are plugged in. For Wi-Fi printers check your Wi-Fi is enabled on both the printer and the PC or tablet. If all is ok here first you need to reinstall the drivers for the printer. Next check the printer user manual trouble shooting section. If you are still having issues then you will need an engineer as you may have a faulty printer part.

9. Printer is running low on toner / ink message

Don’t panic and carry on as long as your prints are clean. Carry on printing as normal and make sure you have spare ink just in case the printer does run out. Toners and ink will normally print for a while after they are due to expire and some will stop when the counter says stop. If the printer stops printing because the counter thinks it has run out, you can normally bypass this in the printer settings to carry on printing. However, if the quality of your prints is poor or not up to scratch then this is a probable sign that you need to change the toner or ink.

10. Wi-Fi printing takes too long to print

Place the printer next to the wireless router and see if this speeds up the printing. If so get a wireless range extender. You need to make sure your router is up-to-date. Check it has the latest firmware installed and that it supports 802.11n.



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