This article lists the top 10 common printer faults our engineers encounter with general office laser printers. By knowing the most common printer faults that can occur, you can reduce the amount down time that is caused as a result of these problems.
1. Paper Jams
A paper jam is the most frustrating and common printer fault our customers see and it seems to always happen when you are in a hurry. You open every door and flap to find where the paper jam is located and clear everything you find but it happens again. Paper jams are most often due to worn rollers and dust / dirt inside the printer but can also be caused by faulty fuser units and other consumables like a damaged transfer belt.
2. Print Quality Problems
Print quality issues are most often caused by a faulty or nearly empty toner cartridge. Check the toner levels are not running low and also make sure the printer and printer driver is not using Economy mode, Draft mode or Grayscale. Lastly, take the toner cartridge out and give it a gentle shake and try printing again. If the problem persists, replace the toner/s to make sure they are not the cause.
3. Ghosting / Repeating
Ghosting is where you see the image repeating faintly down the page, Check the drums, transfer belt and fuser unit for damage. If possible, change the drums / toners to to make sure they are not the cause.
4. Image is dusty and comes off onto your fingers
If this happens on any part of your printed page, your fuser unit is not properly bonding the toner to the page and probably needs to be replaced. The fuser unit normally needs replacing every 50000 prints but exact page counts depend on the model of the printer.
5. Marks on pages when you use the copy button but not when you print from the computer
If you are seeing marks on your prints when you copy pages, the most likely cause will be dirt or marks on the scanner glass. Check the glass for dirt and correction fluid and gently clean with a soft cloth. Some ADF units use a plastic film which must be replaced when they become worn. If you see dirt is on the inside of the glass, it is advisable to have an engineer strip and clean your printer and scanner for you.
6. Blank Pages
If you have recently changed a toner cartridge, check that you have properly removed the tape and any shipping inserts from the new toner cartridge.
7. My printer is making a rattling noise
Grinding, rattling and graunching sounds can be caused by worn toners and drums. Replace the toners or drums to to make sure they are not the cause. If the noises persist, a cog inside the printer has perhaps become worn and will need to be replaced.
8. My Printer is not printing
If you printer is not printing and there is no error message you will need to check the printer is properly connected. If you are using a USB connection or hard wired network connection, check the cables are plugged in and do not show any signs of damage.
For Wi-Fi printers, double check Wi-Fi is enabled on both the printer and the PC / tablet. If all appears OK there, fully reinstall the drivers and software for the printer. Next check the printer user manual’s trouble shooting section. Lastly, check any firewall settings on your PC as these have been known to interfere with printer traffic.
9. Printer is running low on toner or ink.
As long as the printed pages are clean then just carry on printing as normal. Make sure you have spare toner cartridges just in case the printer does run out earlier than expected. Toner and ink cartridges often print for a while after they are due to expire but some will stop when the counter reaches its maximum. Depending on the printer make and model, this can sometimes be overridden. Check the user manual for details and where possible, try to refrain form swapping toner cartridges between printers.
10. Wi-Fi printing takes too long to print
Wi-Fi issues can be intermittent and difficult to solve. Firstly, remove all sources of interference such as Microwave ovens and other electrically noisy devices. Try placing the printer closer to the wireless router and see if this reduces the printing time. If this solves the problem, consider getting a wireless range extender or additional access point. You could also make sure your router’s firmware is up-to-date and that it supports 802.11n.