How to Solve Pesky Printer Problems

Printer problems

You need to print a report pronto, and your printer is showing error messages. What should you do? Before giving up or trashing your printer, try these simple solutions and troubleshooting tips.

Answers to 6 Common Printer Problems

Low Ink Warning Message

Your computer or printer will alert you when ink is running low. But did you know that you can still print using those old ink cartridges? As long as your print job doesn’t require that you only print in black or color, you can override the warning and continue printing. If the black ink is low, the printer will switch to color. If the color ink cartridges are low, then the printer will print the page in black.

Outdated Printer Driver

If your older model printer is connected to a new computer or if you have recently updated the computer operating system, you’ll most likely have to update the printer driver to restore full functionality of the printer.

Visit the printer manufacturer’s website and find the section labeled Support and Drivers. Or simply type your printer model number in the website’s search bar and scroll through the results to find the software/firmware update. To locate your printer model, you can check the outside of the printer or the Devices and Printers section of your computer.

After you’ve found the correct driver update for your printer model, select your computer’s current operating system. The subsequent instructions for downloading the update depend on what type of operating system you are running.

Download the driver and then run the installer. You should now be using the latest driver for your printer. If you still have issues, try restarting your computer and printer.

Poor Quality of Printed Pages

If you’re getting light or spotty printed pages, first check that the cartridges have ink remaining. If that doesn’t work, your printhead might be clogged.

To run the printhead cleaning process via your computer, you’ll need to turn on your printer and insert several sheets of paper. For some printers, you can go to the computer’s Control Panel and then Settings/System Preferences or Devices and Printers. Navigate to your printer model and click Printing Preferences or Properties. After you select the cleaning or maintenance tab, the computer guides you through the cleaning process, ending with a test page printed.

To use the printer itself to clean the printhead, locate the printhead in your printer. Remove the ink cartridges and use water or alcohol to clean dried ink from the cartridges. Then select the self-cleaning option from the printer’s menu.

Slow Printing

Pages taking too long to print? Then speed up the performance and save some ink by changing to a lower print quality setting. For many printer brands, you can do this by opening the printer’s properties from your computer and switching to low or draft quality. Try printing only text instead of graphics to also save ink and time.

Paper Jam

This problem is usually an easy fix once you remove any paper still jammed in the printer. Firstly, don’t overfill the paper tray. Next, verify that the paper is aligned properly: make sure the paper is nicely stacked together and the paper is flush with the guides.

High Ink Costs

Brand name ink is often very expensive. You can save quite a bit of money—sometimes up to 80%—using compatible or remanufactured cartridges. Just because compatible cartridges and remanufactured cartridges are cheap doesn’t mean that they are poor quality. These ink cartridges offer results as good as the brand name cartridges. Don’t believe us? Try ordering your ink and toner from today. We even offer a One-Year Money-Back Guarantee on all of our ink cartridge products.

What type of printer problem do you encounter the most? Let us know below or on Facebook and Twitter.