Tip & How-To about Office Equipment & Supplies

Print defects on HP 3380 and 3330 Multifunction Printers

If you are having a repetive defect appearing on your printer page, here is the quick and easy way to determine if you have a serious problem with your printer or just a bad print cartridge. To use this ruler, you need to measure from the start of the first defect to the start of the second. Find the defect below that matches that distance. Please note that this chart may not be to scale, measure and use the actual distances printer on the chart.

The first 2 defects are caused by a defective toner cartridge.

The next 3 defects are caused by physical problems in the printer.

The last defect is caused by a bad print cartridge.

The physical problems can sometimes be caused by spilled toner in the machine, so if you have one of the three physical defects, remove the cartridge and inspect the inside of your printer. If you see a bunch of loose toner in the printer, you can try cleaning it out with a cloth like a swiffer cloth. Be sure to turn unit off before putting hands into the cartridge area and be careful not to damage any components.

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from top of page to bottom on left side, streaking smudges. About 5 of them per page.

You can tell what part of the printer is the culprit by measuring the distance between the defects. I will attach a link to the repetative defects page for your printer. Make sure you look at the one for the 1200 and not the 1100


Apr 04, 2010 | HP LaserJet 1200 Printer

1 Answer

speckled streaks on right margin of paper

image quality issues.
  1. Press and hold the up arrow (uparrow.gif) and down arrow (dnarrow.gif), and then turn on the printer.
  2. Release the arrows when Diagnosing... appears on the operator panel.
  3. Customer Mode should appear on the operator panel.
  4. Press the down arrow (dnarrow.gif) until the LCD displays Test Print.
  5. Press the Select (enter-key.gif) button.
  6. Press the down arrow (dnarrow.gif) until the LCD displays ContaminationChk.
  7. Press Select (enter-key.gif).
  8. The LCD displays Busy while the 3110cn prints the "ContaminationChk" pages.
  9. Examine the test pages to determine if the defect is being duplicated and also which pages are displaying the defect.
  10. If only a specific color page is reproducing the defect, then that color toner cartridge is causing the issue. You can verify this if an identical known good cartridge is available to swap for testing purposes.
  11. If the image defect appears on all color pages, then measure the distance between repetitions of the defect using the ruled edges of the color test pages.
    Good Luck

Mar 21, 2010 | Dell 3010cn Laser Printer

1 Answer

Shadow on printed page

You either have a bad toner cartridge or bad fuser. Measure the distance from and exact on image printered to the exact same spot on the page it appears again. If it's fuser it will be 41.0mm between image and defect. Any other spacing on the front of the page is usually cartridge.

Try replacing the cartridge first and if that doesnt fix the issue it's fuser.

Here's a link for the service manual. Look at page 117 to get a complete list on repetative defects and their causes.


Hope that helps you.

Aug 02, 2008 | HP LaserJet 1020 Printer

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