Question about Dell 3100cn Laser Printer

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Vertical toner smear-off in all colours

When I print, the pictures and/or text on the bottom half of the paper gets smeared off in 10-12 vertical points, about one inch long. It's as if the feeder can't get a decent grip and spins on the on the paper before the toner gets burned onto the paper.

The smearing goes all the way through the colour so you can actually see the white paper colour on those points.

I have printed solid CMYK pages, and it has the problem on all pages.

What to do?

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  • stormclouds Dec 12, 2008

    For me, the color appears to "smear" across seven vertical lines spaced equally apart (about 3/4 inch) from the top of the page to the bottom. Toward the bottom of each page, between the seven lines, the color appears to spread in a fingerprint-like fashion.

  • Steve Minor Dec 17, 2008

    When I print the 20% coverage tests (Cyan, Magenta, Yellow) you can barely see anything, but on normal color print outs I get perhaps 5-8 small (1/4" long) vertical smears around 3/4 of way down the page--they are seperated by around 3/4" of an inch.

    Does not do this with B&W printing, only color.

  • johntgb Jan 03, 2009

    Same problem.
    When printing photos, top half of sheet is usually OK but bottom half has vertical smears as if there was an obstruction on the fuser or transfer rollers.

    Any ideas?

  • ryanetics Jan 15, 2009

    same problem here. mine happens in the middle of the page but yes, equally spaced spots where the ink just wipes off showing the white of the paper. This is incredibly frustrating!


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Yes, I had just found that! Alas, sanding helped, but I finally just said screw it and kept the cover off the drum alltogether and it solved the problem.

I'm at 8,000 pages so based on some of the netagive reviews I would guess my drum is within 2-3k pages of dieing anyway.

Posted on Feb 03, 2009

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Looks like the ridges inside the cartridge are catching. Here's a solution;

Posted on Feb 02, 2009

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