Question about Canon PIXMA iP3000 InkJet Photo Printer

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Waste ink absorber needs emptying- what do I do?

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This advice is for a Canon IP3000 printer.

The waste ink absorber consists of several sponge pads, two of which run almost the full length of your printer underneath your printer. When a cartridge is cleaned, a small amount of ink is forced through the print head to remove the blockage. This waste ink then goes through two small tubes to the waste pads below. Over time these waste pads become saturated with ink. It is usually the case, that by the time the waste pads become saturated, your printer is well past its warranty period.

Ironically, you don't need to use this method to clean your print head on this printer, as it is easily removable. On most printers including some other models of canon printers the print head is not removable, so you have no choice but to waste ink. With the Canon IP3000, remove your print head out, put it in a container of hot (but not boiling water) and ideally leave it for a couple of hours and usually this cleans it effectively. I usually put into the hot water, some ink jet cleaning fluid. (The purple fluid that comes with refill kits.)

From your question, it sounds as if it is too late for this. so you have two choices. First, you can try resetting the waste counter; if successful this may mean that you can carry on using your printer. However, this is only a short term measure. If your waste pads are saturated they will need removed, replaced or cleaned.

This is how you can reset your printers' waste counter:

1.With the printer plugged in and powered off, press and hold the Resume/Cancel button, then press and hold the Power button. (DO NOT release the buttons. The LED light should be green to indicate that a function is selectable.).

2.While holding the Power button, release the Resume/Cancel button. (DO NOT release the Power button.).

3.While holding the Power button, press the Resume/Cancel button 2 times, and then release both the Power and Resume/Cancel buttons. (Each time the Resume/Cancel button is pressed, the LED lights alternately in orange and green, starting with orange.).

4.When the LED light is green, press the Resume/Cancel button 4 times. (Each time the Resume/Cancel button is pressed, the LED lights alternately in orange and green, starting with orange.).

5.Press the Power button. The LED lights in green, and the reset is performed. (When the operation completes, the printer returns to the menu selection mode automatically.).

6.Press the power button to exit service mode.

Note: if you accidentally press the Resume/Cancel button more than 4 times in step 4 then just press the Resume/Cancel button at least 10 times and the printer will be returned to step 4 automatically

This may allow you to continue to use your printer. However, please be warned, if left unchecked, you could end up with waste ink spilling out of your printer.

Second you can dismantle your printer, remove and clean the pads, and you may also have to reset the waste counter. This web site outlines the steps on how to do this: http://www.druckerchannel.de/artikel.php?ID=1831&seite=6&t=step_1_removing_the_printers_sides

Finally if all this, brings you out in a cold sweat, perhaps it’s time to invest in a new printer. The Canon IP4600 is the modern descendant of the IP3000, with a removable print head and separate inks. It’s quite expensive but it’s worth the extra for reliability and quality.

Hope this helps. I wish you well.

Posted on Aug 03, 2009

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1 Answer

Message about ink asorber full keeps appearing


When the printer is not being used, the print-heads slide to their "resting" position,
in order to keep the ink-jets moist, i.e., to NOT dry-out.

Some ink is absorbed into that INK-ABSORBER.

Now, after a few years of usage, that ink-absorber is "full".

Like taking-out the garbage from your kitchen waste-basket when it gets full, and replacing the full waste-basket with an empty waste-basket, it's time to get your printer serviced -- replace the "full" ink-absorber with an "empty" ink-absorber.

Note that CANON printers do not actually "measure" the fullness -- they electronically estimate the fullness, given information about how much you print, and how often you print, and the "density" of the pages that you do print (text is much less dense than colour-photos).

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"The waste ink absorber is almost full" message?


This applies to the CANON PIXMA MP130 and other ink-jets made by Canon/Pixma.

According to the user's manual, "Ink used to clean the print head is absorbed by the waste ink tank. When this message is displayed, the waste ink tank needs to be replaced, or the machine requires maintenance". There is no information about how to replace or empty the waste ink tank.

In any case, you can try the following to clear up the error, but eventually you'll need the waste tank to be emptied or replaced. And as far as I know, you can't find the replacement parts to buy, nor the instructions to empty the waste tank.

Turn on your MP130.
1) After that press: Menu - Scan - Copy - Scan or Menu-Copy-Scan-Copy-Copy in some models, it depends on the date it was produced)
2) Select TEST MODE.
3) Enter NVRAM ACCESS
4) Select SET ABS-M LEVEL TO 0
5) Select OK
6) Keep selecting OK untill you leave the TEST MODE

Then turn it OFF and again ON. Check if the error message is still there.
The following is taken from the Canon website, regarding this specific error:

"Canon recommends having the printer serviced before the absorber becomes full. We are aware that there are many "do-it-yourself" Web sites that offer instructions for making this repair. Replacing the ink absorber is a complicated and potentially messy procedure. Even if the ink absorber is successfully changed, the ink absorber counter must be reset. Be aware that if you attempt this procedure, it is at your own risk."

As I mentioned before, I have not found any way or procedure to empty or replace the waste ink absorber nor the necesary replacement part.

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Canon pixma ip8500, on third print head in about 4 years. will not print yellow despite repeated head cleaning cycles, now waste ink absorber is full. need instructions for emptying/replacing said...


the waste ink absorber cannot be replaced mate. you have to buy new printer.the waste ink absorber is the sponge part where head cleans all its ink. its a common problem in cannon.

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1 Answer

Waste ink absorber is. full. How do I empty it?


The waste ink absorber can sometimes be removed and cleaned out and put back into place. Although it is not always easy to get at. Usually once this happens it is time for a new printer. You can also contact Canon and see if they have a replacement part for this.

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1 Answer

I keep getting this error message come up, 'The waste ink absorber is almost full - see manual'.what do I need to do as the manual doesnt give details.


According to the user's manual, "Ink used to clean the print head is absorbed by the waste ink tank. When this message is displayed, the waste ink tank needs to be replaced, or the machine requires maintenance". There is no information about how to replace or empty the waste ink tank.

In any case, you can try the following to clear upo the error, but eventually you'll need the waste tank to be emptied or replaced.

Turn on your MP130.
1) After that press: Menu - Scan - Copy - Scan or Menu-Copy-Scan-Copy-Copy in some models, it depends on the date it was produced)
2) Select TEST MODE.
3) Enter NVRAM ACCESS
4) Select SET ABS-M LEVEL TO 0
5) Select OK
6) Keep selecting OK untill you leave the TEST MODE
Then turn it OFF and again ON. Check if the error message is still there

The following is taken from the Canon website, regarding this specific error:
"Canon recommends having the printer serviced before the absorber becomes full. We are aware that there are many "do-it-yourself" Web sites that offer instructions for making this repair. Replacing the ink absorber is a complicated and potentially messy procedure. Even if the ink absorber is successfully changed, the ink absorber counter must be reset. Be aware that if you attempt this procedure, it is at your own risk."
As I mentioned before, I have not found any way or procedure to replace the waste ink absorber nor the necesary replacement part

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The waste ink absorption pads cannot be emptied, only replaced.

Replacing the waste ink absorption pads is something an authorized canon service facility can take care of for you. Once they are replaced, it'll be functional again.

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