Question about Brother MFC-8840D All-In-One Laser Printer

4 Answers

Printer Surge In general, my 8840-D printer has been an excellent one. Ever since I got it, once in a while, when I pressed 'print' on my computer, as the printer awoke from sleep mode, it would cause a surge of electricity that would shut off both the computer and the printer. Hooking the printer through a different surge protector and another electrical socket nearby did not solve the problem. Now, more recently, as the printer boots up or on EVERY occasion when I try to print, it shuts everything down because of a power drain. Thinking that maybe I was dealing with circuit overload, I moved the printer to another computer in another room, but just turning it on caused another surge that kept shutting the printer and the other computer down, so I think that I have a primary printer problem. Has anyone encountered this, and/or any thoughts? Thanks!

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  • Wonderhound Dec 22, 2007

    Thanks - turns out you are right, though there is a bit of a twist. I took it to a Brother repair dealer, and they said that it was the power supply of the printer that was blown. They put a new one in, and it worked fine. I then went to pick it up, plugged it in, and fired it up. The EXACT same problem that I had been having occurred again! I called, furious, to tell them that it was not fixed! It was at that point that the repair man asked me if i was plugging the printer into a battery backup. I affirmatively told him that I was. He then informed me that I should NEVER do that, and that it was mentioned on page 67 or so of the manual!!! He also told me that I had just managed to blow the power supply again on the printer!!! Like - WHO IN THE WORLD WOULD REMEMBER WHAT's ON PAGE 67 OF THE FRIGGIN' MANUAL AFTER OWNING A PRINTER FOR 1 1/2 YEARS?!?!?! I was pissed! Why didn't he ask me that in the first place - especially after he told me that he got printers brought to him for this same issue several times a month?!?!?! Anyway, now I've got to bring it back again for repair!!! More important, I still don't have a working printer that I desperately need. The lesson here, is never, NEVER, NEVER plug a printer into a battery backup!!! Thanks for the reply.

  • Ian Pocock Jan 25, 2008

    I have a Brother MFC 7420 multi-function printer that has the same problem. When the printer is plugged directly into an outlet and turned on the lights in the room briefly dim; the lights also dim when the printer wakes up to print, and occasionally during the print cycle. Worse than that, when my other desktop computer is on and connected via a UPS to a separate supply outlet, it will occasionally restart when the printer is turned on, or starts to print. I sent this printer in for repair, and got another identical unit as a loaner. Guess what, the identical thing happens, lights dim and the desktop on the UPS restarts. I have a variety of HP and Canon printers and have never seen this before until my work sent me the Brother unit. Two weeks ago the motherboard of my old desktop fried - I am now wondering if the culprit was the Brother printer! My confidence is now zero so I am going to dump the Brother printers and go back to HP and Canon. Anybody else seen this? - Ian

  • Ian Pocock Jan 25, 2008

    I have had the same problem with the Brother multi-function laser printer MFC7420. Every time it is directly plugged into wall outlet (not via a UPS)and turned on the house lights dim momentarily, presumably due to excessive current draw. When the printer wakes up to print something, and occasionally during the print cycle, again the lights dim. If I have my desktop computer running when I turn on and use the Brother printer, the computer will sometimes restart when the brown-out happens - even though the computer is connected to a decent quality UPS!

    I took this printer in for an unrelated repair, and got another identical Brother unit from my employer as a loaner. Surprise, surprise, this replacement unit does exactly the same thing! Brown-outs and unexpected computer restarts. Two weeks ago, soon after getting the first Brother printer from my employer, my old desktop had its motherboard fried - now I am wondering if these power surges from the printer were responsible. I am nervous enough that I have disconnected the Brother from my network entirely and will go back to my HP and Canon printers - I don't want to fry my brand new computer!

    Sounds like the Brother printers have poorly designed power supplies which results in an inductive kick-back when certain components turn on. But how does this dirty power get through the UPS? I thought they were meant to stop surges and protect the equipment from lightning strikes to the home! Any further ideas anyone? - Ian

  • Anonymous Feb 25, 2009

    Hello just so everyone knows this as i am sure brother does already, same exact problem, and I am on my second exact MFc. mine is a laser MFC, and like a fool when mine blew i bought another. Tobnight It blew a circuit. And I have already had my hard drive blow and my reciever and my tv. It does surge the lights everytime it turns on, and now it blew out my circuit breaker. There is something seriously wrong with these. And like I said this is my second one doing the same exact thing. PLEASE BEWARE, and let me know if anyone else is having these issues, because, I can see owning one that my be defective, but not two, and not when I read others have these problems two. Sincerely bob call please I would love to here you have the same issues, as this has cost 4000 dollars so far. I have called them and they have no clue what is going on of course. Time for someone to file a lawsuit. Sincerely bob 540-908-4222

  • Anonymous May 25, 2009

    8840 is going back; Just bought from Officemax; I am getting power surges whether on APC power strip or not; either way; Brother should stick to sewing machines.. POS.

  • Ian Pocock May 11, 2010

    Thanks for the help folks, but some bad news:
    1) plugging either of the two identical Brother MFC laser printers into a separate 120V outlet makes no difference - I still get the load surge light flicker as the fuser turns on
    2) the house is new and correctly wired, and there is nothing else on the same circuit taking a heavy draw
    3) my HP 2015 laser printer works just fine plugged into any of the sockets or even the UPS (non-battery backup outlets).
    I have lost confidence in the Brother printers since frying the mobo on my desktop - back to HP/Canon for me!



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I agree with first thought circuit overload.

I dont think it is the printer, I think it is your power supply in house. Just moving it to another socket does not change it from what might already be a circuit with a lot of load already.

You are experenceing surges that are normal operation ie at power on quatz lamp turns on reaching temp of 180 deg cel, then idles, if print command is issued back on comes the lamp drawing power.

Posted on Dec 21, 2007

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  • Soulvisitor
    Soulvisitor Dec 22, 2007

    That is interesting, I see a lot of these printers being a brother repair centre and I have never come across this issue nor had I noted page 67. (but in general one doesn't hook a printer to battery backup systems due to being no need to.)

    When I've seen these machine with power supply issues, I have only known the power supply to stop power altogether.

    Can you tell me what happens when your printer is not connected to battery backup, does it power on at all?

  • Soulvisitor
    Soulvisitor Dec 22, 2007

    Page 67 of users guide that I have doesn't refer to it. Maybe cause I'm in Oz. (we use 240 you have 110v)

    link to user manual

  • Soulvisitor
    Soulvisitor Dec 22, 2007

    LINK to US user manual not sign of battery backup info, close as I can find is below..

    Choosing a location

    Place your MFC on a flat, stable surface that is free of vibration and

    shocks, such as a desk. Put the MFC near a telephone jack and a

    standard, grounded power outlet. Choose a location where the

    temperature remains between 50°F and 95.5°F (10°-32.5°C).


    ■ Avoid placing your MFC in a high-traffic area.

    ■ Do not place near heaters, air conditioners, water, chemicals, or


    ■ Do not expose the MFC to direct sunlight, excessive heat,

    moisture, or dust.

    ■ Do not connect your MFC to electrical outlets controlled by wall

    switches or automatic timers.

    ■ Disruption of power can wipe out information in the MFC’s


    ■ Do not connect your MFC to electrical outlets on the same circuit

    as large appliances or other Equipment that might disrupt the

    power supply.

    ■ Avoid interference sources, such as speakers or the base units

    of cordless phones.



Have the same problem of Computer UPS unit triping to battery and back to AC with a Samsung laser printer plugged into the same circuit as UPS, ( printer on separate surge / no-surge, same issue ). (This is a quality APC UPS). After reading this tale of woe above, I ran an extension cord to a different ( lightly loaded ) circuit, and success, the UPS does not momentarily go to battery mode, when the printer starts... or starts printing.
I provide this as some confirmation that the power surge from the printer doing it's stuff is strong enough to trip up an APC UPS if on the same house wiring circuit.

Posted on Sep 17, 2008


Hi all,

I was having the same problem with a Brother HL-5280DW, sent print job and restarted the computer. If removed the USB port and plugged the printer using the network port and same thing happened. The printer was in the UPS but it was on the Surge only side, not connected to the battery side. I thought that whatever was plugged in to the battery side was "protected", but obviously I was wrong. I then connected the printer to a different outlet [different circuit I think] and could print no problem.

Brother should go back to build sewing machines only, and we computer users should stick to HP. I wish I could thow this printer away, but it is brand new.

Good luck to all.

Posted on Feb 14, 2008

Light flicker is due to inrush current when the fuser turns on. The fusers get really hot - like 200 deg C. This is common and occurs with any laser printer. Best solution is to put the printer on its own circuit - not the same one as your computer and such. Given the conversations here I suspect these are all home offices - one room in home - only has one circuit - Computer, Monitor, Printer, Lights all on same breaker... Not much you can do except add a circuit to your office.

Posted on Feb 02, 2008

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