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How do I clean my ink cartridgef heads and where can I get protectors?

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Cartridges should be cleaned using a soft cloth and a special cleaning solution. If you don't have the cleaning solution, an alcohol of high alcohol content will do the trick to remove hardened inks.

Posted on Sep 13, 2010

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Cleaning head and nozzles


Cleaning the Print Head


r_bullet.gifUsing the Head Cleaning utility
r_bullet.gifUsing the control panel buttons

If you find that the printout is unexpectedly faint or some dots are missing, you may be able to solve these problems by cleaning the print head, which ensures that the nozzles are delivering ink properly.

You can clean the print head from your computer using the Head Cleaning utility in the printer software or from this product itself by using the control panel buttons.


r_note.gifNote:r_space.gif

  • Print head cleaning uses both color and black inks. To avoid wasting ink, clean the print head only if the copy quality drops (for example, blurred printout, incorrect or missing color.)
r_space.gif
  • Use the nozzle check first to confirm that the print head needs to be cleaned. This saves ink.
r_space.gif
  • When the Error light is on and a message appears on the LCD panel to prompt you to replace the ink cartridge or to indicate the ink is low, you cannot clean the print head. In this case, replace the appropriate ink cartridge first.


Using the Head Cleaning utility

Refer to the appropriate section below to use the Head Cleaning utility.


For Windows

Follow the steps below to clean the print head using the Head Cleaning utility.


r_1.gifMake sure that A4 or Letter size paper is loaded in the sheet feeder.


r_2.gifMake sure that this product is on and the ! Error light is off.


r_3.gifAccess the printer software.r_arrow2.gifAccessing the Printer Software for Windows


r_4.gifClick the Maintenance tab, then click the Head Cleaning button.


r_5.gifFollow the on-screen instructions.


Head cleaning... appears on the LCD panel while this product performs the cleaning cycle.


r_space.gifr_caut.gifCaution:r_space.gifr_space.gifNever turn off this product while Head cleaning... appears on the LCD panel. Doing so may damage this product.


r_6.gifWhen Head cleaning... disappears from the LCD panel, click Print Nozzle Check Pattern in the Head Cleaning dialog box to confirm that the print head is clean.


Good: print head does not need to be cleaned yet.


d00_good.gif



Not Good: print head needs to be cleaned.


d00_miss.gif


If the nozzle check page does not print satisfactorily, you may need to repeat the head cleaning and print the nozzle check pattern again. See Cleaning the Print Head.


r_note.gifNote:r_space.gif

  • If the copy quality has not improved after repeating this procedure four or five times, turn this product off and leave it alone overnight. Then, perform the nozzle check again and repeat the head cleaning if necessary.
r_space.gif
  • If the copy quality still has not improved, one or both of your ink cartridges may be old or damaged and may need to be replaced. To replace an ink cartridge before it is empty, see Replacing an Ink Cartridge. If the copy quality remains a problem after replacing the ink cartridges, contact your dealer.
r_space.gif
  • To maintain good copy quality, we recommend copying a few pages at least once every month.

Apr 14, 2013 | Epson Stylus CX6400 All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

My printer won't print anything - only blank pages. However, both ink cartridges have ink. Please help!


If the self-cleaning cycle does not solve the problem, try turning the printer off overnight to allow the ink to soften. Turn the printer on the next day and try printing a test pattern to see whether the problem has either disappeared or become less noticeable. This ink-saving procedure can work effectively because sometimes the dried ink on the print head needs time to soften before the printer head can be cleaned completely. Try running the self-cleaning utility again one or more times.
Steps for Manually Cleaning the Printer Head

If the overnight cleaning still does not work, there may be a layer of thick ink that is blocking the holes of the printer's head. The next option is to manually clean the printer head. Follow these steps:

* Determine from the owner's manual where the print head is located.
* Remove the ink cartridge from your printer and then dip a cotton swab in hot water or isopropyl alcohol and rub it against the print head. This should loosen any crusted ink. NOTE: Be careful, especially if you use isopropyl alcohol to clean your print heads: Some printers use rubber gaskets, and if you get isopropyl alcohol on the gaskets it could dry them out.
* For models where the print head is in the printer, drop 7 to 10 drops of isopropyl alcohol (91% denatured isopropyl alcohol - not 'rubbing' alcohol) down the ink receptacle area where the ink actually flows from the cartridge into the head. Run a few self-cleaning utilities. If possible, allow the printer to sit a few hours or overnight and repeat the self-cleaning utility.
* If the print head is in the cartridge, soak the cartridge print head in hot water. Allow it to soak overnight. Dry the print head area with a paper towel. Repeat the self-cleaning utility.
* If the hot water soak did not unclog the print head, place the cartridge printer head in isopropyl alcohol and allow it to soak overnight. Use a damp paper towel to wipe off the print head area and dry carefully. Try the self-cleaning utility again.
* If the alcohol soak did not unclog the print head in the cartridge you may need to purchase a new cartridge. This will provide new print heads that won't be clogged. Contact a service technician for repair of print heads in the printer if the alcohol did not unclog the printer head.

Jun 09, 2010 | HP DeskJet 5150 InkJet Printer

1 Answer

Print is faded. I just replaced the ink jets.


You said you just replaced the ink jets. Did you clean the print heads? Here is Link on Web. If you find this helpful pls rate me. Thanks
http://www.brother-usa.com/ModelDocuments/Consumer/Users%20Manual/UM_MFC_210C_420CN_EN_286.PDF

How to improve print quality
Cleaning the print head
To ensure good print quality, the MFC will regularly clean the print
head. You can start the cleaning process manually if needed.
Clean the print head and ink cartridges if you get a horizontal line in
the text or graphics on your printed pages. You can clean Black only
or three colors at a time (Cyan/Yellow/Magenta), or all four colors at
once.
Cleaning the print head consumes ink. Cleaning too often uses ink
unnecessarily.
Caution
Do NOT touch the print head. Touching the print head may cause
permanent damage and may void the print head’s warranty.
1 Press Ink.
2 Press or to select Cleaning.
Press Menu/Set.
3 Press or to select Black, Color or All.
Press Menu/Set.
The MFC will clean the print head. When cleaning is finished,
the MFC will go back to standby mode automatically.
If you clean the print head at least five times and the print has
not improved, call Brother Customer Service (see Brother
numbers on page i).

Jan 11, 2010 | Brother MFC 210C All-In-One InkJet Printer

2 Answers

The colour is faint, a new catridge was installed


Hi there,
When printing becomes faint or colors are incorrect, even if ink remains in the ink tanks, the print head nozzles are probably clogged. Follow the procedures below to clean the nozzles.

Step 1 : Printing the Nozzle Check Pattern.
If white stripes are noticeable
Step 2 : "Aligning the Print Head"
If print quality is poor
Step 2 : "Print Head Cleaning"
if the problem remains
Step 3 : Print Head Deep Cleaning"
if the problem still remains
Step 4 : Replacing Ink Tanks.

Note : * If the ink tank replacement does not resolve the problem, contact the Customer Care Center.
* You will be alerted if low ink warning is enabled.
* When the Maintenace button on the operation panel is pressed, the maintenance mode is shown. Numbers and functions that can be selected on the maintenance mode as follows :
01 : Printing the Nozzle Check Pattern
02 : Print Head Cleaning
03 : Print Head Deep Cleaning
04 : Aligning the Print Head
05 : Reset the ink counter.
06 : "Display" or "Not Display" remaining ink volume.
07 : Date and order setting.

Printing the Nozzle Check Pattern : Print the nozzle check patterb to determine whether the ink ejects properly from the print head nozzles and to verify print head alignment. Use this function when printed results are blurred or the color is incorrect,
1) With the printer on, load a sheet of Letter paper in the printer.
2) Print the Nozzle Check Pattern.
a) Press the Maintenance button,
b) The Maintenance icon and 01 appear on the LCD.
c) Press the OK button. The nozzle check pattern is printed.
3) Examine the nozzle check pattern output by the printer.
a) Lines missing in this pattern indicate that the print head of black ink requires cleaning. Perform the Print Head Cleaning.
b) White stripes in this pattern indicate that the print head of color ink requires cleaning. Perform the Print Head Cleaning.
c) Uneven patterns indicate that the print head requires alignment.
Perform Aligning of Print Head.
d) Noticeable white stripes in this pattern indicate that the print head require alignment.
Perform Aligning of Print Head.

Print Head Cleaning : Clean the print head if you suspect that the nozles might be clogged. Cleaning the print head consumes ink, so perform print head cleaning only when necessary.
1) Ensure that the printer is on.
2) Start print head cleaning.
a) Press Maintenance button.
b) Press right arrow once to display 02 on the LCD.
c) Press the OK button.
Important : Do not perform any other operations until the print head cleaning finishes. This takes about 50 seconds.
Note : After the print head cleaning finishes, print the nozzle check pattern to verify that the print head nozzles are clean.
If the problem persists, perform printhead deep cleaning.

Print Head Deep Cleaning : If print quality does not improve by standard print head cleaning, try print head deep cleaning, which is more powerful process. Print head deep cleaning consumes ink, so perforn this procedure only when necessary.
1) Ensure that the printer is on.
2) Start Print Head Deep cleaning.
a) Press Maintenance button.
b) Press right arrow twice to display 03 on the LCD.
c) Press the OK button.
Important : This process takes one or two minutes to complete so simply wait until the Power lamp stops flashing.
Note : After printhead deep cleaning finishes, print the nozzle check pattern to verify that the printhead nozzles are clean.
If the printhead is still not clean after the second deep cleaning, replace the ink tank.
If ink tank replacement does not resolve the problem, the print head may be worn out. Contact the Customer Care Center.

Hope this helps.
Please rate my response.
Thanks.

Have a good day.

Dec 07, 2009 | Canon i475 InkJet Printer

1 Answer

I have changed the printer head and i cannot get it to print colour


First, you need to check the printer properties just to verify that "only black" or "only gray scales" is not selected. Be sure that the color cartridge is recognized by the computer.

Next, be sure the printer head was properly installed, all connections done.

Try to "clean cartridges" twice to see if the printer is able to make the color ink to flow.

Are you using a new cartridge? Be sure the plastic protector was removed and there is contact between the cartridge and the connector in the printer.

Hope it helps.

Aug 30, 2009 | Canon S520 InkJet Photo Printer

1 Answer

Epson PictureMate - can't clean all nozzles & Error P


Many times head cleaning will throw much ink away. 1 time about 10% of ink. After meny times head cleaning, ink will out, and need replacement. May be after head cleaning nozzle is ok, but after replacement, printer do ink charge. It may be distrub the flow of ink at head. Is the cartridge new?. Use CISS for continuity printing.

Jul 26, 2009 | Epson PictureMate C11C623001 Photo Printer

1 Answer

EPSON PRINTER PRINK HEAD PROBLEM


Problem with ink flow. Use original ink or compatible? If original, ink will out and dried after head cleaning many times. If compatible, problem is ink quality. When head cleaning, ink flow to head by suction of head cleaning mech. If use to print, ink at head spray out, but ink ank ink tank not flowing good to head.

Jun 28, 2009 | Epson Stylus CX5400 All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

Printing partial color no black


Did you remove the plastic protector on the ink cartridge before you installed it?

Nov 06, 2008 | Epson Stylus Color 1160 InkJet Printer

2 Answers

How to change black color inkonHp2175all in one


Supported HP ink cartridge part numbers The HP PSC 2100, 2170, and 2200 all-in-one series products use the ink cartridges listed in the table below. The HP 58 tri-color photo ink cartridge replaces the black ink cartridge for six-ink photo printing. Ink cartridges Part number HP 56 black ink cartridge (19 ml) C6656A HP 57 tri-color ink cartridge (17 ml) C6657A HP 58 tri-color photo cartridge* (17 ml) C6658A HP 27 low capacity black ink cartridge (10 ml) C8727A HP 28 low capacity tri-color ink cartridge (8 ml) C8728A * Replaces the black ink cartridge for six ink photo printing and includes cartridge holder. Replacing the ink cartridges The power must be turned ON to the all-in-one or the print carriage will not come to the center.
  1. Locate and raise the print cartridge access door on the front of the unit, just above the output tray. The print cartridge carriage will move into the middle of the access area. Figure 1: Raising the front access door and the ink cartridge latches c00224418.jpg
  2. Press down lightly on the top of the ink cartridge latch of the ink cartridge to be replaced and then pull the lower section of the latch toward you to unlatch the ink cartridge.
  3. Grasping the sides of the ink cartridge, pull the cartridge toward you to remove it as shown in Figure 2. Figure 2: Removing the cartridge after raising the latch c00224419.jpg
  4. Remove the replacement cartridge from its packaging, and touching only the black plastic, gently remove any tape covering the nozzles. Do not touch the gold-colored contacts. Figure 3: Removing the protective tape c00224420.jpg
  5. Holding the ink cartridge with the printed label up, slide the cartridges one at a time into the print carriage as shown in Figure 4. The black ink cartridge (HP 56 or HP 27) goes on the right side (with the gray latch) and the tri-color cartridge (HP 57 or HP 28) goes on the left side (with the blue latch). If the optional photo cartridge (HP 58) is installed for six-ink photo printing, it is installed in place of the black ink cartridge. Figure 4: Inserting the cartridge c00224421.jpg
  6. Place your hand on the latch as shown in Figure 5, with the thumb pulling the end of the latch toward you. While holding the end of the latch out, press down on the top of the latch until it stops and then release the lower portion of the latch with your thumb so that it catches under the tabs. Do not force the latches into place or damage to the unit might occur. Close the all-in-one after latching the ink cartridges in place. Figure 5: Latching the ink cartridges in place c00224422.jpg
  7. Close the print cartridge access door.
  8. A message will appear in the front panel display requesting that the ink cartridges be aligned. Press ENTER on the front panel to start the cartridge alignment. Two pages will print. Following the instructions printed on the second page, place the first page on the scanner glass in the lower-right corner and then press ENTER to finish aligning the cartridges. Remove the page from the scanner glass when complete.
Storing the option photo printing cartridge while not in use The optional photo print cartridge (HP 58) that may be purchased separately for six-ink photo printing includes an ink cartridge protector. The protector is designed to keep the photo cartridge from drying out when it is not in use and for holding and protecting the black cartridge when the photo cartridge is in use.
  • To insert a cartridge into the protector, slide it into the protector at a slight angle until it snaps in place.
  • To remove a cartridge from the protector, push down and back on the top of the protector to release the cartridge and then slide the cartridge out of the protector.
Figure 6: Inserting and removing ink cartridges from the ink cartridge protector c00224423.jpg Fixing error messages that appear after changing a cartridge After inserting the cartridge, one of the following messages appears:
  • Check the black (or color) cartridge
  • Replace the black (or color) cartridge
  • The wrong black (or color) cartridge is installed
These messages indicate that the ink cartridge is not making good electrical contact, is bad, or is the wrong cartridge. Complete the following steps to diagnose and correct the condition:
  1. Open the front of the unit to access the print cartridges (as shown in Figure 1).
  2. Remove the ink cartridge indicated in the message and inspect it.
  3. Verify that it is the correct part number and if it is, reinsert it.
  4. Close the lid to see if the problem is corrected.
  5. If the message is still displayed after a few seconds, remove the ink cartridge again.
  6. Unplug the power cord from the back of the unit.
  7. Clean the electrical contacts on the ink cartridge with a soft clean cloth, slightly dampened (not wet) with clean water. Each contact is very small and shaped like a rounded square. Figure 7: Cleaning the cartridge contacts c00224424.jpg
  8. Inside the HP all-in-one product, clean the contacts in the print carriage (the cartridge holder) with a clean cotton swab slightly dampened with clean water. Allow them to dry for five minutes before reinserting the cartridge(s) and turning on the printer. Figure 8: Contacts to be cleaned c00224425.jpg
  9. If the problem remains, replace the ink cartridge.
  10. If the problem still exists after trying all of the steps above, contact HP for assistance.

Oct 13, 2008 | HP Office Equipment & Supplies

1 Answer

Black ink not printing


Clean heads, clean heads, clean heads, etc. Then do the test print to see if the heads are open. I had similar problem with an Epson, had to clean the heads often, finally got to where the heads wouldn't clean so threw it away and bought another one (HP this time, the heads are included in the ink carts, haven't had to clean the heads at all.)

Jun 06, 2008 | Canon S400 InkJet Printer

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