Question about Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet Printer

7 Answers

Copier problem I have a Brother 420CN. A message about no cartridge keeps apparing. All the cartridges are in and have ink in them. I've reinstalled them a thousand times yet the message keeps appearing. Help!

Posted by Rita HArris on

  • 7 more comments 
  • Rita HArris Aug 03, 2007

    Since I got no response for 4 days, I turned to another resource to solve my problem.

  • Unhappy_user Dec 07, 2007

    Have the same problem, says black ink empty, replaced with original
    Brother LC51BK cartridge still does not see the new cartridge
    ---> keeps saying no cartridge installed. The other 3 colors were OK
    just before this black cartridge empty. Tried to reload drivers, no
    change, unplugged A/C cord waited then no change. What else?
    Junk the F**** thing buy Lexmark or Epson?

  • Unhappy_user Dec 09, 2007

    Follow-up to previous message, uninstalled my network setup of the
    Brothers full software package, re-installed using the USB option,
    printer then accepted the cartridges and showed proper full ink BUT
    within 10 minutes the levels dropped to near empty again. Downloaded
    newest firmware from Brothers for the MFC-440CN and installed, no
    change. Removed all the cartridges, the printer still showed "near
    empty" for all 4 cartridges and still printed. replaced cartridges no
    change. I give up.

    The Lexmark scans and prints much quieter and is faster, however, I liked the Brother face plate and interface better.

    Time to move on.

  • jerry68 Jan 28, 2008

    replaced cyan(yellow) and copier cannot identify that it has been replaced,put the cartridge in and out lots of times still have the same message,no cartridge, what do i do now besides taking a hammer to it?

  • Anonymous Feb 02, 2008


  • andrewJ Feb 21, 2008

    same problem as the others, printer seems to think cartridges are empty or missing. I don't think any other brand/ type of ink has been used in this printer. owner said she used it alot before this happened, perhaps something is clogged inside the lines.

  • Anonymous Apr 01, 2008

    won't print in black

  • jaynb May 25, 2008

    Same problem. Printer says no Black Cartridge and I have reinserted it several times. It is all original equipment. I just downloaded the latest drivers - no use.

  • Anonymous Feb 06, 2009

    how do you reset a mfc420cn to it's original settings



7 Answers


  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

I recently purchased a two pack of lc-51bk cartridges. I had this problem with one of them. I noticed that that cartridge is physically different than the one I removed. There's a little beige tab that was missing. What's interesting is that the other cartridge in the pack had this tab, and everything worked perfectly. The cartridge seemed to be defective.

Posted on Feb 04, 2009



  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

I had the same problem on my MFC640CW until I realized that I wasn't opening the scanner cover completely and not putting the stand up otherwise the mfc thinks it hasn't been opened to change cartridges yet.  I hope this helps Good Luck

Posted on Mar 04, 2009



  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.


    An expert that has over 10 points.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 2 times.

    Problem Solver:

    An expert who has answered 5 questions.

  • Contributor
  • 13 Answers

Remove the ink station assy & check that theres no ink spillage over the cart' sensor pcb.if there is, clean then refix & reinstall
If that does'nt work a new pcb will be needed.

Posted on Aug 02, 2008


  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

    Problem Solver:

    An expert who has answered 5 questions.

  • Contributor
  • 4 Answers

I had the same prob yesterday and just fixed it now heres the message i posted in response to my plead for help.....

Nothing would keep the machine from not seeing a Cyan cartridge installed. I opened
the catridge door, removed the Cyan cart,used a long piece of paper to block the sensor, then used something to push the cartridge door sensor to think it was closed.
This then brought the machine alive happily believing a Cyan cart was installed. This just proves the sensor was then I applied tape over one side of the sensor and installed the Cyan as per usual and the machine is now functioning again.

This fix will work for any color and as long as the sensor itself is working properly. For some reason the cartridge itself was not blocking the light path from the sensor sufficiently causing it not to see the cartridge installed. Usually the ink level will block the sensor......anyway this piece of junk dodges a bullet and lives for another day...but who knows for how long...the more ink i got on me the closer it got to a date with the pavement.

Posted on Jul 29, 2008


  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

Solution is to not buy any brother products...more junk for the recycle pile

Posted on Jul 28, 2008


There is NO solution for this problem, I would like to fix it myself
BUT Brother will not sell repair manual to end user see their response that follows. A used MFC-440CN on flea bay goes for $0.99 and new for $50. Mine will be sent to local recycle dump!!!!

“Thank you for the e-mail. I do regret to inform you that your request for a repair manual is not an option we have to send to you. The repair service manual is only available to Authorized Brother Service Centers. You as an end user will only have access to the instruction manual.
We understand your frustration but here at Brother, we do not support consumables which are not manufactured by brother. When you replace the consumable in your machine by another brand, this may cause damage to your machine. Most non-brother consumables are not designed the way as which we design our consumables. They are manufactured to work hand in hand with the unit.
As you mention below, you are no longer under Brother Manufacturer Warranty and our written documentations state clearly we do not support Non-Brother Consumables and may void the warranty of your machine if this is what caused the damage. With that said, unfortunately we may not support you further but if you wish to have your machine repaired, you may bring it in to any of the repair centers Authorized by Brother that are found below for a repair. Please note that when you bring in your machine, there is a service fee for estimation.
Brother International stands by its products and strives for excellent customer service. We would have tried our best to accommodate you but you have tied our hands with the 3rd party consumables.”

Posted on Feb 10, 2008


  • Level 2:

    An expert who has achieved level 2 by getting 100 points


    An expert that got 5 achievements.


    An expert whose answer got voted for 20 times.


    An expert who has answered 20 questions.

  • Expert
  • 100 Answers

Try to uninstall the drivers of the printer and reinstalling them again.

Posted on Aug 02, 2007

Add Your Answer


Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

1 Answer

My Brother MFC 420CN printer indicated it was out of I replaced the cartridge. After replacing it asks "Did you replace Magenta?" I said "yes". Now it indicates "No Cartridge. Open scanner...

Yep, it supposed to **** your money out of you pocked until you come up with a right solution.

Try pulling your power cord when your unit is on and when it off. It might help.

Try a factory reset on your printer. It's called hard, cold, factory, deep reset that means same thing.

Resetting Brother Printer
You need to keep pressing the DOWN or UP keys a couple of times till you see 'Maintenance 99' displayed on the display. Then hold down the 'Set' button to go to standby mode. Please note that if you press the exit key only after typing in a single digit then the machine goes to maintenance mode in initial stages.

Sep 07, 2010 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

Replaced ink cartridges but still get note to change cartridgees.

Pull the ink cartridge hook toward you and remove the ink cartridge for the colour shown on the LCD. Reinstall the ink cartridge and press down on the ink cartridge until the hook snaps over it securely. Push the hook towards the cartridge to verify it is securely latched over the top edge of the cartridge.

Keep the ink cartridge in an upright position when you insert it into the slot. Press down FIRMLY on the top of the cartridge until it is fully seated. Push the white plastic hook towards the cartridge to verify it is fully latched over the cartridge's top edge.

Jun 29, 2010 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

Changed yellow ink to new cartridge. Printer won't recognize.

I contacted the Brother site, the support function there. Pursuant to what I found there, I unplugged the printer for ten seconds and replugged. The message display then told me that cyan was empty, and that magenta was near empty.

I installed a new cartridge in place of the empty cyan, and that fixed it.

Jun 04, 2009 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

No cartridge reinstall

Try unplugging the printer and letting it sit for more than ten seconds before replugging.
Examine the message window. If it's cleaning, your problem is fixed. It may tell you that another color is out of ink. I had this experience.

Mar 19, 2009 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

I have a brother mfc 420cn printer that displays "low ink" messag

Normal 0 Disconnect the printer or at least be sure it is turned off. I'd do both and reinstall the CD software program that came with the printer. When the software program asks you to connect the printer to the USB port, do so and it should again work properly.
Hope this helps. Bud

Jan 22, 2009 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

Copier problem

I had essentially the same problem. Do this:

Unplug the printer, and leave it so for ten to fifteen seconds. Then replug.

After it powers up again, look at the message display. If it's cleaning the heads, you're in clover. Otherwise, it may give you some other intelligence that could help.

Jul 30, 2008 | Brother MFC-5840CN All-In-One InkJet...

2 Answers


message says"removescanner cover,then reinstall cartridge," just renewed cartridge.

Jun 05, 2008 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer

Brother MFC-420CN All-In-One Won't accept Ink Cartridge Replacement

you may be able to reset the ink cartridge detector, in the printer software, so that it detects the new ink cartridge.

however Brother printers do not handle generic ink cartridges well

good luck

Mar 15, 2008 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

1 Answer


If you don't have the cartridges seated properly you will get this message. Pull them and try again. Myself, I tried to save some money, and bought Brothers refilled ink cartridges. They wouldn't work, so only use new Brothers ink cartridges. Unplug the printer from the wall for it to recycle, don't use the power button. Good Luck

Apr 24, 2007 | Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet...

Not finding what you are looking for?
Brother MFC 420CN All-In-One InkJet Printer Logo


Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Brother Office Equipment & Supplies Experts

Norman  J Weimar Jr
Norman J Weimar Jr

Level 3 Expert

6960 Answers

Cindy Wells

Level 3 Expert

6253 Answers


Level 3 Expert

8092 Answers

Are you a Brother Office Equipment and Supply Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides