Machines are generally known to wear and depreciate in efficiency with time. Printers are not any exception. Regardless of the age or model of your printer, maintenance of the machine becomes vital, lest it breaks down – something that is quite particular with inkjet printers.
In context, after a prolonged use, ink could dry out and clog the nozzle of your cartridge, irrespective of whatever kind you use, be it a reused or compatible or branded cartridge. A clogged nozzle can cause break-down problems for your printer; however, this issue can be solved simply by cleaning the printhead.
It’s okay to check your printhead periodically for cleaning, but some significant pointers to pay your attention are unexpectedly faint printed images or missing dots in the printed image. Another pointer is if your ink level is normal but your printer is printing blank pages; this means the clogged print head is preventing ink from flowing unto the paper.
Usually, the problem of clogged printheads can be solved by using the printer’s in-built self-cleaning software, but should that fail to fix the problem, a manual cleaning is the way to go.
Nevertheless, it is always advisable to perform a nozzle check before you embark on cleaning as that will save you ink. Perform a nozzle check by:
- Either Go through the Printer’s Control Panel
- From the printer’s home button, locate the maintenance section through the setup page
- Ensure you have paper in the loading tray and select “Print Head Nozzle Check”
- The CMYK colour chart printout will let you know if your printhead needs cleaning. The lines will be blotchy if you need to clean.
- Or through your Computer Utility Setting
- From the task menu, through settings or system preference, locate. Then, select the printer utility from opening the “Printers and Scanners” option.
- Select “Nozzle Check” and check your printout.
How to Clean a Printer-head from a Computer
Before you begin, ensure your printer is loaded with paper. Also, note that the steps may vary with printers, however, slightly.
- Select “Control Panel” from your “Start Menu”.
- Right-click on your printer model from opening “Devices and Printers”.
- Select “Properties”
- Select the “Maintenance” tab and pick the needed option (“Clean Heads” or “Clean Ink Cartridges” or something in that regard)
- Follow the on-screen steps and let the computer do its magic.
How to Manually Clean a Printer-Head
You need to get a paper towel or a lint-free cloth and water; then, follow these steps:
- Put off and unplug the printer
- Open the printer. Locate and remove the cartridges
- Remove the printhead unit (the tray the cartridges sit in; distinguished by several holes on the bottom).
Note that some printers will rather have the printhead on the cartridge; hence, no tray.
- Lightly dampen the towel
- Gently clean the foil (electrical contact spot) until the towel no longer comes up with ink stain. Ensure to clean off all dried ink debris from the printhead.
- After cleaning, put your printer back in place and perform another nozzle check.
If you have been having issues with your printouts, probably all you need to do is clean the printhead. It won’t hurt to give it a try as it’s worth the shot.