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Printer maintenance tips and guide - Printer Friendly
Windows XP A to Z -
Printer maintenance tips and guide
Super Admin
By Super Admin
Published on 02/27/2005
Below I have outlined some basic steps to maintaining the life of your printer.

Printer maintenance tips and guide

Keep the print heads clean

It is important you keep the printer heads clean. This stops ink clogging the nozzles of the printer, and reduces ink smudge on the paper. This is important for HP and Lexmark printers, as they donít always do the best automatic clean in my experience.

To clean the print heads, remove the cartridge, and gently clean the print heads with a soft cotton cloth dipped in a little water. I wouldnít recommend using tissue or alcohol. I have personally damaged a few printers doing this. Be warned!

Make sure the print heads are dry and then replace the cartridge. By doing this you will expand your printer life and the quality of the printouts.

Prevent the printer from drying up ink by using it

I remember taking support calls around a year ago. People would say I havenít used the printer for over a year, and the quality isnít what I expected.

If you use your printer regular this will prevent ink drying up and keep the printer and ink in good condition. Use both Colour and black and white prints weekly to stop the nozzles on your printer getting clogged up, or the ink to simply dry up.

Be careful with printer jams

Donít ram the paper out if you have a paper jam. This can damage the printer, which I have seen done many times. Look at guides on the manufactures site, if you donít have time to do that, remember that you want to get the paper out smoothly. Most HP Printers have a hatch attached at the back that can be removed. You will then have access to the paper wheels, and you should be able to see the paper that is jammed in there. Remove the paper this way, and it is unlikely that you will damage the printer.

Power down correctly

Turn your printer off when not in use. This can prevent drying of ink and also help keep the printer functioning at high quality. Remember to use the printers power button, and them remove at the plug if need be. Donít power off if you are in the middle of something. These will just cause problems for you.

Clean your printer but donít over do it

IF you perform print ink clean by software or your printerís hardware, do it once and not over and over. Doing this over and over can cause more damage than good. Clean your printerís encoder strip monthly to stop quality issues at a later date. Remember if you have low ink to replace immediately. This prevents ink being left in the printer heads and nozzles, and will generally give your printer more life.