Archive for March, 2011
Despite the fact that Xerox Phaser 750 series printers have a small LCD screen, there are also a few indicator lights on the front panel that can provide a quick indication of errors even from across the room. Since there are a few different indications relayed by the lights, it is worth understanding what each state means. Listed below are the different indicators your Phaser will give off, what they mean and how to clear them.
Power Light is Off
If the power indicator light is off, it means your printer is powered off. It may also go off if the machine has detected an error or if the machine is malfunctioning. If this is the case, you should contact technical support for help.
Power Light is Flashing
If your power indicator is flashing, it means the printer is printing, processing or receiving a print job or that you have simply hit the menu option on the front panel. To clear it, all you need to do is wait until the print job is complete or close the menu operation by pressing the Cancel button.
Error Light is On
If the error light is on, there is something wrong with the machine that is causing the printer to be unable to operate. Look at the display screen for a more specific indication of the error. The most likely example is that your toner cartridge is low. You may wish to try removing the cartridge and shaking it to redistribute the toner, or replace it with a new one.
Error Light is Flashing
If the error indicator light is flashing, the printer has stopped printing due to a correctable error. Examples of correctable errors are paper jams or open doors. The front panel should tell you exactly what the issue is and what to do, but if it doesn’t, choose the “Info/More” option on the front panel. If the message includes an error number, consult the user manual or contact the manufacturer to figure out what the error may mean.
If an error message persists, try powering down the device and unplugging it for at least 15 minutes before restarting it. This can sometimes reset any errors and get you up and running again. Also be sure to see the Top 4 Xerox Printer Problems to see if there is a solution for the issue you are experiencing. If you are still stuck, you may need to contact Xerox support for more assistance.
Fax machines are declining in popularity as email and other forms of communication become more popular, but some users still require a solid fax machine for their home or business. If you are in the market for a fax machine, there are a few important things to consider before purchasing.
Dedicated or Multifunction
While having a dedicated fax machine has many benefits, such as not tying up a machine for other functions, many modern offices choose a multifunction or all-in-one printer that has faxing capabilities built in. This allows for a more integrated solution, and offers features like PC Faxing for sending documents directly from a computer, as well as the ability to receive documents digitally over the network instead of having them print out. Whichever you choose, most of the important fax features will be the same.
Inkjet or Laser
You will need to decide if you want an inkjet or laser fax machine. Laser faxes offer excellent quality text results and a low cost per page, while inkjets will offer a lower upfront price and less expensive supplies. Laser toner cartridges will cost a little more upfront, but last longer than inkjet cartridges will, reducing costs over time.
You should estimate how often you are planning on using your machine to know what size monthly duty cycle you need. For instance, if you plan on faxing 20 documents a day, you are going to want something that has a monthly duty cycle able to handle a minimum of 600 pages. If you may only send one fax a day, a unit with a duty cycle of under 100 pages should be sufficient. If you plan on only faxing very infrequently, consider buying an all-in-one machine where the fax function is just an extra feature. Also, try to stay within the recommended monthly duty cycle of the machine, and not just the maximum, as it will mean better reliability for the device.
Modern fax machines operate at a rate of 33.6 Kbps, with a protocol known as Super G3. Since these machines are also backward-compatible with slower connection speeds, there is no reason to purchase one at slower speeds. The machine will automatically compensate when transmitting to or receiving from a slower device. With Super G3 speeds, most fax machines can send a document in around 3 seconds per page.
The size and capacity of the document feeder can be an important aspect of a fax machine. If you generally only send one or two-page faxes, a small document feeder will suffice. If you are in a law office that constantly sends 50 to 60-page documents on a regular basis, however, a larger document feeder will be essential. Having a flatbed scanner can also be useful for scanning stapled sheets or books that will not fit into the feeder.
Many fax machines include a number of quick-dial or speed-dial buttons that provide easy access to the most frequently-used locations. For a busy office, this can be a real time-saver, and this type of buyer might want as many stored locations as possible. Home users, on the other hand, may only send faxes to a few numbers, making this feature less important.
When comparing different models, you should research the other fax features available to see if they will apply to your specific needs. Fax Forwarding is a feature that can forward faxes to another number when you are away from the office, for example, but it may not be essential if you only need to receive them in one location. Some fax machines come with a built-in battery backup, but home users may not need to pay more for this feature when missing a few faxes is not that important.
Whether you choose a small dedicated fax machine for the home or a multifunction behemoth for a busy office, the main factors are generally the same. By understanding your own needs and finding a device to match them, you can ensure you will be happy with your purchase for years to come.
If you own an HP LaserJet printer, you know that they are capable of printing very high-quality documents with every print. However, there are things that can affect the output quality of your LaserJet, causing printed documents to look less precise than they should. Perhaps the colors are lighter than desired or printing in the wrong color. Below are some troubleshooting steps to take when the output quality is not what you expect.
Check the Toner Cartridges
First, remove the toner cartridge from the printer and shake it gently back and forth a few times. Some of your toner could be clumped up due to the temperature or environment. This will cause the clumps to loosen up. Check for signs of damage and the level of toner remaining. If you suspect that your cartridge is empty or may be faulty, replace it with a new one.
Check the Output Settings
Also, you may want to check your LaserJet’s settings. When you click the Print option within any software, you are given the choice between different quality modes. For the highest quality output, you want to make sure you have chosen Best or Maximum for the highest quality output instead of Draft or other options. Also, if your printer is in Toner Save mode this can affect the quality of documents as well.
Check the Paper
High-quality output requires good quality paper, and especially paper that is compatible with the type of printing you are doing. Make sure that your paper is designed for use with a laser printer, and that is dry, not sticking together, and is not bent or creased. For more tips on caring for paper, see our article on Preventative Paper Care.
Clean the Printer
If you are experiencing smears, smudges, streaks, or other similar quality issues, you may want to try cleaning the inside of the printer. Open the access panels and check for any loose toner that might be transferring to the page, and be sure to clean the rollers.
With a little luck and maybe even a little elbow grease, these tips should help you get your LaserJet output quality back up to par. If you are still experiencing problems, consult the manual or the HP Support page for specific troubleshooting based on the exact issue you are having.
Are lines showing up on your printouts that shouldn’t be there?
The size, color and number of lines showing up per printed page will vary, though it will create the same level of stress! Stay calm, though, the solution might be easier than you think.
For inkjet printers, there are really only two components that could be causing these lines.
- Run the cleaning utility software provided by the manufacturer then print a test page.
- If lines are still present, you will need to manually clean the printhead then print a test page.
- Once you are sure the printhead is as clean as it can be, check the ink level of the ink cartridges. If they are low, replace them.
- If the ink cartridges are full, you most likely have a defective cartridge. Contact your manufacturer.
- Carefully clean the corona wire located inside the imaging drum. Make sure it is put back into place once it has been cleaned and print a test page.
- As the fuser unit is the heated press that bonds the toner to the paper, it can contract a smudge of toner which will affect future prints.
- Wipe the surface of the fuser and print a test page.
- The surface of the imaging drum is extremely sensitive so if you opt to wipe it off, do so very carefully. Keep in mind, you could permanently damage the drum.
- Constantly pelted by lasers, the imaging drum is bound to be scratched or nicked. In this case, the drum will need to be replaced.
- The roller that applies the toner to the paper can collect dust particles or loose toner. It can also be damaged from wear and tear. The spot that is flawed will create blank lines on the page. Clean the roller.
- If the roller is scratched, you must replace it.
- Shake the cartridge to evenly distribute the toner if it is low.
- If there is toner in the cartridge, you may have a defective cartridge and should contact your manufacturer.
Regardless of if you are using an inkjet or a laser printer, you always want to be sure the paper you are printing on is not damaged or damp. You may even want to try putting a fresh batch of paper in the tray and printing a test page.
After all of this, if the issue persists you should enlist a professional to diagnose the problem. Sometimes it is less expensive to purchase a new printer rather than replace various parts.
Just about every printer owner would like to save money, and the availability of refill kits for toner cartridges might make you consider refilling them yourself instead of purchasing new ones. While the cost-savings might seem appealing, there are a few dangers involved that you should be aware of. Here are a few of the dangers of refilling toner yourself:
Harmful to Your Health
While toner powder isn’t considered toxic, it is not recommended to be inhaled or ingested. Refilling a cartridge requires working in close contact, and could expose you to harmful fumes. These fumes might be particularly harmful to children or animals.
Toner powder is designed to be adhered to paper and last for a very long time. Therefore, spilling the powder onto surfaces in your home or office could lead to a big mess that is difficult to clean up. Toner powder particles are often so small that they go through vacuum cleaner filters and are then dispersed into the air. Getting toner powder out of clothing can be particularly difficult.
Damage to the Printer
If you refill or reseal a cartridge incorrectly, there is a chance it could leak and cause damage to the printer. The money saved by refilling will then have to go toward a new machine.
Voiding the Warranty
Printer manufacturers are forbidden by law from voiding the warranty when using remanufactured toner cartridges, but the rules are less clear for cartridges that are refilled. If the process causes damage to your printer, you may find that the manufacturer will not honor your warranty when it comes to costly repairs.
The Alternative: Remanufactured Cartridges
The biggest reason not to refill cartridges yourself is the availability of remanufactured cartridges. These are cartridges that have been re-used and refilled by professionals, with non-working or damaged parts replaced. They have also been tested for quality to ensure that they meet the same standards the manufacturer puts in place, while they can be purchased for a much lower price than the OEM versions. For example, remanufactured HP toner cartridges for popular models are often 1/3 to 1/4 the price of those manufactured by HP, without the extra risk.
The next time you are considering refilling your own toner cartridges, ask yourself if these potential dangers are worth the risk. By using remanufactured toner, you can avoid these potential pitfalls and still save a lot of money. Lastly, don’t forget to recycle your empty toner cartridges!
If you have ever worked in an office you have likely replaced toner cartridges from time to time, but how much do you really know about the toner cartridge itself? Many people assume that the toner inside the cartridge is liquid, like an ink cartridge, but it actually contains toner powder, which is fused to the page by a very different method than that of an inkjet model.
So what is toner power composed of? The main ingredient of toner is a polymer or plastic that is transferred to the page when it is melted by the fuser, which is the heating element of a laser printer. The type of polymer used will often vary based on the manufacturer. For example, HP toner is made with a styrene acrylate copolymer, while other manufacturers use polyester resin or other materials. Low-quality polymers can be a big factor in toner cartridges that don’t perform as well as others. The polymer generally makes up about 60% of the mass of the toner powder.
Another important ingredient is iron oxide. The roller in a laser printer is magnetically-charged, and the iron oxide is what draws the toner powder toward the charged portions of the roller before it is transferred to the page. The iron oxide accounts for around 40% of the mass of the powder.
Toner wouldn’t be useful without color, so the next ingredient is a pigment agent, which gives the toner powder its distinctive color. The standard colors for a laser printer are cyan, magenta, yellow, and black, and the pigment is what makes each color of powder distinctive.
There are other minor ingredients used in some toner powder, such as wax and sand, which help to give the powder the proper structure or texture. These materials can vary by manufacturer.
The ingredients are together mixed together in a batch, which is then broken up into powder. The downside to this method is that the particles are often somewhat uneven. New technologies allow manufacturers to produce particles that are more uniform through a chemical process, so that they can be used more efficiently and in smaller amounts, resulting in higher quality prints.
Using high-quality toner powder is essential to getting the best prints, which is why it is advisable to avoid refilling toner cartridges and instead choose remanufactured toner cartridges, which undergo thorough testing to ensure the best quality. With a little more knowledge of how toner powder is produced, you may have a little more appreciation for your laser printer, and the number of technologies and manufacturing processes that were required to provide you with your printed pages.