Ten common printer problems and how to troubleshoot them

Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Printer does not have power indicator
First, make sure that the printer is getting power supply. When a printer is on it should have some type of light (usually green) that indicates that the printer is receiving power and is on.
If after following the above steps your printer still cannot get a power status indicator it's likely you're facing a serious printer problem and we suggest contacting the printer manufacturer for additional steps and/or instructions on repair or replacement.

Cables not connected properly
Your printer should have two cables connected to it. The power cable and the data cable, the power cable should have already been verified as being connected if your printer has a power indicator light as mentioned above. Make sure the data cable (parallel cable or USB cable) is also connected from the printer to the computer.

Printer error (orange or blinking light)
After your printer has completed its initial startup you should have a solid green light. If the light indicator is blinking or orange often this is an indication of a printer error. For example, this could indicate a paper jam, issue with the ink or toner cartridge, or other serious error.
Because there is no standard to what a blinking light or orange light means if you're getting either of these we suggest referring to the printer documentation for troubleshooting steps or methods of determining what the status indicator is reporting.

No paper or paper jam
Without paper your printer will not be able to print. Make sure you have paper in the paper loaded into the printer paper cartridge or tray. Next, verify that no printer paper is jammed or partially fed into the printer. If you have one or more pieces of paper stuck in the printer these will need to be manually removed before the printer will print again.

Inkjet printer ink related issues
Often when you're encountering an ink related issue you're printer status indicator light (mentioned above) should be flashing. If this is not occurring you may want to simply skip to the next section. However, if you've recently inserted a new ink cartridge you may want to try the below suggestions.

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