5 Printer Troubleshooting Tips

Innovations in technology have saved businesses time and money, but productivity can be lost when one piece of equipment stops working. When a printer doesn’t operate properly, you may feel frustrated. Your multifunction printer (MFP) also acts as your scanner and copier, costing you even more precious business time. Malfunctioning printers are more than a headache. They cost you productivity. Click To Tweet

Printer Troubleshooting

Printers can operate reliably for many years and thousands of printed pages but they can malfunction or stop working entirely without warning. Sometimes the reason is as simple as over or under use, but it can be difficult to tell what the problem is. Here are 5 common printer problems and their solutions:

  1. Printer Won’t Print
  2. Printing Very Slowly
  3. Text Looks Faded
  4. It Keeps Jamming
  5. Scanner Won’t Work

1) Printer Won’t Print

If there are no error messages, check that the printer is still connected, that the Wi-Fi is enabled and that you’re connected to your network. Even though the printer driver and software are installed on the computer you want to print from, it’s possible that the driver has become corrupted. Try reinstalling the latest version from the manufacturer’s website.

2) Printing Very Slowly

If you don’t need high-quality output for a formal document, print in draft mode (or whatever the lowest-quality setting is). Avoid duplex (two-sided) printing, which can significantly slow it down. Print in black and white unless you need colors. If your printer is more than 10 years old, it may simply need to be replaced with a modern, high-efficiency printer.

3) Text Looks Faded

Printers vary in text quality, with lower quality printers not surprisingly printing lower quality documents. Assuming you’ve noticed a gradual or sudden degradation in quality, there are several things you can try that may resolve it. If you’re in draft mode, switch to higher quality mode (though it will slow down your printing). You may need to replace the ink cartridge as well.

4) It Keeps Jamming

Paper jams are frustrating, but even more so if the problem is chronic. The most common cause of jams is paper misalignment. Be sure to straighten and square off the stack of paper before inserting it in the tray,and ensure that the guides are flush with the paper. Avoid over-filling the tray. If this doesn’t solve the problem, check your printer’s user manual, or contact your printer provider.

5) Scanner Won’t Work

If your MFP’s scanner stops working, it may be that the software has become corrupted. Try reinstalling the printer’s software. If that doesn’t work, it’s best to check the user guide and, if need be, the manufacturer’s support page. It’s not too unusual for the scanner in a lower-end MFP to fail, and in that case, the whole unit has to be replaced.

Invest in Quality

If you work in an office, chances are you’ve encountered a problematic printer at least once, if not several times. Printers are prone to errors, but by investing in a high-quality Sharp machine, many of these issues will disappear!

Contact Us for help finding the best office printer for your business, or to explore print management services.