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What To Do If Your Printer Cartridge Suddenly Fails During A Job

2011-07-22

Anyone who has ever used a printer has no doubt encountered the frustrating situation of a failed cartridge during a printing job. Don't fear - even though this can cause you to tear out your hair and curse the heavens as your pages come out blank or streaky, there is hope. More importantly, there are steps you can take to fix the situation and have your printer back on its way to merrily spitting out beautifully printed pages.

What can cause a failed cartridge? There are a few things that can do this. When it happens to you, the first thing you want to check is if the failed cartridge was loaded properly in the first place.

Open up your printer and take a look. When you put in the printer cartridge, did you remember to remove the safety strip that some of them come with? This strip is used to keep the ink from running while the printer cartridge is being shipped, but if you forget to remove it, it can prevent the ink from getting where it needs to go.

Secondly, you will want to check that the cartridge has been loaded properly. Occasionally things might get turned around and people can accidentally put in the printer cartridges backwards. Make sure they are in correctly and facing the right way. If you have to force them in to their slots, or if you encounter resistance when you are sliding them in, they may not be facing the right way. If there are other printer cartridges you can check and see if the one you've put in looks like it's facing the same way as the others - they can be a helpful guide to you in this case.

If that still doesn't solve your failed cartridge problem, you can try removing the printer cartridge and gently shaking it back and forth. Be gentle! Sometimes just a little bit of agitation can save you the agitation of having a printer cartridge fail during a job, and the shaking movement will remove a block that may be preventing the ink from reaching the page to be printed on.

Always make sure to check any error messages that your computer is giving you. Often your printer will send a message to your computer specifying what the problem is and how to fix it.

Sometimes it happens that you receive a defective printer cartridge and nothing you do will get it to work. Make sure to keep your receipts for all your printer cartridges just in case one of them had a problem with manufacturing and this way you can easily exchange it for a new, operable one.

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