printers

Is my printer dead?

Dennis from Connecticut

Episode 1481

Dennis' Canon printer isn't working anymore. He's replaced the cartridges, but it still doesn't print. What can he do? Leo says that if you go into the printer setup and look in the maintenance manual, there will be a clean print head utility. There's a good chance that ink has dried into the head and the clean print head utility will clear out that dried out ink. Run it several times. If you still get nothing, there's a good chance the print head has died. But some models replace the print head when you replace the cartridges.

What printer should I buy?

Episode 1479

Barry from West Los Angeles, CA
epson.com

Barry needs a new printer that can print on Legal paper sizes, but can also fax. He's looking at a Brother, HP and Epson. Leo says that it depends on how much you use it. If he's rarely going to print, then a laser printer is a better choice because the ink doesn't get dried out in the nozzles. But if he's printing a lot and needs color, then an inkjet will certainly suffice. All three make good printers, but Leo prefers Epson. However, Brother makes very inexpensive yet very good laser printers.

Why do my printed pages have lines?

Episode 1472

Peter from San Gabriel, CA
Brother laser printer

Peter wants to know why his printed color pages have lines in them. Leo says that if he doesn't print a lot with an inkjet printer, lines will occur because the ink simply dries up in the print head. He'll need to run the ink check/self cleaning utility on the printer to clean the printer head. The downside is that will use up a lot of ink. That's why Leo says that inkjet printers really aren't a good idea for people who print seldomly. A laser printer is better because it uses a dry toner.

Why doesn't my scanner/printer work?

Episode 1471

Rex from San Diego, CA
Hamrick VueScan

Rex is having issues with his printer and was told to delete the printer driver to fix it. Will that work? Leo says that if he deletes a bad driver, Windows will look for a new one and reinstall it. But it will be the latest driver that Microsoft certifies, and that could fix the problem. Rex could also be dealing with a bad spooler. Leo recommends using Hamrick VueScan as his scanner driver. It has better settings, and could work better for him.

Why is does my inkjet clog up when I try to print?

Episode 1468

Mike from Maine
Brother Color Laser Printer

Mike's color printer is clogged up. Leo says that inkjets don't work well in a low use scenario. Mike was wondering about the Epson EcoTank printer, but Leo says it's really best for higher capacity printing. If he's occasionally doing color prints, then a color laser is a better option and they are less expensive than he might think.

(Disclaimer: Epson is a sponsor)

Why is my inkjet printer so bad at printing?

Episode 1441

Nathan from Corona, CA
Brother Laser Printer

Nathan has an inkjet printer but he's having issues with print quality. Leo says that inkjet printers aren't very economical for infrequent printing because the jets can become clogged with dried ink unless he uses them every day. That's why Leo recommends a low cost laser printer. He can get a Brother laser printer for under $100. It's ideal for students.