printers

Why is the image quality so bad on my Epson inkjet?

Episode 1502

Robert from Bakersfield, CA
Expression Home XP-340 Small-in-One All-in-One Printer

Robert has an Epson printer and the print quality isn't good. Leo says that inkjet printers need to be used a lot in order to keep the nozels clean. Ink can dry and it can clog. He can run the cleaning utility several times to clear out the clog. The downside is that it uses a lot ink. But it's the only way to get it back to printing good prints. If he only uses a printer occasionally, a laser printer is a much better option.

(Disclaimer: Epson is a sponsor)

How can I save money with an inkjet printer?

Episode 1501

Frank from Huntington Beach, CA
Epson WorkForce ET-4750 EcoTank All-in-One Supertank Printer

Frank wants to get an inkjet printer, but he doesn't know if they're really worth the money. Leo says that while the printers themselves are cheap, the ink is extremely expensive. And he can't refill the cartridges because 1) they're messy and 2) they often won't work in the printer because of proprietary circuitry. It also affects the print head. So Leo doesn't recommend it. Frank could buy re-manufactured cartridges, but at that point, he may as well just bite the bullet and buy a new one. Plus, some cartridges replace the print head in the process.

Does the EcoTank printer have issues with ink drying out?

Episode 1496

Jose from Modesto, CA
Epson WorkForce ET-4750 EcoTank Printer

Jose bought an Epson EcoTank printer and wants to know if it has the same problem of the ink drying out and being unusable. Leo says that's a common problem with inkjet printers. Epson says that they have put a new coating on the print heads to prevent the ink from drying out. So it's not supposed to. If he only prints a few times a week, then Leo says a laser printer is a better option.

(Disclaimer: Epson is a sponsor)

Can I clean my EcoTank printer?

Episode 1492

Thomas from Milford, CT
Epson EcoTank ET-2550

Thomas has an Epson EcoTank ET2550 printer, but the printer is leaking. Leo says that when moving a printer with tanks, it's vital to keep it level. But Thomas says it won't stop leaking. Is it worth fixing? Leo says it probably just needs to be thoroughly cleaned. That ink should dry sooner or later, though. The key concern is if it dried onto the printer head. Leo also recommends using it to keep the ink from drying out on sensitive parts. Some rubbing alcohol will work great for wiping out all the ink.

Why does my printer go offline in Windows?

Episode 1484

Jeff from Lakewood, CA
Brother MFC-J880DW

Jeff has a Brother printer, and every few hours, it loses its connection to his network and he has to sign back in. Rich says that the printer may go to sleep and if he presses the button on the printer, it wakes it up and the computer finds it again. But Jeff says he has tried it, and Windows still says it's offline. Jeff says it may also need a firmware update.

Why does my printer reject a refilled cartridge?

Episode 1483

Felicia from San Diego, CA
Counterfeit Cartridge Detected

Felicia had her HP printer ink cartridges refilled, and now her printer won't accept the cartridge. It just says it's incompatible or counterfeit. What can she do? Rich says that printers are cheap because they can make up the cost on ink. Rich also thinks, however, that the contacts on the cartridges may just be dirty. So she should clean them with some distilled water and a coffee filter. Nothing that has threads to it. She should give it a good wiping down and try again. It should be able to see it then.