Isn’t frustrating when you go to print some important documents, but the printer is not printing anything! It could be any printer problem or other software and hardware issue. Fortunately, you can troubleshoot any printer problems. There are many printer problems that almost every printer faces. But, one of the most annoying and troublesome printer not printing properly issues is when the printer is not printing anything on paper. The situation worsens when it is some crucial document.
If your printer is not printing correctly or giving blank pages, the reason might be simple. You have to replace the printer ink cartridges with a new ones. If it resolves the printer issue, then the problem is not significant. But there could also be other possible reasons. These causes might be improper ink cartridge installation, empty ink cartridge, or congested nozzles. You can also consider software and driver issues.
Why your printer is not printing anything on paper – Reasons.
Below are some of the common and possible reasons your printer is not printing properly.
No power supply
Your printer may not be working or printing as it is not receiving adequate power to function. Faulty cables or incorrect cable plugins may hamper the power supply. So, check the power cables of the printer. If they are not properly inserted into the power socket, connect it firmly.
Suppose the printer cable is connected to a surge protector. If so, confirm if the surge protector is on or not. In the case of the wall outlet, try plugging the power cable into another outlet. That is, only if the wall outlet is not working.
Ink cartridge issues
The most common reason for printers not printing is the ink cartridge issue. The printer will not print anything on paper if toner or ink problems exist. Even if one section of the ink cartridge is empty, the printer cannot print anything on paper. In simple words, if the black ink cartridge is complete, but the blue ink cartridge is empty, you won’t get any result.
If the printer’s paper tray is empty, the printer itself will notify you. But, let’s say that the paper tray is overfilled or almost run out of paper. That will prevent the printer from printing anything. If there is no paper, you will get a message about it. Even if there is no message, check the paper tray before trying to print anything.
Another issue with printers not printing is paper jamming. If the paper is incorrectly placed, it might cause jamming. So, make sure to place the papers in the correct path and direction. Or else paper jamming might damage the printer.
Damaged printer driver
When you connect a printer to your computer, you need to install a driver. A printer driver transfers data between the printer and the computer OS. If the printer driver is not updated, it will become corrupt.
On a side note, you can identify a damaged printer driver through the following signs:
- The printer is generating errors while printing.
- Getting the printer started is taking too long.
- The printer is printing irregularly on paper.
- The printer is disconnected from the device.
If there is indeed a corrupt printer driver, you might have to get help from an IT service provider. They will either update or install a new primer driver based on the damage.
No printer connection to the device or computer
On many occasions, a printer might not print anything on paper if the computer and printer connection is weak or failed. The situation will be different for a WiFi printer. However, let’s say that you are using a wired printer setup. A loose, faulty, or incorrect cable connection will cause a printer not printing properly problem.
Now, assume that you use a wireless or WiFi printer setup. Then, You must turn on the router. Both the computer and the printer should be connected to the correct network. If it is a Bluetooth setup, ensure that the Bluetooth is turned on and linked with the printer.
Whatever the printer setup is, if there is a connection issue, the printer will not print anything.
Documents stuck in the Print Queue.
The documents you input into the device to print are also known as print jobs. Print jobs are lined in the print queue of the device to be sent to the printer. Any problem with the documents cannot be printed. That is to say, if the print jobs get stuck in the print queue, the printer will not print anything. The same goes for the documents in line.
Printing to the incorrect printer.
You may have a single printer in connection to the device. But, modern printers have several printing options. For instance, comprehensive printers have copying, scanning, printing, faxing features, etc. If your printer is not printing properly, it could be that you connected or opted for the wrong printer.
These are the standard and most probable reasons for printers not printing anything or giving out blank pages.
How to fix if your printer is not printing anything.
Try these solutions to fixes below before you spend money on getting repair services for your printer. If your printer is not printing properly, you can apply the following fixes first.
- Restart the printer
- Verify the printer’s connection
- Check the printer error lights
- Update the printer driver
- Resolve any toner or ink cartridges issue
- Clear all print jobs or print queues.
- Clean the print head
- Check that there is no paper jamming
- Set up a default printer
- Look for the Printer Spooler service
- Check the printer’s status
Below is a detailed explanation of how to proceed with the above fixes for printers not printing properly.
Solution 1: Restart the printer
A simple restart or reset process solves the minor and common issues for most electronic devices. So, restarting the printer is what you should do if it is not printing properly.
Here’s how you can restart your printer:
- Simply hold down on the printer’s power button until it shuts down.
- Remove the power cable from the socket. Wait for some time and reconnect the cable again to the power socket.
- Turn on the power button of the printer and conduct a printing test.
If the prints come out right and fine, then the printer not printing issue is resolved.
Solution 2: Verify the printer’s connection
As stated earlier, if the printer’s connection is not right, it won’t print anything. So, you should first check the printer’s connection with the power socket and the computer.
For USB cable connection to the printer, check if they are adequately connected.
For a network or WiFi printer, check the network connection with the modem or router. If the link is not established correctly, reconnect again. For a wired connection, replace or replug the network cable.
If you connect your printer via Bluetooth, place the device near the printer. To fix the issue, try repairing them again.
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Solution 3: Check the printer error lights
Modern printers have light indicators. If there is any problem with the printer, you can determine the issue through the light indicators. For printer not printing issues, you will likely see an error message. This could be like the flashing of colored lights or continuous cryptic flashing.
Check the printer manual to identify what these lights represent. You might also find a guide to troubleshoot the issue at hand.
Solution 4: Update the printer driver
Often, a printer not printing issue stems from an outdated printer driver. If the printer driver is causing the problem, update it. Well, updating printer drivers are time-consuming, though.
Solution 5: Resolve any toner or ink cartridges issue
Problem with the ink or toner cartridges also causes the printer not to print anything. Such issues might create irregular printouts, if not anything. So, this is how you can ensure the functionality of the ink or toner cartridges of your printer:
- Ensure that the toner and ink cartridges have sufficient ink in them. If it is empty or almost empty, replace or refill with fresh ones.
- The ink cartridges might be full yet not printing anything. If so, check for damages to the ink cartridges. If it is faulty, replace it with new ones soon.
- Install or place the ink cartridges correctly. Make sure that the ink tanks are firmly placed into the cartridges.
Solution 6: Clear all print jobs or print queues.
Print queues are the list of files or documents to be printed. When you input files to print to the print queues, they are called print jobs. So, when the print job gets stuck in the printer queue, the printer cannot print properly. Then, you have to clear the print queues before printing again.
You can clear the print jobs through the steps below:
- Press the “Windows + R” keys to get the “Rub” box.
- Input “services.msc” in the space and “Enter.”
- Find “Print Spooler” and double-click on it on the next screen.
- Next, select the “Stop” option and press “OK.”
- Open the “File Explorer” after minimizing the services window.
- On the address bar, input this address – %windir%\System32\spool\PRINTERS and press “Enter.”
- Next, select all the files and click on “Delete.”
- Go back to the Services window and double-click on “Print Spooler.”
- Select the “Start” option and press the “OK” button.
- Now, turn off the computer after closing all the windows.
- Switch off teh printer and remove the power cable. Then, wait for a bit.
- Plugin the power cable and turn on the printer again. Switch on teh computer as well.
You can now check if the issue is solved by printing some files.
Solution 7: Clean the print head
After prolonged use, the printer’s print head often gets clogged with ink. If the printer has automatic cleaning, make sure to clean them regularly. You can find the cleaning option on the printer’s control panel.
If there is no automatic cleaning, you have to unclog the printer’s print head. Make sure to use hand gloves while cleaning the ink.
Solution 8: Check that there is no paper jamming
If the papers on the tray are not correctly placed, it will cause paper jamming. As a result, the printer cannot hold the documents and cannot print anything. Also, do not overload the paper tray. Hence, remove the papers from the paper tray. Realign the papers and place them in the correct order. Do not input any crumbled papers, though.
Solution 9: Set up a default printer
Let’s say that there are multiple printers connected to the computer. You should set up a default printer for quick printing. The process of setting up a specified printer for the computer is as follows:
- Open the control panel of the computer.
- Go to “View by” > click on “Large icons” > select “Devices and Printers.”
- Click on the printer option you want to set as a default printer and select “Set as default printer.”
You have now set up your default printer.
Solution 10: Look for the Printer Spooler service
The Printer Spooler service is responsible for the interaction between the printer and the connected computer. It helps manage the print jobs on the computer. If this service is disabled, the printer cannot print properly. So, you should check the Printer Spooler service if the printer is not printing anything. Make sure to put the Printer Spooler startup type to “Automatic” and run it.
Solution 11: Check the printer’s status
If none of the fixes work, there might be issues with the printer’s hardware. You can check the connected ink cartridges. If the printer has had any part replacements recently, confirm that they are working properly. Call the service provider or technicians if you cannot determine the issue and fix the problem.
We hope this guide is easy to understand and helps you resolve the printer not printing issue.