Fix for epileptic HP inkjet printer

Discussion in 'HP' started by Roy Lipscomb, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. Roy Lipscomb

    Roy Lipscomb Guest

    Update on HP printer-problem "cure":

    Some months ago, I reported that some strange problems with HP
    printers can be cured by just swabbing the plastic strip that
    runs just behind the print head for the width of the printer.

    The strip is bar coded, and the printer uses it to locate
    and to position the printhead.

    The swabbing I mentioned consisted of dampening a q-tip
    and then running it back and forth on both sides of the
    strip for its entire length.

    The particular problem I was hoping to cure was the printer's
    often throwing a catatonic fit, seizing up, its lights blinking
    back and forth, and its buttons unresponsive.

    In my earlier message, I touted the swabbing as having fixed
    the printer.

    Well, it turns out that the problem recurred. I then tried
    this swabbing remedy again, multiple times. And each time
    the problem eventually recurred.

    At one point, on the last of those occasions, while fiddling
    with the printer, I absent-mindedly pinched the plastic strip
    lightly between my thumb and forefinger, and ran my fingers
    back and forth along the strip. Suddenly I noticed something:
    Something that felt like a tiny pimple. It was located just
    where the printhead would stop when the printer would seize up.
    I surmised that this was accumulated crude that the swabbing
    hadn't removed.

    Excitedly, I ran some tap water on my fingers, then ran them
    back and forth along the strip. With each swipe, the pimple
    got smaller, until eventually it vanished. I finished up by
    swabbing the strip with a q-tip, as described above. When I
    tried the printer, it now worked flawlessly.

    And it has worked flawlessly for the past four weeks.

    Before this fix, I couldn't print more than five or six pages
    before catatonia would set in. I have now printed fifty or
    sixty pages without a hitch.

    One caution: Don't pinch the strip tightly, or you risk
    unhitching it from a hook that attaches it to the printer case.
    Rehooking it is a little tricky. (The other side of the strip
    is attached to a spring that provides tension to the strip.)


    I decided to examine the strip on another HP printer, one that
    was totally catatonic: It would just blink, and wouldn't print
    anything at all. I found that the strip on that printer felt
    like fine sandpaper along its entire width and length.

    I applied the above bare-finger treatment until the strip felt
    as smooth as silk, then followed up with a swabbing. When I
    turned the printer on, it awoke refreshed and cured of its coma,
    and it now acts and prints normally.

    "Brothers and sisters, I usually bottle this fix and sell it
    for hundreds of dollars, because people are desparate for
    the soothing relief it brings. But today, brothers and sisters,
    step right up, because today, yes, today, I'm offering it, to
    you--yes, you!--for a song."

    (How about..."Prints of Peace"? ;)



    Roy Lipscomb, Jul 3, 2007
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