If you’ve ever worked in an office, you’ve almost certainly encountered the dreaded copier problem. While a proven copier like a Xerox machine or a Konica Minolta Bizhub with high demands will certainly do a good job, a copier is constantly being used in offices with high printing requirements.
You cannot avoid copier problems, but you should be prepared and have the necessary know-how to solve the problems.
Paper jams are by far the most common problem with photocopiers, but luckily it’s a fairly easy problem to solve.
The exact cause of a paper jam varies, but can be caused by the wrong size paper, improperly loaded paper, and other causes. When these problems occur, the copier attempts to feed the paper, resulting in a paper jam.
To resolve the problem, you must manually remove the jammed paper and load paper of the correct size and orientation in the paper tray.
Another problem that can cause paper jams is paper dust. This builds up over time and can cause the paper feeder to clog. To avoid this problem, paper dust inside the machine should be wiped off regularly.
Cartridge and toner problems
There’s nothing more frustrating when you’re in the middle of printing a big project and you’re running out of toner or, worse, the toner is full but not working properly.
If the problem is that you just ran out of toner, you’ll get a toner low alert. This problem can be fixed in no time, all you have to do is replace the empty toner cartridge.
If the toner cartridge is not working properly, it is most likely due to one of the following causes. It could be a manufacturer defect, in which case you can request a cartridge replacement from the manufacturer. The second common reason is incompatibility issues. Printing problems may occur if you try to use toner that is not compatible with the device you intend to use it with.
lines on paper
If you make a copy and the finished copy has visible lines, streaks, or other irregularities, there is a problem with the copier. There are a few things that could cause this, so the copier needs to be debugged.
Some of the causes of this problem can be:
- Malfunction of the drum knives
- Malfunction of developer or drum unit
- Substances such as dust or hair on the mirrors and scanner glass
- fixer problems
If the scanner glass or mirrors are dirty, they can be cleaned using the appropriate procedures described in your copier’s user guide. The other issues can be addressed by replacing the problematic part.
Copies are either too dark or too light
Over- or under-saturation of images is very obvious to the human eye, problems with excessive lightness or darkness in prints can ruin an otherwise good photocopy. Usually the problem is due to an imbalance in the photocopier’s density control. If your copier has light and dark issues, this is the first thing you should check. Resetting the density levels is easy and often fixes the problem.
If the problem is not in the density controls, your drum may be reaching its expiration date or the toner may have gone bad. If you have aftermarket toners installed, this could be the problem as aftermarket tones often don’t match manufacturer codes. Replacement devices can be installed.
spots on the side
Another very annoying copy problem is dots on the page. If the dots are in the same place every time, there is more than likely a smudge or foreign object on the glass or copy mirror.
If the spots are in a more random order, the problem could be due to a defective drum, in which case the drum should be replaced.
Purchase a quality copier
In addition to the solutions just mentioned, it’s worth noting that the choice of copier you make when purchasing a photocopier can mean the difference between a copier with very few problems and a copier full of problems.
Things to consider when buying a photocopier:
- The age of the copier (if not new)
- Whether renovated or not
- Is it a reputable copier brand?
Daniel Calvin’s mission is to help companies become more productive in a way that benefits everyone in the company. He is the content manager of Number1 Office Machines