copier
by Elie Vigile
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A normal day at the office means using the copier more than a couple of times. If you need copies of a report, you go to the copier and get your copies. Your workmates also do the same for their invoices and various forms.

At the end of the day, the copier is the busiest machine in the office. Remember, your copier is just like any machine and is thus prone to the usual wear and tear with continued use. With time, your copier is likely to encounter a few problems like streaky prints or paper jams.

Don’t be too quick to ditch your current copier for a shiny new one. Instead, consider repairing the machine first before you settle for other costlier alternatives. You’d be surprised how easy some of these fixes are.

In this piece, we’ll be highlighting ten of the most common issues with copiers and how you can fix them. That way, you won’t have to get a new one the next time your copier starts acting up.

1. Issues With the Toner and Cartridges

Chester Carlson invented the first copier in 1938 using static electricity from a handkerchief plus light and dry powder. There’s no mention of toner or cartridges because the first copier had no use for such. Unfortunately, your copier does, so you’ll have to deal with toner and cartridge issues once in a while.

If you’re having problems with your toner, then the problem is not with the printer. When most people complain of toner issues, it’s because they wrongly set up the copier. You can only use a particular toner for your specific printer model.

The first thing to do when you have toner and cartridge issues is to check whether you’re using the right one for the particular copier model. Your print quality will take a huge blow if you use the wrong toner for your copier. 

Fixing toner problems is as easy as replacing the toner with a new one. However, make sure you use the correct toner for your particular copier model. Otherwise, you’ll be doing more harm than good. 

It’s also a bad idea to try to squeeze every bit of ink out of your toner. Your print quality will suffer if your toner ink levels are very low. As such, it’s best to replace your cartridges or toners the moment the ink levels get too low.

2. Crumpled Pages

Crumpled pages are the worst, especially if you have to send the documents to important persons. With wrinkled or crumpled pages, the issue has to do with the outfeed or exit rollers. With continued use, these rollers tend to wear, and that’s where the problem begins.

If you start getting too many wrinkled pages, then it means your copier has outlived its service life. Before you get a new copier, however, it’s a good idea first to replace the tray with the worn-out rollers with a quality replacement tray. Alternatively, you can seek the service of a copy specialist to check out the issue.

3. Random Spots on Your Printouts

Very few things are worse than random ugly spots strewn all over your copies. These spots make your printouts look like something straight out of a malfunctioning dot matrix printer. In severe cases, your copies will be barely visible.

The issue with spots on your copies isn’t as serious as you’d think. The issue has to do with debris strewn all over the copy mirror. All you have to do is take a clean cloth and wipe the glass and the copy mirror. 

Your copier manual will have elaborate instructions on how to clean these parts. Some models also give recommendations on the best products to use for wiping the glass and copy mirror. If the issue persists after cleaning the mirror, then it’s time to call in the professionals.

4. Paper Jams

Paper jams can be very frustrating, especially if you have to make dozens of copies of a document. Paper jams can cause a backlog in work and disrupt normal workflow. Paper jams don’t have the greatest timing and can happen before deadlines or crucial meetings.

If you’ve been experiencing frequent paper jams, then you might have bought paper with the wrong thickness. Apart from the wrong thickness of paper, you might be using the wrong type of paper. 

You shouldn’t also stack too much paper on top of each other. We understand you want to save time by putting as many papers as you can on the copier, but it’s a bad idea. It allows dust and debris to build up within the stacks and also overloads the printer which leads to paper jams.

The only way of solving paper jams is by removing the jammed paper. If you suspect it’s the wrong type of paper, do away with the current one and get new paper sheets. Also, remember to load just enough paper and also be careful not to overload the copier.

If the paper still jams on the copier, then it has something to do with the copier’s internal parts. In this case, you’ll need a printing professional to sort out the issue.

5. Streaks on Your Copies

If you think having dots on your copies is bad, then you haven’t seen streaks or lines on your copies. This might happen once, but it could also be a recurring problem. In extreme cases, the streaks might be misconstrued as intentional.

Lines on your copies have to do with problems with your scanner glass. Again, if you have streaks on the copy mirror or glass, then they will appear on the copies. This mostly happens when you try to wipe stuff off the glass, but it doesn’t wipe completely an instead leaves streaks of the substance.

Apart from foreign materials on the glass, you could also have a problem with the copier’s fuser. This is a problem that only trained professionals can address. If it’s not the fuser, then it’s maybe the drum blade.

Issues with malfunctioning drum blades or developer units are common with multi-function photocopier machines. If you see large lines that run vertically down your copies, then you probably have a malfunctioning drum blade.

If it’s not the scanner glass that’s the problem, then it’s an issue you can’t fix on your own. With a printer, all you have to do is unclog the printhead, but it’s not that easy with a copier. Your best bet is to call a reputable photocopier specialist to set things right.

6. Copies Aren’t Dark Enough to Be Visible

You may have an issue with your copier, where the copies are either too light to be visible or too dark for your taste.  This is a problem you can solve within less than half a minute. If the print outs are too light, then it’s something to do with your density settings.

All you have to do is check the density settings on your copier. If you’re unsure, make copies with different settings, and settle on the one that works for you. If that doesn’t work, then it’s an issue with the toner.

Fixing issues with the toner is as simple as swapping the current toners with a new one. However, be careful to buy the right toner for your specific printer model.

7. Deteriorating Print Quality

If your copies print quality has been plummeting, then you have reason to panic.  That’s because poor-quality print outs send the wrong message about your company. Don’t expect to impress any potential clients if your prints and forms look dirt cheap.

Poor print quality only means that your copier has outlived its purpose. It also means you haven’t been taking good care of your printer. You have no choice but to invest in a new photocopier.

How to Maintain Your Copier

You can sidestep all these issues with your photocopier if you take good care of it. Here’s the correct way to maintain your copier.

Shut it off– When you’re not using your copier, make sure you shut it down. Not only does it save you a bundle in energy costs, but it also extends your copier’s life span.

Clean the scanner glass– Unless you want streaks and spots all over your printouts, then always remember to clean the scanning glass before you turn it off. Don’t spray the cleaning fluid on the glass or it might get into the electronic components of the copier.

Warm the copier up– Before springing into action, make sure you give some time to warm up. Doing so eases the copier into the task at hand and doesn’t strain the machine.

These are just a few things you could do to extend your copier’s life and avoid operational issues. If you’re consistent with the above, then you don’t have to worry about repairing or replacing your copier anytime soon. 

Repair Before Replacing

We all want our copiers to last forever, but that will never happen. However, if your copier experiences the above issue, at least you now know how to fix them. Don’t forget to take proper care of your copier to get the most out of it.

If you’re too busy to mind your copier, you can always ask for a little help. For printer maintenance and repair services, contact us today, and we’ll sort you out.

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