11-29-2012 04:51 AM
I have an HP Deskjet 3050 All in One J610 series printer.
I am using Windows XP.
I am a Newbie as far as HP printers are concerned, but have some experience troubleshooting a relative's older HP model.
The Black Cartridge is not printing. For various reasons, I have not used the printer for about two months. Until now the printer has performed well, and in fact it is still using the cartridges which came with the printer. I mention these points here as I realise either or both may be part of the issue.
When I sent a document to the printer, the printout was uneven. I checked the ink levels, and both black and colour cartridges were about two thirds full (before I used the Print Head Cleaning Utility.
After cleaning the print heads, I tried again and this time the printing was even, but in a shade of pale blue that was very faint. However the original document is in a thin font, and in a shade of grey, so perhaps it was using ink from the colour cartridge, and not the black one?
Searching using HP's Help Viewer does not help as it assumes you do not know how to locate the Clean Ink Cartridge Utility.
After googling for matching issues, I tried a second and then a third level cleaning. And because one post mentioned needing to do it eight times, I did a few more for luck. When the page is printed at the end of the cleaning cycle, the colours are coming out crisp and even. There's no black block...should there be? I can't find an image showing what a perfect print out following cleaning should resemble.
The extra attempts to clean using the utility don't seem to have worked and may even have been counter-productive because when I tried printing another document and this came out so pale that I initially thought it was a blank page.
I have used the utility for a re-estimate of the ink levels and the colour is still at about two thirds full, while the black has dropped a bit lower, but is still above half full. There's a tick/check showing for both colour and black ink.
Posts on similar issues suggest that replacing the cartridge will not solve the problem and that the heads need to be cleaned manually.
Should I try to clean the heads manually? That's been mentioned on threads, and even on the HP support but as a further option for a very different model. I've looked at some demos on You Tube, but they're for different HP models, in which they remove the print heads and clean them either in a commercially provided solution which I don't think is available in the UK, or with water!
I would be grateful for advice as to whether I ought to remove the black cartridge and clean the print heads, and if so, if someone could point me to a link where this is demonstrated step by step, either in video, or set out in logical steps.
Meanwhile I will go off and buy a new black cartridge, though if it's the heads needing cleaning, I'm going to have to do that anyway.
Thank you for any advice you are able to give me!
This question was solved. View Solution.
11-30-2012 08:44 AM - edited 11-30-2012 08:46 AM
I would manually clean the contacts on the cartridges and inside the printer. That process is outlined for your model of printer in step three of this document here. The rest of the document does not apply to your issue, but it does a great job on giving step by step instructions on the manual cleaning process and lists the materials that one needs to use. The manual cleaning will help insure that build up on the contacts is not the cause of the print quality issue that you are having. I hope that this helps.
01-08-2013 09:28 AM
I cleaned the printhead following the instructions in the manual. Black is still not printing. My printer is 2.5 years old. Is this it's natural life-span?
03-21-2013 10:14 AM
MK-in-Hoboken - No that is not considered the natural life span of the printer. Are the cartridges that you are using genuine non refilled HP cartridges? After you have cleaned the contacts on the cartridges and in the machine, I would run the clean printhead utility. If after that it is still not printing I would replace the cartridge as it might be faulty.
03-21-2013 10:45 AM
Thanks for responding. I cleaned everything very thoroughly, following all the instructions. I ran the "clean printhead utility" at least 3 times. I tried 3 different brand-new cartridges. Finally, I said "this is nuts! My time is worth more than this!" We paid about $90 for the printer, which I use very heavily. I sent it back to HP (they pay for the freight) and bought a new one. Also HP.
03-21-2013 12:33 PM
06-08-2014 11:27 PM
This is NOT a solution. Sending a printer back to the manufacturer and purchasing a new one is not a solution!