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32upxot
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Member Since: ‎09-30-2010
Message 1 of 26 (10,996 Views)
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HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

[ Edited ]

I have a HP Photosmart Model #309a All-in-One and today my black ink stopped printing. I have run all the tests; ie, Aligned Print Heads, cleaned print heads, printed a Diagnostic page and printed a test page to no avail. My color will print, but, when I try to print something from the internet or whatever, the colors will print and the background is so faint in black, that is it unreadable. Sure would like to have the problem solved. My black ink shows it to be half full. My printer is 14 months old. Help.

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Bob_Headrick
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Member Since: ‎11-17-2008
Message 2 of 26 (10,981 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

The are are two different black cartridges in the c309a, one is the photo cartridge, the other is the black cartridge.  Depending on the driver you have the photo cartridge may show on the left side or the right side of the ink gauge - one is a mirror image.  When you say the black cartridge is half full make sure you are looking at the ink gauge bar that is next to the yellow cartridge, the photo cartridge is the one next to the magenta bar.  In the two screeen shots below the blue arrow is pointing at the black cartridge (the one used for text) and the yellow arrows indicate the photo cartridge (not used on plain paper).  

 

The issue you describe is most likely due to a low ink condition on the black supply.

Bob Headrick, Microsoft MVP Windows Expert - Consumer,  HP Expert

I am not an employee of Microsoft or HP, I am a volunteer posting here on my own time.

If your problem is solved please click the "Accept as Solution" button -------------------v

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Gary_W_A
Posts: 13
Member Since: ‎10-13-2009
Message 3 of 26 (10,842 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

I have the same problem, but under different circumstances.  My in-laws have a c309a printer in Florida that has sat idle (powered off with no ink cartridges installed in it) since June.  They are now back in Florida for the winter and I installed 5 brand new, HP ink cartridges on Monday (today is Wednesday).  I didn't bother to print anything because I didn't expect a problem.  Today, my in-laws tried to print and all that printed were the colors - no black (text).  It was working fine when I powered it off in June when they headed north.

 

I tried printing a Word document from the PC (all black text) and nothing came out on the paper.

 

I've tried both levels to clean the print cartridges with no luck.  All I've managed to do in the past 2 days is to almost run empty the 4 other cartridges installed 2 days ago.

 

I think the nozzle(s) for the black text ink cartridge (564XL on the far right) are dried up and clogged.  How do I clean them or check them to verify if this is the problem?  If this isn't the problem, then what else can I check?

 

Thanks for any help,

Gary A

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Bob_Headrick
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Member Since: ‎11-17-2008
Message 4 of 26 (10,834 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

 


Gary_W_A wrote:

I have the same problem, but under different circumstances.  My in-laws have a c309a printer in Florida that has sat idle (powered off with no ink cartridges installed in it) since June. 

 

I tried printing a Word document from the PC (all black text) and nothing came out on the paper. [snip]


 

The black cartridige uses pigment ink and is more likely to clog if left unused for five months.  Most likely you will need a new printhead assembly, you would need to Contact HP.  

The following is not recommended, but might be a last resort before buying a new printhead:  remove all the ink supplies.  Remove the printhead assembly and put it just submerged by 0.5" or so in very hot water for five minutes or so.  Remove the printhead from the water and blot (very gently) on a damp paper towel.  The printhead is very fragile, do not press on or scratch the printhead.

Bob Headrick, Microsoft MVP Windows Expert - Consumer,  HP Expert

I am not an employee of Microsoft or HP, I am a volunteer posting here on my own time.

If your problem is solved please click the "Accept as Solution" button -------------------v

If my answer was helpful please click the "Thumbs Up" to say "Thank You"--V

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Gary_W_A
Posts: 13
Member Since: ‎10-13-2009
Message 5 of 26 (10,825 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

Bob,

 

Thanks for the reply.  After some Googling, I realized the same thing.  I didn't know how easy it is to remove the printhead, but once I found that out, I removed the printhead and soaked it in a solution of Windex (ammonia) for an hour or so.  I then used a small air compressor to blow it out and dry it off.

 

IT WORKED!!  After a couple more cleaning cycles, it is now printing black text again.  Unfortunately, all the test printing/cleaning just about used up all the 2-day old color cartridges.:smileymad:

 

They have a second c309a back in Indiana that will be sitting idle until May!!  At least now I know how to clean the printhead if that one ends up clogged.:smileysad:

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Bob_Headrick
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Member Since: ‎11-17-2008
Message 6 of 26 (10,819 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

All is well that ends well, but I cringe at the thought of Windex and/or pressurizing the nozzles.  Either could damage the printhead, you probably got lucky with that one.  If you have to do it again I would suggest using only water.

Bob Headrick, Microsoft MVP Windows Expert - Consumer,  HP Expert

I am not an employee of Microsoft or HP, I am a volunteer posting here on my own time.

If your problem is solved please click the "Accept as Solution" button -------------------v

If my answer was helpful please click the "Thumbs Up" to say "Thank You"--V

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Gary_W_A
Posts: 13
Member Since: ‎10-13-2009
Message 7 of 26 (10,806 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

I found several website articles that described using a 50/50 ammonia/water mixture to desolve the dried ink, so I tried it.  That sounded better than alcohol which could probably dry out some parts like the rubber seals around the ink tank opening.  If it proves to be a problem later on, I found where I can order a replacement printhead from the HP parts store (if they have them in stock).

 

Time will tell.:smileyhappy:

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Bob_Headrick
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Member Since: ‎11-17-2008
Message 8 of 26 (10,785 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

The ammonia may react with some inks and permanently clog the printheads.  As you mention alcohol could damage the rubber seals of the printhead.  Air pressure could cause the printhead layers to delaminate.  I would not use anything but pure water to minimize printhead damage.

Bob Headrick, Microsoft MVP Windows Expert - Consumer,  HP Expert

I am not an employee of Microsoft or HP, I am a volunteer posting here on my own time.

If your problem is solved please click the "Accept as Solution" button -------------------v

If my answer was helpful please click the "Thumbs Up" to say "Thank You"--V

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JonxHong10
Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎12-02-2010
Message 9 of 26 (10,583 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

I had to make an account just to reply back.  Bob, You saved my life, and I thank you.  I had an important research paper to print, and I guess I left the black ink cartridge out too long and it clogged up.  Submerging it in hot water for about 5 minutes definitely fixed problem.  Thank You :smileyhappy:

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attiyeh
Posts: 1
Member Since: ‎04-14-2010
Message 10 of 26 (9,932 Views)

Re: HP Photosmart c309a Black Ink won't print

I also have a Photosmart c309a and my problem is that it keeps running through all of the photoblack despite the fact that I am not printing photos.  I was told there might be a way to change the quality settings so that this doesn't continue, but I don't know how. Please help!  All this ink is costing a fortune!

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