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We would like to share some of the most frequently asked questions about Instant Ink. Check out this link: HP INSTANT INK, HP+ PLANS: INK AND TONER. .
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New ink but problems printing

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Hp officejet 5740

The ink cartridges in my printer are pretty much full but the print quality is terrible.

I've tried the cleaning options but it hasn't improved.


Any ideas?


(I am using genuine HP ink)


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Welcome to the HP Support Community.


Does this happen while copying too?


Follow these steps to align the printer from the control panel.

  1. Load U.S. letter or A4 size, unused, plain white paper into the input tray.

  2. On the printer control panel, swipe the display to the left, and then touch Setup.

    The Setup menu displays.

  3. Swipe the display down, and then touch Printer Maintenance.

  4. Touch Align Printer.

  5. After the printer prints the alignment page, touch OK, and then recycle or discard the alignment page.

  6. Try to print.

Clean the area around the ink nozzles:


  1. Gather the following materials:

    • Dry foam-rubber swabs, lint-free cloth, or any soft material that does not come apart or leave fibers (coffee filters work well)

    • Distilled, filtered, or bottled water (tap water might contain contaminants that can damage the ink cartridges)


      Do not use platen cleaners or alcohol to clean the ink cartridge contacts. These can damage the ink cartridge or the printer.

  2. Turn on the printer.

  3. Open the ink cartridge access door by placing two fingers under one or both of the small handles on the sides of the ink cartridge access door and then lifting it up. Wait until the carriage is idle and silent before you continue.

    Open the ink cartridge access door

    The Door Open screen displays on the printer control panel with the message, 'The cover or door must be closed to print. Check that it is completely closed.' A Change Ink option also displays on the bottom right corner of the touchscreen. You do not need to select this option at this time.

  4. Lightly press down on one of the ink cartridges to release it, and then pull the ink cartridge toward you out of its slot.

    Press down to remove the ink cartridge


    Do not remove both ink cartridges at the same time. Remove and clean each ink cartridge one at a time. Do not leave an ink cartridge outside the printer for more than 30 minutes.

  5. Hold the ink cartridge by its sides.

    Hold the ink cartridge by its sides.

  6. Inspect the ink cartridge contacts for ink and debris buildup.


    Do not touch the copper-colored contacts or the ink nozzles. Touching these parts can result in clogs, ink failure, and bad electrical connections.

    Do not touch the contacts or nozzles.

  7. Lightly moisten a foam-rubber swab or lint-free cloth with distilled water, and then squeeze any excess water from it.

  8. Clean the face and edges around the ink nozzle with the swab.


    Do not clean the ink nozzle plate.

    1. Nozzle plate - Do not clean

    2. Area surrounding ink nozzle - Do clean

    3. Cartridge contacts - Do not clean

  9. Either let the ink cartridge sit for 10 minutes to allow the cleaned area to dry, or use a new swab to dry it.

  10. Reinsert the ink cartridge by sliding it at a slight upward angle into the empty slot, and then gently pushing up on the ink cartridge until it snaps into place.

    • Reinsert the tri-color ink cartridge into the left slot.

    • Reinsert the black ink cartridge into the right slot.

    Reinsert the ink cartridge

  11. Repeat these steps to clean around the nozzles on the other ink cartridge.

  12. Close the ink cartridge access door.

    Close the ink cartridge access door

  13. Turn on the printer.

Try to print.


If the information I've provided was helpful, give us some reinforcement by clicking the Accepted Solution and Kudos buttons, that'll help us and others see that we've got the answers!



Have a great day!



I am an HP Employee

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