Whenever a printer breaks down, employees suffer. If it’s the only device available to staff, it compounds the problem. Unscheduled downtime and delays in workflows may not be tangible expenses, but it influences the organization’s bottom line. Just like other office equipment, printer care, and maintenance will help prevent device failures and costly repairs.
Various reasons may lead to failures, but these are more likely to occur if the company doesn’t carry out the necessary printer maintenance procedures. Manufacturers design and build printers to maximize their lifespans and thus require the owners to conduct periodic inspections and clean their machines. Depending on the wear of the internal mechanisms, some components will require replacement to keep the printer running reliably.
Preventative Printer Maintenance and Service Is Imperative
Like other sophisticated mechanical machines, printers have moving parts, electronic components, and work under extreme operating conditions. Every time it prints a page, the device depends on a range of subsystems to produce a high-quality image. First, the paper needs to travel seamlessly through the machine using the guides and rollers. To produce a print, the fuser system uses high temperatures to melt toner powder and bond the image to the page.
Conditional on the exact features of the device (such as collating or two-sided printing), some subsystems may be more complex. If the company doesn’t execute regular printer maintenance or service tasks, the likelihood of failure will increase exponentially. The longer the device doesn’t receive the necessary printer care, the higher the chance that it’ll break down and require costly repairs.
The Primary Causes of Printer and Copier Problems
Printer failures can range from the menial to the severe. A paper jam is easy enough to remove from the machine if the company follows the manufacturer’s instructions. Regular jams may indicate that there’s a bigger problem with the machine. Dust buildup can lead to frequent jams, so cleaning the internal mechanisms will reduce the frequency of the problem.
If the print quality deteriorates over time, it’s probably an issue with either the fuser system or the print heads. The latest printers will have internal cleaning protocols to address these issues, but companies can also manually clean the fuser and print heads if required. In a worst-case scenario, excessive wear and tear can lead to a complete breakdown. This will require expert technicians to replace some of the components to get the machine working again.
Conducting the necessary printer maintenance and service procedures can help prevent these minor issues from escalating. It will also increase the lifespan of the device and reduce the chances of a company experiencing a critical failure. While a printer’s warranty usually doesn’t exceed two years, a properly maintained machine can operate well beyond this period.
Tips to Keep Your Company Printers Running Optimally
Printer manufacturers use duty cycles to illustrate a device’s capabilities over time. A duty cycle depends on the number of prints the machine produces over a predefined period. For smaller desktop machines, this usually amounts to a few thousand pages per month. However, enterprise-grade printers can easily handle more than 100,000 pages per month without any problems. To ensure the machine performs as designed, keeping track of the duty cycles and observing the recommended maintenance procedures will be important.
Cleaning the Printer Internals
One of the simplest tasks to maintain a printer is cleaning it regularly. Using a vacuum, the company can suck out dust that’s building up inside the machine. For the rollers, using a lint-free cloth with ethyl or isopropyl alcohol will prevent a misaligned feeding system from causing paper jams. Print heads also require cleaning. That said, companies should ensure they follow the manufacturer’s instructions, as certain parts of the cartridge should never come into contact with cloths or cleaning agents.
Replacing Essential Components
Rollers, grips, and guides may require replacement. Companies should conduct a visual inspection to see if the rubbers are shiny or glazed, which will mean they will no longer operate reliably. Investing in a maintenance kit from the manufacturers will give companies the necessary consumables to replace these essential components.
Practicing Proper Printer Maintenance for Improved Reliability
It’s important to remember that the environment the printer operates in will also influence the maintenance requirements. An office printer may not require regular cleaning compared to a device situated on a factory floor. Conducting the necessary printer maintenance procedures can help companies keep their investment operating reliably for extended periods and reduce downtimes. With properly maintained machines, a company can extend the lifespan of its printers and prevent expenses originating from costly repairs.
For 15 years, Imaging Warehouse has helped companies ensure they receive their essential supplies and consumables for their printing fleets. Imaging Warehouse buys and sells wholesale printer cartridges using a straightforward and simple process.
Now that you know how vital printer care is to your business, you can get in touch with Imaging Warehouse to discuss your printer supplies and consumable needs.