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Nathan
Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 20465
Experience:  Computer networking/repair. 12+ years experience.
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Help! Error message 5C20 with Canon Pixma MP 620. Loud

Customer Question

Help! Error message 5C20 with Canon Pixma MP 620. Loud clacking noise. Can we fix it ourselves?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Printers
Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

Hello, I’m Nathan, and I’ll be assisting you today. My livelihood depends on your positive feedback, so your satisfaction is my highest priority.

Sorry to hear you’re having trouble.

Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

Unfortunately, there is no quick or easy fix here. This message indicates a hardware problem, specifically that that the internal "ink absorber system" is faulty (pump roller sensor error). The ink absorber is a series of pumps/rollers/pads/tanks, which catch drips from the printhead when parked, and is also used for maintenance tasks like cleaning and purging.

Eventually this absorber fills up, and the printer shuts down operations, as continuing to operate it can result in ink overflowing the system, damaging your desk, flooring, etc

While it is sometimes possible to temporarily reset the counter, this is dangerous as the system will likely overflow. Cleaning/emptying/replacing the system is a difficult and messy process as well, best left to a qualified service technician. This service is generally not practical though - it's going to run you $150-250 for repairs, which just isn't worth it for an older printer. This is a 7 year old model, that was built for a service life of 3 years. If you have reached the point that the absorber has filled, then other wear items like the printhead, feed rollers, etc are also going to be at the end of their lives and need service/replacement soon.

Given the costs and complexity of fixing this issue, you'd be better off replacing the printer. You can get a brand new and better machine, with current technology and a fresh warranty, for about $80, which makes more sense than investing in the older machine.

I can recommend replacement options for you if you'd like, or if you'd prefer to try having it serviced or working on it yourself, I can advise further on those options. Replacement would be your best bet though, economically speaking.

Best regards, ***** ***** for the news,

Nathan

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
does this mean we have to pay you for not fixing our printer?
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Its one thing if you can walk us through a repair and it is fixed but this is just wrong to pay $23 for asking a question!
Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

I am simply answering the question as asked - "can we fix it ourselves", and the answer is no, there is not a simple fix for this that you can do yourself.

Yes, the fee you agreed to pay applies here, you are paying for my time and expertise in diagnosing/explaining the problem and ultimately saving you time and money in the long run.

Had you taken the printer in to a local repair shop, you'd be paying a $100+ diagnostic fee for the exact same outcome (that is before any actual repairs are done).

Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

I have no control over the costs, that is based on the amount you agree to when posting your question here.

Please note:

I am an independent technician and I've spent my personal time, unpaid, in an effort to assist with the question for which you solicited my services. This site works on the honor system, and to that end, I have prioritized working with you ahead of other paying customers.

Although you’ve already paid your fee to the site, I am only compensated for my efforts when customers such as yourself leave positive feedback for my work. Again I apologize there is not a better outcome here, though this is really beyond either of our control. I do hope you’ll consider leaving a 5 star rating for me, rather than “shoot the messenger”, so that I may get credit for my time spent in good faith to answer your question accurately.

Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

I'm still more than happy to help provide additional information to you, replacement recommendations, etc, if you would like.

Ultimately, payment is up to your discretion and conscience. If you feel it is fair and reasonable to utilize my services at no cost, you may omit rating and seek a refund through the account/help page.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I would not have taken it to a computer repair shop because of the age of the machine. I will place a negative comment about this company as a whole. This whole idea is a scam and I will let my friends and family know to never use the service.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thank you for that information. I will try the account/help page first
Expert:  Nathan replied 10 months ago.

I'm simply trying to help.

I can only answer the question you posed to me.

I agree, the machine isn't worth salvaging. It is well over double its service life, and has greatly exceeded any value that could be reasonably expected of it.

I cannot change how the site works, you asked me a question and I provided the answer in good faith, on my own time, ahead of other paying customers.

This is how I make my living, if you opt not to pay, I hope you'll at least omit rating rather than marking me negatively, which only hurts my professional reputation when I'm just trying to help you. It is not possible for me to reply to you and give you an answer, even a "bad news" answer, without cost, which is something no other support service would offer either. If you had called up canon, they would have charged you a $45 phone call fee as well for supporting an out of warranty item.