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Russell H.
Russell H., Printer and Office Tech
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 11046
Experience:  11+ yrs experience, inkjets & lasers, from huge to portable
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I have a Dell 3110cn printer and no matter what color I am

Customer Question

I have a Dell 3110cn printer and no matter what color I am printing, black and white or color, there is a streak down the entire center of the page where it looks like the ink is smeared and/or missing.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Printers
Expert:  Russell H. replied 6 years ago.
I presume this is a laser printer (looking it up, I find that it is indeed a color laser.)

Can you post an image of an example of this error to me, e.g. by scanning it? that might help me fathom what could produce such an unusual error.

Whether you can do that or not, tell me whether there is any color that is being printed properly all the way through that defective stripe down the center? One color underlying the smearing etc.

And also, take an example of one of these defective pages, and rub on the defective portion with your thumb, fairly firmly... does ink smear around, or rub off on your thumb in considerable amount?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Here is an example of a defective page. I simply printed a large grey box on the page and, as you can see, there is a recurring issue in the center of the printed page. This happens in both black-and-white AND color mode (any color). Thank you.graphic
Expert:  Russell H. replied 6 years ago.
Well, that's a pretty clear pattern (and by the way, I must praise you for making the effort of scanning and sending me a typical print-defect page, that helped my process of diagnosis enormously.)

What you have is an odd-shaped non-sharp-line type defect down the page, repeating a pattern at sufficient intervals that it is present 3 times or more on every printed page.

This sort of repetitive defect is an actual physical problem on one of the roller-like rotating elements in the print engine.
I think it most likely to be the photosensitive drum or roller, which is very easily damaged by a whole list of things: dampness/moisture, exposure to light, abrasion/scratching, being touched by a bare human hand (which deposits an oil that spoils the delicate material of the surface quite quickly), etc... maybe hard radiation too, but I don't know about that.
It looks like a damaged photosensitive drum defect to me. The lighter stripe up the page might be owing to trying to wipe the ...whatever it was that created the repeating pattern... away physically (which incidentally is always a mistake. Touch damages these things, period, one cannot wipe them off or away.)

In this model, I suspect that the 'drum' is part of the toner cartridge (in many modern machines it is.) If not, then replace the 'developer' or the 'drum kit', if there is such a thing for your model of machine (and there doesn't seem to be, so I suspect the ultimate correct diagnosis and recommendation is:)

In short, replace the toner cartridge. It ought to improve at once. (And take care when handling it, of course.)

This picture shows clearly that the sensitive 'drum' is indeed a part of the toner cartridge for this model:


- that's the greenish shiny roller element. Do not touch it, sneeze on it, wipe it, expose it to direct fairly bright light for over a continuous minute per half hour [this causes a sort of 'overexposure' or permanent chemical alteration.]

PS: if you know how to inspect your fuser rollers in your printer, do so also. It probably isn't damage to the fuser roller at all, but it's just as well to check. Such damage would be very visible (and frankly this doesn't look like that at all, it would be much more overt and sharp-edged if it were fuser roller damage, I would think.)

Good wishes for your future use of this printer.

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