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Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 24964
Experience:  Computer networking/repair. 12+ years experience.
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First off, it would not print wirelessly from my wife's

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First off, it would not print wirelessly from my wife's computer...paper would go through the printer, but nothing would print. Then tonight I tried to print my usual contracts for next day's work, and it only partially prints...comes out sketchy with some lines partially printed and some colors missing. All ink is good...just changed the magenta cartridge tonight as instructed, when it ran out. This never happened before.
JA: What is the exact make and model of your printer? And what kind of cartridges are you using?
Customer: EPSON XP 820, using EPON 273 cartridges as required.
JA: What kind of computer are you printing from (Mac or PC)? What Operating System (OS) are you running?
Customer: Mac Pro laptop...not sure what OS it is, where can I find that info?
JA: How long has this been an issue? What happened right before this popped up?
Customer: My wife was trying to print wirelessly from her computer; the paper would feed through but nothing would print. Then machine said to replace the magenta cartridge, which I did. I gave the confirmation that it was correctly installed. When I tried to print the daily contracts for tomorrow's work, they come out spotty, some lines only half-printed and colors off or missing.
JA: Anything else you want the printer expert to know before I connect you?
Customer: Never happened before

Hi, I'm Nathan.
Sorry to hear that you're having trouble, but I'll do my best to help you. Please give me a few moments to review your details here.

These symptoms point to either a clogged/contaminated print head, or a faulty print head (or the logic board that controls it).

You can try going into the setup/maintenance menu on the machine and running the “clean print head” function repeatedly, up to 5 times total, testing after each.

If it still doesn’t print anything, you’ll need to do a manual cleaning as a next step.

I have to caution you up front though that the manual cleaning process is messy and time consuming. It also has a low chance of success, if you see no improvement at all from the automated cleaning. It is most likely a hardware failure (bad head) which the cleaning can’t fix, as printheads are a wear item and do fail with time/use.

Realistically, it’s probably time for a new printer. As this is a 2014 model printer, it is at/past its 3 year service life, so this type of failure is not surprising. While it can be fixed, it is not worthwhile to do so. You would have to, at a minimum, replace the printhead, which costs about $150; if the logic board is bad you’re looking at $200-250. For $80-100 you can replace the entire machine with a brand new model, with current technology and a fresh warranty, which makes more sense than buying the new part for an older printer.

That said, it doesn’t hurt to try, if you wish. Let me know how the built in cleaning function works, and I’ll guide you through the manual steps next, or I can recommend replacement options if you prefer.

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


Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Thank you Nathan. Really like this printer. Hate the way manufacturers always try to "reinvent the wheel" with new things that often don't provide some of the great features that older models have. Anyway, running the printer head cleaning function now and appreciate your help.

You're very welcome, John, hope that works for you, but if not I'm happy to advise further.

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