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It will not print black, HP 4502 & it's 3 years old, PC,

Customer Question
It will not print...

It will not print black

Technician's Assistant: What's the make/model number of your printer? How old is it?

HP 4502 & it's 3 years old

Technician's Assistant: What kind of computer are you printing from (Mac or PC)? What Operating System (OS) are you running?

PC, Windows

Technician's Assistant: How long has this been an issue? What happened right before this popped up?

I changed the black cartridge 2 days ago & that's when I started having problems.

Technician's Assistant: Anything else you want the Printer Expert to know before I connect you?

I have been using refilled color & black printer cartridges ever since I've had this printer & everything has printed out just fine.

Submitted: 8 months ago.Category: Printers
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
9/20/2017
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 8 months ago
Nathan
Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 29,610
Experience: Computer networking/repair. 12+ years experience.
Verified

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.

As an initial step, do you have another black cartridge that you can try?

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
I have already tried another cartridge. The ink level display on the printer shows the black cartridge is full
Customer reply replied 8 months ago
What was the $33 for? I don't want to pay another $39 to get an answer. It's almost the cost of a new printer
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 8 months ago

Thank you for confirming,

the first charge was for the chat here.

I am not asking you to pay more.

You are seeing an automated ad by the site for a call or remote session. It is not sent by me. This is optional and may be ignored if you wish.

Please give me a few moments to send a detailed response.

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
OK
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 8 months ago

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

A defective printhead (damaged black nozzles) are the most likely cause, considering the cartridges you have been using. Though you may have had good luck with them, those refills are prohibited by hp for good reason, as they actually cause gradual damage to the printer. These printers don't last long to begin with, but when using the generics they typically last only about a year.

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 2013 model printer, it is well 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 $85; 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,

Nathan

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
I ran the "clean printhead" function 5 times. It seems to print the colors just fine, but no black square. The colors of the squares across the page are yellow, green, blue, yellow, no color, then a blue square again.
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 8 months ago

That is the black missing,

You could try replacing with a hp ink cartridge, and then doing a manual cleaning from there if you'd like. It does have a low chance of success though. I can guide you through if you wish, but personally I'd move on to a new printer at this point.

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Customer reply replied 8 months ago
Can you send the manual procedure & if no success, a new printer it will be. Thanks very much!
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 8 months ago

Sure thing, it doesn't hurt to try other than some time and inky fingers (recommend wearing gloves)

To try manually cleaning the print heads:

Open up the printer, and look for the "carriage" that goes back and forth (on metal rails) over the paper while printing. This is the printhead.

You'll remove the ink cartridges from the printer, then clean on the bottom of them (focus on the ink port/hole) as well as inside the printer where they mate up using qtips and rubbing alcohol.

If you can, remove the carriage/print head (there will be a small lever at the side/rear of it that lifts up to release) and clean the bottom this way as well.

When cleaning the port on the print head that the ink flows into from the cartridge, also try using a qtip to "pump" the liquid down into the port and force it through, which will help to dissolve any clogs. If possible, you'll get better results by using a syringe and appropriately sized rubber tubing (that will fit into the ink inlet port) to force the alcohol to flush through the head)

After all of this swab again with a few dry qtips or give a blast of compressed air to dry everything well, then put it all back together. You can now try to print, or run the automated print head cleaning function in the setup menu. You may have to run a few pages through before everything starts flowing properly again.

If none of this helps, then you've got a faulty print head(s) which would need to be replaced.

If looking for a replacement, I’d recommend any of the Epson workforce series printers. They tend to be very reliable, are easy to set up and use, have good print quality, and reasonably priced ink. Example: http://amzn.to/2wPdNRJ or http://amzn.to/2hQLirU

Note that these, like all consumer grade inkjet printers, are designed to be low cost and are essentially disposable after a few years, subsidized by the high cost of ink cartridges. If you wish to have a better quality and longer lasting printer, that comes with years worth of ink up front, consider the Epson ecotank models instead: http://amzn.to/1PpOj0C

Alternately, for a more business/commercial grade product that will be rated for a 5 year life, consider a laser printer. Lasers cost more up front also, but a toner cartridge can last for thousands of pages. A black only all in one laser is around $125: http://amzn.to/2fdn5PG

while a color model is about twice that: http://amzn.to/1n4I7Q5

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Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 29,610
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Experience: Computer networking/repair. 12+ years experience.

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