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We have a brother fax-printer MFC-J485DW that is printing…

Customer Question
We have a brother...

We have a brother fax-printer MFC-J485DW that is printing badly. It skips lines and is very light. Changing ink cartridges did not help.

Technician's Assistant: Can you guesstimate how old your Brother is? And just to clarify, what's the exact model?

The model is MFC-J485DW and it is about one year old.

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

PC, windows 8.1

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

It just happened. there was no event that happened right before.

Submitted: 11 months ago.Category: Printers
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Answered in 17 minutes by:
10/4/2017
Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 11 months ago
Nathan
Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 32,154
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.

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Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 11 months ago

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 2015 model printer, it is well into its designed maximum 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,

Nathan

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Technician: Nathan, Engineer replied 11 months ago

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