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I have received error code 5100, my printer will not

I have received error...

I have received error code 5100, my printer will not function.

Technician's Assistant: Is your printer displaying the error on all print jobs, even after you restart it?

Yes

Technician's Assistant: When did you last update the printer driver software?

Have not done that.

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

I am installing a new ink cartridge.

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Answered in 5 minutes by:
3/18/2018
Nathan
Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 30,743
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.

What is the model number of the printer?

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
MX472

Thank you

This message indicates a carriage fault. That can be caused by anything from debris/obstruction (paper jam, bent/damaged rails, out of place purge assembly/wiper, or dirty/dislocated encoder strip) to an actual hardware defect (bad sensor or control board, faulty carriage drive motor/gear/belt, bad printhead/carriage pcb).

If you just changed the cartridges, it is likely that one of them is not snapped in all the way or was the wrong size.

What we can try here are some cleaning and reset steps.
First, open up the printer, and check for any internal debris such as scraps of paper, paperclip or staple, etc. Check if you’re able to move the carriage manually, or if it moves on its own when lifting the lid. If it does move, you can proceed with cleaning by blowing out the inside compartment with compressed air and checking carefully on both sides for any obstructions. Then wipe down the encoder strip, which is a clear plastic strip running the width of the printer, that sits just slightly above and behind the carriage.

Then reset the machine:
unplug power at the wall outlet
wait 5 minutes
press and hold the power/on button for 60+ seconds
keep holding while plugging back in, and for another 60 seconds after, then release

Let me know the results, and I’ll advise further if needed.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Tried that sequence and no luck, the cartridge carrier will not move across the printer as it normally does, looked for debris, nothing obvious but cartridges will not leave the right side of the unit, they seem to get stuck on something. I tried reinserting them also.

But you can access them though to take the cartridges in and out?
Can you leave them out entirely and see if it will move on its own (unplug for a minute to prompt that)

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Carriage would not move with ink cartridges out.

Try sliding a piece of heavy paper or cardstock (or even a thin metal ruler) under the head to see if you can pull it over

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Tried it, still will not move, appears the lower part of the carriage is not engaging the rest of the mechanism.

Thanks for checking

that means there is actually a hardware defect in the carriage mechanism here then,

While it can be fixed, it is not worthwhile to do so. You would be looking at $200-250 in repair costs at a local shop, which just isn't worth it for a 2013 model printer - this system was designed for a maximum service life of 3 years. 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.

Depending how you'd like to proceed, I can advise on finding a local repair shop, or recommending replacement options for you. Just let me know.

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

Nathan

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thanks for your help, guess I guess I am buying a new one, will be making a trip to Costco soon.

You're very welcome!

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

Nathan
Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 30,743
Experience: Computer networking/repair. 12+ years experience.
Verified
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Satisfied Customers: 30,743
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