Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Because printer ink cartridges are so expensive, it is important to make your inkjet last as long as you can. Instead of replacing a clogged or dirty inkjet, you can manually clean it yourself to get it back into good working order.
The following is a guide on how to clean your printer ink cartridge:
1. Before you start the process of cleaning the cartridge, find out the type of cartridge that have. Most HP ink cartridges have the print head on the cartridge, but other brands may be a bit different. Check your owner's manual or check the website for specifics. The information will tell you what part of the ink system you need to clean. It will always be the print head that you will clean, so it is important that you know where it is located.
2. Use filtered, bottled, or distilled water, and then dip a cotton swab into the warmed water. Wipe around the nozzle plate with the swab. Make sure that you clean center of the ink cartridge as this is the actual nozzle plate. Also, do not touch the copper colored areas as they are very fragile. If the swab gets too filthy, use another clean swab dipped in the water until there is no sign of any debris in the area.
3. Remove the cartridge from its holder. If you have a cartridge with the print head on it, run under hot water for 10 seconds. Let the ink cartridge dry for a few minutes before you insert it back into the printer.
4. To clean the printer head nozzle, set the cartridge on the work surface with the ink surface nozzle facing up. Moisten the swab with distilled water. Make sure to squeeze out any surplus water from the swab. Wipe the surface of the nozzle tip with the swab.
5. Dry the cartridge with a soft cloth. Wait until completely dry and then reinstall. If that does not work, remove the cartridge again. Moisten a cotton swab with glass cleaner and swab the print head. Dry with a soft cloth.
6. Reinstall the print cartridge to the printer. Align the print cartridge with your printers alignment function.
7. If your print head is inside the machine, you can repeat the same process as in Step 4. It is important to make sure that you let the print head air dry, or dry it with a cotton swab before using.
It is important to clean your printer cartridge before using it and after an extended period of time. As well, do not use tap water as the impurities can damage the cartridge. For particularly difficult dirt and clogs, you can soak the print head in Windex overnight, dry it off completely, and then reinstall.
To maintain your inkjet and avoid constantly cleaning it, you can just run a few test pages on your printer once a week to preserve ink flow. Cleaning your printer ink cartridge is much easier and cheaper than going out to buy a new cartridge.
Information Source: ehow.com/clean-printer-ink-cartridges and ehow.com/clean-print-head-nozzle