The computer corner

Printer: Headaches & Woes

by Joanne Tolson

     My first printer was a Bubblejet, acquired when I got my first computer in 2002. The tech guy called me from California one day. I was pretty specific with what I wanted. Windows 98, Canon Bubblejet Printer, AMD Athlon. My second printer was a hunk of junk old Canon. It turned out I came home one night and something had happened to my cartridge holders—they weren’t there. No wonder It wouldn’t print any more. It had been fixed so I couldn’t. Then I got a Pixma MX 330 series printer. It worked great for over two years, then I got a small piece of paper torn off in it. That was the end of that. It was a second-hand basement bargain. Then I got my Pixma 490 series printer. It was great, I had duplexing capabilities. The printer itself would turn the page itself and print the next page on the back side. Which was labor saving—not having to turn each page, and I could set the number of pages to be printed, instead of having manually to do that—until I started running out of ink. It was gifted to me by my brother five years ago. It worked until it gave its final sputter. Then in February 2013 I got a new Pixma MX 890 series, not long after moving to my new apartment. Although on later machines I didn’t have the automatic duplex capability for it to turn the pages by itself. So for the most part I have been doing all this, manually turning the pages on the scanner myself, placing the scanned and copied pages in the Right direction for printing front to back. Other printer issues I have been challenged with—using remanufactured/replacement ink tanks and ink refills.

     My latest printer, an HP Desk Jet, is easy as pie, less stress, less noise stress from it requires less effort for me. I can scan pictures and documents and save them to my computer hard drive, as opposed to a scanning software program that saves it to a software program for only printing photographs, which is not very useful if you want to transfer the disc for someone else. But who does that much any more these days? Except I, I know of.

     So if a new ink tank that is remanufactured doesn’t work the first time, take it out, put it back in, this usually works for me. Using ink refills can be tricky, you will be warned by your printer that it knows it’s not HP Brand ink tank, that it knows you’re using ink refill ink in your tank.

     If your ink tank doesn’t work the first time, turn your printer off then back on and the other stuff , holding down the cancel button until the light goes off that says your ink tank is empty. Usually then I have no problem printing. Old programmer’s trick, if it doesn’t work then turn your printer and computer off, and then turn them back on again. Also check your printer to see by clicking on the word PRINT under FILE in the task bar up above before you print to make sure it’s set on the right printer or the page or document is set on the right dimensions to print on the 8x10 letter print size and it was set on 4x6 inch print size, or something weird like it was set on FAX when your printer isn’t even Fax capable that I know of. Freaky things that happen when you go to print because (1) you forgot to reset it to print normal size, at least I do that.

     We learn from our machines things to do to make them work for us that aren’t even in manuals.