Printer Inkjet Cartridge Cleaning, Refilling and Maintainance.

I tried my hand at refilling my old Canon PIXMA iP1800 a part of the 1600/1700 /  printer series .HP inkjet cleaning ain’t too different.


Ink Level Monitoring

Disable the ink level monitors after re-filling the cartridges. Go to properties, maintenance, view printer status, option and uncheck enable status monitor.

Fault Finding and Service

Printer Service required : Printer Properties /Maintenance

1. Printer head Alignment : for Misaligned prints.

2. Roller Cleaning : If there are vertical lines on the paper it is the rollers that are the problem. If rollers make a creaking sound oil the roller ends.

3. Smudges : Bottom plate cleaning

Cartridge problems

1. Cartridge not detected /doesn’t recognize the Ink Cartridge : Ink  has dried up completely on the rectangular head.

2. If prints are bad, or if  there are horizontal white lines in place of ink on the paper the Ink Cartridge nozzles partially blocked.

Cartridge Cleaning using Software

Using Cleaning option in Maintainance can rid you of minor clogs in the cartridge.

Deep cleaning is a sheer waste of ink, and is best avoided.

Manual Cleaning involves using IPA or warm to boiling hot water to unclogg and loosen up dried ink from the head of the cartridge nozzles. A clean head leaves a neat ink train on a soft tissue. Cleaning involves :-

1. Using a clean soft tissue dabbed in  Iso Propyl Alcohol , to wipe the head.

2. Using a clean soft tissue dabbed in warm water, to wipe the head.

3. Soaking the ink cartridge head in warm water for 2 to 5 minutes.

4. Soaking a clogged ink cartridge head in hot water for 2 to 5 minutes.

4. Soaking a undetectable ink cartridge head in boiling hot water for 3 minutes or using steam to clean them up .

6. Opening a dead cartridge and cleaning it up with hot water and then resealing it.

You can spray the clogged head with hot water too and wipe with cotton or a soft dry paper tissue.

Chk out :

How to Manually Clean an HP Ink-Jet Cartridge

Removing Air Bubbles From Ink Cartridge Print Head

Refilling Cartridges

Dont let the empty cartridge run dry, keep empty cartridge airtight by putting a tape over the head or cling wrapping them, emulate how new cartridges have orange tape.

Refill from a good/reputed re-filler or he will damage the cartridge. Else buy a kit with ink specific to your printer, 5 /10 cc syringes and needles and a universal suction adapter to remove air bubbles.

DIY refilling is messy business. Black is easy, Color cartridges are more difficult to refill. Clean the cartridge head before a refill.

Instructions on how to clean Hp cartridges (Mute volume)

HP Cartridge Refill video

Canon Cartridge Refill video (Mute volume)

Counter Reset tips for Canon Pixma  1600/1700/1800  printer series series:

1. Switch on the printer and press Resume button and hold for 1 – 2 minutes

2. Open the cover remove the cartridge and then put them in.

3. Close The Cover, turn off the printer,  turn it on again.

Or you can use IPTool software to reset the page counter when you use refilled cartridges. Download IPTool

*Images are not mine .

Budget Laser Printers – Comparing Canon 2900B, Samsung ML1676, HP1020 Plus and HP P1007.

Canon 2900B, Samsung ML – 1676 & HP1020 Laser Printers

HP1020 & Canon 2900B are the two most popular budget compact monochrome Laser Printers sold in India, and are targetted at the Home /SOHO segment . Printers compared are USB models with a 1 Yr Warranty.

Check out

Flipcart: HP1020 vs Canon 2900B vs Samsung ML – 1676 Specs

CompareIndia: HP LaserJet P1007 vs HP LaserJet 1020 Plus vs Canon Laser Shot LBP2900 vs Samsung ML – 1666 

HP 1020*( with demo toner 12A) costs around Rs6500 to 7000 and is the best of the lot. Its HP 12A Black Toner Cartridge /Model Q2612A  with 2000 pages print capacity retails on Flipcart at Rs. 3190.

Canon 2900B comes for Rs 6000 to 6600.  Canon EP 303 Toner Cartridge with 2000 pages print capacity retails on Flipcart at  Rs. 3688 Canon Accepts certain HP Cartriges.

HP LaserJet P1007*( with demo toner 88A)(Costs appx Rs 5000) with a single tray is more compact than the HP1020 Plus  and its toner HP LaserJet CC388A has a lower capacity of 1500 prints and costs almost the same as a 12A.

Samsung ML – 1676 is the ultra compact, fast printer that offers the highest resolution of upto1200x1200 dpi , with a slightly lower built quality in comparison to Canon. Samsung Black MLT D1043S Toner Cartridge costs 3041 on flipcart and has a 1500 pg capacity. You may face problems refilling it or finding spare cartridges and servicing it post warranty period.

Overall HP scores over the Canon and Samsung in terms of built quality, size, weight, compatibility and general availability of spares, repairs and refilling of toners.

HP Printers sell with a demo cartridge with a limited initial print capacity so u need to spend on refilling or a new toner cartridge asap.

HP/ Samsung toners  come with a chip that measures ink usage and needs to be changed /reset with every refill… which means added costs.

As things keep changing check if the new printer you are buying has a demo cartridge and an ink measuring chip.

Copy Cartriges without chips are available for HP and Canon, check for others.