HP printheads clog on a periodic basis as minute amounts of ink or dust-dry out and accumulate in the nozzle. Faint, streaky, or spotty prints are all common indications of a clog, but a simple cleaning can usually restore proper operation to your HP ink cartridges. Due to infrequent cartridge use, printheads clog. If you go several weeks without printing on a regular basis, your cartridges will eventually dry out and require replacement. Cleaning the printhead can help extend the life of your cartridge and hopefully delay the need for a replacement cartridge! We’ll explain how HP printheads work and how to keep them clean in this guide.
What is the definition of a printhead?
The printhead is a component of the printer that aids in the transfer of ink onto the page. This is accomplished by firing microscopic droplets of ink through numerous printer nozzles to create the desired print. When one of these nozzles becomes clogged, the results are faded or streaky prints.
Which HP printheads are available?
Printheads can be integrated into the printer cartridge or separate from it – it all depends on the HP printer model you own.
Type 1: Cartridges with integrated printheads
Integrated printer cartridges are cartridges that include a printhead. This type incorporates the nozzle plate (printhead) into the cartridge’s side. When you replace one of these printer cartridges, you’re also replacing the printhead, so if you’re having trouble with a particularly streaky cartridge, simply swapping it out for a new one should resolve your print quality issue. HP sells integrated printer cartridges in black and tri-color, and they are frequently used in less expensive Deskjet and ENVY printer models such as the Deskjet 1112 or ENVY 7855.
Examples of integrated ink cartridges:
HP 61, HP 62, HP 63, HP 64, HP 65, and HP 67 series computers
Type 2: Printheads that are integrated
HP printheads integrated into the printer create prints using individual ink cartridges. The printer includes the nozzle plate (printhead) for these types of cartridges, and the cartridges are installed in the printhead to create a print. These types of printheads require replacement after extended use. However, because most printheads cost upwards of $100 and some replacements are difficult to find, it is usually more cost-effective to simply purchase a new printer.
How to clean an HP printhead automatically
The simplest way to resolve your print quality issue is to perform a printer cleaning. Cleaning is included in the software for all HP printer models and is typically located in the “printer maintenance” section of the printer’s display menu. Consult your printer’s manual for instructions specific to your machine.
Printhead cleanings typically take between one and two minutes and require some ink to complete. After you’re finished, print a test page to compare print quality. If the print results appear satisfactory, you may continue printing. If the colours are off, you may need to run the printhead cleaning function 2-4 more times to restore print quality. If you are still experiencing poor print quality after several cleanings, proceed to our manual cleaning instructions. You want to avoid running the cleaning function too frequently because it will deplete the ink in your cartridges.
How to clean an HP printhead manually
Before we continue, it’s important to understand that some HP inkjet printers include a separate printhead from the ink cartridges, while others include printheads integrated into the individual ink cartridges.
Cleaning built-in printheads
Cleaning a built-in printhead manually requires a little more effort. The following steps apply to HP printers with a detachable printhead, such as the HP OfficeJet 8710. This method is also applicable to non-HP printers equipped with integrated printheads.
- A plastic container, a couple of dry paper towels, a lint-free cloth, and filtered or distilled hot water are required supplies.
- Quarter-fold the dry paper towel and place it in the plastic container.
- Pour approximately two inches of hot water over the paper towel to completely submerge it.
- Open the printer and take out all of the ink cartridges.
- While you continue cleaning the printheads, set the cartridges aside on a separate paper towel. Assemble the cartridges with the cartridges facing up on the paper towel.
- Raise the grey latch behind the cartridge carriage. This will allow the printhead to be removed from the printer.
- To remove the printhead from the machine, lift it up and out.
- Hot water should be used to dampen the lint-free cloth.
- Wipe away any excess ink from the printhead nozzle gently.
- Place the printhead in the container with the submerged paper towels. The nozzle should face downward. Take care not to touch the nozzle, as it is easily damaged.
- Allow approximately ten minutes for the printhead to soak. Then remove it from the container and set it aside for fifteen minutes to dry on a dry paper towel. The nozzle should face upward.
- Replacing the printhead in the printer Remember to secure the latch! Then replace the cartridges and run the machine’s cleaning function once more.
Cleaning the printheads contained within ink cartridges
If your printer uses cartridges with an integrated printhead, you can resolve your print quality issue using the “paper towel method.”
- A warm, damp paper towel and a dry paper towel are required supplies.
- Using a warm, damp paper towel or coffee filter, blot the cartridge onto the paper towel, printhead facing down. This will clean the printhead of any dried ink.
- Then, for 2-3 minutes, hold the cartridge with the printhead facing down against a dry paper towel. A clean, dry paper towel will wick away the ink. Avoid wiping the print head, as this may result in damage.
- Replacing the cartridge and attempting to print again If the print quality remains poor at this point, you may need to replace the printer cartridge.
Now that you know how to clean an HP printhead, you have the tools necessary to keep your cartridges in good condition. If you’ve followed these steps and are still experiencing print quality issues, you may need to replace the printhead. This requires purchasing a new printer cartridge for printers that use integrated cartridges.
For printers with an integrated printhead, you’ll need to purchase a brand-new printhead, which can be quite costly. As previously stated, the majority of consumers simply purchase a new printer because it is typically less expensive than a printhead replacement! If you have any questions about cleaning your HP printhead, connect hp printer technician.