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print head clogged

Discussion in 'Printing' started by PacNWMike, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. PacNWMike

    PacNWMike Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Dec 5, 2014
    Salish Sea
    guess?
    Epson R1900. Red ink is hopelessly clogged after new cartridge and burning through multiple clean cycles. Epson says tough luck, send it in for service which is hundreds of miles away and mucho dollars. Not worth it although the printer is otherwise fine with not that many pages through it. Just let it sit too long I guess.

    Anyway, anyone use the cleaning cartridges I see advertised? Like this or this
    $85 is a bit much to spend on this old printer but I would consider it if this worked and I could use it over and over...

    Anyone try to clean the heads themselves? And I've heard of people soaking the waste ink tray in ammonia and parking the heads overnight.

    Hate to dump this printer :( but Epson seems to go with the use it and toss it business model.
     
  2. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    Epsons are the worst for this. Gotta use em regularly. I managed to get one more print batch out of a long neglected printer this year, with some work. I unsuccessfully attempted to clean it with cheap ink carts(cheaper than cleaning carts). What worked was soaking a folded up paper towel in 91% ISO alchohol, and wedging it under the print head, so it was in contact with the nozzles. That way I was attacking the dried up clog from both sides with solvent(ink on one side, alchohol on the other). After going through 3 or 4 inky pieces of paper towel, I did some cleaning routines and managed to purge successfully. I was able to run through a full set of inks with no problem, but it was totally clogged again a week later, and is now destined for the trash heap, as I'm in the market for a 24" printer.

    All these consumer models are made to be disposable anyways. They have a limited life, even if the jets never clog. The overflow tank is not replaceable, so when it fills, the printer is done. All cleaning routines and full bleed printing load the overflow tank. It sucks. They don't begin to be replaceable until you step up to the 17" wide printers.
     
  3. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I stopped buying Epson for this exact reason, so I feel for you.

    I did have some luck with soaking the heads in alcohol, but it wasn't a permanent fix, similar to Ken's experience.

    As much as the ink costs, at some time you just have to cut your losses after running a full set through to unclog it just to get a few pages of real prints.


    This might be an interesting option for you: Canon PRO 100 PIXMA Wireless Professional Inkjet Photo 6228B002
    Canon has their huge rebates going on their Pro 100 13x19 printer. $130 Net, after mail-in rebate.
     
  4. Tenpenny

    Tenpenny Mu-43 Regular

    171
    Mar 16, 2015
    Nampa, Idaho
    Brent Watkins
    I work around a lot ink printers. Clogged print heads are a constant pain in the butt in almost every brand. Some of the newer and nicer models have begun to add microcirculation for the inks and added circulation cycles for dormant times, and those machines do have fewer issues with clogged printheads. However, if the machine is unplugged for an extended time, all bets are off.

    Since, we don't spend our own personal money on these machines, perhaps we are a bit loose and free about it, so bear that in mind.

    We usually remove the printhead if possible. Then scrub the printhead nozzles with some warm and slightly soapy water. Most times we try to use a lint free cloth but, we've also used some crappy shop rags or paper towels or whatever we have laying around. (We have also used alcohol sometimes if it makes a person more comfortable but, it really doesn't work as well for getting that old crap loosened up and out of there). After a good scrubbing, we slap the printhead back into the machine and print some images that are heavy in the color that was clogged. The print quality sucks for a few sheets but, returns to normal print quality once the soapy water is purged.

    It doesn't always work if the pens have been clogged for a long long time. But, most times our method works just fine and the printer is none the worse for wear.
     
  5. PacNWMike

    PacNWMike Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Dec 5, 2014
    Salish Sea
    guess?
    Yeah, I missed the $50 deal on the Canon pixma100 and $130 still isn't bad... Isn't this a dye printer though? I'd rather stay with pigment.

    Anyway, I'm going to fill the tray with ammonia or alcohol, put a paper towel over it and soak over night. Does soapy water work with pigment ink?
     
  6. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    All my research concluded that Epson might be a little worse than Canon in clogging, but only by a hair. You just plain have to use the darn things regularly.
    Epson supports media up to 1.5mm thick in their newest big units, while Canon reduced the capacity to half that. So personally, I'm stuck shopping for an Epson for my next unit.

    Pigment only for me in the future. It's vastly superior to dye, and they both clog, so why not get the better prints.
     
  7. Tenpenny

    Tenpenny Mu-43 Regular

    171
    Mar 16, 2015
    Nampa, Idaho
    Brent Watkins

    Yep. Works with pigment ink. In fact the vast majority of the printers we work with are pigment ink machines. I feel for ya. That situation is frustrating beyond belief.
     
  8. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Dye ink has greater color depth and saturation than Pigment Ink and can match the longevity when used on the right paper. Canon rates their prints for over 100 years when used on their paper.

    That has not been my experience. I live in a desert state and none of my Canons have clogged. Both of my Epsons dried and clogged if they sat for a few weeks.
     
  9. PacNWMike

    PacNWMike Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Dec 5, 2014
    Salish Sea
    guess?
    OK I'll try soapy water next but I don't think the heads come off this turkey easily if at all. Hence the soak in ammonia which I can put in the tray with an eyedropper. I sure would like to use up the set of new carts I have sitting in a box.

    Was looking at the pixma-pro-10 for $450 through tonight. I haven't needed thick media...yet. Which Epson are you looking at?
     
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  10. PakkyT

    PakkyT Mu-43 Top Veteran

    764
    Jun 20, 2015
    New England
    I never print enough to keep print heads clear so I have gone thru a number of ink jet printers over the years. As such, I have given up on them and bought a monochrome Brother laser printer. Cheap, never clogs, toner cartridge lasts forever. Suits the family for the majority of our printer needs. If I need a color print out, I will do it at work, and when I need a real photo printed, then I order online and/or print at the local drugstore. When the kids need those five 4x6s for some poster project, send online to the local CVS or Walgreens, then go pick them up 20 minutes later. Costs all of a buck or two.

    If you do opt to use an inkjet printer, use your Android, iPhone, tablet, Google calendar, etc. and set up a recurring weekly reminder to print out a test page to keep the printer clear. Otherwise even when you intent to print each week, what will always happen is you forget, it goes 4 weeks and then you find you need to print something and have to spend a half hour wasting ink and paper trying to clear the printer.
     
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  11. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    I need pigments for transfers, and I definitely find them superior for B&W. Epson is claiming 200 and 400 years on their newest inks. All the prints I've made on dye printers over the years are fading. Maybe this has changed, but I don't care to be locked into a certain paper combination to get the longevity pigments offer as default.

    As to the canon vs epson thing, I think either you've been lucky, or the dry air gets on well with canon's design. I've had terrible luck with both over the years, and HP too, back when they were competing in the upper end of the consumer photo market. Here in the midwest it's 60-80% humidty for a good deal of the year, then dry when I run the furnace in the cold months. Printers only put up with it for me if I'm using them every couple days. Otherwise, every print session must start with a test pattern and head cleaning. :(
     
  12. faithblinded

    faithblinded Mu-43 Top Veteran

    929
    Nov 25, 2014
    Cleveland, OH
    Ken
    I'm looking at the Epson P7000. It's a 24" unit, with their largest set of pigment inks. One step down would be the P800, a 17" unit with 2 less inks than the P7000. I like the idea of the 17" unit, but the roll media adapter is an added cost, and the availability of 17" roll media is significantly less than that of 24" and 44" roll media. Ink costs are also considerably higher, compared to the 24" unit. It's all a bunch of tradeoffs one way or the other I guess.

    The canons I would be considering would be the same, 17" and 24" pigment based. I can't recall the models. But since I want to experiment with my own papers and printing on thick non paper media, I need all the room I can get for media thickness. That means Epson is my path.
     
  13. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    I'm showing 11% right now. :eek:

    upload_2016-8-31_14-41-29.
     
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  14. PacNWMike

    PacNWMike Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    Dec 5, 2014
    Salish Sea
    guess?
    Update: cut a small square of paper towel to fit the head tray and used a syringe to saturate it with ammonia and parked the heads on it for the afternoon. Did a clean cycle this afternoon and it seems to be printing fine now This whole process burned through a fair amount of ink but I may get some more use out of this rig.
     
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  15. Clint

    Clint Mu-43 All-Pro

    Apr 22, 2013
    San Diego area, CA
    Clint
    When I had my printers I set up a batch file on my computer that ran once and day and sent a photo to the printer, especially with bulk continuous ink systems. I think it was LuminousLandscape where I originally found out about doing this - what a saver.

    Now I just use custom labs.