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What to do when you have encountered a paper jam

Dec-19th-2012

The sight of paper jams makes us feel doomed. Printer jams are inevitable but definitely not irreparable. Here’s how you can get over your nightmare of “paper jams”.

1. Turn the printer off: After a pause of few minutes turn it back on. Some printers tend to clear the jam during the start-up cycle. In case of laser printers, you will have to wait few additional seconds to allow the fuser to cool down before getting your hands inside the printer.

2. Refer to the manual: Many printers can sense the jam and provide you guidance on how to fix it. Also, refer to your printer’s manual for detailed guidance. If your printer is not programmed to offer you guidance then try to locate the jam yourself.

3. Check everywhere for the paper: Lift all the covers and trays, and check near the Ink Cartridges to find any paper or paper scraps which are out of place. If you find any piece of paper lodged at a place where it’s not supposed to be then gently and cautiously pull it out in the forward direction. Do not struggle with the printer’s parts.
While removing the scraps if you happen to damage any mechanical piece, then cease the job and call for professional assistance.

4. Turn the printer on: Once the job is done, reset the cartridges, adjust the covers and trays, and turn on the printer. The printers usually reset automatically. If the printer is still indicating a jam, run a thorough check again. Make sure all the doors are properly closed and all the covers are in place. You may be required to press the ‘Ready’ or ‘Start’ button.

5. Your printer should be ‘Online’ in order to deliver prints: Make sure your printer is online; a green light indicates if the printer is online. Some printers are programmed to complete the unfinished task, for others you will have to send the print command again.

In order to enjoy uninterrupted printing, use only one kind of paper at a time. Do not overload your paper tray. It should be loaded in an orderly manner and not haphazardly. Make sure to convey to your printer about the kind of paper you are using. Most printers offer a drop-down list from where you can select the paper-type and its quality.

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