How to Clean a Clogged Printer Head

Clogged printer heads are a definite hassle to all printer owners. It is not just because clogged printer heads greatly affect the quality of the printing job done on the affected printers, but they can eventually lead to damage to the printer. It is very important to clean out printer heads when they are clogged, but it would be a lot better if we conduct preventive maintenance on our printers to keep them from developing clogged printer heads.

Clearing Clogs from a Printer Head

Most printers these days have systems built into them that allow them to clean their printer heads. This is done by initiating the printer’s cleaning cycles. Ideally, printer cleaning cycles must be started up once a week to prevent the printer head from getting clogged.

The downside to performing the printer cleaning cycles is that it wastes a lot of ink. We all know how expensive printer ink cartridges can get, and the printer cleaning cycles are not an efficient way to use printer ink.

There are other, ink-efficient ways to be able to clean printer heads that will prevent their clogging just as effectively. One such way is to brush the printer heads with Q-tips soaked in water. Sources vary on whether alcohol would be more effective than water, but in the opinion of some printer resources, alcohol can be harmful to printer heads and should thus be avoided.

Another way of preventing clogged printer heads is to buy a cleaning kit and use it regularly on your printer. A typical cleaning kit usually has a tube of ammonia that you can spray on the printer head and remove the dried ink.

Preventing Printer Head Clogging

Cleaning clogged printer heads can be a real hassle, but the condition is very much preventable. The main method of preventing printer heads from getting clogged is to use the printer. In fact, a lot of experts are saying that it is better to print one colorful page a week than to run a printer cleaning cycle because doing so uses a lot less ink. In general, using the printer prevents the ink in the printer cartridges to dry up. Ink that has dried up is the main cause of clogging.

Keeping the printer free from dirt and debris also helps a lot in preventing the printer heads from getting clogged. However, dirt and debris should never be cleaned from the printer using a vacuum cleaner because it can cause the circuitry of the printer to get fried. When that happens, you would have a bigger problem than simply dealing with clogged printer heads.

Turning the printer off when it is not in use also saves the printer head from getting clogged with dried ink. Leaving the printer on keeps the ink in the cartridge warm and makes them bleed onto the printer head.

If you need to store your printer away, it would be best to take the printer cartridge out. Also, never touch the printer head with oily or dirty hands. Doing thus will leave skin oil on the printer head and add to the possibility of it getting clogged.

This Article is written by John C Arkin, contributor of PrintCountry Articles.

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