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Blocked nozzles on printer

juliasdream
Grafter
Posts: 260
Registered: 09-06-2007

Blocked nozzles on printer

I had a blocked nozzle on my Epson Photo R300
I bought a cleaning cartridge for Magenta which was the worst one for blockage and it improved things a little but all the cleaning runs used up a huge amount of ink from the other cartridges.
Well Magenta isnt perfect yet but its better than it was.
The problem now is that another colour has become blocked too so I may need to buy a cleaning cartridge for that one too. Not to mentiuon that most colours are now running low.
I think its all caused by a certain compatible ink I bought cheaply through Amazon marketplace.
All this cleaning + wasted ink is proving to be quite expensive
What I would like to do is find out what the fluid is that is used for cleaning. I'm guessing it may be isopropanol Alcohol.
If I were sure what it was I could inject empty cartridges with it. One for each colour and run the cleaning program several times using only cleaner all round and no ink untill all nozzles were thoroughly cleaned. Then start afresh with ink I know is good
Could anyone please advise me as to which produce I would need to buy along with a syringe fo inject it?
13 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

Any electrical contact cleaner is normally all that is required. The heads block due to lack of use and all printers do it to some extent. Often the cheapest way is to print out a small page every week to stop the ink drying. You need a small picture that uses all the colors and use it weekly or fortnightly depending how long it takes to bloke up.
It is a waste but normally cheaper than cleaning it which takes a lot of ink if you can find something usefully to print its even better (maybe £20 notes)
Community Veteran
Posts: 17,785
Thanks: 1,612
Fixes: 19
Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

My solution to the problem is similar to Samurai.... however, I have made up a "colour test page", with the words. THIS IS RED THIS IS RED THIS IS RED THIS IS BLUE THIS IS BLUE THIS IS BLUE THIS IS YELLOW THISIS YELLOW, to completely cover an A4 page.  I use Capital letters for maximum coverage, and also use the larger font sizes usually 36 or similar, Using "big momma" or "pleasantly plump" or other Big letter fonts.
Edit..... Colour the text accordingly ! !  Huh
This will obviously show "duff" lines up, and also duff colours.... If you have one particular colour that is giving problem, just change the colour of the whole page and run it through several times. 
If you look on the net, you can buy the "cleaning fluid" in bulk from 250 ml upwards  Most of the ink supplier companies do it.... then you could do your "cleaning" with the cartridge and my "Colour Test Page"
If you have any other printer problems, have a look at www.fixyourownprinter.com
Good Luck Wink
pd
Grafter
Posts: 235
Registered: 09-05-2008

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

I do something similar, but rather than just use text, which doesn't always show up all faults I use a block of the one colour.  Just put one sheet of paper in and as soon as you see that the banding has cleared you can eject the page and reset the printer so that you don't use more ink than is necessary and you don't waste the other colours by doing cleaning cycles,  but I re-fill my own cartridges anyway so it doesn't really cost much.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

For the information of most of the posters who obviously don't use Epson printers - the software which comes with the printer includes a nozzle check facility which prints a series of monocolour blocks across the paper which shows up problems and the extent of them.
One further thing - there is often a nice little device in the printer which monitors how many cleaning cycles you have done and when it thinks the little pad which collects the ink/cleaning fluid is full it happily announces that the printer is knackered and must be returned to an Epson specialist for servicing. I did try the DIY method of resetting the system with the end result of a totally knackered printer and 4 unused ink cartridges which had to go to recycling.
Community Veteran
Posts: 17,785
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

Quote

I did try the DIY method of resetting the system

Is this "documented" anywhere?  or did you just "have a go" ?  I would have thought that there would have been something on the website I previously mentioned that covered this.....
Either way, (your DIY, or return to Epson)  you only lost the cartridges, (which you could have used in a replacement of same model?)
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

Epson won't help - this was an unofficial download to reset the firmware which sometimes (usually) works but in my case didn't.
Regarding using the cartridges - you obviously haven't had a Epson - every time they bring out a new model range they change the cartridge type and as my printer was obsolete I had no option.
This is one reason my new printer is a Canon - although I can't use non Canon cartridges the print head is replaceable and because of the system where the printer recycles the ink back to store when the printer is switched off I haven't had a problem with blocked jets yet.
Community Veteran
Posts: 17,785
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

No. I have not had an epson printer... don`t know what it is, but just had a "feeling" not to buy one, and have been with HP (use a deskjet 840c & 5900) both have the print head in the cartridge. The site I referred to, was/is not anything to do with epson, or any other manufacturer.  it is a "forum" type site, with some knowledgable people on there.... you just register, and log in, then ask a question, give as much detail as possible, a couple of hours later check in again, to see if you have a reply..... Has been very helpful to me on a couple of occasions.... Just wondered if you had got your DIY fix from there...
http://www.fixyourownprinter.com
Community Veteran
Posts: 7,329
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Registered: 30-08-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

Agree with Oldjim. As I've mentioned many times before, I've almost always used Canon printers (6 in total over a number years) except one Epsom 6x4 photo printer (c**p!!) and I've never had to do any form of nozzle cleaning, however I do only use Canon cartridges. The recent thoughts about using refills or pattern cartridges has so far come to nothing. And yes, one of my printers that I only use for occasional A4 photo printing (PIXMA 4300, 6 cartridge) that sometimes can be several months between printing sessions, has never shown any reluctance to print correctly.
Experience; is something you gain, just after you needed it most.

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juliasdream
Grafter
Posts: 260
Registered: 09-06-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

There does exist a cleaning cartridge which is in fact an ink cartridge filled with the cleaning liquid. It costs around £3 for each colour so 6 cartridges would come to £18
Has anyone any idea what the product is?
I suspect its isopropanol acohol but cant be sure
If I can find the right product I could inject used cartridges with it
VileReynard
Seasoned Pro
Posts: 10,999
Thanks: 265
Fixes: 11
Registered: 01-09-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

You could always try a cotton bud in conjunction with white spirit or vodka.
Drink the liquid that isn't required.

Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

You drink white spirit - I am astonished  Crazy
Superuser
Superuser
Posts: 2,885
Thanks: 579
Fixes: 5
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

You waste vodka - I'm even more astonished  Crazy
bubbalicious
Grafter
Posts: 174
Registered: 26-09-2007

Re: Blocked nozzles on printer

I had a similar problem on a Canon and was wasting so much ink trying to clear the clogs!  I was thinking about having to buy a new printhead when someone suggested  this -
It worked brilliantly but was on a Canon, and was so simple to do, its universal to all your colours, so cheaper than buying individual cartridges!
the link telling all about it is - http://www.powerklin.co.uk/ and there are a couple of places online you can buy it! 
Good Luck,
Have you read this - http://www.northlight-images.co.uk/article_pages/inkjet_cleaning.html