Computer Basics/Printing/Printer problems

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Identifying printer problems

When a printer starts up, one or more lights usually start flashing. This should stop once the printer is ready to print, and a steady green light indicator or "Ready" light indicator will be displayed on the printer.

Common problems with printer hardware include:

  • being out of paper
  • lack of toner
  • a printer drum or paper feed has become stuck.

Depending on the make of printer these sorts of problems would be indicated by a flashing light, no lights, or an error message being displayed. An example of an error message when a printer is out of paper might be "Load A4" or "Paper tray is empty". Once you have identified the problem, check the printer manual or someone who has used the printer previously, to find out how to fix it.