unknown

asked Dec 17, 2004 at 11:43pm
Epson Epson LQ 850

Epson SC 850 won't print black.

I have recently picked up a Stylus Color 850, which other than some clogged nozzles, tested OK when I picked it up. The previous owner had some clone (MSE brand) cartridges in it, which doubtless contributed to clogging.
After numerous cleaning cycles that showed progressive improvement, the black nozzle check test pattern took on a spattery, 'feathering' look, then black ceased printing altogether.
I took this to indicate black cartridge was running dry, but couldn't swap-out cartridge until 'out of ink' prompt several cleanings later.
I picked up the professional cleaning kit from fixyourownprinter.com, disconnected the printer from my Mac, did the soak-and-wait routine with the solvent, then removed the cartridge and used the syringe to run solvent through the fitting nozzle as per instructions.
No luck. I even swapped-in another cartridge, nothing. Colors still print and test OK when I run a self-test, but black doesn't print at all.
Laser Moe suggests the black print heads may have gone bad, but they were working OK before this turn of events.
The printer remains disconnected from my computer, problem is not software-related.

What the heckydarn's going on here? Are the print heads shot? Are there any other tricks that might get this thing fully-functional?
You've done all the right things and still nothing. Epson heads don't like a lot of the non-Epson inks available. Unless someone knows better, I would invest in a new printhead.

Trev
by Trev Pearson on Dec 18, 2004 at 12:52am Add comment
Try warming the solution a little. It will get a little cloudy when it is warm enough thet re-inject the solution and let it sit for a few minutes then flush the entire print head again. (clolr and black) Remember to inject the solution very slowly to avoid damaging the print head. Then run a cleaning cycle to prime the print head of ink then try printing a page. If that does not help then let the solution soak for a while.

I have a Stylus Photo 700 that I had to let sit for a week before it cleared. But to works fine now.

I hope this helps,

Wes.
by unknown on Dec 18, 2004 at 7:49am Add comment
> You've done all the right things and still
> nothing. Epson heads don't like a lot of the
> non-Epson inks available. Unless someone
> knows better, I would invest in a new
> printhead.

Lets see... New print head $40-$80.
Used SC 850 $20...

Actually, it was a replacement for a damaged SC 800, and I had to pick up a replacement for the replacement (another SC 800) to get my Xmas cards printed.
So now this one's basically a doorstop, but it'd be nice if I could get it up and running again, since it was heading in that direction before it decided to stop printing black.
by Anonymous on Dec 18, 2004 at 9:43pm Add comment
> You've done all the right things and still
> nothing. Epson heads don't like a lot of the
> non-Epson inks available. Unless someone
> knows better, I would invest in a new
> printhead.

Lets see... New print head $40-$80.
Used SC 850 $20...

Actually, it was a replacement for a damaged SC 800, and I had to pick up a replacement for the replacement (another SC 800) to get my Xmas cards printed.
So now this one's basically a doorstop, but it'd be nice if I could get it up and running again, since it was heading in that direction before it decided to stop printing black.
by unknown on Dec 18, 2004 at 9:44pm Add comment
Roboclown: If that Epson Cleaning Solution does not open up that Black Printhead Assembly, then either its failing or the Main Board is failing, but no way to really know. Its even possible that those Non-Epson Ink Cartridges could have even damaged those Printhead Nozzles. Its also possible that you could have damaged the nozzles, when you tried to inject that solution, if you used force on the plunger of the syringe. Just so you will know: The "nozzles" inside the printhead assembly can be easily damaged by using to much force on the plunger of the syringe. Damage can even occur when you are using the Epson Stylus Head Cleaning Solution method, if you actually try to force the fluid thru the nozzle. To much force/pressure can damage the little tubes inside the Nozzle Assembly and then it will never work again. One individual printhead nozzle is so tiny, that it will not accept a human hair. You can see why they can get clogged so easily, or even why the nozzles can be so easily damaged. The correct method is to use the syringe to add the fluid into the nozzle and then leave the fluids set inside the nozzle for a day or two, to try and dissolve a possible bad clog. Sometimes you might have to use the fluids several times to be able to dissolve the clog in the printhead nozzles. Sometimes the clog will never dissolve, or it actually damages the nozzles. The longer the clog has been in, the worse it is to remove. Again, if the cleaning fluids don't help, then its generally time to invest in a new printer. In some more expensive printers, you may want to get an estimate to replace the printhead assembly, but as a general rule, its not really economical to do in the smaller Epson Ink Jet style printers. You can generally buy a new small printer cheaper than you can have your old one repaired for. EXAMPLE: The printhead assembly in the "C80" Printer sells for around $120 to $130. There is a REVIEW of the Printhead Cleaning Solution kit, available to view at http://www.inkjetprinterhelp.us/EKR.html ...Good Luck! Denny Conway
by Denny Conway on Dec 20, 2004 at 1:16pm Add comment
It's conceivable that, even as gentle as I was in running cleaning fluid through heads, I may still have damaged them.
That being the case, it would seem, thre's nothing to lose with a little experimentation.
With both cartridges removed, heads unseated, and printer unpowered, I put a strip of paper towel under print area, and very gently ran additional cleaning fluid through all heads - I've found that if you slowly rotate syringe plunger as you press, in a 'screwing' motion, you can press it much more gently and slowly - so I kept running fluid through heads until it was coming out clear on the towel, then I re-cleaned the head "sponges" and re-parked the heads. I figure the heads should now be very nearly clean, or totally shot.
by unknown on Dec 22, 2004 at 11:31am Add comment
RoboClown: Generally speaking, your right. If fluids run thru the Printhead Nozzles, but they still won't print out any ink, then usually either the Printheads are failing or the Main Board is failing. Especially as there was some ink printing out, prior to the actual use of the "Epson Printhead Cleaning Solution"...Denny Conway
by Denny Conway on Dec 22, 2004 at 11:38am Add comment
> Generally speaking, your right. If fluids run
> thru the Printhead Nozzles, but they still
> won't print out any ink, then usually either the
> Printheads are failing or the Main Board is
> failing. Especially as there was some ink
> printing out, prior to the actual use of the
> "Epson Printhead Cleaning Solution"

Well, previous cart apparently ran dry before all that. Didn't know trick about unplugging during startup, so had to run test print until printer prompted for replacement, so could have been serious clogging of dry ink. That's where cleaning kit came to play. This would be consistant with large amount of black ink flushed out in yesterday's thorough cleaning.
Timing's pretty fishy for a head failure, and no indication problem is logic board, but last month's been an exercise in bad timing and Murphy's Law:
Every year, I end up getting my Xmas cards out way-late, so this year I generated art 5 weeks ahead of time, so naturally my SC 800 goes belly-up (with help of third-party ink and incorrect instructions in "cleaning cartridge". Lesson learned: use only Epson cartridges and syringe-type cleaning kit)
So I go through two weeks of frustration finding replacement (the SC 850 in question) and then another hour picking replacement up when it decided not to run self-diagnostic before seller and I finally tricked it into printing something from his laptop.
I take it home, run several cleaning and nozzle check cycles, and black cart runs dry and stops working after replacement and cleaning (described previously). Back to square one.
In desparation, I pick up a third (SC 800) that tested OK (needed cleaning) at thrift shop, and paper loading mechanism stops working when I set it up at home!
After thorough dismantling (and learning a lot about how Epson inkjets are put together), I find tiny chunk of plastic wedged in roller assembly, have to further dismantle to fish it out, reassemble, cleaning, and got it working.
Then these random horizontal black lines start appearing in prints, ruining about 60\% of prints. No choice but to just keep printing, just use what's usable.
After another 20 pages, problem mostly goes away on its own.
Finally got my Xmas cards a week before Xmas.
And only THEN, after weeks of printer hell and troubleshooting and buying two printers and more troubleshooting, after getting the SC 800 that replaced the SC 850 (that in turn replaced the original SC 800) back up and running, does a client who owes me a wad of money offers me his SC 3000 as barter.
Arrgh!
It's been educational, but that's an education I really could have done without.
by unknown on Dec 23, 2004 at 6:14pm Add comment