asked Apr 7, 2005 at 8:12am
Epson Epson Stylus CX5400

clogged cx5400

Wow I am so thrilled with my discovery. These printers seem to become trouble some after about a year of printing.

I was trying to help a customer with a very clogged CX 5400 Epson printer. She prints often and understands head-cleanings.

She was getting lines through her black and the tri-colors were not printing much at all.

I installed and ran cleanings with a black "cleaning cartridge" with limited success. I then took all the cartridges out and wiped around the pins with a q-tip and blew some air through the nozzles. Still no success.

But when I looked into the printer I noticed a small reservoir on the bottom left. If was over-flowing with a very thick residual ink. I gently "shoveled" out this area with q-tips. (It took about 10 swipes to get the black "gunk" out.)

I then re-installed my cartridges - did a head cleaning and so far I am getting great printing results.

I believe because the reservoir was so full of the black "gunk" the ink had no where to go during a head-cleaning and was smudging - or pooling back onto the cartridges.

I have done about 5 tests and it seems to be the solution to the problem.

Gook Luck!
Edie: Thanks for the information, its always good to know what seems to help correct problems...I do want to worn you that its very easy to damage the tiny nozzles and the small internal tubes that are attached to those nozzles [inside the actual printhead assembly], when using air pressure. Its even easy to damage those nozzles by applying to much pressure on the plunger of a syringe, when actually trying to inject the "Epson Print Head Cleaning Solution". Especially if you use to much force on that plunger, while trying to force the solution in, or trying to force out a possible clog. Clogs have to be dissolved from the inside of the nozzles and that sometimes requires the solution to be installed for several days, on a really bad clog...Denny Conway
by Denny Conway on Apr 7, 2005 at 10:13am Add comment
Do you have a special cleaning solution? or do you use a cleaning cartridge? - Anonymous
I also have a CX5400, Just the other day it was working fine but my ink was running out so I bought new cartridges. Well when I put them in, it would print but the page would come out completly blank. Is this the problem you had? Should I clean out the small reservoir as well and then clean and see what happens. Cause I've wasted so much ink already just cleaning the head.
by Anonymous on Apr 9, 2005 at 4:06pm Add comment
Try reading this page inkjetprintethelp.us/duraink.html and see if that helps.

by unknown on Apr 9, 2005 at 4:38pm Add comment
I'm sorry the link doesn't work. But have you ever heard an cleaner ink cartridge for the cx 5400? On Ebay theres a person that sells them...But I don't know if it'll work...
Thank you for your time
by Anonymous on Apr 9, 2005 at 5:30pm Add comment
http://inkjetprinterhelp.us/duraink.html is the correct url the first was mis spelled. And the cleaning cartridges are useless if you have blank pages.

I hope this helps,

by unknown on Apr 9, 2005 at 7:14pm Add comment
Ok, I see how to fix it...Thanks, will try to...If it doesn't work, im throwing it and going with HP. - Anonymous
I would avoid buying an HP just now as they have very small cartridges. The new canon pixma series are just great. They are very economical on ink and produce beautiful photo results. Epsons are great when they work but they are fussy.

Good Luck to you.
by Anonymous on Apr 11, 2005 at 7:33pm Add comment
Anonymous: I don't normally recommend using cleaning cartridges, especially if you have a possible print head clog. You might want to try using the "Epson Stylus Head Cleaning Solution", available through fixyourownprinter.com, at http://www.fixyourownprinter.com/kits/epson , but it will only help, if there is an actual clogged printhead assembly. When it opens, click-on "Epson Stylus Head Cleaning Solution" thats listed for your particular printer. The epson solution sells for around $10.00 plus shipping. It includes a syringe and some epson printhead cleaning solution, which is designed to dissolve most clogs, especially if you were using epson inks. This is the same chemical used by epson in their service department. You can try it if you want to and see if you can get the printhead nozzles to open up again, but that will only help if they are actually clogged. It was basically designed by Epson Company for use on their older models of ink jet printers, but people have been using it on the newer models, with success reported. IF YOU DECIDE TO, TRY THE "EPSON STYLUS HEAD CLEANING SOLUTION", JUST REMEMBER: 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. If you remove the Top Cover Assembly, then you can leave the printhead assembly parked in its normal home position, at the far right side. Then any ink & fluids that are purged during the cleaning, will normally travel thru the cleaning station hoses, to the waste ink pads. If you have the "Print Cartridge Holder Assembly", positioned away from the home position, then you will need to slide strips of paper towels or coffee filters under that assembly, to soak up any expelled ink and fluids, or it can get all over. 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", as well as general "Printhead Cleaning Instructions", that is available to view at http://www.inkjetprinterhelp.us/EKR.html ...Good Luck! Denny Conway
by Denny Conway on Apr 12, 2005 at 9:59am Add comment
I fixed it and now its printing with the picture with lines in it...What am I doing wrong?
by Anonymous on Apr 15, 2005 at 6:55pm Add comment
If you are getting lines then you will need to clean the print head. Try running the print head cleaning utility a few times. If that does not help then you can buy the cleaning solution from here http://www.fixyourownprinter.com/kits/epson/K89

I hope this helps,

by unknown on Apr 15, 2005 at 9:18pm Add comment
Anonymous: It could even be as simple as a failing or bad ink cartridge, or even a possible clog in the printhead assembly. If running several sets of print head cleaning cycles and nozzle tests does not seem to help, then you might want to try that cleaning solution, like WES mentioned. However, normally when I see horizontal lines [side to side on page], banding, or colored lines being printed across photos, its usually do to a failing "Printhead Assembly", but no way to really know for sure. Generally speaking, cleaning will not usually help for long if it is a hardware/parts problem, that is actually causing those types of lines. If a colored line goes past the border of the actual printed image, that usually also indicates a failing printhead assembly...Here is some previously posted info by EDDY on 12/29/2004 @ 04:20:21 Re: epson and lines. Here is a procedure to confirm that the print head is failing: print the same picture at a lower resolution than the resolution which the problem occurs. Sometimes the problem does not occur at 720dpi or lower. If the problem does not occur then the print head is failing...There's a slight possibility that a build-up of dried ink, dust, dirt, lint and hair, that has possibly built-up on the bottom side and backside areas of the Printhead Assembly, can sometimes cause the "Printhead Nozzles" to fire crooked and that can cause a colored line to appear. The only way to find out, is to clean those two areas, just to eliminate that possibility. If you clean those areas and the lines are still there, then you can assume that its a Hardware/Part Failure thats causing the line problem. I ended up posting my in-depth information, for cleaning the underside & backside areas of the Print Head Assembly, on 4/7/05. You can see that in-depth info at http://www.fixyourownprinter.com/forums/printer/28244 [simply click on that link and it will usually open for you], on the fixyourownprinter.com , Printer Repair Site. There are two separate posted replies, listing GENERAL INFO #1 and GENERAL INFO #2. You may want to perform that in-depth cleaning, to at least eliminate those very common problem areas. I hope that in-depth cleaning information, actually helps to correct your printers problem...Although its a lot of information to read and to follow, its not actually that hard to perform the needed servicing and cleaning. That info is posted step by step, so its usually not that hard to actually follow the steps in the actual cleaning procedure...Good Luck! Denny Conway

by Denny Conway on Apr 18, 2005 at 1:41pm Add comment
This is new! Customer service actually hung up on me. No polite good-byes, no have a great day, no thank you for calling Epson. If you plan on calling, be prepared to yell and scream before they hung up. I was polite and lost my opportunity.

Apparently, this is a common problem, it is not easily fixable by home repair. Epson even has a court ordered settlement for it (I found out too late.

The Canadian customer service rep's name is Mary and that she was the supervisor so there's no one else to talk to. Tech support previously had told me that it would take 4 weeks to repair after that they'll give me a 90 day warranty. How much you want to bet that the machine will conk out on the 91st day! I called Mary to see if I could get a loaner for the 4 weeks while my job suffers without a printer. You don't ask, you don't know right? Well, she hung up!

Enough of the lousy product. I am in a position to recommend printers to about 2,000 employees. At least 2,000 people will never have to go through what I did.

Best solution, tell everyone you know and tell them to tell everyone they know not to buy Epson ever again. Thanks for all your tips, at least I get a free repair. Whoopee!!!
by angryuser on Feb 12, 2007 at 9:36am Add comment
My problem seems unique in that my CX5400 has lost yellow only. All other colors print just fine. The tube is conected. I have ran nurmouse cleanings. But still no yellow whats so ever.
by Havoc on Nov 3, 2008 at 5:44pm Add comment
Had an Epson CX5400, got clogged up, found 8000 posts (no exaggeration) about the same problem, got no satisfaction from tech support or customer service. Piece of crap.
Switched to HP, happy since.
by dricks on Dec 12, 2008 at 9:20pm Add comment