Fifteen years ago, opening the hood and cleaning the interior of your printer—unclogging inkjet print nozzles, wiping down gears and rotors, vacuuming up dust and grime—was standard operating procedure for those wishing to extend printer life. Unfortunately, while things may have often looked cleaner before the hood was reclosed, in fact sensitive parts had been damaged, dust had been blown about rather than removed, and printer life had been shortened, not extended.
By contrast, many printers today are typically self-cleaning. Often, the hood is bolted shut—it’s not even possible to open the printer and poke around inside. Printers just work, without any need for cleaning or repairs. There’s no need to replace parts—only paper and ink. And when a printer finally wears out, purchasing an affordable, high-quality new printer is far and away the most cost-effective response.
Still, there are steps you can take to extend the life of your printer. For instance…
Keep your printer plugged in.
As mentioned above today’s modern printers are mostly self cleaning and need little to no maintenance, but in order for the printer to conduct self cleaning it requires power. It will wake itself up and conduct a self clean and go back into standby mode. If your printer is unable to conduct a self clean then the printer heads stand a chance of packing up due to the ink drying and blocking the tiny nozzles the ink feeds through.
Put a cover over it
Protect your printer from dust and hair, this is a printer killer working its way into the printers fine parts. Paper clips, pens, pencils and coins often find there way inside causing paper jams that destroy a perfectly working printer. Pests like ants also find a nice cozy home inside destroying the electronics.
Use Quality Paper
There’s good paper—quality multipurpose or recycled paper, or paper made specifically for laser printing or special jobs like photos, glossy brochures, and iron-on transfers. And there’s bad paper, often made of ground-up newsprint, which leaves an excess of dust behind inside your printer, is more prone to jamming, and results in lower-quality print jobs. Good paper requires only a minimal additional investment, and is more than worth it if you want to produce higher-quality documents and extend the life of your printer. Keep your paper stored in a clean dry area preventing dust and moisture collection.