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Copier-Multifunction Printer

Factors That Could Affect Your Business Copier

WRITTEN BY
Michelle Lievense

Copier problems are the last thing you or your staff should have to worry about. Your productivity, efficiency, team morale, and bottom line can end up circling the drain when the copier is down. 

Avoid the frustrations and limitations caused by business copier and printer issues. Check out these photocopy machine problems and solutions to keep your office running smoothly. 

1. Not Giving Your Copier Time to Rest

Everyone can get rundown from time to time. Usually, it’s the result of being overworked. The same goes for machines. Copy machines need a little time to rest after large projects and after long days. 

When a business copier hasn’t had time to rest, it can cause the toner to bind with the paper because it is overheating, causing a mess and causing breakages and malfunctions. An overworked machine will also cause significant wear and tear, especially if the work is ongoing.

When taking care of your business copier, be sure to set it to energy-saving mode when it’s not in use. What’s even better is setting the timer, so it automatically switches to energy-saving mode when it hasn’t been in use for 15-minutes. It’s also a good idea to turn the copier off on the weekend and holidays when it won’t be in use. 

Finally, consider adding a second machine to the copy room if your office functions more than five days per week or requires constant use throughout the day. This is particularly important if your machine is tasked with substantial projects or needs to prioritize multiple projects for most of the day.  

2. Improper Density Levels

Density level refers to how light or dark your documents are coming out of the printer or copier. Selecting “draft” mode, for example, will ensure your copier creates results that are less precise and lighter. This is a great way to save toner and limit the wear and tear on your machine. 

However, when the density levels are too high, the results will be very dark. Areas that should be clear of ink may have a dirty look where the machine was bleeding ink or where it was printing shadows from the original project.

Someone may have changed the density controls by accident or adjust for a lighter project that needed different ink levels. It’s an easy problem to fix. All you have to do is alter the copier’s settings until the print looks normal again. 

This simple fix will help ensure better projects as well as save money on toner and copier maintenance.

3. Not Enough Toner

Toner challenges are among the largest sources of frustration when it comes to printer malfunctions, second only to paper jams. 

Every copier needs the right toner to run correctly. Off-brand toner is okay, but be sure it really is rated for your business copier or printer. 

If the copier toner tends to run, it could mean you have the wrong toner. It also means you’re losing money on toner and wasted paper. 

Always check the toner number and rating against the specs provided when you purchased or leased the printer. Also, if the cartridge doesn’t fit perfectly, it’s a good sign that it's the wrong one. Fitting too loose or needing to be forced into place are telltale signs. 

If the print quality is low, it could also be a sign that the toner either isn’t right for your copier or has a problem at the manufacturing level. If this is the case, you can usually show this poor print quality to your manufacturer for a replacement. 

Using the wrong printer toner, even if it fits correctly and seems like it’s working correctly, can cause a number of problems. Aside from being less efficient, the toner could leak or leave residue in the copier, resulting in malfunctions. 

4. Using the Wrong Type of Paper

Nothing frustrates an office team more than paper jams. They cause delays and interruptions to normal work. They can be challenging to clear. And paper jams can cause wear and tear or damage to your office copier. 

The most common cause of paper jams is improper feeding of the printer of copier paper using the feeding tray. The next more common cause is using the wrong copier paper. Every copier will come with specs regarding the right types of paper that are safe to use. 

If the paper is too big or small, too thick or thin, it will be more likely to jam. Be sure to choose the right options, whether you are going with lightweight draft paper or heavyweight paper for high-quality projects.

5. Foreign Objects

Finding foreign objects in your office copier is less common, but it happens more than you may realize. And foreign objects can cause breakdowns, malfunctions, and significant wear and tear. 

If your copier begins to malfunction, check for foreign objects like staples, paperclips, pencil tips, rubber bands, pieces of paper, and other tiny pieces that don’t belong. It’s a good idea to check periodically whether your machine is working correctly or not. 

These objects, especially the sharp ones, can scratch the glass or mirrors inside the machine. Damaged glass means you’ll see lower quality prints. 

A tell-tale sign is a consistent ink mark or lack of ink in the same place on the page on every copy printed. It means the machine is picking up errors and imperfections when scanning the copy. 

Foreign objects can also cause paper jams, wear and tear, increasingly poor quality over time. Some service techs find it useful to keep a small flashlight and magnet on a stick handy to view small crevices and areas where something may have fallen out of view. Keeping items like this nearby will save you money on maintenance calls as well as speed the time to repair the copier. 

Final Thoughts On The Main Factors That Could Affect Your Business Copier

You’ve invested in a quality printer because you need high-quality prints and other services. Regular maintenance is the key to a long life for your business copier. However, knowing how to take ownership of the printer issues and small fixes mentioned here will not only lengthen the life of your business copier but will also save you money on excessive service calls. 

Copier problems can happen for several reasons, but you now have the answers to the most common factors that could affect your business copier. 

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