FIX: My printer is making black lines on paper

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and driver troubleshooting. When he's not tackling... Read more
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Printer making black lines
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Printers making black lines on paper is a fairly common problem. It’s something that you are likely to come across printers of any make or type, including laser or inkjet printers. That said, resolving the issue is quite easy and can be done in just a few minutes.

Fix the issue of printers causing black lines on paper

1. Clean the rollers

Clean the printer roller to deal with printer making black lines on paper

  1. Made of soft rubber material, rollers act to move the paper inside the printer for the print to take place.
  2. However, any dust particles here can be enough for black lines to appear on the prints.
  3. So, the thing to do here is to clean the rollers gently using lint free cloth.
  4. You can also use a soft brush moistened with some isopropyl alcohol for the cleaning act, especially if it’s hard to reach with your hands.
  5. Clean the transfer belt as well if your printer has one.
  6. You might also be required to replace the roller if cleaning the same does not solve the issue.

Note: You need to be extremely gentle with the rollers and transfer belt as any damage to either will only aggravate the problem. Preferably, wear gloves so as not to end up damaging either.


2. Replace the drum

Replacing the drum is often the best solution if printer is making black lines on paper

  1. This is more applicable to laser printers where the drum is used to sort the print on to the paper.
  2. However, even a speck of dust on the drum can be enough to cause black lines as the print misses out on the portion where the dust is.
  3. Replace the drum if you are able to or replace the toner if the drum is part of it, as is sometimes the case.
  4. Unfortunately, this isn’t quite a simple job and you should seek expert help if you can’t manage it on your own.

3. Clean or replace the fuser

Cleaning the printer fuser can help if your printer is making black lines on paper

  1. A damaged fuser is also another reason for lines to appear on prints.
  2. So, the best option here is to go for a complete replacement of the fuser.
  3. Again, seek professional help if needed.
  4. Both the drum and fuser or replaceable units and are replaced during maintenance operations.

4. Clean cartridge nozzles

Clean cartridge nozzle to fix printer making black lines on paper

  1. Launch the printer app and select Maintenance.
  2. Under Maintenance, look for anything like Device Servicing and such that allows you to deal with the ink cartridges.
  3. Once you are through the same, select Clean Ink Cartridges.
  4. Follow the on-screen instruction.
  5. If needed, you might have to opt for a more thorough clean (if such an option is available) or perform the cleaning act several times.

5. Extract, clean and reinsert the cartridges

Clean and re-insert the cartridges to fix printer making black lines on paper

  1. Sometimes, faulty installation of the cartridges or those with blocked print heads (especially in inkjet printers than lasers) can be the culprit too.
  2. In that case, remove the cartridge and clean the print head using cotton buds moistened with isopropyl alcohol (or any light cleaning agent).
  3. Take care to clean only the portion from where the ink is ejected and not the entire cartridge, especially the region where the circuit is located.

If everything else fails, or things turn for the worse, seek professional help immediately.

Meanwhile, here are some additional resources on the topic:

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Thanks for this info. Unfortunately, I was not able to print out the directions. I wanted all the directions, with pictures. Instead, I had to copy and paste the printed directions into a Word document. Still no pictures. It would help us low-techie people if you would make your info more accessible. Still, this was a big help.

Hi Alexander!

You can download and print this post using “Download PDF” button in upper right corner of the post.

Thank you