Keep Calm and Print On: Troubleshooting Common Toner Cartridge Issues

Posted by David Adamson on

Troubleshooting Common Toner Cartridge Issues

Blotchy or Streaked Printing

If your images are being printed, but are coming out blotchy or streaked then this may be a toner issue.

If you haven't used your printer for a while, the toner may have settled inside the cartridge. This can lead to blotchy or streaky printing as the toner is not properly distributed within the toner cartridge.

The simple way to fix this is to remove the toner cartridge from the printer and rock it gently from side to side. Don't shake it vigorously as this could damage your cartridge.

After a short while of rocking your toner cartridge, the toner should be more evenly distributed and your printing should be free from streaks and blotches.

Color on Black and White Images

If you're trying to print an image in black and white, you may find that there are some spots of color on your page.

If this is happening, then the most likely cause of the problem is a leak from your toner cartridge. Examine your toner cartridge to see if you can see any tell-tale signs that it is leaking.

If you spot any leaking toner, it's time to order a new cartridge.

Light Printing

You may find that your printing is coming out lighter than you would expect it to.

If your text is gray when you're expecting it to be black, there's a number of possible causes. It could be that your toner density is set too low. Your printer may allow you to change the printer density, to produce lighter or darker printing.

If the toner density isn't the problem, then it might be that your photoreceptor drum is getting old. Over time the charge that the photoreceptor holds decreases, reducing the amount of toner drawn to the page. This can lead to lighter blacks in your printing.

You'll need to get your toner cartridge replaced if it is the case. 

Horizontal Lines

If your printing has obvious horizontal lines across it and repeats 3 to 4 times on each page, this could be a toner cartridge issue.

If your toner is seated correctly in the printer, the issue of the horizontal lines should clear up after printing 5 to 10 pages.

Generally this issue is due to a defective PCR (Primary Charge Roller) in your toner cartridge. Your cartridge is defective you need to change your toner cartridge.

Loose Toner Particles on the Page

You may sometimes find particles of loose toner on your printed page.

If this occurs, it may be due to the cartridge has been filled with toner that is not compatible for your printer. Remove it from the printer, if you have a similar printer that will accept the same cartridge, install it in the other and try a test print otherwise if you don't have a similar printer, try a new cartridge. If the problem disappears, you'll need to replace the defective toner cartridge.

If the issue is still occurring, the toner cartridge is not issue, you will need to replace the Fuser Assembly Unit in your printer. The fuser has a halogen lamp or element inserted in the center of the fuser roller which is not working properly.

Constant Low Toner Warnings

If you've recently replaced your toner cartridge, or not used it for very long, it can be frustrating to receive constant warnings about low toner.

This may be due to the toner not being evenly distributed. Try rocking the cartridge from side to side for a while before reinserting it. Print a test page to see if the problem still occurs.

If the messages continue it may be that you are genuinely running low on toner. If you are happy with the quality of your printing and want to save money, then keep using the cartridge. Many printers will give this warning quite a while before the cartridge actually runs out.

Unidentified Toner Cartridge

If you insert a new toner cartridge, your printer may say that it is not able to identify it. 

This can happen for a number of reasons. Firstly, ensure that the toner cartridge is correctly installed, as per the manufacturer's instructions.

If this doesn't solve the problem, then you may have a defective chip. The chip is how the toner cartridge communicates with the printer; if it's not working correctly, the printer won't recognize the toner cartridge as being compatible. In this case, try turning the printer off, unplugging it, leaving it for 10 minutes or so, then powering it back on.

The final reason for this message is that you have purchased the wrong type of toner cartridge for your printer, and the cartridge is incompatible. In this case, you'll need to purchase a new toner cartridge. 

Are You Looking for High-Quality Toner Cartridges? 

If you've had problems with a toner cartridge it may be due to purchasing products of inferior quality.

We offer high-quality toner cartridges compatible with big names such as Brother, Canon, Dell, HP, Lexmark and more. All our toner cartridges come at a fraction of the price of the big-name brands, and we offer free shipping for orders over $49. With 100% satisfaction guaranteed to work order from first print page to last print

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  • I’m very pleased to read this blog. This is awesome! Full detailed and simple statements make this blog too good. I want to write a blog like this. Thanks for sharing..

    Mtech Toner on

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