Print | Rate this content

HP OfficeJet 5510, 6100, PSC 2100, 2400, and 2500 All-in-One Product Series - Correcting Printing Quality Problems When Printing from Windows

Purpose

The document will help resolve print-quality problems. If your problem is not listed, there may be another document that covers that specific topic. If a document on the problem still cannot be found, or the problem cannot be resolved, contact HP for assistance. Click the Contact HP link on this Web page to learn how to contact HP.

This document applies to the following HP all-in-one products:

HP PSC 2170 series (PSC 2170, 2171, 2175, 2175xi, 2175v, and 2179)

HP PSC 2200 series (PSC 2210, 2210xi, and 2210v)

HP Officejet 6100 series (6110, 6110xi, 6110v)

top

Basic print quality troubleshooting

Follow the steps below to perform basic print quality troubleshooting.

  1. Check your paper and verify that the all-in-one has clean, white, inkjet-rated or multipurpose paper in it. In many cases copier grade papers or paper specifically for Laser printers should NOT be used. These papers are frequently coated and are not intended for dye-based inks. The paper container should also have a brightness and weight listed on it. Generally speaking, the brighter and heavier the paper, the better the printout will look. HP recommends papers with at least 90 brightness and 75 g/m2 (20 pound) ratings.

  2. Verify that the all-in-one is on a firm surface that fully supports its weight and does not move as the all-in-one prints. If the all-in-one is placed on a desk or other surface that is free to move or shake as the all-in-one prints, the printout will not look as good as it should.

  3. Refilled or remanufactured print cartridges will often produce inferior results. HP will not support any print problems that result from the use of remanufactured and refilled print cartridges since their quality is not in HP's control. If you are using refilled or remanufactured print cartridges, replace them with a new HP print cartridge.

  4. Print a self-test page from the all-in-one to verify that the all-in-one is working correctly. If the self-test prints correctly, go to Step 3. If the page does not print correctly, verify that the ink cartridges have ink in them. Then, unplug the power cord from the all-in-one, wait five seconds, and plug it back in. Contact HP for assistance if a self-test page still will not print. To print a self-test page, follow the step below:

    • Press SETUP (or MENU) until "Print Report" displays, then press ENTER.

    Figure 1: A self-test page

    Test page
  5. Examine the self-test page printed by your all-in-one.

    • If the colors are correct and the text is sharp and clear on the self-test page, the problem is not the all-in-one or the print cartridges. The problem is the print settings, the file being printed, or the program you are printing from. Continue to step 6 below.

    • If the colors on the demo page are not correct or are missing, review HP document Printed Pages Are Missing One or More Colors but No Error Message Appears (buu02176) (in English).

    • If the printout is not sharp or clear, skip the remaining steps in this section and review the remaining information in this document.

  6. Try printing the document again but try changing the print settings by following these steps:

    1. Within the application you are trying to print from, click File and then click Print. This will bring up the print screen.

    2. Verify that the correct printer is selected and then click Properties.

    3. On the Quality tab, verify that the correct paper type is selected, and then change the Print Quality setting to Best. Verify the settings on the remaining tabs are correct and then click OK.

    4. Print the file you were trying to print again.

      • If the problem is corrected, the problem was the print settings. There is no need to continue troubleshooting.

      • If the problem still exists, try printing on different paper.

  7. Print a different file or image. If you have a file that printed well in the past, try printing that file. Low quality originals will not print very well. Screen captures and images from the internet are often at around 75 dpi. These images are at too low of a resolution to print well. If the self-test page looks good but your image does not, even after changing the print settings, the problem may be the original file. Review the remaining information in this document to see if there is information about the problem you are experiencing. If the problem cannot be determined, contact HP for assistance.

The colors are incorrect

This may occur when one of the ink cartridges are low on ink. To check them, perform the following steps:

  1. Check the estimated ink levels by performing the following steps:

    1. In the HP Director software, click Settings, click Print Settings, and then click Printer Toolbox.

    2. In the Printer Toolbox, select the Estimated Ink Level tab. If one or more of the colors of ink are low or empty, replace the cartridge.

      NOTE: The ink levels indicated are "estimated" levels and are calibrated to the HP 56 and 57 cartridges. The actual ink left in the ink cartridge may be less.

      Figure 2: Estimated ink levels

      Estimated ink levels
  2. Open the printer properties and verify that the settings have not been changed. Follow the steps below to check the settings:

    1. In the software program you are printing from, click File and then click Print.

    2. Click the option to change the print properties (usually Properties or Settings).

    3. On the Quality tab, click Factory Settings, then click HP Digital Photography.

    4. On the HP Digital Photography Options tab, click Factory Settings, and then click OK.

    5. Verify that the Paper Type setting matches the paper loaded in the paper tray.

    6. Click the Color tab.

    7. On the Color tab, click Factory Settings and then click OK to close the properties.

    8. Print again to see if the colors are correct.

  3. Assign a color management profile to the all-in-one. To do this, follow the steps below:

    1. Click Start, click Settings, and then click Printers (in Windows XP, click Start, then click Printers and Faxes) to open the Printers folder.

    2. In the Printers folder, right-click the HP all-in-one printer icon and then click Properties.

    3. Click the Color Management tab.

    4. Click Add to see the list of available color profiles.

    5. In the Add Profile Association box, select Diamond Compatible 9300k G2.2.icm.

    6. Click Add and then click OK. Print the file again. If the application you are printing from does not print in color, use Microsoft Paint to print a document containing colors.

    7. Try printing again and see if the colors are better.

  4. If the colors are only slightly off, adjust the print properties. Adjust the settings on the Quality tab by clicking HP Digital Photography on the Color tab to affect how the colors are printed.

  5. When printing on some photo papers, black ink can have greenish tint when photo paper is selected as the paper type. Try changing the paper type setting to HP bright white paper or Plain paper.

  6. Perform the steps listed in the Help files to clean the print cartridges. To locate the Help files, follow the steps below:

    1. Open the HP Director software and click Help.

    2. On the Contents tab, click the listing for your all-in-one.

    3. Click Maintain your HP PSC or Officejet.

    4. Click Work with Print Cartridges.

    5. Click Clean the Print Cartridge Contacts.

  7. Some programs or files may not work correctly with the HP print driver.

    If the problem still exists using the alternate driver, the problem is with the file being printed or the program being printed from.

top

Faded or grainy lines in printout

Perform the following steps to reduce or eliminate faded or grainy lines:

  1. Print at a higher quality setting.

  2. Verify that the paper you are printing on will lay flat. Paper that is not laying flat can cause banding when the paper transitions over the rollers or cause the print cartridges to scrape across the surface of the page.

    Check the top sheet of paper by removing it from the all-in-one and placing it on a flat surface. If the paper does not lie flat, bend it in the opposite direction to straighten it.

    Figure 3: Faded or grainy bands in print caused by paper that is not flat

    Faded or grainy bands in a printout
    1 - Faded or grainy bands due to roller transition with paper that is not flat
    2 - Faded or grainy bands due to print cartridge scrape on paper that is not flat

Print has white streaks

This problem will occur if the ink cartridge is low on ink or has clogged nozzles. To correct it, perform the following steps:

  1. On the all-in-one front panel, press SETUP (or MENU) repeatedly until "Maintenance" displays, then press ENTER.

  2. When "Clean Cartridges" displays, press ENTER.

  3. At the end of the cartridge cleaning cycle, a page will print. Examine the page to determine if the problem is corrected.

  4. If the problem still exists, clean the cartridge contacts following the directions in the Help files. To locate the help files: Open the HP Director software and click Help.

    1. Open the HP Director software and click Help.

    2. From the Contents tab, click the listing for your HP all-in-one product.

    3. Click Maintain your HP PSC or Officejet.

    4. Click Work with Print Cartridges.

    5. Click Clean the Print Cartridge Contacts.

  5. Verify that the ink cartridge is not low on ink by checking the estimated ink levels as indicated in the "The colors are incorrect" section above.

  6. Replace the ink cartridge for the color that has the white streaks in it.

Problems printing borderless images

The HP all-in-one is capable of printing borderless images with the HP Photo and Imaging version 2.x software using the Photo Prints tool in the Photo and Imaging Gallery. Use this tool to print borderless pictures.

If the borderless image does not look like the original, the problem is the height and width ratio of the original image. If the height to width ratio of the image is different than the height to width ratio of the paper (which is 2:3 for 4 x 6-inch paper), the Photo Prints software will center the image on the page and crop any portions of the image off that will not fit on the page as is shown in the image below.

Figure 4: Sample image showing how the HP software crops the image to fit the paper

An image of a mountain being cropped

Workaround

There are two different methods that will improve the way the image is printed:

  • Use the Album Printing tool from the right side of the screen to print the photos instead of the Photo Prints tool. The Album Printing software will not print borderless but will size the image so that the entire image is printed on the loaded paper size. If desired, the image can then be cut out from the page to be borderless.

  • If only one portion of the image is being cut off that you would like to keep (such as the head of the dog in the image below), use the HP Image Editor tool or other graphic software to edit the image before printing. Use the crop tool to remove a portion of the image on the opposite side from the part of the image you want to save as is shown below. Remove enough from the opposite side of the image that the portion of the image that was missing is retained. You can examine your results before printing by viewing the thumbnails created on the HP Photo Prints screen.

Figure 5: Cropping the image to retain desired portions

Cropping an image of a dog

Print is skewed

  1. The rear access door might not be fully locked into place, causing the paper to skew in the all-in-one. Remove the rear access door by pushing in on both release tabs as shown in the figure below. Inspect it for damage, and then reinsert it. Make sure it is securely latched in place.

    Figure 6: Releasing the rear access door latch on one side

    Pushing a tab to release the rear access door

    Figure 7: The rear access door removed

    The rear access door removed
  2. The paper feed rollers may be dirty. Over time, paper fibers and dust will stick to the rollers and should be removed.

    1. Unplug the power cord from the back of the all-in-one and open the front to expose the print mechanism.

    2. Gently wipe the paper feed rollers with a soft clean cloth slightly dampened with clean water. These rollers may be rotated with the power unplugged.

    3. Remove the rear access door shown in the figure above and wipe the paper supply feed rollers. These rollers may be rotated with the power unplugged. Allow the water to dry for five minutes before reinserting the rear access door and locking it in place.

    4. Close the all-in-one and reinsert the power cord.

The ink does not go to the edge of the paper

The all-in-one has a non-adjustable printable region that it can print within. Borderless printing is available only for 4 x 6-inch photo paper, Hagaki, and A6 card sizes and is used to create borderless photos similar to photographs (refer to Problems printing borderless images for problem solutions). Enable this option in the Print settings on the Layout tab. The reasons for a printable region are listed below:

  • The all-in-one must be able to grip enough paper in the rollers to position the paper to receive ink. For this reason, the bottom margin is larger than the others.

  • A printable region prevents ink from spraying on the paper feed rollers. If ink is sprayed on the rollers, it may be deposited on future copies or cause paper jams or hardware failure.

    CAUTION: Forcing the all-in-one to print edge to edge or incorrectly loading the 4 x 6-inch, Hagaki, or A6 card paper may damage the all-in-one by ink spraying into the print mechanism. Read the paper loading information in the Help files for assistance loading paper.

Sheet paper print/copy margins

Paper type
Top
Bottom
Left
Right
U.S. Letter U.S. Legal U.S. Executive
.07 inch 1.8 (mm)
.46 inch (11.7 mm)
.25 inch (6.4mm)
.25 inch (6.4mm)
ISO A4 ISO A5 JIS B5
.07 inch 1.8 (mm)
.46 inch (11.7 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)

Envelope print/copy margins

Paper type
Top
Bottom
Left
Right
U.S. #10 A2 DL C6
.13 inch (3.2 mm)
.46 inch (11.7 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)

Card print/copy margins

Paper type
Top
Bottom
Left
Right
U.S. 3 x 5 inch U.S. 4 x 6 inch U.S. 5 x 8 inch ISO and JIS A6 Hagaki
.13 inch (3.2 mm)
.46 inch (11.7 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)
.13 inch (3.2 mm)

top

Paper is curling

Some papers cannot absorb enough ink to work correctly at all print settings. Verify that the correct paper type is selected in the print properties and then do one or both of the following to correct the problem.

  • In the Print Properties, reduce the Print Quality setting one level.

  • To reduce the amount of ink being applied to the page do the following:

    1. In the Print Properties, click the Features tab, then click Advanced Features.

    2. Use the Ink Volume slider to reduce the amount of ink, and then click OK.

top

Print is smeared by other pages in the paper tray

This happens if the ink is not drying fast enough and can occur in humid environments or if the paper is not accepting the ink. To correct this problem, increase the ink drying time in the print properties.

  1. In the software program being printed from, click File and then click Print.

  2. Select the option that will open the Print Properties (usually Properties or Setup).

  3. Click the Features tab.

  4. Click Advanced features.

  5. Use the Drying Time slider to increase the amount of ink drying time, then click OK. This will slow print speed.

top

Provide feedback

Please rate the information on this page to help us improve our content. Thank you!