Not all printer problems are fixable, and damage to the print heads or ink absorber may mean you need to buy a new printer. If your printer is continually suffering from paper jams or print quality issues, these could be signs of a deeper mechanical fault.
As a first step, see our guide to using the printer troubleshooter tool
Print head damage
If running your printer’s cleaning utilities doesn’t improve poor print outs, you could have a damaged print head inside your printer. This can sometimes be fixed by buying new ink cartridges since, on many models, the print head is included on the cartridge itself.
Some printers have built-in print heads, however – in these cases, you may need to replace the entire printer.
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Ink absorber issues
A message telling you that your ink absorber is full is another sign that it’s time to trade the old model in. The absorber is a piece of felt inside some printers that soaks up excess ink.
It’s possible to replace this, but it’s a messy, awkward job that can result in damaging the device. You’re better off replacing the printer itself.