Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

How Do I Fix Messy Printing?

Reader’s Laser Printer Leaves Extra Toner On Pages

Q: Paul, my HP laser printer has started to leave ink along the border of the page and on other unwanted places. I ran the “cleaning tool” which helped but not much and I don’t want to use it each time I print. Any suggestions?

printer_clip A: Dear Reader,
You do not tell me the model number so I cannot guess how old your printer is, or how you use it, but there are usually two areas to look to for repairing the issue (I believe) you are describing.

* First, Run the cartridge cleaning feature (which you have done). This can be found in your printer’s software, or the Properties window for your printer.
* Then, look to the toner cartridge: it may be very low, or it may be defective. Try inserting a new one and see if you problem goes away. If not..
* It may be the printer’s “fuser unit” has worn out or become dirty. This is a more serious (and expensive) issue that usually calls for part replacement. Look to the HP website to find the part number and cost of a replacement for your specific printer. (You may need to use the part# to look for parts elsewhere on the Web, if your printer is really old.)

With the drop in pricing on laser printers, you may find that simply replacing the whole printer is a reasonable option… particularly if your current one has seen a lot of use already.

Related: The print job won’t stop printing

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved.jaanix post to jaanix

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September 18, 2009 - Posted by | advice, computers, gadgets, hardware, how to, PC, printers, tech, troubleshooting


  1. TechPaul,

    Excellent advice and instruction…



    Comment by Ramblinrick | September 18, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you, Rick. Very kind of you.


      Comment by techpaul | September 18, 2009 | Reply

  2. when i try to print all i get is red lines. i have cleaned it but it is still doing it


    Comment by Ivy Fletcher | November 8, 2014 | Reply

    • Ivy Fletcher,
      If it is still under warranty, call the manufacturer. If it’s too old for that, you may want to have a tech take a look..
      But, generally speaking, printers are such a cheap item, (cheaper than a technician’s fee) that the “fix” is replacement. (It’s the ink refills where the printer manufacturers profit.)


      Comment by techpaul | November 8, 2014 | Reply

  3. Great article. Tried it but still spitting Ink now and then.


    Comment by Jamie alexander | June 5, 2017 | Reply

    • Which did you try? If you tried all three –> new printer.


      Comment by techpaul | June 5, 2017 | Reply

  4. The ink on my photographs seems never to dry. I cannot touch them without their smudging. This is a new problem. I have been printing photographs for years and had this problem only with this lot of ink


    Comment by Ruth Miller | March 8, 2020 | Reply

    • Outside my area, but.. I believe it may not be the ink.. it might be the printer (‘fuser unit’). And.. I suppose it might be the ink.
      But I would call the printer manufacturer’s ‘tech support’. And you might call the ink maker’s number too..

      If your printer’s more than 5-7 years old.. maybe just replace it.

      Sorry to be so vague.


      Comment by techpaul | March 10, 2020 | Reply

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