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How to Clean HP Print Heads

Updated February 21, 2017

If the print heads on your HP printer become clogged, the documents you print may come out smudged or smeared. They will definitely be low quality. Luckily, it's easy to clean HP print heads. HP printers even have a way to clean the print heads electronically. Once the print heads are clean, you can enjoy higher performance from your HP printer.

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  1. HP recommends trying to clean the print heads from the control panel before attempting to clean them manually.

  2. Press and hold in the "Power" button on your HP printer. While pressing the "Power" button, press the "Resume" button six times before letting go of the "Power" button. This will prompt the cleaning process.

  3. If you need to try the manual cleaning option, open the top cover of your HP printer. Notice that the print cartridge moves to the left when the cover is open.

  4. Turn off your HP printer and unplug it from its power source before continuing.

  5. Remove the print head from its slot inside the printer. This may involve lifting the print head latch.

  6. Use a clean, lint-free cloth to wipe any dirt or debris from the print head contact pads. Be sure no fibres are left behind. Do not touch the print head nozzles, which are located on the underside of the print head.

  7. Plug your HP printer back into the power source and press the "Power" button. Put the print head back inside the printer, snapping it into place. Close the top cover before attempting to use the printer.

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Things You'll Need

  • Lint-free cloth

About the Author

J. Johnson has been completing freelance writing work since September 2009. Her work includes writing website content and small client projects. Johnson holds a degree in English from North Carolina State University.

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