Epson Photo Stylus 1400 won't print black after using CIS
December 30, 2009 5:21 PM   Subscribe

After using a third-party continuous ink supply system (CISS) on Epson Stylus Photo 1400 printer, black ink won't print.

My friend prints materials for visitors here in Key West.

He uses and is generally very happy with an Epson Stylus Photo1400 printer, and it does well for him ($$$), but there is a problem. The black ink cartridge has stopped working. Not just on one printer, but on three separate machines!

It appears that the problem is caused by a third-party continuous ink supply system. This one. He is pretty certain that the machines stopped working each time after using one of these. He uses the CISS, and blammo! The ink cartridges all stop working.

So he replaced them back with all original Epson cartridges. All new cartridges are being used but the ink refuses to flow from the black cartridge. He has replaced it again. Still, nada.

I have done every cleaning alignment etc there is to do via the Epson utility several times over. I have read all Epson FAQ and studied google on the subject. And all have been dead-ends. I now turn to AskMefi.
posted by Mike Mongo to Technology (4 answers total)
Ink sometimes gets stopped up on the continuous flow. We would clean/ soak ours with rubbing alcohol to unclog them. It has been a few years back since we used the system, so hopefully someone can back me up on this.
posted by srbrunson at 5:29 PM on December 30, 2009

The trouble with Epson printers is that the actual print head - the part actually responsible for spraying ink onto the page, and the part that typically clogs when fed dodgy ink - is not part of what's replaced when you replace an ink cartridge. It's actually quite difficult to replace the print head on an Epson.

Your friend might be able to unclog the black nozzles with a cleaning fluid that's made just for that purpose, but he's most likely due for expensive printer servicing.
posted by flabdablet at 5:59 PM on December 30, 2009

Best answer: Don't try cleaning using the Epson utility more than three times; that could make the problem worse:

"The printhead cleaning cycles on models of Epson printers has consistently gotten longer with each new model introduced to the market. These longer cleaning cycles suck out more ink in an attempt to clear the clog. Unfortunately, after two or three cleaning cycles, excess amounts of ink is being smeared over the printhead and can actually block more or all of the nozzles. The more you clean, the more ink, the more smearing.

If after two cleanings the nozzles aren't cleared, then print at least 10 full pages. If the nozzles don't clear themselves within these 10 pages, then further cleanings will not solve your problem. You will have to manually clean the printheads."

Send this link to your friend:

How To Unclog Epson Print Heads.
posted by LuckySeven~ at 7:53 PM on December 30, 2009

The good part about Epson print heads is that they use piezoelectric activators to squeeze out the ink, rather than the more common thermal ones. That means that unlike the nozzles on most inkjet printers, a clogged Epson nozzle won't burn out with continued attempts to print with it.

That ten-page trick would almost certainly burn out many, many nozzles on an inkjet print head from any other manufacturer.
posted by flabdablet at 7:58 PM on December 30, 2009

« Older Saving images straight to hard drive   |   Can I clamp two jumper cables together to jump a... Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.