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Cartridge Errors

  • PrintPrint


After you install a cartridge, the attention light flashes red. The printer does not print, and one of the following messages might display on the printer control panel.
  • Color or Right cartridge is not compatible
  • Incorrect cartridge(s)
  • cartridge Problem
  • Incorrectly Installed Cartridge(s)
  • Black or Color Cartridge(s) Failed
If your printer control panel displays a cartridge error and you need to print immediately, follow these steps to print.
NOTE:If the steps to print in backup mode do not work, complete the remaining steps in this document.
If you do not have a replacement cartridge, you can still print in ink backup mode. Simply remove the problem cartridge, and print with the remaining cartridge.
  • If you remove the tri-color cartridge, printouts will be in grayscale.
  • If you remove the black or photo cartridge, the product prints slowly and the colors in the printouts might differ.


Follow these steps to resolve the issue. When the attention light no longer blinks, you have solved the issue.
NOTE:In the following steps, the "problem" cartridge is identified by the blinking attention light. Either one or both of the cartridges can cause the problem.

Step one: Remove, inspect, and then reinstall the problem cartridge

The print cartridge may not have full electrical contact with the product. Removing and reinstalling the cartridge might help.
NOTE:HP cannot guarantee the quality of remanufactured or refilled cartridges. Use genuine HP print cartridges to ensure good quality.
  1. Make sure the product is on. Press the Power button if it is not lit.
  2. Open the product cover, then wait until the print carriage is idle and silent.
  3. Press down lightly on the end of the problem cartridge to release it.
    Figure 1: Releasing the problem cartridge
  4. Slide the cartridge out, and inspect it.
    CAUTION:Do not touch the copper electrical contacts or the ink nozzles.
    Figure 2: Electrical contacts and nozzles
    1 - Copper electrical contacts
    2 - Nozzles
    Check the electrical contacts for debris. If any debris is evident, proceed to step two.
    Make sure all the clear nozzle protective tape has been removed.
    CAUTION:Do not attempt to remove the copper electrical strip.
    Figure 3: Removing the clear nozzle protective tape
    Look at the number on the print cartridge label, and make sure it is compatible with the product. Compatible print cartridges are listed in the Printer Reference Guide supplied with the product.
  5. If the cartridge is compatible, reinstall it.
    • Cartridges marked with a triangle, go into the left carriage slot.
    • Cartridges marked with a square or pentagon, go into the right carriage slot.
    Figure 4: Sliding the cartridge into the carriage
    Figure 5: Pushing the cartridge into place
  6. Close the product cover.
  7. Try to print again. If the issue persists, continue to the next step.
To view a demonstration of how to remove and replace print cartridges, follow these steps:
  1. Click the Start button and click the HP Solution Center icon to open the toolbox.
  2. Under Device Support, click the How do I button to display a list of topics.
  3. Select Replace print or ink cartridges, drag your cursor right, and click the printer's name. The video will start.

Step two: Clean the problem cartridge contacts

  1. Gather the following items to clean the cartridge and carriage:
    • Clean distilled water. Use bottled or filtered water if distilled water is not available. Tap water can contain contaminants that damage the cartridge.
    • Clean cotton swabs or any soft, lint-free material that will not stick to the cartridges (coffee filters work well).
    • Sheets of paper or a paper towel to rest the cartridge on during cleaning.
  2. Open the cartridge access door and wait until the carriage is idle and silent.
  3. Disconnect the power cord from the back of the printer.
  4. Remove the cartridge and place it on a piece of paper with the nozzle plate facing up.
    NOTE:Do not leave the cartridges outside of the printer for more than 30 minutes. If the cartridge is outside of the printer for too long, the ink can dry and clog the nozzles.
  5. Dip a clean foam-rubber swab or lint-free cloth into distilled water, and then squeeze any excess water from it.
  6. Clean only the copper-colored contacts
    Figure 6: Clean the contacts
    1 - Copper-colored contacts
    2 - Ink nozzles (do not clean)
  7. Repeat these steps for the other cartridge.
  8. Lightly moisten another cotton swab with distilled water, and then squeeze any excess water from the swab.
  9. Use the swab to clean the electrical contacts in the carriage, located inside the printer on the carriage slots.
    Figure 7: The electrical contacts in the cartridge slots
    Image: The electrical contacts in the cartridge slots
  10. Wait 10 minutes to allow the cartridge and carriage electrical contacts to dry.
  11. Reinstall the cartridges.
  12. Close the cartridge access door.
  13. Reconnect the power cord to the back of the printer.
  14. Press the Power button to turn on the printer.
  15. Try to print a page.
  16. If you are still unable to print, repeat these steps to clean and reseat the cartridges. Multiple cleanings might be necessary to restore printing.
Figure 8: Print Carriage contacts

Step three: Replace the problem cartridge

If the problem is not solved, follow these steps to replace the problem cartridge.
If you have a defective cartridge or printhead, it might be under warranty. To check the warranty on your ink supplies, go to hp.com/go/learnaboutsupplies , select your country/region, and then review the limited warranty information for your supplies.
  1. Open the cartridge access door. The carriage moves to the cartridge access area. Wait until the carriage is idle and silent before you continue.
    Figure 9: Open the cartridge access door
    1 - Print-carriage access door
    2 - Print carriage
  2. Press down lightly on the end of the problem cartridge to release it, and then pull it out to remove it from its slot.
    Figure 10: Release the problem cartridge
  3. Remove the new cartridge from its package, and then pull the pull tab to remove the plastic tape.
    Figure 11: Remove the pink tab
    CAUTION:Do not touch the ink nozzles or copper-colored contacts.
    Figure 12: Do not touch ink nozzles or copper-colored contacts
    Image: Do not touch ink nozzles or copper-colored contacts.
  4. Insert each cartridge as follows:
    1. Insert the cartridge in front of the corresponding slot.
      • Insert the black cartridge in the slot on the right side, marked with a black and orange label.
      • Insert the tri-color cartridge in the slot on the left side, marked with a green label.
      Figure 13: Direction to insert the cartridges
      Figure 14: Insert the tri-color cartridge
      Figure 15: Insert the black cartridge
    2. Push the cartridge firmly into the slot until it snaps into place.
  5. Close the cartridge access door.
  6. Try to print again.

Step four: Service the printer

If the previous steps did not resolve the issue, service your printer.
NOTE:Keep a print sample that shows the problem. If the ink cartridges, printhead, or printer is replaced under warranty, the support agent will request the print sample. If the printer is returned to HP, the print sample must be returned with the printer. Place the sample in the output tray when you package your printer for shipping.
Contacting HP for service in all countries/regions except Asia Pacific.
If you have completed all the preceding steps and are still experiencing a problem, service the product.
Determine if your product is in warranty or out of warranty. If you need help determining your product’s warranty status, go to HP’s Warranty Check Tool .
  • If your product is in warranty, Contact HP to obtain service.
  • If your product is out of warranty, Contact HP to find an authorized service provider or to setup service (fees might apply).

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