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HP Officejet 6500 All-in-One Printer Series (E709) - An 'Alignment failed' Error Message Displays on the Printer

Issue
The error message 'Alignment failed' displays on the printer control panel.
  1. Press the Power button () to turn on the product.
  2. With the product turned on, disconnect the power cord from the rear of the product.
  3. Unplug the power cord from the wall outlet.
  4. Wait at least 15 seconds.
  5. Plug the power cord back into the wall outlet.
  6. Reconnect the power cord to the rear of the product.
  7. If the product does not turn on by itself, press the Power button () to turn it on.
Solution two: Load paper, and try to align the printer again
Follow these steps to make sure that the paper type is appropriate to print an alignment page, and then try to align the printer again.
Step one: Load the correct type of paper
  1. Remove all the paper from the tray.
     note:
    Aligning the printer using colored, photo, or used paper can cause the alignment to fail.
  2. Load unused, plain white letter or A4-sized paper with a brightness level of at least 85 into the tray.
     note:
    Look for the brightness level on the paper packaging.
  1. On the printer control panel, press the Setup button () repeatedly until Tools displays, and then press OK.
  2. Press the Right Arrow button () to select Align Printer, and then press OK.
     note:
    Mechanical noises during the alignment are normal.
  3. Examine the printed alignment page. It should show all the color patterns—especially the black and blue patterns. The ink should not be streaked or faint.
    Figure : Example of a correct alignment page
    Image: Example of a correct alignment page.
    Figure : Examples of streaked, faded, or missing colors alignment pages
    Image: Examples of streaked, faded, or missing colors alignment pages.
  • If the alignment page looks good, and resetting the printer and realigning did not resolve the ‘Alignment Failed’ message, then skip to the solution to service the printer. There is no need to clean or replace the printhead if the alignment page prints correctly.
  • If the alignment page is missing colors or is faded or streaked, continue to the next solution.
Solution three: Check the cartridges
Low ink can contribute to alignment failure. Follow these steps to check the ink levels, and then replace any low or empty cartridges.
 note:
Ink level warnings and indicators provide estimates for planning purposes only. When an indicator shows low-ink levels, consider having a replacement ink cartridge available to avoid possible printing delays. You do not need to replace ink cartridges until print quality becomes unacceptable.
Check the estimated ink levels from the Home screen on the printer control panel.
  1. Look at the estimated ink levels on the Home screen of the printer control panel. The control panel displays the ink levels as "bucket" icons above each color marker.
    Figure : Estimated ink level indicators on the printer control panel
    Image: Estimated ink level indicators on the printer control panel.
  2. Identify any low or empty ink cartridges:
    • An exclamation mark (!) in the bucket indicates a low or empty ink cartridge of the color marker below the bucket.
    • An ink cartridge that is not low or empty shows you its estimated ink level in the bucket above its corresponding color marker: Magenta, cyan, yellow, and black.
Step two: Replace any depleted cartridges
Watch a video or use the following steps to replace a depleted cartridge.
The following video demonstrates how to replace an ink cartridge.
.
If you have trouble viewing the video or to view the video in a different size, click here to play the video on YouTube.
Visit HP SureSupply to check ink cartridge compatibility or purchase replacement ink cartridges.
  1. Go to the HP SureSupply website.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the page, and then make sure the country/region location is correct.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions to order new ink cartridges or check ink cartridge compatibility with your printer.
Genuine HP ink cartridges can also be purchased from other retailers.
  1. Press the Power button to turn on the printer, if it is not already on.
  2. Open the ink cartridge access door. The carriage moves to the center of the printer. Wait until the carriage stops moving before proceeding.
    Figure : Open the ink cartridge access door
    Image: Open the ink cartridge access door.
  3. Press in the tab on the front of the ink cartridge, and then pull it out and up to remove it from its slot.
    Figure : Remove the ink cartridge from its slot
    Image: Remove the ink cartridge from its slot.
     caution:
    Do not lift the gray latch next to the carriage to install the ink cartridges. Doing so can result in incorrectly seated ink cartridges and printing problems. The latch must remain down to correctly install the ink cartridges.
  4. On the new ink cartridge, pull the orange pull-tab straight back to remove the plastic wrap.
    Figure : Remove the plastic wrap
    Image: Remove the plastic wrap.
  5. Twist the orange cap counterclockwise to snap it off the ink cartridge.
    Figure : Remove the orange cap
    Image: Remove the orange cap.
  6. With the ink cartridge contacts facing the printhead, slide the ink cartridge into the correct slot. The color-coded icons on the ink cartridge and in the printhead indicate the correct slot.
    Figure : Insert the ink cartridge
    Image: Insert the ink cartridge.
  7. Press down on the ink cartridge until it clicks firmly into place.
    Figure : Press the ink cartridge into place
    Image: Press the ink cartridge into place.
  8. Repeat these steps for each ink cartridge that you want to replace.
  9. Close the ink cartridge access door. The carriage moves to the right side of the printer.
Step three: Align the printer
If you replaced any depleted cartridges, align the printer again. Otherwise, skip to the next step.
Step four: Make sure that the cartridges are properly vented and seated correctly
If the vent on the top of the cartridge is clogged or obstructed, the cartridge might not work properly. Follow these steps to make sure that the cartridges are properly vented and seated correctly.
  1. If the printer is not already on, press the Power button to turn it on.
  2. Open the ink cartridge access door.
    Figure : Open the ink cartridge access door
    The carriage moves to the center of the printer. Wait until the carriage is idle and silent before you continue.
  3. Press the tab on the front of one of the ink cartridges to release it, and then remove it from its slot.
    Figure : Remove the ink cartridge
    Image: Removing the ink cartridge
     caution:
    Do not lift the gray latch next to the carriage to remove the ink cartridge. Doing so can result in incorrectly seated ink cartridges and printing problems.
  4. Examine the vent area above the HP logo on the top of the ink cartridge.
    Figure : Vent area on the ink cartridge
    Image: Vent area on the top of the ink cartridge.
  5. If the ink cartridge still has the orange pull-tab attached, pull to remove it.
    Figure : Orange pull tab
    Image: Orange pull tab.
  6. If the vent is clogged, use a straight pin to gently remove excess adhesive from the vent.
      Figure : Clean the clogged vent with a pin
      Image: Clean the clogged vent with a pin.
    1. Clogged vent
    2. With a straight pin, gently remove excess adhesive from the vent
    3. Unclogged vent
  7. With the ink cartridge contacts facing the printhead, slide the ink cartridge into the correct slot. The color-coded icons on the ink cartridge and in the printhead indicate the correct slot.
    Figure : Insert the ink cartridge
    Image: Insert the ink cartridge.
  8. Press down on the ink cartridge until it clicks firmly into place.
    Figure : Press the ink cartridge into place
    Image: Press the ink cartridge into place.
  9. Repeat these steps to inspect the vents on each of the ink cartridges.
  10. Make sure that each ink cartridge is firmly in place in its slot. Run your finger along the top of the ink cartridges to feel for any that are protruding, and if any are, press down firmly until each ink cartridge snaps into place.
  11. Close the ink cartridge access door.
  12. Try the print job again.
Step five: Align the printer
If you replaced an empty cartridge, cleared a vent, or correctly latched a cartridge, align the printer again. Otherwise, skip to the next solution.
Solution four: Use an automated tool to clean the printhead
 note:
This process uses ink to try to unclog and clean the nozzles in the printhead. This process might take a few minutes and uses one or more sheets of paper.
You should only clean the printhead if the alignment page is streaked, faded, or missing colors.
  1. Load letter, A4, or legal size, unused, plain white paper into the input tray.
  2. Press the Setup button ().
  3. Press the Down Arrow button () to highlight Tools, and then press OK.
  4. Press the Down Arrow button () to highlight Clean Printhead, and then press OK. The printer cleans the printhead, and a test page prints once the printer is done cleaning the printhead.
     note:
    Mechanical noises during the cleaning process are normal.
  5. Examine the test sheet for print quality. Consider repeating the cleaning if there is improvement. Sometimes the printer requires several cleanings.
  6. Recycle or discard the test sheet.
  7. When the cleaning process completes, press any button on the control panel to return to the Tools menu.
  8. Align the printer again.
 note:
If the printhead is badly clogged, you might need to clean the printhead several times to restore normal print quality.
Step two: Align the printer
Once the printer finishes cleaning the printhead, align the printer.
Solution five: Replace the printhead
If you have completed all the previous steps and the alignment page still looks streaked or is missing colors, replace the printhead.
 caution:
Wait until you have a new printhead assembly available before removing the cartridges. HP recommends that you do not leave the cartridges outside the printer longer than 30 minutes. This could damage both the printer and the cartridges.
These steps apply to the United States only.
If HP replaces your printhead assembly under warranty, you receive a new printhead assembly, cleaning materials, and a full set of new ink cartridges.
If your printhead assembly is no longer under warranty, you can purchase a new one online.
  1. Go to the HP Parts Store website (in English).
  2. Under Find your part(s), type CN643A in the Search by part number text box.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions to order the printhead assembly.
When you have the replacement printhead, go to Replacing the Printhead for detailed instructions to remove the old printhead and install the new one.

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