solution Contentsolution Content

HP Photosmart C4380, C4400, and C4500 All-in-One Printer Series - Missing Colors in Printout

Issue

The printer is working, but the colors in the printed output are not the expected colors. The output may look as if only one color has printed, or as if a color has not printed, or as if the wrong colors have been printed.

Solution one: Check the print settings

  1. In the program being used for printing, click File, and then click Print.
    The Print window opens.
  2. Make sure the appropriate product is selected, and then click Preferences or Properties.
    The Preferences/Properties window opens.
  3. Click the Printing Shortcuts tab.
    Consider modifying some or all of the options in the Printing Shortcuts menu to increase print quality.
    • Print quality: If the quality of the printouts is not acceptable, try increasing the print quality. To print more quickly, try decreasing the print quality.
    • Paper type: If one of the options matches the paper type exactly, select it instead of Automatic.
    • Paper size: Make sure that this option matches the paper loaded in the product.
    To see additional options, click the Advanced tab, and then click Advanced Features.
    The Advanced Features window opens. Consider changing the following option:
    Ink volume: Adjust the amount of ink that prints on a page. For lighter images (less ink), drag the slider to the left. For darker images (more ink), drag the slider to the right. The lighter the ink volume, the more quickly the printout dries.

Solution two: Check for defects using a self test report

Step one: Print a diagnostic page

To check whether the cartridges are in good condition, print a self test page. This page provides useful information on several aspects of the device, including the print cartridges.
  1. Load letter, A4, or legal unused plain white paper into the input tray.
  2. Press and hold the Cancel () button and then press the Start Copy Color () button.
    The product prints a self test report, which might indicate the source of the printing problem.
Figura : Self test report

Step two: Note which cartridges printed which areas of the diagnostic page

You must identify which cartridge printed which part of the self test report, so that if you find defects on the page, you will know which cartridge is the problem.
Note though that different combinations of print cartridges can be installed in the product, and different cartridge combinations print different patterns. Your self test report may not look exactly like the picture below, but the right and left cartridges will print in the same areas of the report no matter which cartridges are installed.
    Figura : Self test report layout (the patterns in each area may look slightly different on your page)
  1. Printed by the right cartridge
  2. Printed by the left cartridge

Step three: Check ink-level indicators on diagnostic page

nota:
If you have installed a refilled or remanufactured print cartridge, or a cartridge that has been used in another printer, the ink level indicator will be inaccurate or unavailable.
  1. Open the Printer Toolbox.
    1. Open HP Solution Center.
    2. Click Settings.
    3. Click Printer Toolbox.
    nota:
    The Printer Toolbox can also be opened from the Print Properties dialog box. In the Print Properties dialog box, select Printing Preferences, click the Features tab, and then click Printer Services.
  2. Click the Estimated Ink Levels tab.
    Figura : Estimated ink levels
    nota:
    A cartridge might be running out of ink even if the graphic shows that there is ink remaining in the cartridge. Lines or streaks always appear in printouts when the cartridges begin to run out of ink. Replace print cartridges that are out of ink or low on ink.
    The ink levels provided are an estimate. When print cartridges are truly low on ink, printouts will be faded or streaked. As long as print quality is acceptable, there is no reason to replace print cartridges. Low ink warnings are provided for planning purposes only.

Step four: Look for defects

In general, if the product and print cartridges are working properly, the patterns (which look like grids of lines) should contain few or no missing lines. None of the colors should be missing and the colors of the blocks at the bottom of the page should match the labels below each block. Also, there should be no streaks of ink on the report.
nota:
You can install different combinations of print cartridges in the product, and different cartridge combinations print different self test report patterns. Your self test report might not look exactly like the pictures below.
Missing or streaked bars
If a pattern shows more than a few missing lines, or a bar is streaked, that print cartridge is not functioning properly.
Figura : The left cartridge shows missing lines and a streaked bar - the cartridge is not functioning properly
If your self test report shows streaked bars, click here to continue troubleshooting (c00313117) (in English).
Color mix
The color blocks at the bottom of the self test report are printed by the tri-color (left-side) cartridge only. These blocks have labels describing the color they should be. If the color of any of the blocks does not match its label, the left-side cartridge is not functioning properly.
Figura : The color of one of the left cartridge bars is very different from the color on the cartridge label - the cartridge is not functioning properly
If one or more of the color blocks does not match its label, click here to continue troubleshooting (c00313147) (in English).
Missing colors
If any of the color bars is entirely missing, the cartridge is not functioning properly.
nota:
If you are printing in reserve mode, without all the cartridges installed, the patterns associated with the missing cartridge will also be missing.
    Figura : Missing colors
  1. All colors present - no problems
  2. Yellow missing - the tri-color cartridge is not functioning properly
If any of the bars is entirely missing, click here to continue troubleshooting (c00313147) (in English).
Ink smears
If the self test report shows smeared ink, clean your cartridges.
Figura : Smeared ink
If your self test report shows smeared ink, click here to continue troubleshooting (c00313140) (in English).

Step five: Service your product

Service or replace your HP product if the issue persists after completing all the preceding steps.
Go to Contact HP Customer Support to schedule a product repair or replacement. If you are in Asia Pacific, you will be directed to a local service center in your area.
To confirm your warranty status, go to HP Product Warranty Check. Repair fees might apply for out-of-warranty products.