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HP LaserJet M207-M212 printers - Fix poor print quality issues

The quality of a printed document is not as expected. Printouts are smeared, fuzzy, dark, or faded, or toner is loose, partially missing, or scattered.

Perform the following tasks in the order given. Use the printer after each task to see if the issue is resolved.

Check the toner level (HP Smart app)

Use the HP Smart app to check the toner level for your printer.

  1. Open the HP Smart app on your computer or mobile device. To install the app, go to 123.hp.com.

  2. View the Estimated supply levels next to the printer image. It might take a few minutes for the ink or toner levels to display.

    Location of the Estimated supply levels in the HP Smart app

Inspect the toner cartridge

Check the toner cartridge for damage.

  1. Open the cartridge access door.

    Opening the cartridge access door
  2. Remove the toner cartridge.

    Removing the toner cartridge
  3. Examine the memory chip (e-label) for damage.

    If the memory chip is damaged, replace the toner cartridge.

    Examining the memory chip for damage
  4. Check the toner cartridge for any other damage.

  5. Install the cartridge.

    Installing the new toner cartridge
  6. Close the cartridge access door.

    Closing the cartridge access door

Check the paper, print settings, and quality of the file being printed

Make sure your print job is set up for optimal print quality results.

  1. Check paper type and condition. Make sure the paper is appropriate for the print job and in good condition.

    • Use paper designed for HP LaserJet printers, which is designed to handle the additional heat produced during the printing process.

      CAUTION:

      Do not use paper designed only for inkjet printers. For example, inkjet glossy photo paper can blister during the print job, which might damage the printer.

    • Some paper might not absorb toner as well as others, causing faded or smeared prints.

    • Use clean, wrinkle-free paper. Wrinkled or curled paper can cause dark, horizontal defects.

    • Do not use paper that is too rough. Smoother paper can result in better print quality.

  2. Loading paper according to the print side: Typically, the smoother or glossy side is the print side, and it is loaded with the print side facing up in the input tray.

  3. Loading paper according to the print side. Load paper into the paper tray with the print-side facing up. Typically, the smoother or glossy side is the print side.

  4. Check the print job settings: From the application you are printing from, click File > Print, and then click Options, Printer Setup, or Preferences, or open the Paper Type/Quality or Media & Quality menu.

    Make sure the color, paper type, paper size, and quality settings are correct for your print job.

  5. Check the quality of the photo or document: Use editing tools to improve colors, brightness, contrast, and any other appearance settings. Higher resolution photographs and graphics result in clearer prints with more accurate colors.

Clean the toner cartridge (HP Smart app)

Use Advanced Settings in the HP Smart app to clean the toner cartridge and resolve any print quality issues including vertical dark band or repetitive horizontal banding.

  1. Open the HP Smart app, and then click the image of your printer to open the settings and management tools.

  2. Under Advanced or Settings, click Advanced Settings to open the printer Embedded Web Server (EWS).

  3. From the EWS home page, click the System tab, and then click Service.

  4. If prompted to log in, type admin for the username, enter the PIN from the printer label, and then click Submit. This label is typically inside the cartridge access area.

    Location of the PIN on the printer label
  5. Under Cartridge Cleaning Mode, click Start.

    A Cartridge cleaning has begun message displays in the EWS. The printer might take up to 3 minutes to complete the cleaning.

    Clicking Start under Cartridge Cleaning mode in EWS

Print a fuser cleaning page (HP Smart app)

Use Advanced Settings in the HP Smart app to print a fuser cleaning page and resolve any print quality issues including toner specks or spatter, smears, streaks, lines, or repeating marks.

  1. Make sure paper is loaded into the input tray, and then turn on the printer.

  2. Open the HP Smart app, and then click the image of your printer to open the settings and management tools.

  3. Under Advanced or Settings, click Advanced Settings to open the printer Embedded Web Server (EWS).

  4. From the EWS home page, click the System tab, and then click Service.

  5. If prompted to log in, type admin for the username, enter the PIN from the printer label, and then click Submit. This label is typically inside the cartridge access area.

    Location of the PIN on the printer label
  6. Under Fuser Cleaning Mode, click Start.

    Some printers require you to press a button on the control panel, typically indicated by a flashing Attention light . For example, press the Start Copy/Resume , Resume/Cancel , or Resume button to start the fuser cleaning.

    Clicking Start under Cartridge Cleaning mode in EWS

    The printer uses a single piece of paper to clean the fuser. The printer might take up to 3 minutes to complete the cleaning.

Change the print density settings (HP Smart app)

Use Advanced Settings in the HP Smart app to change the print density settings and resolve any print quality issues.

  1. Open the HP Smart app, and then click the image of your printer to open the settings and management tools.

  2. Under Advanced or Settings, click Advanced Settings to open the printer Embedded Web Server (EWS).

  3. From the EWS home page, click the System tab, and then click System Setup.

  4. If prompted to log in, type admin for the username, enter the PIN from the printer label, and then click Submit. This label is typically located inside the cartridge access area or printer door.

    Location of the PIN on the printer label
  5. Next to Print Density, select a higher density value to increase how much toner is used when printing, which can improve print quality.

    Selecting a Print Density value in the EWS
  6. When you are done, click Apply.

Replace the toner cartridge

Replace the toner cartridge.

  • Even if the toner cartridge is not low on toner, follow the steps in this document to replace it with a new, genuine HP toner cartridge.

    Note:

    If you have a defective cartridge or printhead, it might be under warranty. To check the warranty on your ink or toner supplies, go to Printer and Page Yield Overview and then review the limited warranty information for your supplies.

Service the printer

Service or replace your HP printer 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.

Note:

Keep a print sample that shows the problem. If the printer, ink or toner cartridges, or the imaging drum are replaced under warranty, the support agent might request the print sample.


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