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HP inkjet printers - Alignment issues and errors

After replacing ink cartridges or trying to align the printheads or cartridges, one of the following issues might occur.

  • An Alignment Page does not print.

  • An Alignment Page prints every time you start a print job or turn on your printer.

  • An Alignment unsuccessful error displays.

  • An Alignment failed error displays.

Reset the printer

Reset the printer to recover from printer errors or failures.

  1. If your printer has a rechargeable battery, remove it.

  2. Press the power button to turn off the printer. If the printer does not turn off, disconnect the power cord from the printer.

  3. Unplug the power cord from the power source.

  4. Wait 60 seconds.

  5. Connect the power cord directly to a wall outlet and to the printer.

  6. Turn on the printer to complete the reset.

Print an alignment page with the HP Smart App

Use the HP Smart app to align the printhead.

  1. Load plain white paper into the tray.

  2. Open the HP Smart app, and then click the image of your printer or Printer Settings.

  3. Under Tools, click Print Quality Tools, and then select Align Printer, Align Printheads, or Align.

    An Aligning printhead message displays and an alignment page prints.

  4. If the alignment page includes instructions to scan the page, follow the instructions to finish the alignment process.

    Example alignment page with instructions to finish by scanning the page

    Example alignment page with instructions to finish by scanning the page

Check your ink cartridges

Incorrectly installed ink cartridges or low ink levels can result in poor print quality or errors.

  1. Check ink levels.

    • From the printer control panel: Look for an ink drop, a cartridge icon, or an Ink Levels menu.

    • From the HP Smart app: Open the HP Smart app. Estimated ink levels display on the Home screen.

    • Ink Tank, Smart Tank, DeskJet GT printers: Look at the ink tank windows on the printer. Most printers with ink tanks have a minimum fill line.

  2. Open the ink cartridge access door, and then wait for the carraige to stop moving.

  3. Remove each cartridge from the printer. Make sure to hold each cartridge by the sides.

  4. Remove any protective tape that might be on the cartridges.

    CAUTION:

    Do not touch the copper-colored contacts or the ink nozzles. Touching these parts can result in clogs, an ink system failure, and a failed electrical connection.

  5. Check for and remove any obstructions around the printer carriage.

  6. Replace any cartridges that are low or out of ink. If you have an ink tank printer, make sure each ink tank is filled to the minimum fill line.

  7. Reinstall the cartridges into their correct slots, and then make sure they are firmly seated.

  8. Close the ink cartridge access door.

Print a Print Quality Report (HP Smart app)

Print a Print Quality Report to check if the printhead or ink cartridges need to be cleaned, or to resolve an alignment issue.

  1. Load plain white paper into the tray.

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

  3. Under Tools, click Printer Reports, and then click Print next to Print Quality Report.

    Example of a Print Quality Diagnostic page
  4. Review the printout and follow the instructions to resolve any issues found.

Clean the printhead (HP Smart app)

Use the HP Smart app to clean the printhead and fix many print quality issues including incorrect colors, streaks, and faded printouts.

  1. Load plain white paper into the tray.

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

  3. Under Tools, click Print Quality Tools, and then select Clean Printhead or Clean.

    A Cleaning printhead message displays, and a test page prints.

    Example of test page printouts

    Examples of a test page
  4. Examine the print quality on the test page.

    • If the print quality is acceptable, you are done troubleshooting.

    • If the print quality is unacceptable, touch Yes in the HP Smart app to perform a second-level and third-level cleaning, which are more thorough and take a few extra minutes to complete.

      Note:

      Printheads that are badly clogged might require another printhead cleaning cycle. Wait at least 30 minutes before cleaning the printhead again.

Service the printer

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.