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HP Scanjet 8300 Series and N8400 Series Scanners - Paper Feeding, Jamming Problems and Related Simple Checks and Fixes

Issue
Clean Out Zone
Under certain circumstances a scanner may report ADF (Automatic Document Feeder) paper feeding problems, paper jams, open hatch/door and also be picking multiple pages simultaneously. Frequently these problems are easy to identify and fix, avoiding inconvenient and time-consuming replacement and repair by HP. This document describes several different steps that can be performed, such as cleaning out the ADF Hatch & Access Door areas, removing foreign objects (paper, staples, paper-clips), checking the ADF Mylar strip, and inspecting the Input Tray, ADF Sensor Flag, Separation Pad & Rollers.
Solution
If you get a paper-jam or hatch/door error message or paper won’t feed, the first area to look at for possible problems is the Clean Out Zone, located on the underside of the ADF. Open the ADF Access Door as shown in the Figure below.
Figure : Clean Out Zone
Open the ADF Access Door on the underside of the ADF. Press the tabs on the door, then pull the door toward you until it detaches from the ADF. Note the center photo in the Figure below showing the appearance of the ADF Access Door after it has been detached from the ADF. Fix any issues in the Clean out zone & firmly snap the ADF Access Door back in place.
Figure : Examples showing large and small paper-pieces and paper-clip and staples found in the ADF
Look for any jammed paper, small pieces of paper, stuck staples or paper clips, and any other object that may be stuck in the Clean Out Zone. Figure 2 has examples of the objects that may be stuck and some locations where they may be found. Clear out any stuck paper and objects inside.
In addition to objects stuck in the Clean Out Zone, paper jams and paper feeding problems may be caused by a damaged plastic Mylar strip. The Mylar strip (shown in the Figure below) helps guide the paper through the paper path and can get damaged by paper clips and staples. The Figure below shows a Mylar strip in good condition and the second Figure below is an example of how this strip may be damaged. If this strip is seen to be damaged there is no way to repair or replace it. If it is damaged then please contact HP support to arrange for an exchange of the ADF.
  note:
Image quality of the scanned pages can be improved by periodically examining the white strip shown in the Figure below which can accumulate paper dust after thousands of sheets being fed through the ADF. The white strips and glass should be cleaned using a dry soft, lint-free cloth.
Figure : Normal Mylar strip on ADF Access Door
Figure : Mylar strip torn out of ADF due to staple damage
The final item to check in the Clean Out Zone is the Sensor Flag. The Figure below shows the location and appearance of the tiny Sensor Flag. If the Flag is as shown in Figure 5 (sticking out and unable to be easily tucked back in with a soft push) or is difficult to move, then a paper jam will occur. Check to see that the Sensor Flag moves freely by pushing it with a pin or ballpoint pen. If it feels tight, remove any obstructions (like the paper in Figure 2) or wiggle it gently in four directions until it moves freely.
Figure : Sensor Flag in Clean Out Zone
ADF Hatch Area
The second area to check is at the top ADF Hatch. First, open the ADF Hatch as shown in the Figure below and clear out any paper or stuck objects found inside (similar to the steps and examples for the Clean Out Zone).
Open the ADF Hatch to look for jammed paper or foreign objects. If nothing is found, close the ADF Hatch firmly -- making sure that both “ears” of the hatch are firmly down.
Note that if either the ADF Hatch or ADF access door are not firmly seated then error messages about Hatch/door will be occur. Any time such a message is seen, reseat both the ADF Hatch (Figure below) and the ADF access door.
Figure : ADF Hatch Area
The second step in this area is to check that the Input Tray (see the Figure below) is sitting flat. It may be possible that the Input Tray is lifted up on one side or the other. The two front tabs may not be completely inserted in their slots. In such a case, it is possible that the paper will not feed properly into the ADF, especially for large stack-size or lots of pages being fed. To avoid this problem, make sure that the Input Tray is firmly seated in the top of the ADF.
Figure : Top Of ADF
Separation Pad and Rollers
The separation pad and rollers (Figure below) are important parts of the ADF mechanism responsible for separating and properly feeding pages into the scanner.
Figure : Seperation Pad and Rollers
Any damage to these parts can cause paper jams, miss-feeds, or multiple page feeds. The pictures below are examples of damaged or worn-out separation pads that affected the performance of the scanners paper handling. As shown in the Figure below, you get access to see the appearance of the separation pad by opening the ADF Hatch & lifting the green lever to expose it below.
Figure : Separation Pad access - Note that this separation pad is disintegrating from high page count
Replace the pad when its middle is half as thick as the top edge as shown in the center sample in the Figure below.
Figure : Three stages of Separation Pad wearing
Another example of problems occurring in the paper-path is where parts are missing and the roller/separation pad, (Figure below) combination cannot adequately feed paper.
HP makes a Roller Replacement Kit available containing the Bogy & separation pads for cases where significant wear is seen in rollers or pad. For cases of high roller wear, the Bogy needs to be replaced. Most of the time, re-assembly of the Bogy can be done according to the following instructions.
REMOVAL INSTRUCTIONS
  1. With the Roller assembly down, depress the button centered in the middle of the black cover while raising the mechanism with the large blue-green lever.
  2. Raise the lever and allow the roller assembly to drop away from the bottom of the roller drive shaft.
  3. The Figure below is the roller assembly separated from the drive shaft. This roller assembly is also called the Bogy.
    REPLACEMENT INSTRUCTIONS
    1. Locate the two retaining hooks. See the shaft path noted in green, and the hooks circled in blue.
    2. Pick up the roller assembly so that the blue-green side is aligned to the blue-green lever on the drive shaft. Lift the roller assembly so that the metal shaft slides into and against the retaining hooks.
    3. Secure the roller assembly to the drive shaft. Press on the blue-green and black plastic sides of the roller assembly until it clicks into the drive shaft.
        note:
      Do not press on the gear. This will make it difficult to seat the roller assembly. Press on the plastic sides indicated in the picture at right.
    4. Bogy is shown assembled in the Figure below. Using the blue-green lever, lower the roller assembly back into operating position so that it looks like Step 1 in the REMOVAL section.
    For both the separation pad & rollers, the problems are easily fixed by ordering a Roller Replacement Kit for your scanner and substituting the damaged parts with the new parts in the kit.
“Flossing” the ADF
One final optional step is to “floss the ADF.” This is done by running a sheet of heavy media through the ADF. “Flossing” is considered an optional step because it requires feeding paper that is much heavier than specified for the scanner but it can be very effective in clearing and dislodging staples, paper clips, small bits of paper, or other objects stuck in areas not accessible through the other steps provided in this document.
“Flossing” can be done by cutting a manila folder to A4 or letter-paper-size (8.5” x 11”) and running a single sheet of that through the ADF. The paper weight is 60# (approximately 225gsm) and is 0.3mm thick (this is almost 2.5 times as thick as maximum allowable paper). Place the media in the ADF input tray and start a scan job using the software installed on the host computer. Since the media is so thick the user may have to push the sheet in to help get it started. When the media feeds through and ejects from the ADF any dislodged objects will eject into the output tray as well.
Background
The ADF for these scanners are robust mechanisms, able to handle duty cycles of at least 1000 scans/day. However, the scanner is still susceptible to poor performance when some of the conditions mentioned above exist. Note also that in these cases the error messages reported can sometimes be misleading. It is important to always do a visual check of the product and mechanism to identify easy fixes and a quick resumption of normal operation.

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