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Resolve scan quality problems on HP printers

When you scan, the computer file or printed output has vertical lines, incorrect colors, color bands, or poor resolution.

Examples of poor scan quality

Examples of poor scan quality

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

Make sure the scanning quality is not printing-related

If you are experiencing an issue with the quality of your printed scans, send a print job from the computer to confirm the quality issue is not printing-related.

  • If the quality issue occurs when printing from the computer, it is not scanning-related. Go to HP Customer Support, enter your printer model number, and then search for print quality to find the Fixing Poor Print Quality document.

  • If the quality issue occurs when scanning, it is most likely related to the scanner hardware or scan job settings.

Clean the scanner glass and parts

Fingerprints, smudges, dust, or debris on the scanner glass, under the scanner lid, or in the document feed slot can cause lines and color bands. Clean these parts with a soft, lint-free cloth sprayed with glass cleaner.

Examples of scanner types

Callout

Description

1.

Printer with flatbed scanner glass and lid

2.

Printer with a document scan feeder

Clean a flatbed scanner

Clean the scanner glass and underside of the scanner lid with a soft, lint-free cloth sprayed with glass cleaner.

  1. Turn off the printer, and then disconnect the power cord.

  2. Lift the scanner lid.

  3. Spray a soft, lint-free cloth with glass cleaner, and then wipe the scanner glass, glass strip (if present), the white backing under the scanner lid, and the white strip under the lid (if present) until clean, dry, and streak-free.

    CAUTION:

    To protect the interior printer parts, do not spray the cleaner directly on the glass or on the underside of the lid.

    Clean the scanner glass and under the lid, and any glass or white strips (if present)

    Callout

    Description

    1.

    White scanner lid backing

    2.

    White ADF scanner lid strip (if present)

    3.

    Glass ADF scanner strip (if present)

    4.

    Main scanner glass

  4. Reconnect the power cord, turn on the printer, and then close the scanner lid completely.

Clean a document scan feeder

Clean the plastic and glass strips inside the document feeder with a soft, lint-free cloth sprayed with glass cleaner.

Note:

Some printers ship with a document feeder cleaning cloth. If you have the cloth, load it into the document feeder and start a scan job to clean the scanner mechanism.

  1. Turn the printer off, disconnect the power cord, and then remove the rechargeable battery if your printer has one.

  2. Depending on your printer model, open any top cover, document feeder tray, and scan document feeder cover.

  3. Remove any debris such as bits of paper or paper clips from inside the document feeder.

  4. Spray a soft, lint-free cloth with glass cleaner, and then wipe the scanner glass and the white strip on the underside of the document feeder until clean, dry, and streak-free.

    CAUTION:

    To protect the interior printer parts, do not spray the cleaner directly on or into the printer.

  5. Completely close any covers and trays that you opened.

  6. Reconnect the power cord, reinstall the battery if necessary, and then turn on the printer.

Reset the printer

Reset the printer to recover from printer errors or failures.

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

  2. With the printer turned on, disconnect the power cord from the printer.

  3. Unplug the power cord from the power source.

  4. Wait 60 seconds.

  5. Reconnect the power cord to a wall outlet and to the printer.

    Note:

    HP recommends plugging the printer directly into a wall outlet.

  6. Turn on the printer to complete the reset.

Clean the automatic document feeder (ADF)

If your printer has an ADF, clean it regularly to help avoid paper jams and quality problems.

  1. Get a lint-free cloth and distilled water.

  2. Remove the original document from the ADF.

  3. Turn off the printer, and then disconnect the power cord.

  4. Open the ADF cover.

    Lifting the ADF cover
  5. Find the paper pick rollers and the separator pad inside the ADF.

    ADF paper pick rollers and separator pad

    Callout

    Description

    1.

    Paper pick roller

    2.

    Separator pad

  6. Lightly dampen a clean, lint-free cloth with filtered or distilled water, and then squeeze any excess liquid from the cloth.

  7. Use the damp cloth to clean the paper pick rollers and the separator pad.

  8. Leave the ADF cover open for two minutes to allow the rollers and pad to dry.

  9. Close the ADF cover.

  10. Reconnect the power cord, and then turn on the printer.

Change the scan settings

Change the settings in the scan software to help improve the scan quality of your document or photo.

Note:

Available settings vary by printer model, scan software, and when scanning a document or a photo. For example, the PDF settings are only available for document scans.

  1. Make sure the original document or photo is in good condition and free of tears, creases, folds, staples, or tape.

  2. Place the original on the scanner glass or into the automatic document feeder (ADF).

    Note:

    Do not load photos into the ADF to prevent damaging them or the printer.

  3. Open the scan software, and then find the scanner settings.

  4. Change any of the following settings before scanning, if available.

    • Select the appropriate scan type: Make sure your scan type matches the object you are scanning for optimal quality.

    • Select either the color or greyscale scan option: If the original item is in color or greyscale, choosing to scan it in black and white can significantly degrade scan quality.

    • Increase the scan resolution: Increasing the resolution improves the scan quality, but it also increases scanning time and file size. A standard resolution of 300 dpi is acceptable for most text-based documents, while 600 dpi or higher is better for detailed photo scans.

    • Choose the appropriate file type: The file extension you choose can affect the final scan quality. For most scan jobs, PDF, JPEG, GIF, and PNG are acceptable file types.

    • Do not compress or reduce the file size: Compressing your scanned files produces smaller file sizes at a cost of lower image quality

  5. Scan the document or photo.

    A preview of the scan displays in the software.
  6. On the preview screen, make any final scan adjustments, and then save the scan.

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.


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