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  • Information
    Fix Windows 10 Update Issues

    Resolve Windows 10 or update issues on an HP computer or printer – Click here

    Information

    Fix intermittent print spooler service errors that may cause print jobs to fail post a Windows update. Click here

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HP Deskjet F4200 All-in-One Series - Faded, Missing, or Dull Colors in Printouts

Issue

The product is working, but colors in the printed output are faded, missing, or dull in comparison to the original.

Solution one: Make sure the paper is appropriate for the print job

Using the wrong paper for the print job might cause the colors to be faded, missing, or dull.
  1. Many papers have printing and non-printing sides. Make sure to load the paper with the print side facing down.
  2. Make sure the paper type is appropriate for the project. Use HP Premium or HP Advanced Photo paper for the best results.

Solution two: Check estimated ink level

Use the following steps to check the ink level.
  1. From HP Solution Center, click Settings, and then click Printer Toolbox. The toolbox appears.
    note:
    The 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 Level tab.
    Figure : Estimated ink levels
    note:
    A cartridge might be running out of ink even if the graphic shows that ink remains in the cartridge. Lines or streaks appear in printouts when the cartridges begin to run out of ink. Replace print cartridges that are out of or low on ink.

Solution three: Check the print settings

Use the following steps to check and adjust the print settings for the product.
  1. In the software program from which you are printing, click File, and then click Print.
  2. Make sure the product is selected from the drop-down list, and then click Properties or Preferences.
  3. Click the Features tab, and then select the print quality and paper type settings that match the print job.
  4. Click OK to accept the new settings.
  5. Click Print to send the print job.

Solution four: Check for defects using an extended self-test report

Extended self-test reports identify specific print quality issues. Use an extended self-test report to determine what is causing the issue.

Step one: Print an extended self-test report

Use the following steps to print an extended self-test report.
  1. Press and hold the power button (), and then press Cancel.
  2. Release both buttons. The extended self-test report prints.
    Figure : The extended self-test report

Step two: Note which cartridges printed which areas of the extended self-test report

Identify which print cartridge printed which part of the extended self-test report, so that if there are defects, it will be possible to know which print cartridge is the problem.
Different combinations of print cartridges can be installed in the product, and different cartridge combinations print different self-test report patterns. The right and left cartridges will print in the same areas of the report no matter which cartridges are installed.
    Figure : Layout of the extended self-test report
  1. Printed by the right cartridge
  2. Printed by the left cartridge

Step three: Check 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 there should be no streaks of ink on the report.

Missing lines or streaked bars

If a pattern shows more than a few missing lines or if a bar is streaked, the print cartridge that corresponds to that section is not functioning properly.
Figure : Color block with missing lines
If the report shows missing lines or streaked bars, click here to continue troubleshooting (c01369232) (in English).

Color mix

If any of the colors of the bars are very different from the color dots on the cartridge label, the cartridge is not functioning properly.
Figure : The bar color differs from the color dot on the cartridge
If the report shows colors that are very different from the colors on the cartridge label, click here to continue troubleshooting (c01369366) (in English).

Missing colors

If any of the color patterns or bars are entirely missing, the cartridge is not functioning properly.
note:
If printing in reserve mode, without all the cartridges installed, the patterns associated with the missing cartridge will be missing.
    Figure : Missing colors
  1. All colors printed - no missing colors
  2. Yellow missing - the tri-color (left-side) cartridge is not printing properly
If any of the patterns or bars are entirely missing, click here to continue troubleshooting (c01369481) (in English).

Ink smears

The cartridges might be dirty if the extended self-test report shows smeared ink.
Figure : Smeared ink
If the report shows smeared ink, click here to continue troubleshooting (c01368590) (in English).

Step four: Service the All-in-One

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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