HP Printer Won't Feed

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My daughter just called from DC.  Her printer (HP 3650) stopped
feeding in the middle of a print job.  She can hear the usual noises
but it just won't feed.  She tried fanning the paper then feeding in
one sheet to no avail.

Any ideas on how to fix this?


Re: HP Printer Won't Feed

On Tue, 27 Sep 2005 19:13:36 -0400, "Gary Brown"

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Note if the paper is picked up at all, and if so, how far in
it goes.  Could it merely be a paper jam?  We have no way to
know her experience with printers.  Does it seem like the
printer thinks the paper went through?  Did it continue
trying to print on *nothing*?  Did it prompt to insert
paper?  What kind of feedback does this model provide on
it's operating state?

If the cover flips open, an inspection of the paper path
would be useful.  If not (or either way) a flashlight or
strong light might help.  If the top doesn't open it could
be necessary to take it apart a bit to see the paper feed
mechanism, whether there are any stripped gears or
broken/loose belts, if the motor is running (Or motor shaft
is spinning within the attached gear), if any microswitches
aren't making contact... something that might be visually
obvious or might require a multimeter to check continuity.

Basically if she has no mechanical or electrical experience
*in general*, the best you might do is to describe that it's
using motor(s), gears, and rollers to pick up the paper and
guide it, and she needs to see where/why it isn't moving the
paper along.

There are other various things less easily seen, like a
loose tensioning spring (allows varying paper thickness) or
perhaps an entire plastic piece (holding a spring or even
unrelated to springs) could have broken off or bent.  This
isn't necessarily pertaining to that specific model of
printer but the general operation of it is probably similar
to many from a mechanical standpoint... if it's nothing
obvious then she (or someone nearby) will have to understand
a bit about how it mechanically works in order to find
what's wrong.

They're essentially throwaway printers though, repair can be
unworthwhile in many cases.  It looks like a replacement
could be had for about $70, if she had enough toner refills
already to make choosing same thing again worthwhile, but in
the interim if these are standard format files, a local
Kinkos or other copy center can probably get the rest of the
print job done "right now".

Re: HP Printer Won't Feed

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Sounds like worn out paper rollers. I've fixed laser printers by coating and
wiping clean the rollers with brake fluid. It doesn't last but definately
gets you through a month or so until new rollers can be found/shipped.

Re: HP Printer Won't Feed

If she can see the rubber rollers that move the paper, she might try
cleaning them with alcohol and a lint free cloth or swab.  But as was
mentioned, a good inspection is the best thing to do.  Make sure she
doesn't stick her finger in the rollers while they are moving.

Also make sure she hasn't moved a control for the paper thickness.  If
it was to be set on envelopes, it might not grab normal letter size paper.


Gary Brown wrote:
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