asked Sep 8, 2005 at 2:20am
Canon Canon Color Bubblejet (BJC) i450

Canon i450 - Will not print in Black or Blue

I cannot clean the heads using several Deep Cleaning cycles. It still won't print in the BLACK and CYAN. Anyone done anything desperate here ... and succeeded? Otherwise its curtains for Canon. I've read and tried the suggested stuff on the Canon Site - didn't work.

by Anonymous on Nov 29, 2005 at 5:23am Add comment
Canon not printing in black? So did my S400. And as most of you know, and to make clear what I mean when I say printhead, cartridge, ink tank/reservoir, etc, most recent Canons have a printhead (the gizmo with the nozzles) which fits into the printhead carrier(fixed) under the cover, is removable, and from which you can remove and replace 4 to 6 different ink tanks.
When it started skipping parts of lines, showing white lines in black part of fotos, showing nothing from part way down a page, I checked various sites such as this and started cleaning the nozzles. No luck. Not even when telling it that high gloss foto paper was used. Since I have 4 different printheads always loaded with tanks, 2 BC33e and 2 BC-34Photo, I tried all 4 with same results. Different drivers from various software, such as Word Perfect, no go.
Then figured that the problem was not printheads or their nozzles. but in the feed to the printheads. The back of the carrier has a number of pins that come in contact with the gold foil on the printhead. A bit of alcohol on a swab accross the pins and the old Canon is working better than in years. Go easy with swabs.
Hope this helps someone with similar frustations. Took me weeks to finally fix it. I must be getting too old for this hi-tech stuff.
by Old Rob on Jul 7, 2006 at 4:28pm Add comment
I use an iP4000 and could not print black. I set my paper option to envelope and this works.. as a matter of fact every other setting other than the plain paper setting works, thanks everyone..
by just.liam on Oct 19, 2007 at 12:50pm Add comment
My Canon i560 will not print black text. Have tried the usual things like cleaning print head, checking ink etc. When I do a nozzle check or alignment it DOES print black so there is obviously ink and it ain't blocked. So why will it not print black text. I do not want to change from plain paper to photo as has been described on other threads this just combines the other colours to make black. I have tried re-installing driver and have even re-installed XP and the driver.......

Any ideas?
by flashman1207 on Nov 26, 2007 at 8:25pm Add comment
Hi I have a Canoni450 and am having the same trouble I cannot print in Black, any ideas or suggestions would be most welcome
by raymauhel on Sep 23, 2005 at 1:29pm Add comment
Mine won't print black, came here for help. I had allowed the ink to totally go out before i tried to replace it. The document i was trying to print wouldn't stop printing when I noticed it was getting etchy looking, and almost ran all the way through before I shut the printer off. Of course by that time, there was harldy any black markings on the paper at all. Tried 3 different ink tanks. Have tons of ink from 123 inkjets for it, too.
by unknown on Sep 24, 2005 at 4:35pm Add comment
Sounds like I'm having same problem as the rest of you. Anyone find a solution? I can't print in black and I have tried everything. Changed the cartridge several times (123 inkjets). Bought a "Cannon" cartridge today and it still will not print. Cleaned the heads, alligned. Very frustrating!!!
by unknown on Oct 11, 2005 at 2:23pm Add comment
Did you find a solution to your problem.
I have a Canon i550 and have the same problem not printing in black. Very frustrating. - Anonymous
I contacted Canon; the responder said the head may be bad, however the responder also advised changing the head may not work. Anyone perused any other boards to find if someone has made this step?

Looking for another printer now, something cheap with cheap ink. Been punching codes for days on 123 inkjets for inexpensive ink. Don't want to pay any more than 5.00 per black ink cartridge, and don't want to pay any more than $70.00 for a printer, preferably less. Any suggestions? Thanks.

Seems like even the printers I've checked out that do have inexpensive ink, have several color cartridges instead of one. It all adds up, I'm a poor college student at this time. Don't want to go that route if I don't have to.
by unknown on Oct 13, 2005 at 10:22am Add comment
Despite the problems with the print head, Canon is still the most economical printer to own. So if you are a starving student (been there man), "couch dive" and eat Top Ramon so you can save the money to buy a new Canon. Make sure it uses the BCI-6BK or BCI-3eBK. Ebay might be a good idea, look for the Canon pixma ip4000.

Hope this helps

- Anonymous
I am having the same problem, but only after I put it on my mother's computer. The i450 has worked great for over a year. My mom was having problems with her Epson (which I read has notorious printhead issues) so I gave her my little workhorse to use. It worked great for the first few days and then the black ink started to get lines through it and now doesn't work at all. I see too many posts to think it is a print head issue. I went from fine to bad without any real reason. In that the same problem existed on two Epsons we tried and now my old Canon, I am thinking it is PC related, not the printer. Any thoughts?
by Anonymous on Oct 23, 2005 at 3:33pm Add comment
i am glad to hear other people are having the same problems.
not that is a good thing. i too have tried other printers.
i use canon pixima ip3000. switched to epson stylus color 850.
have same problem. - Anonymous
Thank,s Anonymous did,nt use what you said but had a go cleaning the head with acetone free nail remover on cotton bud and it worked.Was on the verge of buying new printer saved me the money,Thanks - mama mia
Canons do rock for the price; but right now I'm looking for anything with inexpensive ink. I've noticed alot of printers, even canon, are coming out with printers that require several ink cartridges for color. Ugh. Usually they all have to be replaced around the same time, anyway, so it's not that economical. I'm not buying a used printer, don't want someone else's headaches.

Thanks for the tip on the printer, will keep looking.
by unknown on Oct 29, 2005 at 10:25am Add comment
I swear by Canon printers. I wouldn't own anything else. The ink is cheap, the printers are affordable and the qualitiy is great for routine use which is what the majority of home printing is, right. The problems I am having are due to the cpu and not the printer. Do not hesitate to by the lower end canon's, they are great.
by Anonymous on Oct 29, 2005 at 6:20pm Add comment
I would like to share with you my personal experience with printer issues. I have canon i455 printer which has black & blue color clogged. Here is the solution:
1. Buy Ethyl-alcohol/ethanol solution (70\% or more). You can purchase this at any drug stores. Isopropyl alcohol may work as well.
2. Remove both cartridges from the printer head. Unplug the printer head from the printer body. Pour the alcohol liquid into paper towel layer (use more layer/thick to avoid ink from being drop into table).
3. put the printer head on the top of wet towel - with the face of HEAD touching the towel.
4. rub the head to the towel until you get rid of built-up ink on the head.
5. Pour some alcohol liquid into the printer head container (ink-receptacle area where the ink cartridge normally sits (there should be a little hole down in there where the ink actually flows from the cartridge into the head). Be careful do not touch the electronic parts. Let's dry overnight.
6. repeat step 2-5 if necessary.
7. Install the cartridge back to the printer and run several head cleaning maintenance, print nozzle check, repeat until no more dead nozzle shown.

good luck!
by Anonymous on Nov 14, 2005 at 11:17am Add comment
any of u having ink spills/leaks?
my ip1000 just goes on dumping blue ink in the holder but surprisingly no blue gets to the paper while printing - unknown
Absolutely Brilliant!!!

Didnt have any ethanol so tried nail varnish remover! Worked a treat!!

Filled up the printer head compartments and left them for 5 minutes, then rinsed with hot water and dried (in the sauna) and 5 minutes later my printer printed like a GOD!

Thanx so much for the tip!

- Anonymous

I followed your steps and they worked wonderfully well.
Saved me some bucks. - Anonymous
brilliant advice all works great now - Anonymous
trying this on a i560 printhead tonite. Will advise if it works. - unknown
Recently my Canon i860 stopped printing in black and white. I tried your suggestion it now works fine. Thanks so much!!! - Anonymous
Woohoo! ty, Anonymous. I have some progress, there's lots more black lines showing, and even some faded text. :) Gonna soak it overnight, that should do the trick. Using rubbing alcohol. Awesome! I'm soo happy I don't need a new printer! woohoo!
by unknown on Nov 17, 2005 at 10:21pm Add comment
Refering to step number 5 above, did you find a hole? Mine appears to have what looks like small plugs that probably absorbs the ink. Did you remove plugs?
by unknown on Nov 28, 2005 at 9:35am Add comment
No. I didn't remove the plug. just pour out the alcohol into the ink receiver hole (what you called "plug"). For me, I have to let the alcohol drain overnight. Find ethanol 90\% if possible. I think would be a better solution compare to rubbing alcohol. I have no idea how to get this. maybe you can try buy in local pharmacy.

Good luck danschultz110.
Congrat Avonlady.
It's a pleasure to help other
by fe1ixs on Dec 5, 2005 at 2:25pm Add comment
with canon if some coulours are not working try taking out the printhead and soak the metal plate on the bottom in very hot water. it sounds blocked but only leave it in hot water till you see ink flow ( make sure cartridges are out ) If you leave your printer off when not using the ink will go like glue. Ink runs on heat so best leave your printer on.I work for a ink company and most time this works. Good luck
by on Dec 5, 2005 at 5:55pm Add comment
Can't believe this. Soaked the thing, went to try it out again. Paper went in crooked, pulled it out, and out comes a metal piece. Can't find where the thing is supposed to go, now I have no printer at all. Trying to find a canon that has ink listed on 123 inkjets, can you believe they are all out? in every online store I've looked at. I'm soo cheesed, need a printer pronto. exams and final papers are due next week! AAAAAAAARGH!
by unknown on Dec 10, 2005 at 12:02pm Add comment
I'm sorry to hear that avonlady. Looks you had mechanical issues on your printer. Btw, I have good source if you need to buy cheap cartridge. here is the link :
Ink works pretty good on me.

Good luck!
- fe1ixs
i have a i450 printer would not sell or trade for anything just love it but i am haveing a problem it will not print in any color going to try the step above and see if that will work does anyone now where i can get a printer head for it for under 50
by unknown on Dec 24, 2005 at 9:38am Add comment

My Canon i550 printer won't print Black - bought two new cartridges and it still won't print.

what could I do to solve this problem

Help anyone!

by Aridni on Dec 25, 2005 at 1:01am Add comment
Follow the instruction on this thread:
Re: Canon i450 - Will not print in Black or Blue by Anonymous (11/14/05 11:17 AM)

goodluck! - Anonymous
try cleaning the print head the black ink might be cloged
by unknown on Dec 25, 2005 at 7:42am Add comment

I'm having same problems with my i560 but can't seem to get my print heads out to clean them -- any suggestions?

by Anonymous on Dec 26, 2005 at 6:25pm Add comment
Hi Tia,

Have you all ready got a response on your post?

If not do you have the book for you printer? If you do it should give you directions on how to get your print head out.

If you don't have a book check around the print head to see if there's a lever of some sort that you can use. You probably'll have to take out the ink cartridges before you can get the print head out. I have a Canon PIXMA MP500. On my printer you have to take the ink cartridges out before you can get the print head out, then lift up the lever (on the left of the print head) and then left out the print head.

Hope this is of help to you. If you have any problems/questions please give me a holler.

Good Luck.
LaVonne - Anonymous
not sure how you would go about takeing it but i have seen some cleaner tanks online dont rember witch site its was i havent been able to fix my i450 yet think my printer head is junk and a replacement head for it is $75.00 good luck with yours
by unknown on Dec 26, 2005 at 6:31pm Add comment
Felix, your prices are awesome! better than 123. I got a new printer, pixma mp130. Actually, I got 2 of them the same day, didn't know one was on it's way already from a different store. When it rains, it pours. :P I'll clean the i450 printhead again and save it for when the ink clogs in the 130.

Good luck everybody, and be careful pulling the paper out if it jams.
by Anonymous on Dec 27, 2005 at 8:01am Add comment
A detailed note for people like me who were unfamiliar with the insides of an i560 printer.

1. Open the printer lid. The printer cartridge holder slides to the middle.

2. Raise the gray lever directly to the right of the yellow cartridge.

3. Remove all four ink cartridges.

4. Now reach in and remove the black print head unit. It's the smaller black plastic piece that sits inside the back of the larger black plastic ink cartridge holder. You can identify it by the four small "plugs" where the ink flows from the cartridges into the print head. BTW, these are actually tiny screens, not plugs.

You will need to grab the print head unit by the upper corner tabs, tilt it toward you then lift it out.

Now you can clean the entire works as described above and reassemble. I'm assuming other Canon printers are similar.
by unknown on Jan 26, 2006 at 3:05pm Add comment
Disassembled as described. Gave the whole print head underside a dry clean on a blank sheet of paper (somewhat afraid of water), and that worked fine too. Applied only light pressure, a few strokes, reassembled and tested OK. - Anonymous
A detailed note for people like me who were unfamiliar with the insides of an i560 printer.

1. Open the printer lid. The printer cartridge holder slides to the middle.

2. Raise the gray lever directly to the right of the yellow cartridge.

3. Remove all four ink cartridges.

4. Now reach in and remove the black print head unit. It's the smaller black plastic piece that sits inside the back of the larger black plastic ink cartridge holder. You can identify it by the four small "plugs" where the ink flows from the cartridges into the print head. BTW, these are actually tiny screens, not plugs.

You will need to grab the print head unit by the upper corner tabs, tilt it toward you then lift it out.

Now you can clean the entire works as described above and reassemble. I'm assuming other Canon printers are similar.
by unknown on Jan 26, 2006 at 3:18pm Add comment
Than you SO much Followed your instuctions and they worked. Very grateful for your taking the time to post the information - Anonymous
i have s6300. cleaned as described. new inks in it. still prints only faintly in black. I can seee the colours seeping out when I clean it
by fat larry on Feb 2, 2006 at 1:29pm Add comment
GREAT! Now I have to build a sauna to fix my printheads!!!
Dazz UK ;)
by hpwizard on Feb 2, 2006 at 1:57pm Add comment
thank you thank you thank you... i used a radiator instead of a sauna - my vision is blurry and my nerve endings are shot from all the nail varnish remover I've tipped over my finger ends (I had to do it twice as it didn't work so well the first time) - but who cares - my black ink is back! thanks again!
by Anonymous on Feb 13, 2006 at 7:29am Add comment
What a great bunch -- many thanks. My black, (Canon MP780) which was non-existant, is now better but has white lines running through it. For the record, I used warm water and a hair dryer.
Any further suggestions will be appreciated.
by deejw on Feb 16, 2006 at 2:34pm Add comment
I have a 780 as well with the same problem. Tell me, did you soak the the whole head (chips and all?) . Looks risky to me, but if it works for you, I'd like to try it.

Peace, Geoff - unknown
Ignore previous message (except the part about everyone being great) the black is absolutely FINE now. Blessings to all who helped!
by deejw on Feb 16, 2006 at 2:51pm Add comment

Hi Canon i450 users. I had the same trouble - black wouldn't print. The email I printed had horizontal smears and words printed with horizontal streaks and blanks. I knew the cartridge was empty, the warning showing in the dialogue box. Usually get 20-25 more pages!

I changed the cartridge and ran the alignment program and the last two boxes failed to print and the plus/minus adjustment boxes were only partially numbered. Tried test printing. No black print. Tried head cleaning followed by nozzle clean. No black. Head clean black only, still no black print.

Recall someone @ Neil Slade's Inkjet site said to remove carts and head and rub head on a pad of paper towels saturated with alcohol to scrub and unclog holes. I could see me making a mess. I took my old cartridge and dripped 25-30 drops of isopropynol alcohol (standard medicine chest quality)and ran black cleaning cycle twice and printed test page with this medicated cartridge which worked! Put in a new (cheap reman- cartridge) from Inkjet Mart and I'm back in business again! Hope this works for someone. Just giving back.

by unknown on Feb 20, 2006 at 10:14pm Add comment
The quality of my black ink printing is having problems as the document printed are not of the same black tone. I have cleaned the printhead a lot of time with a substantial amount of money spent but still the printhead cannot perform properly. Can someone help me on this?
by unknown on Mar 1, 2006 at 10:44am Add comment
My printer still wouldn't print black ink until..... After having read somewhere else to change setting to photo paper I tried it and it worked. I then tried other paper settings which worked as well. Black would not print only on plain paper setting. Maybe a drive problem?

Hope this might help someone else

I have a canon s600
by chikita on Mar 29, 2006 at 10:27pm Add comment
Good tip chikita.

I had recently changed out the black cartridge on my i550 and was not getting any black print. I re-replaced the cartridge - no success. I was about to have a go at the full printer head cleaning techniques mentioned on this site when I saw your note and decided to give it a try.

Not sure why it works, but it does. I've tried changing print quality settings and other various settings permutations, but it will only seem to work if the media type is not set to "Plain Paper". Also interesting that my i550 had the same response as your s600.

Anyone else out there seeing this type of behaviour? Any ideas what might be going on (drivers, etc)?

- Anonymous
Many, many thanks for your tip to change the printer setting to photo paper. It worked!! I have an i450 printer which has worked GREAT until just now it won't print in black. - Anonymous
"My printer still wouldn't print black ink until..... After having read somewhere else to change setting to photo paper I tried it and it worked. I then tried other paper settings which worked as well. Black would not print only on plain paper setting." - chikita, from 3/6/06

This worked, amazingly!! Try this method first before wasting more money on carts and print heads. - CJARNS
I am a happy camper today! Thanks to "chiquita" my printer is now printing in black once again. I had been having problems with the black ink on my Canon i550 smearing every fourth line. Yesterday I printed out a message from someone who uses blue for their email and I had no problem at all so I realized that the problem must be with the black ink cartridge. Today I decided to clean the black ink area with distilled water and, when I put everything back together again, the black ink did not print at all. Argh! I decided to search on the 'net for help and came upon this site. Searched through this site for the least messy solution and I tried setting the paper for "Photo" paper as recommended by "chiquita" and amazingly it worked! A thousand thank you's to you!

- franconia
Thank you - have a canon mp600 - black * wouldnt print text - simply changed the paper from plain to something else! :-) (I was nearly at the point of following the posts about soaking the head in alocohol!!) Must be a S/W driver issue . . . - Anonymous
I tried switching to photo paper and it works fine now. Thanks a lot for the suggestion. Even if it uses a little more ink, at least I don't have to wait till I get a new print head. - Anonymous
Just want to thanks. I have a cheapie all in one Canon MP130 that had all kinds of banding in the printing. Even the deep cleaning cycle wouldn't work. I used rubbing alcohol, medicated the ink cartridges per Marlite and it worked liked a champ. I get clear and sharp photo prints again. Thanks again and Great tip!!


by unknown on Apr 15, 2006 at 2:10am Add comment
I have a i560 and had the same problem and did all the fixes
mentioned here to no avail. then i read another post from a novice that he simply change the paper type setting from "plain paper" to "photo paper" and he can now print black text fine.

i tried it and it works great! i use plain and say its photo paper and no problems with black ink anymore. this works when
the nozzle check shows black ink on paper and head alignment shows black ink on paper but you cant print text.

by itsjustme on Apr 15, 2006 at 10:14am Add comment
Holy printer paper!

I have been reading through these and other posts on
different pages. I have been trying everything.
I thought Windex might do the trick (didn't).

Then I changed the printer settings to 'photo'
for type of paper.
It worked for me.

Best of luck to everyone. - unknown
I've been reading all your postings and am encountering the same problem with my i450 printer. in a way it was my fault coz i've refilled the cartridge twice in order to save cost. on my second refill... the problem existed. only yellow is printing. haven't tried your tips yet co'z i might ruin the printer. im after looking for a print head replacement instead. so i just wanna ask if you know any pc store selling that kind of print head in the philippines.

one thing more... that printer came along with the digicam. a month before i had a prob with the printer, the shutted of ixus450 doesn't work anymore so i was also thinking that maybe there's a correlation between these two. heard from my friends who also purchased the same cam that their stutter wouldn't work as well. do you think cannon equipment last only for up to 3 years?
by nutcase on Apr 17, 2006 at 12:27am Add comment
My i965 is also not printing in black if the paper type is set to plain paper. I have recently shelled out some £60 for a new head so am not best chuffed.

Any help would be VERY gratefully received.
by tab on Apr 17, 2006 at 10:51am Add comment
I've had a similar problem with my (used) i550. However, there is a nasty twist that I can't explain.

My printer would print colours very well, but not black, even though the nozzle check printed black and all three colours out well enough. As per suggestion, I cleaned the print heads and cartridges with isopropyl alcohol. Now -nothing- will print. A nozzle check still prints out fine, though. Plainly, something is fubared, and I've only made things worse.

I'm not sure what printer driver I'm using right now - I've changed drivers so many times I've forgotten. It should be using XP's default or i550xp190ea20z. I'm not sure if that's the latest one or not.

by unknown on Apr 21, 2006 at 1:37pm Add comment
Mine is an i560x and was printing with apparently too little cyan - all landscapes looked like yellow desert.

Canon's technical help was useless - they just tell you to try the obvious things and don't react to specific symptoms.

I took the print head out, soaked and agitated it in a saucer of methylated spirits, and repeatedly dried it on thick kitchen towel to try to unblock any jets [it goes without saying that I'd done the deep cleaning etc ad nauseam].

Nothing. Then I tried printing direct from Google's Picasa2 - perfect results, colours as desired.

So it seems the problem may be in Canon's own printer driver for Easy-photo Print. I tried reinstalling it from disc but without any improvement.

Has anyone else tried printing from another program?
by drjohn on Apr 22, 2006 at 2:03pm Add comment
Have been going nutz with a refusal of i560 to print grey color. I cleaned it according to matchpatchink's web site and it got better but still no true grey. Since I am printing workbooks for which I charge and the cover is grey is got important. I was ready to purchase a new printhead after reasoning that after all, I'd been printing with 5.00 print refills for nearly two years. I was literally one keystroke away from ordering a new printhead on eBay and because I read it here, changed the paper type and Voila! grey has returned. Printer performing flawlessly. But if you do need a new printhead found them for 40 bucks on ebay.
by unknown on Apr 29, 2006 at 5:42am Add comment
I'm using an i450 and my printer was very reliable to me...
when my ink went low so I went out to buy an imitation product...
Jet Tec is the brand.
when i used that catridge lines appeared when i printed black.
I didn't know it was clogged, even the maintenance deep cleaning wouldn't help,
after reading the above.
I tried as followed, this is what I did:

1) remove printer head
2) remove cartridges from printer head
3) I could see a slighty bigger black blob in the middle.
Which is the clog.
4) Because I do not have ethanol, I used nail varnish remover as
Anonymous did above.
5) Soaked a tissue partly with nail varnish remover, wipe the
printer head. Becareful no to touch the golden parts where the
head gets it's info from the printer. You may leave a finger
6) wet another tissue with water, just slightly damp, to remove
nail varnish remover.
7) Blow dry for only a few seconds, or else you may dry up the
ink and clog it up again. Best is to leave it dry on it's own.
8) Install back the printer head to the printer and cartridges.
9) Run deep cleaning once or twice.
10) VOILA! My printer worked as good now! wheeee~~!

orel of the story : Do not buy cheap inks! Only use original Canon inks for quality printing!


-Kenneth TCF,Malaysia.
by unknown on Apr 30, 2006 at 8:28am Add comment
My i450 went from great to rubbish in minutes, the test page prints in black, but no black text, i have cleaned the head with cartridge flush and still no good, i have been refilling the original canon cartridge with ink for months, and thought the risk of damage due to using refills was a myth?

i will try changing the paper settings, and eventually fill the blue chamber up with black ink to get this bloody 55 page excell doc out of the way.

by unknown on May 10, 2006 at 4:34am Add comment
I had the problem of my printer not printing black.Following suggestions here I removed the print head and cleaned the outlet (about 1/2 in long)at the base of the head with a cotton bud and some iso propol cleaner from a vhs tape cleaner, then wiped it with a tissue to dry it.When I did a nozzle check I got a small missed area
so I ran the clean process and checked the nozzle setting and got excellent results.I had tried the head clean first with no results but a loss of ink, so finding what others had tried gave me the courage to try.Thanks.
by unknown on May 19, 2006 at 3:49am Add comment
My i450 printer worked perfectly until I left it in the trunk of my car for a few days (in very hot weather). After that, I could
not print in black. Came up with various cleaning methods similar to the ones described above, but nothing helped. After reading
all these postings, I switched the setting of paper type to photo paper and printed perfectly -- with the same half-
filled black color cartridge that "stopped working". Apparently the problem wasn't with the ink or the nozzle.
I have always used the cheap cartridges and not had any problem with them.
by unknown on Jun 23, 2006 at 7:31pm Add comment
I changed my setting to Photo paper instead of plain paper and it now prints just fine
by Anonymous on Jul 1, 2006 at 9:46am Add comment
Hi everyone,

Glad and worried to see so many people with the same problem. I have an i450 which stopped printing black after a cartridge change. I've changed it twice to no avail. My concern is that the nozzle check is absolutely perfect, with the black coming out. So I don't know if there is any point to doing the alcohol cleaning if black does come out. Any advice? Thanks,

by smale on Jul 5, 2006 at 9:13am Add comment
Hi Soph;
Check my comments posted today.
Old Rob - Anonymous
Have all read this with interest - my i450 stopped printing black at the weekend. Have done the deep cleans ad nauseam, replacement cartridges etc, am now ready to try removing and cleaning printer head - but how is this best removed? Is this the same as for the i560 given above?
by unknown on Jul 12, 2006 at 5:43am Add comment
Removing the print head in i450:
If you take out the ink cartridges it is quite easy to lift up a
gray lever that goes around the edge of the print head. When you
lift that up, the print head pops out.

On my printer, I think that some ink has crept up (evaporated and
stuck onto) the backside of the print head where the gold electrodes
are, and that is probably what is causing my problem (fit with that
it started after leaving the printer in the trunk during hot weather...)
by unknown on Jul 13, 2006 at 10:41am Add comment
i have a cannon i550 and colour was not working
used nail polish and cleaned as above
now the error orange ligth comes up and wont print at all, whoops- any suggestions- should i clean it again?
by Anonymous on Jul 17, 2006 at 8:29am Add comment
I think this is a driver issue. i changed my paper type to glossy photo and viola! the black prints perfectly. we need to get canon to fix their printer drivers!
by sktech on Jul 23, 2006 at 7:09am Add comment
I have a Canon s530d which would not print black text, but it would print black in my photos. After reading this forum, I found that changing the media type to something other than plain paper would do the trick. And by golly it worked. thanks to this forum, I don't have to buy another printer. It has been driving me crazy.
by Anonymous on Jul 24, 2006 at 11:43pm Add comment
Great tip - it works!

I had an S530D printer attached to a PC running Windows Me, but when got a new PC with Windows XP it would not print black ink text. - Anonymous
I have done the cleaning wit the rubbing alchohol. It went from printing streaky text to printing absolutely nothing. I keep trying to moisten the ink to get it flowing and still blank pages. Of course I have just purchased replacement cartridges in bulk- 2 boxes! Any one else have the same issue/remedy?
by Anonymous on Jul 30, 2006 at 4:09pm Add comment
Tried changing the printer paper type to Photo Quality as suggested and it worked like a dream. Black ink is working again. Cheers
by unknown on Aug 3, 2006 at 10:30pm Add comment
I just got this from Canon after asking why changing the paper fixed it:

"Thank you for your inquiry. We value you as a Canon customer and appreciate the opportunity to assist you. We apologize for any difficulties you have experienced printing black with the i550.

The issue indicates that true black is not printing, but composite black is. Composite black is the color inks mixed together.

Please follow these steps to perform a Print Head Deep Cleaning:"

blah, blah. I'm going to try cleaning the print head as mentioned earlier in this thread.
by Tym T on Aug 9, 2006 at 7:27am Add comment
please help me for cleaning of the Canon i560 printer head especially for black and cyan. Please introduce to me the safe solvents or mixed solvents for the cleaning of the printer head.
Thank you
by Anonymous on Aug 19, 2006 at 5:15am Add comment
I went through the same thing. It started with streaky black text, then no black. I cleaned with alcohol, then warm water, got the ink running, still no black. I replaced the print head - which may work for you, it may not. For me it did not. But, I didn't waste any money because I ordered from Precision Roller in Phoenix AZ. They sent me 3 different ones for no charge and I sent them back after we figured out it was my printer. What a great company. They give a lot of great advice too. Call (800) 323-9523 ask for Bill extension 2226. Good luck, I bought an HP, I am told it is a much better printer and shouldn't give me the same trouble. Good luck.
by wendych on Sep 5, 2006 at 2:28pm Add comment
Tried the "printing to photo paper" instead of plain in print optionsand it printed in black! Had nothing to do with printhead or being clogged.


by Anonymous on Sep 8, 2006 at 3:53pm Add comment
had the same problem where printer wouldnt print black... ran cleaning program once... still didnt print... then ran the deep cleaning program... still didnt print... checked out this website... going to the store to get ethanol seemed complicated... ran deep cleaning program another two times in a row... and tada it suddenly worked... so hey before trying the ethanol procedure perhaps just try the deep cleaning program multiple times...

by unknown on Sep 11, 2006 at 2:03am Add comment
Oh anonymous, I love you truly, truly dear. I soaked, I hot watered and now she's printing like a sunday school teacher! all the colours, all dandy. Used isopropyl alcohol and it worked just fine.

Thank you thank you!

by unknown on Sep 22, 2006 at 9:26pm Add comment
I have a Canon S400 printer. Should the "Print head cleaning" program print out anything? (Mine does not and I think it should).
by Anonymous on Oct 1, 2006 at 2:15am Add comment
My printer would not print in black. I put in two new cartridges and still no black. I changed from plain paper to color photo, as recommended above, IT WORKED!!!!!!!!!!!
by unknown on Oct 5, 2006 at 9:50pm Add comment
For all those who think that changing the paper settings to "photo paper" or any other paper setting is fixing your problem, think again.

The brief reply from the Canon rep is correct.

All that is happening is your printer is now printing black(or dark) from a combo of all the colors in your color cartridge.

Notice how slow your printer is now printing in black ?!?!?!?

The problem is not fixed. And is probably just getting worse.

And you are going to fly through color cartridges now !

If a good cleaning doesnt work, or a new print head, then you have a damaged printer.

If you can live with the temp fix, coool, just beware you are going to print slower and more expensively.

Or , new printer !!! - Anonymous
Have an i550, same problem, everything comes out in blue as the "standard" print colour. Well, I took out the print head and rinsed it under running hot water, dried it off as best I could and now it all works like a charm :)
by unknown on Oct 16, 2006 at 1:53pm Add comment
I have an i450 and I have had no end of problems with it. When on "standard" quality, black text prints streaky (white lines across it) and when printing photos it prints with a blue tinge (no matter how it is set up.

I've just cleaned the print heads following everyones advice. And the photo printed came out "washed out" like a faded photograph and with a big black blog on it. I'm going to try cleaning cycles etc but doesn't look hopeful. Quite dissapointed as I've only had the printer 2 years :(
by Anonymous on Oct 23, 2006 at 9:53am Add comment
If you've been printing fine then suddenly can no longer print in black, try this: Try opening a document in Adobe Acrobat and try printing it. If you can print Adobe documents in black and other documents in color if you change the color of the font, then the most likely cause of your problem is Microsoft Windows Update has corrupted your Canon print driver. I have an I-860 that worked perfectly until I turned on automatic updates. After an overnight update by Microsoft I had the same problem everyone is complaining about here. If your printer is new enough there could be a new driver on the Canon website available for download that will fix your problem. My I-860 is new enough that Canon had a new driver to download. My printer now works again. This actually happenned to me twice. I forgot and installed the I-860 driver from the CD that came with my printer when I got a new Dell. I updated my operating system security patches from Windows Update and the printer quit working on the new computer, (same problem wouldn't print black).
Downloaded the new driver from Canon website and it's working again.
by Anonymous on Dec 15, 2006 at 6:10am Add comment
Can't actually believe it. tried all the cleaning methods above to no avail and then come across the thing about changing from Plain Paper. voila. WHAT THE HELL IS THAT ALL ABOUT!!!!!

Any how my i450 is running sweet. Cheers everyone
by unknown on Dec 18, 2006 at 7:29pm Add comment
Perfect solution, thanks a ton, worked fine for me.

Basically, I took the printer head, removed the ink cartridges, put in some ethyl alcohol and kept it for a few minutes. Then washed fully with warm water and dried all the water and inks from the head. After a couple of deep cleans, works great.

Thanks again for this forum
by unknown on Dec 31, 2006 at 1:09pm Add comment
For the 3,476th time "alcohol does absolutely nothing to ink!" The warm water wash is what did it since the ink is "water soluble!" - moe
Even with new print head green kight flashes seven times mening defective print head
by Lynden on Jan 11, 2007 at 3:33am Add comment
I have 2 of these printers and the black won't print on either one and that's with new cartridges in both of them.
by unknown on Feb 1, 2007 at 2:36pm Add comment
I had the 'not printing black' problem with my i560 until I did a 'google' I ran across the threads on this forum.

Tried the warm water print head soak. No go.

As it only came about after I'd left the printer unused for two months I persevered with the cleaning.

I sat the print head in a saucer and poured boiling water from the jug gently over the ink pads.

It took three or four full jugs of boiling water to finally dissolve the deeply imbedded dry ink in the black ink well but eventually it came clean. Works like a new one now.

By the way, the option to run on high quality is no solution. It just means you're using your coloured inks to replicate black.
by yakker on Mar 26, 2007 at 3:17pm Add comment
Just did mine and it worked. Put boiling hot water in the topside a couple of times and then put the bottom in the same for a couple of minutes and shook it dry. Put it back in the printer and did the deep cleaning and it printed a perfect test page after that.
by Anonymous on Apr 10, 2007 at 12:47pm Add comment
I own a Canon S 530 D and it didn't print black at all. The printer did clean the print head and wasting ink --> no black at all. Even with the alignment and nozzle checks there was no black. I did cleaning with hot and cold water, with ethanol and others.. --> no black.
After reading this forum I simply changed paper type in the printer settings to be different than normal paper --> the bl&&\%$* thing works!!!

Thanks folks.
by Anonymous on Apr 20, 2007 at 10:39am Add comment
Hello to all that think "Changing the paper type" will help it to print in black, is not printing using black ink at all. It is printing black using all 3 colors, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, at the same time on the same dot. One of your black ink nozzle or black ink cartridges is clogged.

I can't believe this original thread goes back to 2005 and people are still learning about this. There are 4 reasons that your printer my not print in black ink.

1. The printhead nozzles for black have been burned out.
2. The printhead nozzles for black are clogged.
3. The BCI-24 black ink cart is totally clogged.
4. The Purge unit in the printer is either broken or clogged in the black purge Cap.

The first one is totally bad news. If it is number 2., you could try and take the printhead out of the printer and clean it using water in the sink. Then set the head in a dish and add Windex-Original to the top side where the ink cartridges sets. It will slowly drain through to the dish so refill it several times. Let it sit over night. The dish should be full of black stuff the next day. Let the hot water fall onto the top and then the bottom side until you can see no more ink coming out. Then fold a paper towel into 1/4 size and set the printhead on it. Fill the filter side again with Windex but don't spill any on the paper. See if black ink comes out the bottom onto the paper towel. Keep refilling with Windex. From time to time, move the printhead to a clean spot on the towel and repeat the process. Keep doing this until you don't see black coming out any more. Then you can put it back in the printer and add a brand new BCI-24 ink cart, run the deep cleaning cycle. You should be back in business.

If it number 4. You're going to have to take the printer apart to get at the Purge unit. While you're in there, you might as well take out all of the waste ink pads and clean then, and OH yes, clean the bottom of the printer.
by unknown on Apr 20, 2007 at 11:43pm Add comment
Hi all its me, your friendly local Canon Tech.
Trigger is totally correct and besides that, the i400 series is a very inexpensive printer and why anyone would want to spend so much time and effort on such an inexpensive printer is beyond my scope of intellingence unless its just a challenge, and that I can understand. I have a reputation with my peirs at Canon that if even they don't know the answer I will eventually figure it out and fix it. I have done that and relayed infomation back to Canon on PC's and ImageClass Copies several times. ok so enough ego building, LOL.
If your going to do all this then I may as well help out a bit further, so this is to all of you and Trigger. Instead of cleaning your blotters, you can buy new ones at in the parts section. And like the printers, they are pretty inexpensive. You will need 2 blotters for the i450, i455, i470, i475D. Parts numbers are QA4-0212-000 and QA4-0213-000. I will also make the purge unit available and if you read the Canon bulletin I'm including below you'll see that Canon does really try to back up their stuff.
PRODUCT: i70, i450, i470D, i9100, MP F30, MP F50, S200, S300, S500, S520, S530, S600, S630,
S630N, S750, S800, S820, S820D, S820MG, S830D, S900, S9000
DESCRIPTION: Print Head is a Warranty Part while the unit is under warranty

Authorized Canon Tech
by BAB on Apr 21, 2007 at 6:53am Add comment
Nice post on ink problem.
Here is my problem.
I can print any color fine on my i475D but cannot print any black.

Here is the killer!!! I received a new print head from CANON which I paid $40+ for and it gives me NEITHER Color or BLACK.

Is there any logical explanation for this?

When I put my original print head back it still prints color?!?!?!?

Doesn't this seem really weird?

Thanks for any help. - Anonymous
I need to update the post I made about cleaning the printhead. There are several things I left out. I keep forgeting that I have been doing this for long enough, I know how to do it right.
So when I make posts like that I tend to leave things out that I do just as habit.

First off, cleaning with water out of the sink is not a good thing to do unless you have verified your water is VERY VERY low in mineral content, and is not saturated with salts that come form Water softner systems. If you have rusty pipes that is even worse. I live in a mountain area where my water is probably better than most bottled water. If you don't have the best of water, buy distilled water, heat it any way you want so that it is Hot but will not burn you, then pour it over the printhead filter screen while your over the sink. It could be good thing to use hot water to let it soak. You're trying to dissolve the old dried up ink that is trapped in the cavity between the ink filters and the nozzles, and some that is dried on the internal walls of each nozzle. Once you get most of it out, switch to the Windex and do that. -------One very important thing I left out,... don't put the printhead back in the printer unitl you have used an air compressor to completely blow the head dry and get all the water out from behind the back of the printhead contacts where the EEprom is located. The let is set somewhere till you know it is dry. --------

Don't beat you head into a brick wall. If you've clean it over and over and you don't get any ink out and it still won't print, you have got to find out if your purge unit is successful in sucking ink all the way through from the ink tanks, through the filter screen, and through the nozzles.

Once very quick way to find out if your purge unit is sucking at all is to put a small amount of Windex on the black and color ink caps. These are the pads that the printhead resets on when in the locked position. Turn the printer on, and open the cover. The printhead should move to the center of the open cover,..then pull the power plug. Then remove all the ink cartridtges This will leave the printhead free and you can easily move it back and forth. Move it to the left side. Now you have access to the top side of the purge unit and the ink Caps. Use a syringe and add several drops of Windex to each cap. This should flood them as they don't hold very much. If you know how to do it, you can take the top covers off the printer so you can get a better view of things down there. After you've added the Windex, turn the power on, wait till things settle down and turn it off. The printer will move the printhead back to home and park it. As it does this it will cycle the purge unit and suck the Windex through the Caps into the waste ink area. Look at the Ink Caps, if the Windex is all gone,..good news,. the purge unit is working. If not, repeat the power on and off cycle a few more times. Add more Windex if you need it.

Put all the ink carts back and cycle the printer on and off. this will do a basic cleaning cycle and suck ink out of the printhead. Since you don't have the Carriage taken out of the base cover, you won't be able to see any ink that was purged. However, now you can repeat from the printer sofware, a nozzle check pattern. If you see improvement, you need to run a couple of more deep cleaning cycles. If you see no improvement, while it may not be 100\% sure, it is a high probability that the black ink nozzles are burned. Think about it this way. What every you did a long time ago, you probably did not use the printer for awhile. The black ink dried up in the printhead and then you tried to print some big document and got nothing, so you did it again, and then you ran some cleaning cycles, and then some deep cleaning cycles, and by that time the temperature of the black print nozzles went over the limit and "Kaabooom" Wet ink is the only thing that will "CooL" the nozzles as the try and print 1000's of ink drops. If no wet ink is getting to the nozzle entrance because of a clog some place above, and the nozzle keeps firing,.. and heating up,... KaaaBoom!.

The Service EEprom data file has about 70 individual entries, the first two are printer model number and serial number. Why do yo think the very next item listed in 70 things they keep track of would be,..NOZZLE TEMPERATURE?????. It must be very important.

Sorry, I didn't mean to write a book,.. that is for another day.
Hope this helps someone.
by unknown on Apr 21, 2007 at 11:01pm Add comment
Thank you for your very useful posts. I followed instructions for cleaning the print head . Drained overnight & put everything back. Now the black & red print, but no yellow or blue. Before it was the black that wouldn't print. This is a new color cartridge. Do I need to do the hot water thing again & drain overnight? Many thanks, Colleen - colleenz

Your post above said you were including:

"if you read the Canon bulletin I'm including below you'll see that Canon does really try to back up their stuff."

I don't think your link to the bulletin made it to the post. I don't see it??????
by unknown on Apr 21, 2007 at 11:05pm Add comment
Both Trigger and Bab's responses are excellent.... It is imperative to keep your printers clean.... and sometimes there are a myriad of issues causing a print failure....

I am experiencing such on several different machines...

The Canon i475D was operating famously, with 98\% of its use printing in black, first it had issues that were resolved by changing the media setting from standard to high/custom until it suddenly failed partway through a document. I changed ink cartridges, did the blot test (have ink flowing), bought a new printhead $46, cleaned the interior, reinstalled a new driver from Canon, tried different print settings -- nada. But I did find I could print a streaky copy in black only when I used the envelope setting. You see, I was very negligent in switching the lever setting on the top of the printhead from regular paper to the right side for envelopes..... I suspect the issue is how the printhead is addressing the media.....

So while this issue was being researched I pulled out the Epson color 880 I have and got that running as my backup.... knock wood, it is working for now.

I also pulled out an Epson color 640 which was working fine when it was mothballed.... I have soaked the ink cartridges and the blot test shows them flowing nicely but that hasn't resolved the issue, so I need to find disassembly instructions for that so I can get to the service station and really deep clean the machine....

While I was inked up, I dragged out the HP Officejet R series color copier 260 that had ceased working a year and a half ago - my ex had had the machine for his small business and made probably 20,000 photos on it without ever changing the media selection from plain paper to photo paper -- I suspected the pad separator was shot at that time, and had discussed it with a Senior VP at HP.... anyway, I had gotten the color ink printing on the test page, but no black....with instructions from the HP guru on this forum, I completely disassembled the machine and cleaned the gunk out -- oh my was there gobs and gobs of it.... so now the wipers are clean, but I still cannot print black -- the color meanwhile is now stupendous....

Some of these machines will use the color cartridge when you change to photo paper and the likes, others have actual paper settings that are irrespective of the ink cartridges.... it appears to me that having been negligent in switching from plain paper to envelopes I have somehow damaged the Canon, and my ex did the same on the HP with not selecting photo paper.... Yes we do need to clean these machines, and yes you can force them to work for awhile when switching to a heavier paper setting, but that is not necessarily the root of the problem..... perhaps someone has some information on repairing the paper/media selection issue that has developed. It isn't just replacing the printhead which I have done with the Canon -- that did not resolve the problem. - Anonymous
I see it. Its says products: Affected: and Description:
by BAB on Apr 22, 2007 at 12:13am Add comment
PRINTER: Canon i560
Problem: Tried printing test page and could not print any text only the windows logo printed.

Solution: I had no rubbing alcohol so i used jamaican rum, 63\% alcohol as well as hot tap water.

1 I poured the alcohol in the black case with the screens.
2 after 2 mins i emptied it and blotted it out.
3 Ran the hot water on it slowly so i could some how expand the pores.
4 Blotted it out.
5 Repeated steps 1 to 4 two more times.
6 Made sure everything was dry placed back in printer and printed test page.
7 Everything was back to normal

Thanks for the ideas people. You saved me $$$ so im sharing my experience with you.
by xbitman on Apr 27, 2007 at 8:27am Add comment
Re Solvents: Nail Varnish remover - just make sure it doesn't contain acetone & touch plastic or it will destroy the plastic by causing it to melt (Don't use turpentine either)

If rubbing (ethyl) alcohol is not available - try (methyl) alcohol, methylated spirits its generally easier on plastics...

But the ink seems water soluble, so try hot water first - and a hair drier on warm to dry it.

(btw Take the rum, double shot and a block of ice & to celebrate the clean printer)
by nextstep99 on May 2, 2007 at 8:40am Add comment
Having said that about solvents...

... can I use those methods on a Canon i965 printer. My printer has stopped printing yellow.

Any suggestions? Thanks in anticipation
by nextstep99 on May 2, 2007 at 5:05pm Add comment
I found tht my printer (Canon Multipass F30) gives me black with more than one choice of paper. I tried High resolution, photo paper, high gloss photo film, even transparency and T-shirt transfer; which came out in reverse.

The best was the High resolution paper, the photo paper was okay and took less time to print and used less ink.

Went back and tried plain paper and got nothing. Does not even print in other colors.

Thanks to all of you for your help. I may also try the alcohol soak and see what that gets me. But, I guess only if I have ink problems again.

Aren't these forums great? This is where the real help is to be found!
by unknown on Jun 9, 2007 at 1:09pm Add comment
My printer started out as described, skipping lines of black. Changing setting to photo paper helped temporarily. But now, even after inserting a new color cartridge, all it prints is bright pink and orange. With a shelf full of cartridges for the i450 but a sick printer, does anyone know what other available printer uses the same cartridges?
by unknown on Jun 27, 2007 at 3:36am Add comment
POSSIBLE SOLUTION: I had this same problem this morning so I did a thorough cleaning to no avail. I then contacted Canon at the (800) number listed above and after charging me $9.99 and FOUR suggested cleanings, my printer works perfectly. If you guys are still having printing problems, try running the 'CLEANING' through at least 4 times - it's worth a shot and less expensive then buying a printer head OR a new machine. Good luck!

by carolleigh on Sep 17, 2007 at 10:09am Add comment
Carolleigh--Tried but just couldn't make it work. Thanks for your advice. Ended up going out and buying a new inexpensive HP that prints great. I guess 3 1/2 years from the old Canon is about what we should expect. Thanks...John in Nashville - unknown
Apparently, I had the bad luck to get totally dry color ink tanks last time. I found the black & color ink refill bottles at the dollar store. I put the ink (.5 ml) at a time into a plunger type syringe & had to fill each tank 4 times before I got print. I didn't pry the top of the tank off per instructions, just plunged the ink into each color well on the bottom. All is now working well.
by colleenz on Sep 24, 2007 at 5:20pm Add comment
Simple green also works well to free up the clogged nozzles, if you have the full strength stuff dilute it 4 to 1 or if you have the already diluted stuff just use as is.
Fill the area that holds the cartridges with it and let it soak overnight. Dry out any remaining fluid and either let it sit and dry for a few hours or I used a hair dryer. It worked fine on all colors after that.
by unknown on Oct 7, 2007 at 12:38pm Add comment
This must be the longest running forum topic ever.

I,ve learned some great stuff, thanks.

Here's another trick which I like.

Keep one of your old empty printer cartridges as a print head cleaner.

For black ink problems, fill the empty cartridge with alcohol...I use methylated spirits, but pure alcohol would be better (nail polish remover is probably a bad idea as it tends to dissolve a lot of plastics)

Take out your current print cartridge and replace it with this "print head cleaner".

Do as many deep cleaning cycles as is necessary. It depends on how long the printer has stood unused.

That way you are passing solvent through the printhead without having to disassemble anything.

Put back your current ink cartridge and away you go.

I sometimes use a mixture of alcohol and water and/or one or two drops of liquid detergent (like simple green). This may work better for some of the colored inks.

The thing trigger said on 4/21/07 about overheating the prinhead by doing too many cleaning cycles is something to think about here. So if this method doesn't work after a few cleaning cycles, resort to the disassemble and soak methods.

I suppose for maintenance it may be a good idea to print out a full color page at least once a week. And don't keep the printer in a hot/sunny place. It's possible to keep these printers running for far longer than the manufacturers would like!

my two cents
by st3v3 on Oct 15, 2007 at 4:59pm Add comment
my i560 was not printing , but after reading this forum, i cleaned the print head with hot water (it was pretty clogged after all thoes deep cleanings i tried!) and when i put it back in, it worked perfectly.
THANKYOU so much for this solution!
by JoKate on Oct 29, 2007 at 12:00am Add comment
Canon i560

Thanks guys

I had to:

Perform 10 or so dousing with boiling water
Perform 3 deep cleans

Photo Paper trick is lame because it mixes Cyan/Magenta/Yellow to make a muddy black and wastes the colour cartridges.

Alcohol is useless as Canon ink is water based.

by unknown on Nov 27, 2007 at 4:59am Add comment
This thread is still not long enough!!! :-)

I bought a new printhead!

Nothing has changed. My 550 will not print black from the black nozzel. It will not print black on plain paper, in test mode, print head allignment nor in noxxle check, or from a pdf document, or a Google Picasa program.

It did not help on the old printhead if I cleaned it either, with alcohol or warm water, clean or deep cleans, and I cleaned contacts!

I tried changing the printer driver with the original driver on the CD, and removing the printer from ECP mode.

Does anyone know how to remove the top part of the printer so I can get at the ink bin. I really don't see how that can help unless there is some type of sensor there.

I feel I may have a bad cable going to the printhead. Does anyone know how I can remove it so I can test it?

Any other idea would be greaty appreciated.

Thanks - Denis
by mooses on Dec 1, 2007 at 12:26pm Add comment
sorry for those still having issues printing from the canon printers, but I was lucky in that after removing the printhead and cleaning it under VERY HOT water, everything worked!!

Consider I have 2 i560 printers, this was good news.
by just me on Dec 5, 2007 at 5:12pm Add comment
I've had the same basic problem as others have described; initial problem was streaky black print quality. Lurked on this blog and others, and after trying the usual repeated cleaning / deep cleaning cycles, got nowhere, so ordered a new printhead. Installed it, with new (non-Canon, which have always worked fine before) cartridges, and got...nothing when attempting to print black only. Tried the photopaper setting trick and it worked, but I agree with previous posters that this doesn't fix the underlying problem.

Trigger and BAB's comments (4/20-21/07) were very helpful, and since options 1,2 and 3 didn't apply after my efforts, I was faced with option 4--the ruined purge unit--and all efforts to clear it have not worked. Nuts.

I appreciate BAB's comments and help, but I have to vent a little here. The comment "...and besides that, the i400 series is a very inexpensive printer and why anyone would want to spend so much time and effort on such an inexpensive printer is beyond my scope of intellingence unless its just a challenge, and that I can understand" really gets to the heart of the matter, which is my IMMENSE frustration at our throw-away culture. GOD D--- it all, it makes me want to screech that we have traded quality and cost-effective repairability for price. I've now sunk $48, including shipping, into a new printhead that's not returnable, and I'll be damned if I'm going to spend another $35 on a new purge unit and 2 blotters. I could probably figure out how to install the things, but at the addtional price of my own time, and then there's still no guarantee that thing will work.

I quit. Time to buy a new printer. Throw-away culture 1, me 0.

And I have learned a good lesson about what to do / not do with a bubblejet printer (leave it on all the time and run full-color copies through at least twice a week). As 98\% of my printing is straight text, I've not bothered to keep the color ink capabilities exercised, and it has come back to bite me.
by unknown on Dec 14, 2007 at 9:22am Add comment
I've owned several i450's & still use them. I purchased a "magic inkjet flush" on EBay & found it cleared clogged heads.
by dcc733 on Dec 14, 2007 at 11:30am Add comment
Hi Guys, have been printing photo's on glossy paper No problems for about 10 then not good no more, same on blank cd's good for one then all crapola. any ideas am trying to do covers for my sons wedding
by unknown on Dec 26, 2007 at 12:18am Add comment
Hi there!

I just cleaned my i450 heads using the procedure outlined by anonymous on 11/14/05.

It worked perfectly!

Being the impatient type I remounted the head within 10 minutes of cleaning it (no overnight drying) and was amazed how well it had worked!!

Thanks again "anonymous"!

PiwiKiwi, Netherelands
by Anonymous on Mar 17, 2008 at 2:49am Add comment
"Recently my Canon i860 stopped printing in black and white"

Hmmmm, mine is printing white just fine!
by unknown on Mar 24, 2008 at 1:53pm Add comment
Mine did not print in Black.
I did this and now prints - saved a bundle! Hope it works for you.

-Removed the printhead, removed the ink tanks and put them upside down on the table to prevent spills.
-Made a 4 x 6 square out of 2 sheets of paper toels to protect table.
-Cleaned the underside of the Print head cartridge with isopropyl Alcohol, wiped with a paper toel to clean.
-Put in enough alcohol in the print head and let it drip thru, soaked it on the paper towel. let it sit for a while to make sure alcohol made it thru.
-Emptied the surplus alcohol, wiped the unit.
-Repalced the ink tanks, put it itn the printer.
-Did a few deep cleans.
-Printed a nearly perfect test page - Yah-hoooo.

Good luck
by Anonymous on Mar 26, 2008 at 6:36pm Add comment
I can't believe it's 2 years later since I used medicated alcohol cartridges to restore my print function.
I reported success with alcohol added to the cartridge above on 02/20/06.

Tried this many times again to no avail. So following Yakkers success and Trigger's knowledgeable
explanation I did the printhead clean using hot water in an ashtray. I poured it in the cartridge holder
and filled to capacity agitated a bit and left for 5 minutes, shake some more and rinse and hot watered again.
Used 6 applications and shook dry while hot and placed on the radiator for 15 minutes, replugged to printer
ran one cleaning cycle and printed a sample.

Voila! Tres bien, fantastic. Great printer and cheap to run. I have been using refill ink since my warranty
expired 4 years ago.

Thank you all for your help, I love my i450 with no timer chips in the head.

by unknown on Mar 28, 2008 at 6:58pm Add comment
I've got an i9100 - it's been a great printer.
One day it just stopped printing black.
I called Canon, and their suggestion was: buy a new printer (this after a long diatribe on what a pity we've become a "throw away" society - not cost effective to fix such items when can just buy another printer for less.." This seems ridiculous to me: to toss this otherwise great printer and buy a new one. So for months I've been trying to find a solution.

cleaned the printhead as above
tried all the above ideas. I DID notice when I changed the paper settings to Photo Paper (rather than plain paper) it WOULD print a version of black (it seems a grayscale black - but I figured I'm printing on plain paper..) But the overall problem of not being able to print black on regular, plain paper settings bugged me and I wanted to find a solution.
Finally, when nothing worked, I caved in and: bought a NEW printhead (for $80), which was "sure to work" - why the heck wouldn't it work?
Lo and behold, when I plugged the brand new, sealed printhead into the machine - it still would not print black on the default, plain paper settings!

I went ahead and changed the settings to "photo paper" and, voila - it printed the grayscale version of black again (as it did with the old printhead).

So - as with "anonymous" in the 4-20 post above here - I think it has to do with a paper/media selection issue. I'll be damned if I can figure it out beyond that though.
I thought for a while it might be a printer driver conflict. I had a bjc portable canon, that I had loaded for a while - my i9100 problem seemed to happen after that. I thought maybe the printer driver was corrupted somehow and was interfering with the black setting. But I've removed, updated the printer drivers many times - and its still the same.

So - even with a brand new factory fresh Printhead, it still will not print black (on regular paper).

Thanks for everyone's ideas and efforts in solving this mystery.
by reeeecko on May 22, 2008 at 7:17am Add comment
Hello All,

If you can't solve your problem by cleaning the print head, it probably is that your printer driver needs updated.

I had the same problem. My printer would not print blue it come as like a purple or pink. I tried cleaning the print head, that didn't solve the problem. So, I decided to put on a search for a driver. Come across a program called "Driver Detective," a free download. Downloaded it, installed it and ran a scan. I had a bunch of drivers that needed to be updated on my computer and printer. BUT, there's a catch you have to buy the program. It costs $39.90 (cheaper that buying a new printer). I installed the drivers and printed out a project from my Printmaster program. Walla!!!! Much to my surprise it printed "BLUE" again. Was I ever happy.

Here's the site where you can get your free download program of "Driver Detective:

Let me know if "Driver Detective" solved your problem.

by unknown on Jul 27, 2008 at 2:05pm Add comment
WARNING - Do NOT buy a new print head until you are absolutely sure that it is the PRINT HEAD that's faulty and not the PRINTER.

I say this because the Canon printers have something called a PURGE UNIT and if this is FAULTY it can BLOW your print head.

Obviously, if you keep installing print heads it will BLOW every one you fit, one after the other infinitely. This is a very expensive mistake !!!!!!!!!!!!

Also, if you take your expensive print head and fit it to someone else's Canon printer and THEIR printer has a faulty PURGE UNIT - it will blow YOUR print head as well as their own.

Get an official dealer to check your print head before buying a new one, or at least have the PURGE UNIT tested before investing in a new print head. I think it's possible for shops that REFILL ink cartridges to check print heads - ie. "Cartridge World" and such like. Well worth a phone call.
by unknown on Jul 29, 2008 at 4:04am Add comment
honestly, it's so nice to have success!
thanks to those people who took the time to explain how to clean print heads
i live in australia and figured i'd give metho a go instead of the alcohols you were mentioning (i had nothing to lose - we had begun shopping for new printers)
so with the combo of hot water - lots of it (despite the fact that there was a little electronic thingo on the back) and lots of shaking the water out and then a dunk in metho (i know this also works for mobile (cell) phones if you accidentally give them a bath - the alcohol grabs the water and evaporates out of there real fast - if you get to it on time the water doesn't have a chance to corrode the electronics) and then a quick blast with a luke warm haridryer, and then more shaking (getting all that moisture out.....
voila! in 20 minutes, my printer (resting in peace for over 6 months, was ressurected!)
you guys are the BEST!!!!!
and thanks to the guy/gal who told us which part we were supposed to be pulling out by describing how to do it, and to the person who suggested heat (there was a lot of heat going through that sucker!), and the person who clarified that the "plugs" were actually screens so that i gave them extra attention.
thanks a bunch
by jenni from australia on Jul 29, 2008 at 9:30pm Add comment
Just me again,

I'm cleaning out my puter room. Found an old Favorites/Bookmark list that I wrote up a along time ago. Came across some good info on cleaning out printheads. This person had an Epson Stylus Color 600. Hopefully this will be of help to someone. The site address is:

by unknown on Jul 31, 2008 at 2:08pm Add comment
Hello all,

This may help some of you with ink printing problems. Might want to download a driver (for all makes and models)as your driver might be bad or need to updated.............It's free......Can't beat that.

The address for the sight is:

Good Luck,
by unknown on Aug 2, 2008 at 4:06am Add comment
I think a lot of people are missing the problem here. When you change the option to photo paper it is NOT using black ink, its using a combination of the coloured inks to produce black (or kinda black)......
by flashman1207 on Aug 6, 2008 at 7:35pm Add comment
I know this may seem simple, but I also had the problem of blue not printing and a sad little purple pink color was coming out instead.

You know what my problem was???

I have a i965 and I recently changed several of my ink cartridges, including the Cyan and Photo Cyan. When I pulled out all my cartridges I noticed that I forgot to remove the plastic tear off tape from the top which was covering some sort of air hole (even though it specifically had big letters telling me to tear it off).

I took this off and blue prints correctly.

Is anyone else as dumb as me? :)
by unknown on Sep 23, 2008 at 5:17pm Add comment
Yes, I am as dumb as you! I did the same thing on all the color cartridges I replaced some time ago in my PIXMA 860 - I forgot to remove the tab covering the air hole. What's interesting is that things would print sort of OK but then got worse. I finally did a test page and sure enough only blue and black. I did a cleaning and it got a BIT better. Then I cleaned again thinking "this ought to do it " and instead it got WORSE. Then I just kept hammering the cleaning and after a couple more deep cleanings, NONE of the colors printed! I started thinking I'd seriously clogged the printhead, and opened up the printer to pull it out. But to do that I had to take the ink cartridges out out first and as I did I looked at the color cartridges and something I'd seen earlier in the troubleshooting guide clicked - I'd left the tape on ALL the color air holes! As the printer draws ink from the cartridges when its printing, a vacuum builds up inside the cartridge. Without the air hole to relieve it, ink eventually stops coming out! I removed the tape over the hole in each cartridge, did a test page and voila there were all the colors. ....However, several were slightly raggedy so then I took a sharp map tack and pocked the air holes to make sure they were thoroguhly open - and THEN things finallly looked great.

So my lessons from this are:
a) don;t forget to pull the air hole tab
b) If things still look raggedy, poke the air hole to be sure it's open.

I'm sure this is not sufficient to fix every ink problem, but it certainly is necessary to fix this one!

- highhopes
Hello out there. I just pulled out the ink cradle that the ink tanks go in and washed it out untill there was no more ink then blew it dry with the compressor and it worked good.
by unknown on Oct 9, 2008 at 1:05am Add comment
i took the advise from a couple of posts and removed/cleaned the printer head by soaking it in hot water. Now absolutely NO ink comes out on the paper. I have done a couple of cleaning cycles, and one deep cleaning cycle, with no luck. Anyone have an idea why no ink is coming out? Thanks.
by cricketer on Nov 17, 2008 at 6:56pm Add comment
same thing happened to me, wiped the print head w/ iso pads and it started to work, then the streaks came back, then i soaked in hot agua and nada... - unknown
Hello everyone,


I first confess that this is a re-post and an update of the original one. I am putting it in this thread since there seem to be several veterans and other users that are subscribed to this thread via email, and therefore I was hoping to increase the odds of a response.

Firstly, thanks a lot in advance for your help.

I have read this thread and the one at...

...and am hoping for some individual advice.

I have been the happy owner of a Canon i860 for a long time and absolutely love it. Recently, it started having issues. Mostly, the 3eBK nozzle is not printing anymore (in addition to other nozzle check ugliness). The current nozzle check and manual print alignment pat looks like this:

From the resources on this website, I have tried the following:

1) Updated to the latest driver

2) changed new (generic) ink cartridge back to refilled ones that have worked earlier (genuine Canon cartridges)

3) Soaked the print head in Windex overnight. Cleaned with distilled water after.

4) Soaked the print head in 70\% IPA overnight. Cleaned with distilled water after.

5) Put 70\% IPA on the inlets of the print head and let it sit overnight until it ran out the other end clear.

6) Blasted compressed air through inlets of print head.

7) Finally broke down and bought a new print head (nothing changed).

8) Cleaned the electrical contacts between the print head and the carriage with a q-tip with the 70\% IPA.

9) Checked the purge unit by dripping 70\% IPA onto the sponges in the far right of the printer and turned it off and on a few times. The IPA is definitely getting absorbed in both pads, so I think the purge unit is working. This step was repeated several times, followed by a deep cleaning.

None of these steps changed anything.


1) What should I do now?

The only other thing I can think of is to attempt to replace the purge unit. Since it is sucking in the IPA in step 8, however, I am not confident that it would be a wise, non-refundable $30 to spend.

Is there anything else I can do? Am I at the end of the road with this printer?

2) Troubleshooting Logic Check:

Please let me know if my current diagnosis is correct:

a) Replacing print head did not change the situation, therefore it is not a clog issue in the print head.

b) The ink pads in the purge unit is sucking IPA, and deep cleaning of the 3eBK ink cartridge definitely lowers the ink in the ink cartridge reservoir. Therefore the issue is not with the purge unit.

c) That means it is probably something beyond the topics of this forum, such as a random electrical connection of sorts.

Thank you in advance for all of your help!


I have been refilling the original ink cartridges that came with the printer over three years. It has been under lots of black and white use and occasional (once or twice a month) color printing. I clean the print heads using the maintenance software when I refill the ink.

Some where along the line, the column
by fiterfly on Nov 25, 2008 at 3:57pm Add comment
The additional background info got cut off...sorry for that.

Here it is below if you are interested:

(...Here is some more background info:)

I have been refilling the original ink cartridges that came with the printer over three years. It has been under lots of black and white use and occasional (once or twice a month) color printing. I clean the print heads using the maintenance software when I refill the ink.

Some where along the line, the column "G" in the print head alignment stopped printing (I think it's cyan), the "I" column comes out in black and white stripes in manual alignment, and there are some horizontal lines missing in the 3eBK nozzle check pattern. The printer worked fine otherwise. I tried to fix it by soaking the print head in Windex overnight, but didn't do anything else when that did not fix these minor issues.

A month ago, I was given some generic ink cartridges, so I decided to switch the ink cartridges once they ran out, instead of refilling my 3+ year old ones. Trouble struck when I replaced the 6BK and 3eBK. The printer started printing every third line of text darker than the others. Switching back to the old print cartridges did not fix this.

After going through all the cleaning steps (up until buying a new printhead), 3eBK stopped responding altogether and more columns in the print head alignment disappeared. I then broke down and bought a new print head.

Yesterday, the new print head arrived, and to my dismay, changed nothing. I did some more of the cleaning mentioned in the above post, but nothing has changed.

What would you suggest? Should I invest in the purge unit to see if that will fix it? Is it time for a new printer?

Thanks so much in advance for your help, and reading my long (wanted to make them detailed) posts. - fiterfly
I had similar problems with an i860 - tried cleaning the printhead
and the black would show up during the nozzle check but not when
running a test page? So as suggested changing the paper
setting away from plain paper and this solved the problem.
maybe time to reinstall the printer...
by unknown on Dec 18, 2008 at 10:42pm Add comment
I have an i550, would not print black. Followed instructions above to pull out printhead and clean it, though I did not soak the printhead in water--I simply cleaned it with rubbing alcohol, and it worked great! There was a great deal of ink "crud" on the printhead. I was getting ready to go look at Consumer Reports for a new printer. You have saved the day!
by unknown on Feb 1, 2009 at 6:53am Add comment
Wow! It works again. Thanks for helping me fix my canon i560 printer.
by Anonymous on Feb 6, 2009 at 11:05am Add comment
Black quit working.
Works now if the media type is not set to "Plain Paper"

by Anonymous on Feb 15, 2009 at 1:06pm Add comment
soaking the head in water worked perfectly!
you saved me a looooooooooooooooot of money.
by Anonymous on Feb 23, 2009 at 9:52am Add comment
I soaked the printer head and it cleaned up nicely, but now I get an error (error # 54) saying that I don't have the printer head installed. I obviously put it back, so did anyone else get this error after cleaning? Is there something else that I need to do when putting it back?
by unknown on Apr 30, 2009 at 7:05am Add comment
You only need to soak it in about 1/4 inch (roughly 1/2 cm) of solvent liquid in a small glass. I'm using alcohol but I've also read that tap water should do the trick fine. alcohol evaporates quicker so it dries quicker than water. Apparently nail varnish remover works too but I'm fine with alcolhol.
by unknown on Aug 18, 2009 at 3:44pm Add comment
I have a Canon i470D

I tried printing black today and it came out Cyan.

I tried cleaning from the maintenance menu - but for me the cleaning doesnt do anything...
It just sits there - I hear no sounds from the printer and the print monitor screen says: "Executing the processing specified by the operation panel, a digital camera, or another computer."

I cleaned the head with a paper towel and rubbing alcohol, but before I pour alcohol through the print head container, I wanted to try deep cleaning.

Deep cleaning also does nothing (I dont hear anything), so what do cleaning and deep cleaning actually do??


by unknown on Sep 22, 2009 at 6:01pm Add comment
i did the soak with hot tap water and it works perfectly now! thanks so much! :D now i don't have to buy a new printer...YET!
by teyegr4eyes on Oct 8, 2009 at 8:17pm Add comment
Like Miss Australia I want to thank all those helpful guys with excellent advice for Canon inks which won't print, when we are getting desperate and thinking about new printers. Especially helpful were instructions on how to take out printhead, cleaning it with near boiling distilled water (because the inks are soluble in water I didn't need alcohol, though I did swab those pins as advised with surgical spirit and I did "medicate" some of my older ink cartridges as advised). Keep persevering with cleans until the nozzle check improves.
Mine is a Pixma iP4600 and from no colours I went gradually to perfect print out on all except yellow.... after all that......

So out came print head again and I targeted just the yellow filter with drops of v. hot distilled water from a pipette (like from an eye drop bottle). Drop enough to cover the filter screen making sure the print head stand on paper towel. Yellow emerges onto towel(good sign) and yellow also comes out from the circular yellow filter basin if you tip up print head (more good signs). When no more yellow emerges dry off and replace and a perfect nozzle check emerges. LESSON? some nozzles need further individual attention being more gummed up than others...

Be patient with your printer if it starts to tell you some inks can't be recognised or may need replacement. It doesn't like all this putting in and taking out of cartridges. A permanent red light on the cartidge is good news, a flashing red light may be but no light at all is bad news; chip gone or connection problem. Right at the end I had the latter with a a perfectly good magenta which had been fine up to the final insertion! Several goes and I finally get a flashing red light and all is well. clearly the connection can be a tricky one.

But if it hadn't been for this forum and the experts to give me confidence and patience I would be in the dumps!! Going to toast you all tonight with a glass or two!!!! THANK YOU!!!
by Anonymous on Oct 25, 2009 at 10:02am Add comment
I have an i900D that refuses to print photo cyan on photo paper. I was printing just fine, then replaced the cartridge. When the next photo printed red, I tried cleaning/deep cleaning, and print head alignment. When that didn't work, I put in another new cartridge and did the same thing. After wasting several sheets of photo paper, I tried printing on plain paper at 'standard' quality. That worked, so I switched back to photo paper at 'standard' quality. Printed red. So I tried plain paper at 'high' quality. Printed red. Then I tried a piece of photo paper, telling the printer it was plain paper at 'standard', still got red! Now my photos only print on plain paper, when I've selected plain paper. The only way I can get my photo to not print red is to select 'standard' or 'draft' quality on plain paper. I've re-installed the printer, drivers, ink tank. I even downloaded a newer driver from Canon. The nozzle check and alignment all print fine, so I know the nozzle is not clogged. Anyone else have this problem? (And hopefully a solution?) I hate to have to buy a new printer.
by unknown on Dec 7, 2009 at 7:54pm Add comment
change from "plain paper" to "photo paper"---worked for me
by Anonymous on Dec 23, 2009 at 10:24pm Add comment
same to me, plain paper to photo paper and its working right
by Anonymous on Dec 24, 2009 at 5:32am Add comment
My Printer is i560 suddenly stopped printing black text but still prints colour photographs
by unknown on Jan 12, 2010 at 7:44am Add comment
I have an issue with a Canon ip4600 printer that won't print black (PGBK). I printed a document perfectly, then the next document didn't print anything at all!!!(Clean paper). When I completed a test print, all colours printed perfectly except the PGBK ink which didn't print anything! (not even the name of the ink on the left of print sheet) I happened to try to print a document weeks later and it printed the documents perfectly! I thought YES! but next document...NOTHING!!! I removed the printer program from the computer and reinstalled it and still no BGBK ink printing. The PGBK ink is used when printing documents (Grey scale) as well as photos, and if you try to print in colour, the pictures don't have any black. I believe this isn't a blocked print head problem as when it does print black it is perfect, and when it doesn't print black, there absolutely nothing!
by Anonymous on Mar 16, 2010 at 10:43am Add comment
I have had the same problem with a canoni560. I have had some success by changing the paper settings. It prints on matte and photo but not on plain paper - Anonymous
I have a MP510 that decided to stop printing black. I am happy to report that it is now working by following the steps from Anonymous (11/14/05) after having tried everything else to no avail. I have to emphasize that the last step is crucial. I nearly gave up when the first deep clean (after completing all the steps) produced no results. I persisted and did another deep clean followed by the nozzle check print, and this time the black appeared! I used a nail polish remover for the cleaning.
by Anonymous on Mar 24, 2010 at 4:58am Add comment
I've had trouble with my i560 printing 'magenta' for some time now. When I tried cleaning the print head with the 'print head cleaner' that came with my ink refill kit, it made it better, but I still had 'white lines'. I tried running hot water on the print head under the faucet, which made it look nice and clean, but didn't fix the problem. I tried soaking it in alcohol, hot water, non-acetone polish remover, and ammonia. I was just about ready to go buy that new Canon I've had my eye on when I thought I had better check with the 'keepper of the checkbook' first. She told me that she uses "Gerased Lightning" to get ink out of clothes in the laundry. Yep, I tried soaking the print head in it over night and rinsed it off with hot water the next day. I let it dry over night and now the printer works like new. You can get this mulit-purpose cleaner/degreaser at LOWES, HOME DEPOT, WALMART, etc. Their website; I'll be praying for your printer...
by JouleThief on Mar 27, 2010 at 8:15am Add comment
Seems that time passes, yet the problems remain the same ;)
Some general advice first: if you leave your printer on, it will drop a little ink from time to time, to prevent the printhead from clogging. If you want to save electricity, you should print a few lines with each color once in a while yourself, the printer doesn't like to sit unused ;) That's especially important with cheap inks, I've learned.
As for cleaning the printhead, I bought a special set of fluids on eBay, one is a kind of alcohol I think, one is enigmatic, and the third one is labeled "corrosive", but it doesn't ruin the printhead luckily ;) Anyhow it worked quite well when white lines appeared on black prints, but what I think is most effective, when no color appears at all, is alcohol. I tried flushing the jets with it, soaking, rubbing, etc. but the best way, for me, is using a syringe to fill up an empty cartridge with it and set a multi-page print in a color that has clogged. So far that has been foolproof. And of course you need strong alcohol, above 70\%, if available. Vodka will do, but it works much slower.
Good luck,
by Anonymous on May 5, 2010 at 2:50pm Add comment
One more thing, all the ink from nozzle cleans and such goes into a kind of sponge inside the printer. It has a limited capacity and the printer has a sensor for that. When it's full, the printer won't print anything. If you need to print something fast, the short-term solution is to reset the electronics (I've read of people who did it a couple of times and nothing bad happened, yet I think there's a reason why the manufacturer made it like that, hopefully something else then trying to make us buy a new printer ;) ). If you're particularly game, you can disassemble the printer, wash out the sponge, and then do the reset, but you may just do the last mentioned.
The procedure is quite straightforward, kind of like a quick-time event in a computer game, just need to press buttons in the right order ;)
If your printer isn't on the list below, you'll have to google it, just type your model + resetting and something should pop up ;)

Canon i450, i455, i470D, i475D, i550, i560, i6100, i6500, i850, i860, i865, i900D, i905D, i950, i960, i965, i9100, i9950
Canon S300, S330, S500, S520, S530D, S600, S630, S750, S820, S830D, S900, S6300, S9000
Canon PIXMA iP2000, iP3000, iP3300, iP4000, iP4200, iP4300, iP4500, iP5000, iP5200, iP5300, iP6000, iP6210, iP6220, iP6600, iP6700, iP8500, pro9000, pro9500, iX4000, iX5000
Canon BJ F500, F700, F890, F900
1. Turn off the printer.
2. Press and hold the Resume button.
3. Press and hold the Power button
4. Release the Resume button.
5. Press the Resume button twice and release the Power button.
6. Wait for the light to turn green.
7. Press Resume four times (each time you press it, the light switches color).
8. Press the Power button to confirm the selected action (reset absorber counter).
9. Turn off the printer (some models require pressing the Power button two or three times).

Just another thing you might try, when printing goes pearshaped ;)
by Anonymous on May 5, 2010 at 3:20pm Add comment
Well, I thought my Canon i475D was done for. It would not print MAGENTA at all. Sure enough, after reading this thread, I simply soaked the printhead thingy in very hot water (not boiling) for a few minutes, rinsed, repeated until no more ink came out and colored the water, then put it in front of a fan over night. Now it works as good as new.

by unknown on May 23, 2010 at 1:18am Add comment
I have CANON S200.
Haven't been used for 3+ years. The printer cartridge is new however it prints blank pages. The print cartridge is good and it lets ink out but it didn't come to the end of the printhead. I've cleaned it from the upper side where the inkhole is but on the lower side where the printhead connects to the paper and places the ink on the paper. There was black dried ink and I've removed it however just near it is something like a tiny glass which i transperant and I can see lots of black dried ink there... How is it possible to clean it there? It seems like sealed with this glass and it must be the problem for printing black. The software program don't report errors and measures the black ink fine. You can reply to this mail also and preferably please
[email protected]
by unknown on Jun 3, 2010 at 10:10am Add comment
I fixed the problem suggested by several people in this thread. Namely removing the print head then placing the print head under boiling hot water. Stop when there is no ink leaking from the print head and dry using a hair dryer. Put the print head back into its shell and perform deep cleaning. Print head now works as good as new!!

All hail the internets!
by unknown on Jul 12, 2010 at 6:59am Add comment
I have had several messages about the Absosber but now it is FULL and the cartridge is locked to the right and won't move. How do I unlock it and how and where do I replace the absorber?
by unknown on Aug 23, 2010 at 6:58am Add comment
it worked!

i have the same problem that the black and white cartridge didn't work. but now after 1 hour of water soaking and several deep cleaning (and loosing much ink :()it works!

thank you so much.
by unknown on Sep 13, 2010 at 8:22am Add comment
I have an i560 and had the same problem. When I change the paper size from US letter to US letter (borderless) it uses black ink. So you could try that.
by unknown on Sep 13, 2010 at 10:08am Add comment
Me printer head was all bunged up where I used a cheap copy magenta Canon ink cartridge.

Flush with twice isopropyl still no joy, then nail varnish remover, still no good every thing fine apart from magenta, and we need magenta!..

Run under hot water tap then hair dry for about 3 minutes as suggested.
She prints like new one!

Me genuine Canon i560 cartridges are now fitted.
by Bob Hope on May 12, 2011 at 11:26am Add comment
Prints lines across picture when I print a picture with blue colour in picture.

please help.
by unknown on Aug 17, 2011 at 11:01am Add comment
Hi, After looking EVERYWHERE for a fix for this the thing that has worked for me is to change the paper option to Envelope in the print window. Black is printing fine, speed is fine, borders are where they should be and you can still change other options like page range and reverse print. Then save that print option so you don't have to set it up every time you use the i470D.

I'm sure a lot of people do have problems because of dirty print heads, but i believe that's a separate issue. This is obviously a software communications problem and Canon should be doing a lot more for people than laughing at them trying to fix their 'cheap' printers! Nobody minds spending money on a printer, but EVERYBODY hates spending £20 for a handful of ink, which is why we want to hold onto our old, cheap machines!
by unknown on Aug 25, 2011 at 1:14pm Add comment
my canon ip 4300 printer is printing only the top half of a line for the PGBK black cartridge
by chargill12 on Sep 24, 2011 at 11:26am Add comment
My canon i560 would not print anything, so I socked the heads in alcohol like some suggested, and now it prints spotty. I have replaced the ink cartridges,still the same. Any suggestions?
by RLB on Oct 16, 2011 at 7:12am Add comment
I just tried this. hopefully this works. as usual, the black doesnt want to print. I am using ip1000 canon printer. changing the paper type to photo works but it's because printing in photo paper uses the 3 colors to produce color black.
by unknown on Oct 30, 2011 at 9:46pm Add comment
"resetting the electronics" did the trick for me when cleaning did not work.

-Posted by Anonymous (5/5/10 3:20 PM)

Thanks Chris

by Petrikske on Jan 15, 2012 at 7:42am Add comment
My Canon i455 will not print yellow.

I have tried EVERY suggestion on here!
- Soaked/rinsed w/ alcohol
- Soaked/rinsed w/ almost boiling water
- Ran hot tap water for 10 minutes (from top and bottom sides)
- Reset the electronics
- Filled an old ink cartridge w/ alcohol and ran 4 pages of solid yellow print.

The only thing I haven't done is bought a commercial cleaner.

Any other suggestions?
by unknown on Feb 20, 2012 at 7:38pm Add comment
After reading this thread I cleaned my Canon Pixma Pro9000 Mark II printhead. It wouldn't print with the black ink cartridge. I'd tried the cleaning through the driver and that didn't help. I'd tried cleaning with water and alcohol and that didn't help. But now I tried with almost boiling water and that worked. I'm using Cartridge World refills. I did also download the latest driver so that could have done it, too, but I'm guessing it was the hot water since only the one color was not printing.
by unknown on Dec 18, 2012 at 10:34pm Add comment
I just bought a second hand Canon i560, the only printer driver I could find online was compatible with Windows XP (I have windows 7)and everything seemed to work until I tried printing black text and nothing came out. The whole cleaning thing sounded like way too much work so I tried changing the printer properties to photo paper and it works fine now. I'm almost certain this must be a driver issue not anything to do with blogged ink. Thanks for the tips everyone!!
by unknown on Jan 14, 2013 at 10:30am Add comment
i560 Black ink stopped printing after changed ink cartridge with refill one, (I keep all empty ones to be refilled tightly capped to prevent drying out the pad but guess something wasn't quite right).
Tried most of the suggestions above except soaking and buying a new print head. Used isopropyl alcohol and water BUT did not dry or drain well as suggested. I was able to run water and alcohol through the gauze and out the inkject head into tissue. However, still no black print after all this.
I noticed that when remove the ink cartridges, each colour had a bead of ink or was quite "wet" on top of each gauze but the black one did not have this bead, it was quite dry.
I also noticed that when I held a paper tissue to the actual inkjet head, the colours would run out into the tissue of the colour head, but the black one would not. So I tried drying out the black inkject head with tissues and cotton bud soaked in water to try and suck out the water. Then one more deep clean, and then pulled out the black cartridge to check what was on the gauze and found it was wet. So tried printing and FINALLY it was all go. So it seems there was something stopping the flow of ink from gauze to inkjet head and once I had dried it out a bit the ink was able to flow. Very frustrating though.
by unknown on Jan 20, 2013 at 8:01pm Add comment
I cleaned it all, nothing worked.

I changed the setting to glossy paper and it worked great!!

Thank you.
by unaguayabita on Apr 12, 2013 at 11:03am Add comment