Trouble Shooting Printers? Find Help Here!

Printer Troubleshooting Guide

Always read your manual

Always read your manual

On your computer, hit the print button on the document you want to print*

Problem: 50 page print job sent to the black and white printer, when you clearly sent it to the enormous, overly complicated color printer downstairs.

Color is better because little children jump right off the page! They do.

Color is better because little children jump right off the page! They do.

Check your manual.  Go to section titled “Cancelling a print job”.  Duh.

Cancelling a Print Job

  1. Hit “cancel button”
  2. Hit every button
  3. Yell at printer to stop
  4. Frantically jump up and down while yelling at printer to stop
  5. Smack printer
  6. Unplug printer and start over
  7. Printer will now say “Paper Jam”
paper jam

Smack printer repeatedly. Ignore musical paper.

Check your manual.  Go to section titled “Removing a paper jam”.  Double duh.

Removing a Paper Jam

  1. Read instructions on printer to open one of the printer doors
  2. Try to open the indicated door
  3. Well, pull harder on the door
  4. Yell at door to open
  5. Threaten printer with bodily harm
  6. Smack printer
  7. Find easy-to-use button and pop open the door.  Remove paper.
  8. No paper?  Just shut the door and maybe the printer will forget that one.
  9. Printer will now say “Paper Jam” and indicate another door.
  10. Repeat steps 2-6
  11. Pull out toner making sure to get ink on your new sweater
  12. Remove paper (or just stare at the empty roll) and replace toner.
  13. Printer will now say load paper
  14. There is paper in the drawer?  Put some more in anyway.
  15. Hit print button on computer again, clearly indicating color printer
  16. Black and white printer will now say “Paper Jam” and indicate paper drawer
Example: Something is dead in your printer. This could cause a problem.

Example: Something is dead in your printer. This could cause a problem.

Check your manual.  Go to section on Devices and Printers.  You are like, so dense.

Printing to the right printer

  1. Problem?  Printer is printing to a color printer that no longer exists
  2. It is just being helpful by sending it to the black and white one that does exist
  3. Find new color printer under Devices and Printers tab (Try reading the section in “English” not “Japanese” this time.  Yes there IS a difference.)
  4. The Devices and Printers tab is on your start menu on your computer
  5. Yes it is
  6. Look for missing printer on this tab.
  7. Keep looking.
  8. Inform currently listed color printer that it no longer exists and should then disappear
  9. Call I.T.  Try not to sound so pathetic.
  10. They have gotten the right printer installed again?  Great!  Hit print button on your computer and print your document
  11. Go to color printer.
  12. Printer will read “Printer Asleep”
  13. Wake it up.  By. any. means. necessary.
  14. Seek new employment
I'll teach you to talk to me like that!

I’ll teach you to talk to me like that!

See?  Easy!  Be careful with that hammer!


*If this doesn’t work, see section You’re Just Screwed.

14 responses

  1. I remember the day I had the idea to print all my christmas cards…. not even the river of tears could wash away the black stripes from my face I’ve got as I ripped out the misprinted crap (paper jam n°87) and touched my face with my black hands… oh man…. I hope there is a place in reserved in hades for all that darned printers :o)

    1. There must be – for printers and all computer related devices. That’s why my favorite movie is Office Space. I love when they take out the printer and smash it to pieces with a baseball bat. Best scene ever.

  2. I’m shocked that the troubleshooting section doesn’t actually require shooting the printer with your AR-15. Guns have cartridges too, you know.

    1. That was next on my list. I figure if Trump can shoot someone and not lose votes, I should be able to put bullets in a printer and keep my job.

  3. You need to try switching it off and on again. Trust me, I’m in IT.

    1. A coworker and I were discussing this. Can you think of any other device (not computer related) that will work if you turn it off and on again? A toaster? Nope. Still won’t toast. And I restarted it several times!

      1. Well, funnily enough a few years ago my dad had a heart issue. They effectively turned him off and on again (with a defibrillator) and now he’s fine!
        Sadly, toasters just die 😦

        1. Wow, well I am glad hearts can be turned off and on again, especially since it worked for your Dad! Can they do that with brains?

          Wait – there is that ECT business where they shoot electricity in your head. Weirdly, that actually seems to help some people, but I’m not to that point yet, I think.

  4. My last printer was done in by a Tootsie Roll that slipped down the paper slot and got hopelessly buried in the inner workings. I can’t be the only person who keeps my snacks on top of their printer, can I?

    At least I was able to get a newer, cheaper printer to replace it that sucks major possum balls!

    1. A tootsie roll? Ha, I would love explaining that one. I wrecked a keyboard with a spilled coke once. I also have a bad habit of eating snacks over my keyboard, then going insane trying to get the crumbs out later, as if that’s the worst problem with my desk. The keyboard.

  5. It all sounds horribly familiar.

    Will you cover changing ink cartridges next? 😉

    1. I think last time we just bought a new printer. They cost less than the cartridges. We do have to change toner at work, but thus far I have managed to avoid that job. I did get some on myself just from lifting it out to check on the paper jam, though.

      1. Sometimes buying a new printer is the solution. My old printer cost me £50, replacing the ink was £35 for the two cartridges. I was quite glad when it stopped picking up the paper out of the tray!

  6. Printers are stupid, who thought it would be a good idea, it’s always quicker to typeset what you want and so it the nostalgic way. People love retro these days, somebody (wo wasn’t lazy) could make a killing with this idea.

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