Find a repair centre

Support & Downloads: Epson Stylus SX510W

The printer sounds like it is printing, but there is no ink on the paper. What's wrong?

RELATES TO:

  • Poor print quality.
  • There is little or no ink on the printed pages.
  • Stylus Inkjet printers.

EXPLANATION:

The print head nozzles may be clogged. If the nozzles are clogged, this will affect the ink flow and therefore result in little or no ink appearing on the page.

    Notes Icon Note:

    • We recommend using genuine Epson cartridges. Genuine Epson ink contains an anti-coagulant. This chemical will ensure that the nozzles are cleaned as the ink passes though.

    • The use of non-genuine Epson inks can be a major cause of blocked nozzles as the ink may not be of the same viscosity, nor contain an anti-coagulant.


  1. Start with plain, A4 paper loaded in the printer. Open the printer utilities and print a nozzle check. Follow the instruction for your operating system:

    Mac OS X:

    1. Open the Epson Printer Utility from Applications, or Applications > Utilities.

    2. Click on the Nozzle Check option and follow the on-screen prompts to print it.

    Windows:

    1. Open Control Panel, and then Printers or Printers & Faxes.  (Alternatively, in Windows XP open Printers and Other Hardware and then View installed printers and fax printers).

    2. Locate the icon that represents your printer. Right-click on the icon, left-click Printing Preferences, and then left-click the Maintenance or Utility tab.


  2. After printing a nozzle check, examine the printed dot pattern. Each block, or for some patterns, each staggered horizontal and straight vertical line should be complete, with no gaps in the dot pattern.

    Click Here to see examples of a nozzle check

    • A good nozzle check (lines):

      Good nozzle check



    • A poor nozzle check (lines):



    • A good nozzle check (blocks, and squares):

      Blocks:


      Squares:

      Good nozzle check



    • A poor nozzle check (blocks, and squares):

      Blocks:


      Squares:

      Poor nozzle check



    • A good nozzle check (individual colours):



    • A poor nozzle check (individual colours):


  3. If no ink is printed or the nozzle check is incomplete, you will need to use the Head Cleaning utility from the Epson printer driver. After performing head cleaning you will need to print a nozzle check.

    • Head Cleaning - This process attempts to force a small amount of ink through nozzles in order to try to clean them.

    • Nozzle Check - This will print out a nozzle check sheet. This will show the condition of the print head nozzles and show if the nozzles are blocked.


  4. The head cleaning and nozzle check must follow each other to complete a full cycle. Perform a head clean as follows:

    1. Start with plain, A4 paper loaded in the printer.

    2. Click on Head Cleaning.

    3. Once cleaning has been completed, click on the option to print a Nozzle Check.

    4. The printer will attempt to print a nozzle check sheet.


  5. After printing a nozzle check, examine the printed dot pattern to see if there is any improvement. Each block, or for some patterns, each staggered horizontal and straight vertical line should be complete, with no gaps in the dot pattern. Compare the pattern with the earlier examples.


  6. If there are gaps in the dot pattern, continue with another cycle and perform up to six cycles if necessary.


  7. If the nozzle check is not printed completely and further head cleans do not improve the nozzle check and prints, try replacing the ink cartridges for the affected colours. If this fails to resolve the issue, your printer may require a service.

    Notes Icon Note:

    Also try powering off the printer and leaving it overnight. This will allow an opportunity for any dried ink to soften. After being left overnight, use the Head Cleaning utility print head again.



For more information, see your user guide (available from the Epson website), or the following Related Articles:

Did you find this article helpful

Thanks for leaving feedback