Troubleshooting Advice for Basic Problems with Canon Ink Cartridges

Canon ink cartridges, as with the rest of Canon products, are made to ensure optimal quality. These cartridges are also durable, and it is recommended that you always use the original manufacturer cartridges to avoid printing problems and to get the best possible quality. However, if your budget is tight or you print a lot, then you may want to consider using remanufactured, generic or refilled cartridges. In such an instance, and even when using the original manufacturer cartridges, you may still get error messages or experience some printing problems. We have briefly addressed some of the problems and error messages to help you get the best value from your cartridges.

How do I ensure longevity of the ink cartridge?

Your cartridges will keep longer if you install them immediately after having removed them from the package – at least within 24 hours. Always test print for reviewing the alignment and ink flow. If the print alignment or quality is poor, remove the cartridge and check the contact points for dirt and debris. Using a slightly damp lint-free cloth or paper towel, wipe the contact points clean in one direction. Ink flow is often restricted when the nozzles of the cartridge become clogged. You can also gently shake the cartridge from side to side, to have the ink flow distribution improve. Reinstall the cartridges and test print a page.

What is the E5 error message?

It indicates that the printer doesn’t recognise the cartridge or doesn’t pick it up. The problem can be solved by removing the cartridge from the printer and then completely switching off the printer. Be sure to also disconnect it from the power socket in the wall. Leave it off for about 3 minutes and then reinstall the Canon ink cartridge or compatible cartridge. Check if the E5 message for not recognised or incorrect installation is still displayed after 3 minutes. Where needed, repeat the process and make sure that you have installed the cartridge with the label at the bottom and that the cartridge is seated correctly.

How do I solve the E6502 error problem?

It is an alignment problem that can be solved by reinstalling the ink cartridge and checking whether the paper is properly aligned in the paper tray.

What is the E8 error message on a Canon printer?

When the waste-in absorbing tank is full, the printer will display the E8 message. Open the printer’s protective cover and wait until all the heads have come to a resting position on the printer’s left side. Switch the printer off and remove it from any power source. Remove the cartridge and use tweezers to remove the ink absorber unit’s felt. You will see the felt at the bottom of the cartridge holder. Rinse the plates gently with lukewarm water and allow to air dry before tapping dry with a paper towel. Wait a few minutes to make sure that the plates are completely dry and reinstall the felt using tweezers. Switch the printer on and conduct the test print.

What does the E4 message on the printer display screen mean?

It is the Canon message for needing to replace the cartridge because it is empty.

What are the steps I should take before installing ink cartridges?

Remove the cartridges from their protective packages on the same day that you plan to install them. Let the cartridges stand in an upright position for about sixty minutes, which will help to lead the ink flow down to the nozzles. Remember to keep the cartridges in a cool dark place on a paper towel when doing so. Remove any protective tape over the nozzles and install the cartridges. You should run a head clean and do a print test every time you install new Canon ink cartridges.

Why do I get a low ink message even after just having installed an ink cartridge?

The problem often occurs with the installation of a remanufactured, compatible, generic or refilled cartridge. The Canon printer cartridge has a monitoring chip to ensure once-off usage of the cartridge. The cartridge you have installed is full, you just need to convince the printer. To this end, simply ignore the low ink message and continue with your print. However, if the printer fails to print, you will need to take an additional step. Press the printer’s resume button in for about 10-30 seconds, which will lead to switching off the monitoring. You will notice that the light will stop blinking and this means that you should be able to print now.


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