What is the difference between a laser printer and an ink-jet printer?

Laser printers and ink-jet printers are the two most frequently used printers. ink-jet printers print brightly, but the printing speed is slower and the consumables are more expensive. Laser printers print faster and have higher precision. In fact, these two printers use two completely different printing technologies. Let’s take a look at the difference between these two printers.

The laser printer is a printing output device that uses a combination of laser scanning technology and electrophotographic technology. The printing information is converted into a laser drive signal through a control interface. The laser scanning system generates a laser beam with printed information, and then the electrophotographic technology enables the laser beam transferred to the print media. Compared with other printing equipment, laser printers have the advantages of fast printing speed and high printing precision.

The ink-jet printer was developed after the pin-type printer. It uses a non-impact working method, which has the characteristics of small size, low noise, and many printing media. At present, the main ink-jet printers use two types of piezoelectric ink-jet technology and thermal ink-jet technology. In addition to technical differences, thermal bubble ink-jet printers need to install nozzles in each ink cartridge, which increases the cost of the ink cartridges; but the nozzles of piezoelectric ink-jet printers are integrated in the printer.

The common printing format of laser printers is A4, A3 format laser printers are expensive, but ink-jet printers are simpler and cheaper to make A3 format, so if you often need to print large format materials, you can choose ink-jet printers. The printing speed of the laser printer will be much faster than that of the ink-jet printer, so if you need to efficiently print the A4 format data, it is recommended to choose the laser printer.

 The main consumables for laser printers are toners, and many companies now choose toner cartridges, which greatly reduces the printing cost; ink-jet printers use special inks, and some companies have also launched printers with their own supply systems, but relatively printing costs will be higher. So in terms of printing cost, the printing cost of laser printers will be lower.

From the above information, we can see that laser printers are generally suitable for office use, where high work efficiency and mass printing are required. The ink-jet printer is suitable for homes or places with small print volume, or where high-precision photos need to be printed. In addition, it should be noted that ink-jet printers need to be used frequently, and at least one or two prints per week are required to avoid nozzle clogging.

Printer general maintenance – How to clean the laser printer ?

1. Reduce external dust

What is the number one enemy of laser printers? Dust! Because the laser printer works by static electricity, it can strongly absorb dust. Any clean office is dusty, and the paper itself has tiny fibers similar to dust. These fibers, dust mixed together, and then after “hot” processing, will become a “universal” adsorption of dirt. In order to fix the toner, the last process of laser printing is heating by heating the roller. The “residual heat” of this process will make the dust accept the “firing” process and become a hard structure. We should pay attention to the ventilation of laser printer, but we can’t put it on the ventilation channel. If we put the printer on the vent, aisle, or next to the door and window, the printer with static electricity will play a role of “magnet” to absorb dust.

2. Hazards of internal dust

The printer is a technology complex. It will spread millions of toner particles precisely on a piece of paper. While doing this work, there will inevitably be a small amount of “litter”. When these small particles are mixed with the small fibers shaken off from the paper, they become the “micro” garbage with strong adsorption. Gently shaking the powder box to make the toner evenly distributed will help to achieve good printing results, but if you use excessive force to do this work, it may cause toner leakage, resulting in adverse consequences. Should pay attention to the use of clean paper, not only to ensure the printing effect, but also for internal cleaning.

3. Learn simple cleaning

Many faults of laser printer need to be repaired, the root cause of which is dust. It is very necessary to clean the printer regularly and effectively, but how do we do these daily cleaning work? The simplest and reliable way is to have professional maintenance engineers clean the printer regularly, but some cleaning work can be done by ourselves through careful operation. Too much dirt in the paper path will make the printed paper dirty. When cleaning the paper path, first open the cover of the printer, take out the selenium drum, and then gently wipe the roller and other relevant parts back and forth with a clean and soft wet cloth to remove paper scraps and dust. Because of the corona net technology, the ozone filter is installed on the laser printer. The ozone filter should be replaced at least once a year. After each replacement of the powder box, the corona net shall be cleaned with an alcohol swab. More often, use soft gauze to clean the carbon particles on the inner wall. Carefully clean all visible and accessible parts of the interior, just like cleaning camera lens. The best way is to use a small vacuum cleaner to absorb the powder particles without blowing the leather ball (do not directly wipe the smooth surface of the drum to avoid scratches). These cleaning work can reduce the black spots or stripes when printing.

4. Special cleaning tools

You can buy some special laser printer cleaning tools. Cleaning paper is a kind of special paper with the shape of ordinary paper. It has a strong adsorption effect. When it is used, it is put into the paper feed slot and have the laser printer print a blank file. The purpose is only to make the cleaning paper move normally. The cleaning paper is like a sponge to stick away the dust on the roller and paper path. Repeat the operation several times to complete the cleaning work on the paper track. For the dust adsorber, due to the influence of static electricity, carbon powder may be adsorbed to other parts of the printer. Replacing the powder box and pulling out the jammed paper will also cause the diffusion of carbon powder. These scattered carbon powder may fall back to the paper path, which is one of the reasons why the printed paper is not clean. The carbon dust adsorber itself is also charged with static electricity, and is made of elastic active adsorption materials, so it is easy to clean up the internal dust.

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DIY repair your laser printer

A laser printer is a kind of output device which integrates laser scanning technology, electronic technology, electrostatic imaging technology and so on. It has the characteristics of fast printing speed, good printing quality, high resolution, and low noise. It is an important computer peripheral equipment. With the emergence of a network printer, it is widely used in office automation, printing, publishing, scientific research, and other industries.

Typical faults and maintenance methods

Fault 1

The image of a laser printer is obviously black and white on one side. After replacing the toner cartridge and cleaning all the components, the fault still exists.

Maintenance method: through the maintenance of the optical part of the laser printer, the fault is solved. It is mainly to open the shell of the laser printer, disassemble the black plastic box, carefully wipe several reflective surfaces of the multi shuttle mirror with clean lens paper, wipe several optical lenses clean, restore the removed plastic box, and pay attention to the installation of the connector of the junction card. When the machine is turned on again, the printed handwriting will be full.

Fault 2

The laser printer often fails to turn on the heating lamp. Only one power lamp turns on after the machine is turned on, so the machine can not work normally.

Maintenance method: through inspection, it is found that it is not the problem of fuser, power supply or small relay. It’s a problem that a 102J small resistance heated by the tube in a small box beside the power box doesn’t contact the circuit board well. Because it’s two sides of the circuit board, both sides should be welded, and the trouble should be eliminated after the electric ferrochrome is welded. This fault is very common in St laser printer, but sometimes the heating lamp does not work is the one-way SCR fault of power control part. Fusing lamp, thermistor and thermal protector are also common failures. If the measuring fusing lamp tube is burnt out, the thermistor performance is not good, and the thermal protector is open to replace.

Fault 3

Sometimes the heating lamp of the laser printer is on or off.

Maintenance method: when the heating lamp is not on, use a multimeter to check whether the connecting wires of two light tubes are broken or not, and whether there seven thin wires are broken, because the fusing part of the laser printer is connected to the main machine flexibly, and several wires are often disassembled and broken easily. If the heating lamp does not light up frequently, but it can be used normally after a long time of cooling, it is the problem of the thermistor. Replace the thermistor with a new one, and the fault can be solved. Use a multimeter to measure 320K Ω in cold state and 1.45k Ω in the hot state of the normal thermistor.

Fault 4

The output image is light in color, unable to see the handwriting clearly.

The color of the laser printer and the output image is so light that the handwriting can hardly be seen. Try to adjust the contrast knob to the maximum position, and the output sample handwriting is still unclear. Considering the dirty mirror surface, wipe the reflector and focusing lens with alcohol cotton ball, and the fault is still the same. Check whether the transfer electrode wire is normal. If no abnormality is found, clean the electrode wire, and the fault is still not eliminated. Check the charging electrode wire of the powder box. It is intact and normal. Check the high-voltage and high-voltage contacts. It means that the fault is not related to the electrode wire.

Through further inspection, it was found that a spring plate of the sensitive sensor switch of the laser drive circuit was broken, which causes the printer to fail to close when it is working, resulting in the above-mentioned fault. After replacing the spring plate with a new one, the fault is removed.

Fault 5

Photographic fixing heating is not normal

After the laser printer is turned on, the power indicator light is on. The preparation/waiting indicator light is off as soon as it flashes. The fusing heater only flashes once and no longer heats up. Sometimes the fusing heater does not work at all when the printer is turned on.

Based on the fault, suspect the fusing heater is in poor contact or damaged. Take down the fusing heater, use the multimeter resistance to check whether both ends are normal, and check the thermistor, temperature sensor and protection circuit, and no problem is found. Check the control interface circuit of the main control board and no abnormality is found.

Further, check the heating drive circuit and find that there is a problem with the thyristor. After the replacement of the new silicon controlled rectifier, the fusing heater returned to normal operation and the fault is removed.

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