How to Clean Clogged Print Heads

Everyone can be caught in a situation where you want to print an important document for school, office, or assignment, but the Epson printers print come with streaks or white lines, missing the places between words. Well, this happens due to clogged print heads.

Nothing is more frustrating for an inkjet user than a clogged printhead because it messes up the prints badly, and an instant solution is required. Here, we will discuss how to clean these clogged pores, what causes the clogged printheads, and what types of clogs can occur in the printhead.

By understanding how the print head works and how to clean it, you won’t have to worry about changing your print head. Instead, you can solve this issue at home by following some simple steps. But first, let us understand what a print head is and what causes the clogged print heads.

What is a Print Head?

A print head is a critical printer component responsible for transferring ink from the ink cartridge to the paper. It has tiny nozzles from which ink is spread over the paper in the form of tiny droplets. Printers such as Epson printers use microscopic print head holes for detailed prints.

It ensures that the ink from the cartridge is applied evenly to the paper. It is located at the bottom of the plastic carriage in the printer. So, this way, a print head plays a crucial role in the overall functioning of your printer.

  • What are the causes of Clogged Print Heads?

The Printer Ink in the print head can get dry in the nozzles after finishing the print job. When one of these nozzles gets clogged, the print comes streaky or with white lines.

A little bit of dirt or air bubbles can also block the ink from coming out from the nozzle, causing clogged print heads, disturbing the print quality. Some print heads clog more quickly than others. For example, Epson Printers provides sharp prints but blocks more rapidly because they have tiny nozzles than others.

Types of clogs:

Following are the major types of clogs that can occur in the print head of Epson Printers:

  • Simple Clogs:

When you don’t use your printer for a long time, the ink dries in the print head, causing it to block. This type of clogs can easily be removed by running a head cleaning cycle followed by a nozzle check. You can also use air pressure to clean simple clogs by blowing air to the printer.

  • Stubborn Clogs:

Sometimes, the clogs get stubborn, and they can be fixed by rubbing warm water on the print head. If this doesn’t work, you need other solvents for deep cleaning.

Here is the detailed method to clean stubborn clogs:

  1. Turn on Epson Printers. As the print head starts to move up and down, unplug the printer power off the supply. The moving print head helps easy cleaning.
  2. Remove the ink cartridge, and place it in plastic wrap to stop it from drying.
  3. Take a towel, fold it into quarters, damp it with warm water and other cleaning solvents.
  4. Wipe away the excess ink from the print head by placing it beneath the print head assembly and moving the print head back and forth.
  5. Replace the ink cartridges and try a sample test.
  • Hardcore Clogs:

You do all the cleaning with warm water and other cleaning solvents, but still, the prints are not coming smooth. In this case, you are dealing with hardcore clogs, and they can be solved by removing the print head from the printer.

One of the most efficient ways to clean hardcore clogs is to dip the print head in the solution of ammonia and water for a few hours or by running warm water to the print heads. Other ways are similar to the stubborn clog method, but you have first to take out the print head from the printer.

Here is how you can take out the print head. It is not as difficult as it seems.

  1. Open your Epson printers and remove your ink cartridges.
  2. Place the cartridge aside on a towel.
  3. Locate a grey behind the carriage, which is holding the cartridge.
  4. Lift it, and this will release the printer from the print head.
  5. Pull up the print head to remove it from the machine.

After removing the print head from the printer, follow the cleaning methods discussed above to ensure proper cleaning and fine quality prints.

How to Clean Clogged Print Heads?

First of all, we should know that there are two types of print heads. The first is built in the printer, and the other one is built into the cartridge. The print head built into the cartridge does not need any cleaning. When you replace the printer ink, you also replace the print head, which will solve your printer problem.

But for the print head built in the print head, there are several ways to clean.

  • Automatic Print Head Cleaning:

Most inkjet printers, i.e., Epson printers, have automatic print head cleaning mechanisms that help clean the print head. The software for automatic cleaning is available on almost every printer and is the easiest and effective way to clean print heads.

In this method, the air pushes out the dried ink from the nozzle with pressure. You can see ink coming out from the print head when you blow air.

Once the process is done, try taking out a sample print. If the pattern is still streaky, repeat the process two or three times until the result is smooth without any white lines. Still, if it doesn’t work for you, you need to clean your printer manually.

  • Manual Print Head Cleaning:

You can clean your print head manually using two types: removable and non-removable. First, you have to locate where your print head is, and the type of cleaning depends on which kind of clogs you are dealing with.


If you ever face a situation where you have to deal with clogged print heads, following the above techniques will help you solve the issue effectively. High-end printers such as Epson printers heads offer more clogs due to their high-resolution prints and micro nozzle technology. Make sure to handle the machines properly to avoid any damage.

Always run a test sample before going to the next stage of cleaning. If all of the above methods don’t work for you, contact your provider and replace the print head. To ensure maximum life, one must handle the equipment properly and always read the manual provided by the company before use.

Tenaui Middle East

Tenaui Middle East is a leading provider of consumer, business-to-business and industrial digital imaging solutions in the Middle East, South Africa, and Singapore region.

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