HP guide may offer solution for ‘muddy streak’

Friday, February 16, 2018

Dear PC Doctor:

I have an HP jetpro 400 color printer M451 that I use for my home business. It’s been great! Recently, though, it has begun making a muddy-looking streak down the side. Sometimes it just looks a little gray in the background. How can I find out how to fix this and get nice crisp prints again?

I don’t want to have to buy a new printer, as I just ordered several hundred dollars’ worth of toner cartridges.


Signed, Muddy Prints

Dear Muddy Prints:

It’s worth taking a look at the troubleshooting guide that HP has for this printer. You can find it online at: support.hp.com. There are sections on “Dark or light streaks,” “Gray background,” and “Fuzzy print” that might address your problem.

From a quick read, there is something that you might try right off the bat. First, print a cleaning page. During the many years that you’ve relied on this printer, toner and dust particles may have accumulated inside, causing specks, spatter, smears, streaks, lines or repeating marks.

From the Home screen on the printer control panel (located on the printer itself, not your computer), select the Setup menu. Then choose Service, then Cleaning Page. Load plain letter or A4 paper when you are prompted, and then select OK. A Cleaning message will display on the printer control panel. Wait until the process is complete. Discard the page that prints.

There are other potential solutions, such as making sure you are using the right toner, that the toner is distributed correctly inside the cartridge, that the paper you are using is the thickness you’ve told the printer you’re using and more. I hope you find your solution!

Until next time,

Happy computing!

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