Why is my printer skipping lines of text?

Hi,

I have an Epson XP 330. I have been trying to print a paper and it keeps skipping lines of text. I have done a nozzle check, cleaned the printhead, and also done an alignment SEVERAL times. Is there something else I can try? I feel like I am wasting ink and paper doing the alignment over and over, and I don't even know if I am doing it correctly. It started to skip less lines after the first alignment, but it's still not working and hasn't improved after the other alignments. I am a college student so my printer is essential... HELP!

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I was first suspecting that printing on cardstock was causing the feeding to not be able to feed plain paper through the paper feed correctly. Is there a way to fix the paper feeder so that it can feed paper without skipping lines?

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I presume you don't mean it's skipping lines of text as such, but rather that text/pictures/whatever have horizontal white lines through them, probably regularly spaced.

I don't think alignment will help, but if it improved somewhat after the first head cleaning cycle it sounds very much like a clogged printhead. Was the printer left unused for a while, maybe several weeks? They do like to feel wanted, and keeping them somewhere warm is a bad idea as that too can cause the printhead to dry out.

Unfortunately, if its out of warranty, once this has happened there's not much you can do apart from repeated head cleaning cycles until you run out of ink. Check whether there's any kind of deep cleaning cycle amongst the maintenance options.

There are a few kill-or-cure measures you may come across with a bit of googling, such as manually moving the print head away from its rest position then inserting a paper towel under it and soaking it in cleaning solution, but these are desperate measures

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There are actual lines of text completely missing. It is not that there are spots of ink missing (like low ink) but there are completely printed lines of the text and then completely blank lines where there should be text.

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But it could be possible that the issue you suggest is what is happening. When I do a nozzle check it comes back clean (no broken segments) so I don't know if a clogged printhead is the culprit...

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If the nozzle check shows no unbroken lines then it seems unlikely to be a blocked nozzle problem, and radica kill-or-cure cleaning efforts might not be a good idea. In any case, it's very unlikely that all the nozzles should block at the same time. From what you say it sounds like the print head simply prints nothing at all on some passes across the paper. Do you get the same whether printing in black and white or in colour, and when it happens in colour, are all 3 colours missing? If so, it would again confirm that it's not a nozzle problem.

If only black or only one of the colours is affected I'd suggest the gold contacts on the cartridge aren't connecting reliably. Or it could be that the ribbon cable connecting the print head to the logic board needs reseating. Potentially, that could affect any or all of the colours.

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You suggest it might be slightly better temporarily after doing a head alignment. That would suggest some sort of alignment problem though it's hard to know what. Maybe the logic board has commanded the motors to advance the paper but thinks they haven't succeeded in doing so, and so advances the paper again. That would result in the total height of the text on a page being wrong.

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Mine will print in color, and I recently changed the blank ink cartridge. When I try to print in black, it will print maybe the first two lines of a paragraph, then the rest of the paragraph will be blank and then it will print the first two lines of the next paragraph and so on. The paragraphs are spaced as though it is printing the entire thing. It is sooo frustrating!

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Hello everyone,

I have had this problem with my printer a couple of times and have been able to fix it! After doing a printer head cleaning and an alignment check. I acted like I was replacing the ink cartridges. I removed each of the ink cartridges and then put them back in. The printer than configured the “new ink” and it went back to working normally! I believe this was how it fixed it last time too. Hope this helps some of you with the same issue!

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This is usually caused by a clog or air trapped in the printhead. Epson can’t design a printer that doesn’t clog because you used it wrong to save their life, so this isn’t surprising.

If it’s a clog, the trouble areas will be persistent. Run a few nozzle checks and see how consistent the problem areas are. If you find it’s a clog, then you need a printhead cleaner designed for Epson printers, which can be found on eBay through many sellers. One of their other problems is they use ink that can’t be unclogged like any normal HP or Canon inkjet, so you can’t soak the printhead in hot water to clear out the clog. Running multiple cleaning cycles makes the problem worse, so DO NOT do that.

If it’s an air problem, the problem will not be consistent on every nozzle check. You’ll need to find a way to get the air out of the head and should probably at least run printhead cleaner through it while you’re there so you can sort out any current (and future) clogs that aren’t obvious./

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