Your office copier plays a vital role in your company’s productivity and efficiency. That means keeping it up and running is critical.
We rely on our office printers and copiers for simple tasks, like copying and printing. But nowadays, we depend on them for much more like sending files through the cloud or project assembling, like stapling or binding.
But, what happens when your device isn’t properly functioning? How can you make sure you won’t experience downtime if your office copier malfunctions or breaks?
We’ve got ten tips to keep your office printer in tip-top shape so that you can have certainty and reliability of your office equipment. We want your printers to be solutions, not problems.
How to Keep an Office Printer and Copier in Excellent Shape
You need all hands on deck to keep your multifunction printer (MFP) in good shape. Your employees need to care for the copier, communicate when it’s beginning to work improperly, and you also need a service company by your side for help.
1. Warm it Up When it’s Cold
When you shut the office doors for the weekend, your copy machine takes a break. It goes into sleep mode, and it has to go through a process to wake up. When your device wakes up, it will automatically enter its calibration mode. It also needs time to warm its drum in order to print accurately and efficiently.
If you’re in a hurry, you might find yourself pushing the copy button over and over, trying to get it to work—which won’t wake your office copier up any faster, and it could also cause damage.
Instead, give it time to warm up and copy a test page when it’s been idle for an extended period. When you allow the copier to warm up slowly, it will reward you with consistent high-quality copies.
Speaking of warming up your device, there’s actually a lot of newer models on the market from brands like Kyocera and Sharp that include a walk-up sensor. Meaning, these printers can wake up the device when they detect any nearby motion. How nice is that?
2. Don’t Overload the Paper Tray
Overloading the paper tray is a surefire way to end up with a problem. Your office copier will have trouble feeding the paper into the machine, causing a jam.
Most paper trays include fill level lines, so use the lines as a guide when loading the paper tray. Also, make sure the paper is packed tight and wrinkle-free as well. When you follow these tips, you can avoid common paper jams.
If you find that you are having to refill the copier more often on a regular basis, maybe it’s time for you to contact your provider for an upgrade expanding to larger or more paper trays, or maybe a larger machine.
3. Be Careful When Clearing Paper Jams
You can’t help but feel frustrated when a paper jam occurs. Don’t let your frustration cause you to get rough with the office copier, though. These are sensitive and complex electronic devices.
First, look at the display panel to discover the source of the paper jam. Then, before you address it, unplug the copy machine. Once it’s unplugged, open the device slowly so that you can fix the paper jam.
If you force components open or move too quickly, you could make the problem worse. For instance, forceful movements or pulling in the wrong direction, might rip the jammed paper. If that happens, you’ll have to call your service technician to handle the paper jam.
4. Keep Your Office Copier Clean
Dirt and debris are harmful to copy machines, so keep your copier clean. Clean the bypass and exit trays, as well as the glass surface.
Also, remove debris from the machine’s exterior, so it doesn’t find its way into the paper tray and inside your office copier. Make this a regular part of your office cleaning duties, and employees will get in the habit of keeping your device clean.
5. Don’t Ignore Lines on Your Paper
Your copier machine will leave lines on the paper when it’s trying to tell you something. The lines could be due to a spot on the machine’s glass. If that’s the case, you can clean it off with an alcohol-free glass cleaner and a soft cloth. Then, the lines will typically go away.
Your machine could be trying to tell you that your last paper jam caused loose toner residue to pool in the copier or printer. You might be able to solve this problem by making some blank copies.
The blank pages might pick up the rest of the toner, leaving clean paper behind. However, you’ll need to make a service call if this trick doesn’t fix the problem.
You’ll also need to make a service call if the lines are due to a roller problem. A service technician will inspect the roller to see if it’s dirty or failing. If it is, the technician can fix or replace it so that you can get back to printing.
6. Use the Right Toner for Your Printer
You will receive an owner’s manual when you buy or lease an office copy machine. When you look through it, you’ll find a section containing information about the type of toner you need to use for your copier or printer. If you use the wrong toner, it could damage your machine.
You also need to avoid buying counterfeit toners. Criminals sell counterfeit toner and other printing supplies on online marketplaces. They offer a steep discount, and people think they are purchasing the real deal. Then, when they receive the toner, it leaks or causes other problems, damaging the machine.
You can avoid falling victim to a counterfeit toner scam by getting your supplies through your printing partner. Then, you’ll know the supplies are authentic and will not harm your multifunction printer.
By the way, this is when learning about your maintenance or service level agreement is a great idea. Your managed print provider typically includes things like toner within your agreement, making it easier for you to obtain the right supplies for your devices while avoiding those common counterfeit toner scams.
7. Don’t Scratch the Platen Surface
Make sure you remove paperclips and staples before making copies. They could scratch the glass, making it impossible to get clear copies.
8. Train Your Staff
Office copiers have changed a lot over the years. They now have more features than ever before, so it’s a good idea to train your employees. This way, they know how to use your office copy machine.
Your managed print provider can help teach your employees how to use the office copy machine’s different features and functions. And don’t forget, when you add new members to your team, make sure they get fully trained too.
9. Maintain Your Copier
Your office copier should undergo regular maintenance based on the schedule in your owner’s manual. Regular maintenance is necessary if you want your copier to perform at optimal levels and reduces the need for time-consuming repairs.
10. Make Sure You Have the Right Machine
Far too many offices purchase cheap copy machines from big-box retailers, only to find out that the copiers weren’t designed to accommodate their office’s needs—leading to lots of breakdowns.
Choosing a copy machine that meets the needs of your office will help you reduce downtime.
The Next Step: Taking Care of Your Copy Machine Increases its Life Span
Although there are many more, these ten tips will help you extend the life of your office copier. Your copier is like any other office technology product at your organization. It’s there to support you and your employee’s needs and the demands of your small business.
AOS can help you with printing and copying solutions by providing managed print services that include maintenance, repairs, and remote monitoring. Our managed print services help our clients improve efficiency and reduce costs. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help your business continue on its path of growth and success.