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Diagnosing and Troubleshooting HP LaserJet Jams, Image Defects And Error Messages

Troubleshooting print defects, paper jams, error codes, and printer noises.

This article helps printer service technicians trace the potential sources of common problems and issues on mono chrome HP LaserJet printers. Issues that include print defects, paper jams, error codes, and printer noises.

Image Defects

High percentage of print defects come from a faulty toner cartridge. Even if the cartridge is somewhat full, other components can fail within the cartridge and cause defects. A halfway test can help eliminate the fuser as the problem.

Troubleshooting Laser Printer Parts and Techniques With The Halfway Test Or Stop Test

Paper Jams

Which paper tray does the Paper jams at?

1. All trays

2. Manual feed tray only

3. Main cassette tray only

4. Optional cassette tray only

Where does the leading edge of the paper stop?

1. Never leaves the tray

2. Stops underneath the toner cartridge

3. Stops inside the fuser, or just exiting the fuser

4.  Stops only when duplexing

5.  Stops as it exits the printer

Error codes and messages

Numeric error codes:

Error Codes 0 - 19

Error Codes 20 - 49

Error Codes 50-59

Error Codes 60 and up

Text error messages:

Text Error Messages A - M

Text Error Messages N -Z

Printer Noises Location

What area of the printer does the noise seem to be coming from, the front or rear?

-- Rear noises are usually fuser, drive gears, or output assembly

-- Front noises are usually pickup rollers, toner cartridges, laser scanners

What kind of noise: high-pitched squeals, or low-pitched rumbling?

Higher-pitched noises are usually:

-- printer toner cartridge

-- printer laser scanner

-- printer output assembly

Lower-pitched noises are usually:

-- worn printer roller

-- worn printer gear

-- damaged fuser

Does paper actually leave the tray?


Continue on trouble-shooting.


1. Examine the paper pickup and feed rollers for wear. Replace worn rollers as needed.

2. Inspect quantity of paper in tray; if tray is overfilled, remove excess paper and re-test.

3. Inspect separation tabs in tray which hold down the paper stack. Make sure separation tabs are not bent or tweaked.