Jun 272012

printer repair pickrollers Of Printer Repair And Pick Rollers

Ever wonder what in the world Pick Rollers, Separation Rollers, Paper Feed Rollers, and all those other rollers that you’re constantly replacing are? Well, let’s take a little look and see…

Different printer manufacturers and different printer repair companies call the rollers that help move the paper through your printer by different names. Additionally, the same roller is often called by a different name dependent on where it is located within the printer… confusing right? At American Printer Service, Inc. we just refer to all these rollers generically as, “Pick Rollers”.

Pick Rollers are like the shoes on your feet…except far less fashionable, especially if you’re into your Jimmy Choos. Besides making outrageous fashion statements, shoes serve the more mundane purpose of providing traction and comfort while doing things like running a marathon, rock climbing, or playing sports. It is this traction that the Pick Rollers provide, allowing your printer to ‘grab’ the paper and move it through your printer. Pick Rollers are manufactured with different types of rubber, dependent on the model of printer and the expected amount of usage, but most have a sort of tacky feel to them.

Over time, the Pick Rollers can accumulate small bits of debris that causes them to ‘smooth’ out and lose their grabbing ability. This leads to ‘mispicking’ or paper jams. Also, if you have a toner spill, or the Fuser Assembly is not properly adhering toner onto the page, the loose toner can accumulate on the Pick Rollers and cause them to stop working correctly. Sometimes all the Pick Rollers need to correct mispicking and jams are a good cleaning; however, even with a cleaning, once Pick Rollers have become compromised, it is best to replace them so the problem does not reoccur immediately. This is the reason why we advise customers to keep their printers as clean and free of debris as possible. Pick Rollers are not the most expensive parts in printers, but most printers require several sets to operate smoothly, and worn Pick Rollers can add up!

Jun 202012

refurbished printers printer repair blog And Speaking Of Refurbished Printers...

Speaking of refurbishing printers… Have you ever wondered just what that means?

I think the term ‘refurbished’ means different things to different companies, at least in our field of work. We’ve ordered printers from companies before where refurbished obviously meant just wiping the outside down with a wet rag, wrapping it up, and shipping it out. Then again, we’ve received printers from companies who have completely torn the unit apart, replaced all worn parts, cleaned the unit up, and shipped it out.

Here at American Printer Service, Inc., we believe that a ‘refurbished’ printer should be more the latter than the former. A well refurbished printer should be completely disassembled by a professional Technician, who should note worn / faulty parts. These parts should be replaced with new parts. Then the printer should be thoroughly cleaned, inside and out, before being wrapped up for shipping.

When you are purchasing a refurbished printer, it is very important that you know what the company considers ‘refurbished’. Ask. If you get the ‘run-around’ or the sales person changes the subject, chances are, you’re purchasing a printer that may look pretty on the outside but have major components on the inside that may need to be replaced.

It is important to note that there are no ‘refurbishing police’ making the rounds and inspecting the way companies sell their printers. For that reason, prices on refurbished printers can vary widely, sometimes hundreds of dollars. Personally, I go with the adage, ‘You get what you pay for…’, but it is up to you as the consumer to make sure you’re informed and understand exactly what you are purchasing. Every once in a while, you may come across a stellar deal, but on the whole, I’d say that if you’re buying a $1,000.00 printer for $200.00, something has got to be wrong with it!

Build a relationship with a printer repair company, like American Printer Service, Inc. that you can trust. That way, when it comes to purchasing new equipment for your printing needs, you can rest assured that you’ll be getting a sturdy printer at at great price.

Jun 182012

Here at American Printer Service, Inc. we are often asked by customers looking to replace a unit about whether they should purchase a new printer or go after that ‘really great deal!’ they found online. In these economic times, the compulsion to snap up a great deal, and save some dollars, is easy to give into, especially when they seller makes it seem like a ‘once in a lifetime’ opportunity. We have mixed feelings about purchasing refurbished printers from online sources such as Ebay, Craigslist, and etc. Here’s why…

There is no denying that online retailers can offer some really great prices when it comes to purchasing refurbished printers. Sometimes you can end up with a unit that costs you hundreds of dollars less than a comparable, brand new printer would have cost. We would just caution you to ‘read the fine print’ when it comes to purchasing printers from online sources.

Typically speaking, refurbished printers that are sold online are an ‘as is’ item, meaning that when you receive the printer, it may work perfectly for a week and then have a complete meltdown. As the buyer, you can contact the seller and ask for a refund, and some reputable sellers will try to help you out. However, I would say the majority of sellers will point to the one line in their advertisement that lets them off the hook. We’ve seen this happen time and time again to our customers, who have purchased a printer online, only to call us to fix it down the road. Typically speaking, the costs involved in fixing a broken unit wipes out any savings in the original purchase price.

You know, I can see already that this is a much bigger discussion than one blog post should be so for now, let me just sum things up by saying… There are some really great companies out there that do a great job refurbishing and selling printers online. You’ve just got to realize that there are some shady ones out there as well. When it comes to purchasing refurbished printers from online retailers, be sure that you know the seller and have read AND understood the ‘fine print’. Of course, we recommend that you buy from local small businesses whenever possible but since that is not always possible or economical, just be aware that purchasing printers online carries specific risk / reward possibilities.

We’ll pick this discussion up at a later date!

Jun 122012

Generally speaking, I’d guess if you asked employees at corporations which department is their least favorite to interact with, the HR Department and IT Department are probably pretty closely tied for 1st place. That’s not to say there are not exceptions to the rule but in all the businesses that I’ve worked for, that seems to have been the case.

Most people assume that the personnel in their Information Technology Department are gurus at all things related to computers, including printers. And quite frankly, some are. I’ve come across IT people that I would love to have working at American Printer Service, Inc. but on the whole, IT people usually concentrate their knowledge on resolving computer-related issues. Although many IT people may think they can repair a printer (How hard can it be?) when it breaks, it is best to have a professional Printer Repair Technician, who has been trained specifically in that area, to diagnose and resolve issues.

Printers and computers are two completely different pieces of equipment and both require a different skill set and knowledge base to resolve issues. IT people typically realize this fact, and generally speaking, that is one of the reasons why they do not enjoy it when an End User, who probably knows less about the printer than they do, calls them with an issue. Generally, as far as the IT Department is concerned, fixing printers is like asking an automobile expert to work on a tricycle… Which is not to say that I’m equating printers with tricycles, but I think you get the point. So, the next time you have an issue with your printer, you can take the chance that you’ll happen on a well informed IT person who enjoys working on printers and actually has the knowledge to do so, or you can call use at American Printer Service, Inc. and rest assured that we have professional, factory trained Technicians who can resolve your issues efficiently.

Jun 112012

As a printer repair company, we are frequently asked about which printers we recommend, and one of the questions customers ask is:

Should I buy a laser printer or an inkjet printer?

The real fact of the matter is that whether a laser printer or an inkjet printer is right for you is largely dependent on your printing needs. Things such as speed, volume, quality, consumable cost, and output quality are all factors that you should consider before purchasing your next printer. Another item (perhaps the most important) that most people do not think of when purchasing a printer is whether or not the unit can be serviced if it happens to break or have a paper jam that you cannot clear.

It is no secret that inkjet printers are generally considered to be ‘disposable’ items by the manufacturers. Even more expensive models are typically not supported with parts, and outside the warranty period end users are typically left with no recourse than to replace the printer entirely. While inkjet printers can last for years, you may happen to be THAT person who encounters a fatal breakdown a day after the warranty period expires.

I am always a little amused that this fact is not really factored in when you read glowing reviews of inkjet printers in computer magazines. While the majority of persons will probably never encounter a problem with their inkjet printer that requires replacing it completely, for those who do, the options outside of the warranty period can leave them completely frustrated. At American Printer Service, Inc. we have called manufacturers on several occasions on behalf of customers and invariably when it comes to inkjet printers, the Technical Support’s resolution is a flat, ‘Replace the printer’.

Generally, we recommend that businesses purchase laser printers for their printing needs. We’ll go more in depth about the reasons why in future posts so stay tuned!