How to Clean Epson Printer Head on Windows and Mac Automatically and Manually?

How to Clean Epson Printer Head on Windows and Mac Automatically and Manually?

Cleaning the print head of your Epson printer can be required when the quality of printouts has decreased, faded, or is presenting unwanted streaks/spots. Such printing issues can be observed when the cartridge is not having enough ink. Also, in an instance in which a surplus amount of ink has gathered around the print head, it can get affected. Eventually, the printouts produced may not be likely. To know how to clean an Epson printer head, you can either choose the manual option or opt for the cleaning utility. Those who are using the Epson printer along with Windows and Mac computers can also use these approaches. Additionally, if you are using Epson L210 Printer, then you can clean it using the Control Panel of your system.

To receive a short summary of this post, you can consider reading the following:

Reasons behind Blocked Print Heads in Epson Printers

Blocked print heads on Epson printer models can be due to one of the following reasons:

  • When your device displays a low ink warning and the cartridge is not changed or refilled, the printouts will be faded. This can also result in blockages in the print head.
  • During the priming process, if certain issues occur, then the printer head may be affected.
  • Surplus ink in your device can harm the printhead, this can also result in jammed nozzles.
  • You may not be using your printer on a regular basis. Consequently, its ink may have dried out, thus, affecting the print head.

How to Clean Epson Printer Head via Head Cleaning Utility?

The Head Cleaning Utility can be used for cleaning the print head in Epson printers. This utility can be found by accessing the printer’s software on your system. It can work on Windows as well as Mac. However, the methods for cleaning the printhead via them will be slightly different.

As you read further, you will find that the methods explaining how to clean the head printer on Epson using the utility have been separately mentioned for Windows and Mac.

Method 1: Running Head Cleaning Utility on Windows

On Windows, you can run the Head Cleaning Utility by opening the software for your printer. Prior to this, you will be required to start your device and ensure that the Ink out light is not on. In the software, you will find the option of Utility. You can click on the button that mentions Head Cleaning. To continue, you will have to read the instructions that are on the display. Soon after this, you will be able to print a nozzle check pattern. The quality of the pattern will reveal how successful this method has been.

To learn the directions explaining how to clean the print head on Epson printers, you can scroll below:

  • Check that your Epson printer is on.
  • See to it that the “Ink out” light is not on.

Note: In case the “Ink out” light flashes, the print head cannot be cleaned. The ink cartridge may have to be replaced.

  • Open your printer’s software.
  • Go to “Utility”.
  • Press the button stating “Head Cleaning”.
  • Use the instructions displayed to continue.

Note: The “Ink” and “Power” lights can flash when the cleaning cycle is running. You will be advised to not turn off your device.

  • Via the dialog box for “Head Cleaning”, select “Print Nozzle Check Pattern” when the “Power” light is not flashing.
  • Go through the nozzle check pattern. If it is not clear and the print quality is not satisfying, then run the cleaning cycle until satisfactory results are obtained.

Note: After repeatedly running the cleaning cycle, if the quality of the print isn’t satisfying, then your Epson printer’s ink cartridges may either be damaged or old. You can replace them. You can also connect with the device’s manufacturer to get help.

Method 2: Using Head Cleaning Utility on Mac

Macintosh users can use the Head Cleaning Utility for removing the blockages from their Epson printers. Initially, you have to check that the Ink out light isn’t on when your printer is working. After checking this, you can open the dialog box of Page Setup/Print. You can opt for Utility and choose the button for Head Cleaning. After selecting this option, you can go through the visible directions and start applying them. When the print head of your device has been cleaned, you can print a nozzle check pattern for ensuring the print quality. This should help you in knowing how to clean the Epson printer’s ink heads.

  • Begin with starting your printer.
  • Verify that the “Ink out” light isn’t on.
  • Go to the dialog box of “Page Setup” or “Print”.
  • Select the icon of “Utility”.
  • Now, press the button for “Head Cleaning”.
  • You will be provided with certain instructions on your screen. Follow them.

Note: While the cleaning cycle runs, the “Ink” and “Power” lights may flash. Turning off your Epson printing machine will not be suggested.

  • Wait for the “Power” light to stop blinking.
  • In the dialog box of “Head Cleaning”, press “Confirmation”. Doing so will initiate the printing of a nozzle check pattern. Also, the cleaning cycle will be reset.
  • Check the printed pattern. If its print quality does not seem satisfactory, then you can start the cleaning cycle again. You can repeat it as many times as required.

Note: It may be possible that despite running the cleaning cycle, the print quality may not have improved. You can suspect certain issues with your printer’s ink cartridges. You can either opt for replacing them or connect with the manufacturer of your printer.

How to Clean Blocked Print Heads on Epson Printer via the Control Panel Buttons?

The buttons of your Epson printer’s Control Panel can also be used for Epson head cleaning. Before you start using these buttons, you need to be sure that the Ink out light is not on and that the Power light is up. After verifying this, you can tap the Ink button for as long as 3 seconds. Your printer will start cleaning the print head. As the process reaches completion, you can run a nozzle check pattern. Going through this pattern will help in identifying how clean the print head is now.

  • Checking that the “Ink out” light is not on is the first step.
  • Ensure that the “Power” light is not off. 
  • Keep the “Ink” button pressed for at least 3 seconds.

Note: If you notice that the “Ink out” light is either on or flashing, Epson head cleaning will not be needed. In case this part is cleaned at this time, the process for replacing the ink cartridge will begin. You can tap the “Ink” button if you do not wish to replace it.

  • Let your Epson device clean the print head. 

Note: The “Ink” and “Power” lights can flash now. Avoid powering off your device to prevent any damages.

  • When you notice that the “Power” light isn’t flashing, the nozzle check pattern can be printed. 
  • After printing the nozzle check pattern, check its quality. In case the quality is just as expected, you don’t have to repeat the cleaning cycle. However, if the quality seems poor or bad, the cycle can be repeated for as long as the expected results are acquired.

Note: In case this procedure doesn’t help in cleaning the print head of your device, check the ink cartridges. They may need replacement.

How to Clean the Epson Print Head Manually?

The print head of your Epson printer can also be manually cleaned. This can be done by pouring distilled water over the device’s sponges. You can also learn how to manually clean print heads on an Epson printer by adding distilled water into the ink port. In case this doesn’t seem feasible, then you can get a paper towel and use it for securing your device’s rubber roller. By wetting this towel, you can accumulate the dried ink on it. Soon after, the print head will become clean and your device will start producing clear prints.

Method 1: Clean Print Head Using Sponge and Distilled Water

In the initial method, we will show you how to access the sponges in the print head region via the printhead assembly. After accessing them, you can cover them with distilled water. You can keep the sponges beneath the assembly for some time. After 15 minutes or so, you can print a few pages inclusive of text and images. In case the prints received are of good or satisfying quality, the print head would have been properly cleaned.

For finding out more information about this method, you can go through these 9 steps:

  • Keep your printer off.
  • Access the top of the device.
  • Locate the “Printhead Assembly”.
  • You will find a tiny plastic lever towards the left. Pull the lever forward. Then move it downwards.
  • The printhead will get released. After this, the assembly has to be pushed towards the right. You will hear a clicking sound when it has been completely released.
  • In case no lever is available near the printhead assembly, a page can be printed. Ensure that the top is kept upwards. Then plug out your device. Ensure that the assembly is placed in the center and isn’t locked.
  • You will find the sponges now. These are responsible for storing the ink. Get a plastic syringe or an eyedropper for saturating the sponges with the help of distilled water.
  • The assembly has to be moved back to the sponges.
  • After the water has been kept on it for 15 minutes, try printing several pages.

Note: As a suggestion, you can let the sponges be soaked overnight. 

  • Ensure that the printouts are good in quality.

The users of Epson can clean the print head manually by using this method in less time. Also, this method has proved to be successful in several instances. If due to some reason further cleaning is required, then you consider trying out the next method.

Method 2: Clean Print Head by Using Distilled Water in the Ink Port

The print head of your Epson printer may be having an ink port. You can add some drops of distilled water into the port. This should help in doing away with the dried ink in the printhead region. 

To find the ink port in your device, you can find the printhead carriage. Following this, the ink cartridges can be removed. Now, you will view certain indents represented by the cone-like shape. You can fill the port with distilled water and then opt for replacing your Epson printer’s cartridges. The final step will be to take out certain prints. By inspecting the quality of these prints, you can know whether or not the print head is clean or still clogged.

If you require more guidance to find out how to clean the clogged Epson printer heads, then you can view the directions displayed here:

  • Access the printhead carriage of your Epson printer.
  • Take out the ink cartridges.
  • In the cartridges, you will find indents in cone-like shapes. These are responsible for getting the ink to the printhead from the ink cartridges. Take a plastic syringe/eyedropper and fill it with distilled water. In the ink port, a few drops have to be poured. 

Note: Ensure that the distilled water isn’t poured in every port that you can see. 

  • Now, the ink cartridges have to be replaced. 
  • Your printer will require some time for setting the replaced cartridges. You can wait till then.
  • If you notice the water coming out of the printhead, then clean it using a paper towel.
  • Now, try printing several pages and ensure that the printouts are satisfactory in terms of quality.

Method 3: Using Paper Towels to Clean the Print Head

There is another method that can educate you about how to clean an Epson printhead manually using paper towels and distilled water. To practice this method, you can turn off your printer in case it is on. You can fold a paper towel sheet until it becomes 1.5 inches thick. You can access the rubber roller of your Epson printer and place the folded towel over it. The center of this towel has to be made wet with some drops of distilled water. Now when you place the assembly over it, the dried ink will start dissolving. You can repeat this method with fresh paper towels this time. Until all the dried ink gets removed, you can keep practicing this method.

  • Keep your device off.
  • Take a paper towel sheet. Tear it half. Then fold it. When it is 1.5 inches wide, access the printer’s top. Use it for securing the rubber roller. You can use tape along with the paper towel. 
  • Get distilled water and pour a few drops of it in the towel’s center.
  • Place the printhead assembly on the towel by moving it.
  • Allow the assembly to sit over the towel for 15 minutes.
  • Slowly, the printhead’s dried ink will get dissolved.
  • Now, use fresh paper towels. Make them damp and repeat all the steps given above.
  • Next, start your device and ensure that the assembly is in its original position.
  • Try printing a few pages and check that the results are of good quality.

How to Clean Epson L210 Printer Head?

For running the Epson L210 head cleaning process, you can head to the Start Menu and access the Control Panel via it. Here, you will find Hardware and Sound. Select it and then move to Devices and Printers. You can pick your device and open the Printing Preferences by right-tapping on it. Gradually, you can go to Maintenance and select the option of Head Cleaning. 

To understand all the steps associated with this method, you can read these 11 steps:

  • On your desktop’s home screen, click on “Start”. 
Control Panel - epson l210 head cleaning
  • Select “Control Panel”.
  • In the pop-up menu, choose “Hardware and Sound”.
  • Now, click on “Devices and Printers”.
device & printers - epson l210 deep cleaning
  • From the list of printers, select “Epson L210 Printer”. Right-click on it and pick “Printing Preferences”.
right click and select Printing - epson l210 head cleaning
  • Now, from the pop-up menu, select “Maintenance”.
Select Maintenance Option - l210 printer head
  • Click on the “Head Cleaning” option. This may take a few minutes.
head cleaning option
  • After the head-cleaning process is complete, select “Print Nozzle Check Pattern” from the pop-up menu. 
  • When you are asked to print a sample paper, click on “Ok”.
  • From the pop-up menu, select “Print”.
  • You will receive a response indicating that the cleaning has been successful. In case the response states that cleaning is required, clean the print head one more time. Based on the response, choose “Finish” or “Clean”.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Let us now go through the queries that most of the readers usually ask. In case you have any questions for us, we may have already covered them in this section.

1. What can I use to clean the Epson printer head?

If you’re manually cleaning your Epson printer’s print head, then you can use distilled water. You can also use a solution specifically for cleaning this part of your printing machine.

2. How to Clean Epson L210 Printer Head Manually?

For the manual cleaning of Epson L210’s printer head, you can use distilled water via an eyedropper. You can clean the sponges of the printer by pouring a few drops of it on them. This procedure can take up to 15 minutes.

3. How to remove Epson L220 printer head?

You can remove the print head of your Epson L220 Printer by accessing its cover. Here, you’ll find the cartridges. You can remove them and locate the printer head. After it has been located, you can safely remove it. 

4. How to remove the printer head on Epson L120?

Beneath the cover of your Epson L120 Printer, you can locate the cartridges as well as the print head. You can remove the cartridges and then take out the print head.

5. Is it possible to clean the printhead of my Epson printer?

Epson printers come with an option of cleaning the printhead. You can use the buttons of the Control Panel for selecting the option to clean this part. Followed by this, you can print the nozzle check pattern to confirm that the printhead has been properly cleaned.

As a Final Observation

The print head is an essential part of your Epson printer for producing printouts. When this part is affected due to any reason, the quality of the printouts is likely to get affected. Factors like the accumulation of ink around the print head, a lack of sufficient ink levels, or dried ink can be responsible for affecting this part. Running the Head Cleaning Utility is the most used approach for restoring its condition. Additionally, you can manually clean the Epson print head using distilled water, as you learnt here. On most of the printer models of Epson, these methods can work well.

We hope that you found this blog helpful. To discover more such blogs, you can consider reading how to fix the issue of Epson printer offline. We will also suggest you to see how you can resolve the Epson printer printing blank pages error. 

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Randy L
4 years ago

I get the 031008 code. I shut it off and pulled to the left and reset cartridges and turned back on. Same 031008. I can,t get to menu to select clean ink heads. Just keeps coming back to the same screen. What do I do now?