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Just like any other equipment, like your car or even home appliances—your multi-function printer (MFP) will tell you when it needs a copier repair service.
Is it flashing a warning that says it’s in need of repair?
Are you unsure what that means or who you should call to have it serviced?
Or maybe your copier hasn’t been performing quite the way you would expect.
So what exactly should you do?
You just need to listen to what it’s telling you or just know what to look for. Where do you find the best copier or printer service?
If it has moving parts, they need to be cleaned, checked, serviced, and maintained on a periodic basis so that they are in good working order.
1. The “Call for Service” Indicator
Check your machine, it may have a warning sign on its LCD display or screen. It may have a simple warning message like, “Call for service”. If it does, then you need to do just that. Do you have a number to call your copier service company? Check with your copier repair service and maintenance provider. They may have put a label on the front of your copier or printer for easy reference. Be aware, there may even be important information you need to provide them, like the ID number or Model number when you contact their service dispatch so they can provide you faster service.
Your technical service organization should have a remote diagnostic service that allows them them the ability to see what’s going on with your machine, troubleshoot it and possibly fix it. This is a great tool so you don’t have to wait for a person to come out and repair your copier or printer. They may also have a service for the machine to alert them when it has a problem so they can fix it without you even being aware there was an issue or schedule a service technician for onsite repair. This is another great service for business users, so don’t be alarmed if a service technician contacts you to schedule a visit or they just show up to provide you service.
2. Is it Time for Preventive Maintenance?
Most copiers and multi-function printers have strict manufacturer preventive maintenance guidelines and recommendations for your device. These should be performed by an authorized dealer’s technician. Their technicians should be updated by the manufacturer on a regular basis on all software and hardware updates so that your copier is maintained and always up to date on its service. See also our post on Caring For Your Office Printers.
3. Your prints or copies can tell you a story…
Sometimes it’s as easy as looking at the output of your printers and copiers to see potential problems before they arise. By being on the lookout for any of the following issues regarding the quality of your prints or scans, you can identify issues with your copier.
· I have streaks and lines on my copies and prints.
So, you’ve noticed that your copier or multi-function printer is producing pages that have long black lines or streaks intermittently or on every page. This is not normal and you should never have to put up with this type of output. This can be an indication of a much bigger problem and you should contact an authorized service technician to look at your device.· Are my copies or prints blank or all black?
When your copies are blank or they are all black, is another indication that you need service on your copier. This could be something as simple as multiple pieces of paper are being grabbed and sent through the copier, or a driver issue printing separator pages. Either way, you’re going to need service. If the pages are coming out all black, call for service right away. This could be a complete waste of toner, especially if someone sends a large project to the printer for later pick up.· Voided or Missing Areas on Prints
Are your pages blank or have blank areas when they exit your copier? Is it the same area or different areas with each print? No matter what, it’s a service issue and needs attention. Call for service.
4. Machine needs toner all the time
If your copier or printer is eating toner like it’s going out of style you probably need someone to look at this. Your contracted service organization should be on top of this, but you need to make sure you are watching out for this too. This could lead to other problems or a complete mess because if that toner is not being outputted on your prints or copies, it must be collecting somewhere. So make sure you contact an authorized dealer to check out your machine.
5. Long wait times warming up
A copier or printer that is operating normally usually takes some time to warm up each time you turn it on. A minute or two. If your machine is taking 5 minutes or more to warm up, it’s time to put in a service call. Additionally, a device will run or cycle throughout the day. This is usually due to it needing to keep the drum heated up so it’s ready for its next use. This is normal for most copiers except for the Kyocera brand of copiers. They use a ceramic drum in their copiers and printers and also have faster warm-up times.
6. Unable to scan
One very important part and feature of any copier or multi-function printer is the scanner. The scanner is used not only for scanning paper documents and converting them into electronic files, but they use this same capability to initiate the copy process. Today’s copiers provide very fast scanning mechanisms. These all have a number of moving parts, not only in feeding paper to the scanner, but the scanner itself is constantly moving to image the original. Some of the easy ways that you can determine you could be having issues with your scanner are:
- Paper is jamming or misfeeding in the document tray.
- The scanner is not moving when making a copy.
- The scanner does not light up when scanning or copying.
- The final output is not an exact duplicate of the original (copy or electronic file)
- Your copies or electronic files are blank, have poor color or contrast.
- You don’t receive a copy or electronic file.
7. Features have stopped working
One thing we have not touched on is software or firmware. This has to do with programming code of your copier or multi-function printer—and it’s equally important to all of the other parts. There is software that controls all of the functions of your copier, firmware (software that is usually provided as updates) and third-party or manufacturer software that provides added features important to the use of your copier. All of this software is constantly working in unison or integrated together. So, if all of a sudden your copier or printer’s features are working differently or not at all this could be due to a recent change in one of the other software packages. If you see any of your copier features stop working, there may have been a recent firmware update. You might also want to test all of your copier's current features right after a firmware or other software update. Doing this immediately after can save your organization time and resources than trying to troubleshoot or solving the issue after the fact.
Every organization dreads copier service or repair. They expect copiers and muti-function printers to just work, and when they break down it can cripple the flow of your business (What Happens When the Big Printer Breaks?). By knowing what to look for and listening to the feedback your office technology devices are presenting you, this can result in overcoming bigger issues and minimize future downtime. Don’t forget when going through the process of purchasing your next copier, don’t be afraid to ask questions about the provider’s ability to provide exceptional technical service like:
- The number of devices they service in your business area. Their customer “footprint”.
- The number of technical service staff.
- The number of service calls last year.
- The average response time per customer service call.
- The percentage of “one call” (first time) resolutions.
- The average amount of part inventory each of the technicians has available on their service vehicle.
- The average amount of product inventory they warehouse.
- Net Promoter Score (NPS) if they have one.
Finally, ask your service company what other technology or benefits they provide to provide better service to their customers. Or what singles them out as a company that you would either purchase future office technology from or enter into a service agreement to maintain your copiers or multi-function printers.
At AIS, we have the numbers and answers to all of these questions and more. Just contact us by clicking on the banner below and we will be happy to show you how we strive to be the best copier service repair company in the industry.
Visit our Office Copy Machine Ultimate Resource Page for additional info on service & repair, and just about anything else copy machine related.