/ Technology

Has a printer update rendered your cartridges redundant?

Printer software update

You fire up your PC, turn on your printer and send a file to print and then… ‘cartridge not recognised’. The printer won’t print. So what’s changed since yesterday? You may be the latest victim of a printer update.

Third-party ink cartridges are generally a fraction of the price of printer-branded inks, but we’ve heard reports of printer updates rendering these cartridges unusable.

We asked Which? members to share their printing problems and a number of them sounded like they related to software updates. However, with some printers set to automatically update, it can be hard to pin a specific problem to a specific update. Ian C told us:

‘I bought compatible inks. After a few weeks they suddenly stopped working, with a message saying they were incompatible. Replaced them with new ones but had the same problem.’

Tony G had a similar experience:

‘Lo and behold, my printer has started rejecting – that is, not printing when I use third-party cartridges – but when I then replace them with printer-branded ones it seems to work fine.’

We tried updating the firmware on three second-hand printers in our lab and the printers worked just as well with third-party ink before updating as they did afterwards. So updates won’t always stop your cartridges from being recognised.

HP printers rejecting ink cartridges

However, there have been some very recent victims. Just last week we heard a number of reports from members whose HP printers have stopped working with the third-party inks.

Mr White’s printer ink cartridges have been affected by the latest update:

‘I own an HP 3055A printer which uses the popular 301 cartridge, today I changed the cartridges and find that the printer will no longer print as it detects that a non-HP cartridge has been installed. A printer update was reported as being available from HP when I turned the printer on – on the 7 March – and I updated prior to installing the new cartridges. After installing the new cartridge the information screen on the printer showed the message “incompatible cartridge detected”.’

Rob Stone has also suffered at the hands of a recent update to his HP Officejet 6600 and said:

‘I’ve been using third-party inks with no issues for several months. It was when I accidentally ran an HP update from my PC that the problem occurred. The error message said “There is a problem with the printer ink or system. Turn printer off, then on. If problem persists, contact HP”. It prevents me from moving to any other menu on the printer.’

Your right to use third-party printer inks

As iPhone 6 users suffering at the hands of the ‘Error 53’ message know only too well, update issues aren’t only a problem for printers. But, fortunately for affected phone users, Apple released a fix.

It may not be quite so simple to roll back a printer update. We’ve previously spoken to printer manufacturers about software updates, with Brother, Canon and Epson telling us that reverting to a previous firmware version wasn’t usually possible at all. HP stood out from the crowd by saying that you could roll ball its updates, but it’s not an obvious or simple process.

In light of this latest glut of update issues, we’ve approached HP to find out what’s causing the problem and whether it’ll be possible for those affected to get their printers working with their inks again.

You absolutely should be able to choose to use third-party ink in your printer. The big consumer printer brands have all signed up to a voluntary agreement which includes a provision around not preventing third-party ink from being used in their printers.

If you’ve suffered a ‘printerruption’ as result of a printer software update – or which you suspect is as a result of a recent update – we want to hear about it.

Comments
Guest
James Dinius says:
24 June 2018

Yep. Firmware update on my EPSON XP-330, cartridges stopped working immediately after. Doesn’t take a genius to do the math. Isn’t this illegal???

Guest

Epson have got good corporate attorney,s – good connections to Congress -good speech writers James you should read their T & C ,s they sound so reasonable while at the same time stopping you from using third party cartridges , William Shakespeare couldn’t have written a better story although it turns out like a Stephen King novel. In their “eyes ” they are not doing anything illegal and even with this countries laws in place they mean nothing when up against a giant US conglomerate . With Donald about to take over trade in this country with his American First policy and TM about to cave in to his demands the future for the British public looks bleak .

Guest

Your last sentence, Duncan: You keep telling us that, but what do you propose we do about it?

What American goods do we have to buy for which there is not a European or rest-of-the-world alternative?

America’s big problem is that their industries have lost the home market. Trying to hurt your allies seems a desperate response.

The EU’s decision to target Harley Davidson and other specific brands or products in its retaliation against the latest import tariff increases is not to demonstrate that they will have massive individual impact but to drive home the point to the industrial heartlands of America [where such products are made] that have supported the President’s protectionist policies that it could be a self-defeating exercise. Time will tell where all this ends. My own view is that it will go the way of PanAm and TWA from whose collapse and loss of global dominance America has never really recovered or adjusted.

Guest

John-I would like a resolute NO ! from TM or her Cabinet to allowing US conglomerates to destroy British internal democracy by suing local regional/district councils policies because BRITISH voters would rather have British firms etc running their local affair than a foreign country like America TELLING the voters -do that/vote for that and we will sue you . Would Americans allow that to happen in the USA ? In other words our country RUN from Wall Street / the White House . Well do I say UK=satrap of the USA hegemony / Empire = Costa Rica etc . I have already posted here and supplied links to a vote on keeping trade deals like this SECRET and not allowing Parliament to vote on it until its a fait accompli. I have already posted that Richard Branston has collected £2 Million of YOUR money because he didn’t get a NHS contract taken from NHS resources , of course a £Billionaire always needs another yacht in the Bahamas .

Guest

You haven’t answered my questions, Duncan, and I suspect you have not even asked the Prime Minister to give you the assurance you are seeking. This is getting too far off-topic now and, as you say, you have said all this before, so best leave it until we know what’s really happening.

Guest

Thats the problem John its going to be forced through and then its a case of — live with it . Not good enough for me nor the British public. Donald has already announced he will hit the Germany car industry hard if he is not obeyed . The US is living on the biggest debt balloon in the world , worthless bonds -money printing and the dollar relies on gold backing it and many countries repatriating their gold and now the dollar is being undermined by other countries using local currency . Just watch gold prices John.

Guest

What has all that to do with Printer software updates?

Guest

Control/power Ian , its not in our hands , its in the hands of the “second level American army ” — the commercial wing , backed up by US legislation that overrides foreign legislation . Read your history , every Empire introduced its laws into those it ruled – even before Rome , its taxation , its trade rules and the satraps obeyed . Nothing has changed , just another Empire giving out orders and the ruled countries fearing to disobey this time from sanctions . Ink is just a symptom of a growing control from abroad .

Guest

Ah, well – if the topic is really about the “second level American army ” — the commercial wing , backed up by US legislation that overrides foreign legislation, then it opens the floodgates very wide indeed.

As the moderating team seem quite content to allow this expansion of the topic (which I find odd, since they came down so heavily on a minor digression in a rather ephemeral topic the other day, let’s get the facts straight.

If I understand you correctly, your argument is that US companies, with the complicity of the US Government, are waging a sort of war (use of the word ‘army’ at least implies that) and the the US ’empire’ aims to control every aspect of our lives. Is that a fair assessment?

Guest

Its all about trade Ian thats why its relevant , look why not have complete honesty that American firms are on the road to taking over our trade with their own rules as they are sub-servant to US Law and,if you read up on exporting to foreign countries they sell on an “area of Commerce ” -IE- the EU/ Far East etc which have standardized products to save on production costs and the UK is a minority concern on that worldwide level. Its all right quoting UK law to me Ian but it doesn’t stand up to reality .

Guest

Well, I haven’t actually quoted any law to you as yet, Duncan, but US firms are the result of investment and enterprise. And, as John neatly pointed out, they fall as well as rise.

You’re arguing that the UK is a minority concern and of course we are; compared to China, Japan, Korea and India we’re nowhere near a global player. What we still do, however, and we’re one of the best in the world at it, is produce finely honed minds and intellects. But yes – we’re not even self-sufficient in food, let alone the multitude of manufacturing products used every day.

But you’re focussing on the US,when in reality the burgeoning economies of India, China, Taiwan and Korea are extremely powerful in the world trade area.

We have to accept the fact that our role in world manufacturing isn’t really a role as such; we’re net importers, I believe but we are starting to concentrate on technology and film / TV production where we do rather well.

I don’t believe this is about control at all. It is, however, about money and wealth, and the companies around the globe are proving that rather well. However, I do wonder if companies have a critical mas, beyond which they seem to find difficulty in functioning. Certainly no company is too big to fail, except possibly the banks…

Guest

EU/ Far East etc which have standardized products to save on production costs and the UK is a minority concern“. We share a great many “standardised” products already, with many other countries but particularly with the EU. So we are not a “minority” concern if, by that, you mean a need for UK only dedicated products.

I may have misunderstood your comment, but please tell me what products you have in mind. OK, cars where we drive on the right, but much else in vehicles is common.

We, the UK, in turn also must manufacture “standardised” products that we can sell widely abroad. Industry is something we must build up for the future. That is why we subscribe, for example, to the harmonisation of international standards to ensure we have easier access to these markets.

Guest

China isn’t ordering our economy about Ian as you well know its the USA . I hope your faith in America is justified , much as I enjoy communication with Americans I am down to earth enough to know what they are like deep down and its built in hard nosed me first capitalism . Yes there are altruistic Americans , intellectuals , but I am talking basic instinct here Donald is just being straight out about it rather than low profile.

Guest

Duncan: the US is not “ordering our economy about” as far as I can see. All companies around the globe live only to make money and accrue wealth. The Chinese, Indians, Koreans and Americans are all doing the same. No one’s “ordering our economy about”, unless you can provide evidence.

Guest

Ignoring UK law amounts to supply and control of that economy , this website as we speak is full of posts about the decline of shops due to Amazon / Google/ etc not Chinese imports . Honestly Ian do you think TM will get the better of Donald in the trade negotiations ? I think she will allow his US conglomerates to flourish here it wont be “Open Britain ” but Wild West style WIDE Open Britain as they said about lawless towns in the West. Time will tell . Trade deal “at any price ” not long now till his “golfing trip ” with -do as I say on the side comes into being . I will of course apologise if she really stands up to him -IE- no US conglomerate doing a Virgin R. Branson suing action of taking UK councils to court or UK public bodies .

Guest
G Krot says:
30 July 2018

I think it should be illegal. They have uploaded malicious software, a virus, into your computer which has stopped your printer working in the way it operated when you purchased it. Moreover, they are operating in an anti-competitive way by attempting to stop other manufacturer’s products being used. Google has been fined by the European Court for anticompetitive practices and it is time to bring a case against printer manufacturers which behave in such a vile way.

Guest

G.Krot is your printer an Epson ?

Guest

Negotiations – trade, Brexit, or commercial – cannot be done in public as each side will see where the other is prepared to compromise and work on that basis. Not sensible. We elect politicians to work on our behalf and, like them or not, we are stuck with it. I respect very few of them but it is the way the whole world works.

Nothing to do with third party printer cartridges. That’s what should be discussed; The Lobby is there for other matters please.

The EU should regulate against any attempt to dictate whether 3rd party cartridges are accepted by a printer. The user must take responsibility for any problems they might cause, and pass that back to their supplier for redress. It is quite reasonable for users to take that chance, and equally reasonable for the printer manufacturer to guarantee their printer (or appropriate parts) only when used with approved inks.

Guest
Gary says:
25 June 2018

Exit

17:37:21 System System: Connecting…
17:37:21 System System: Connected to etalk.epson-europe.com
17:37:21 System System: Your reference number for this chat session is 2451142
17:37:21 Customer Gary: Initial Question/Comment: 820 expression premium, out of PBK full ordinary black catridge connected will not print greyscale 2 page doc I MUST PRINT SCAN AND RETURN DOC NOW!!!!! I have 2 820 neither will print, spent hundreds on ink and ……
17:37:26 System System: Thank you for connecting to Epson’s chat service.
17:37:26 System System: Please wait a moment while we connect you to an advisor who will respond to any questions you may have. Whilst waiting to be connected, you can continue to browse the Epson website.
17:37:26 System System: For technical enquiries, please make us aware of your product model e.g. Epson Expression Home XP-215, and your computer’s operating system e.g. Windows 10, Windows 8 or Mac OS X El Capitan (10.11).
17:37:31 System System: New products can be purchased directly from Epson using this chat service. If you are interested in purchasing a new product, your advisor will be able to recommend the right product to meet your requirements, confirm stock, and arrange delivery.
17:37:31 System System: Waiting for a Customer Representative…
17:37:31 undefined System: You are number (4) in queue.
17:37:31 System System: As well as new printers, scanners, and projectors, you can also purchase genuine Epson ink cartridges, paper and special media for Epson inkjet and laser printers.
17:37:53 System System: For easy, convenient shopping available 24 hours a day, Epson Store provides for all your Genuine Epson needs.
17:39:10 undefined System: You are number (3) in queue.
17:41:04 undefined System: You are number (2) in queue.
17:43:16 System System: Richard has joined this session!
17:43:16 System System: Connected with Richard
17:43:28 Agent Richard: Thank you for contacting Epson’s UK Customer Interaction Centre. My name is Richard
For information on Epson’s Service privacy policy go to: http://www.epson.eu/GDPR
17:44:09 Agent Richard: Do you have a previous session number so I can read your history please?
17:47:02 Agent Richard: How did you get on with the French support Gary?
17:47:59 Customer Gary: I nwent and bought new PBK
17:48:34 Customer Gary: It prints a nozzle test.
17:49:04 Agent Richard: Wonderful, you should be able to print from the computer now
17:49:12 Customer Gary: but prints totally blank pages after that
17:49:28 Agent Richard: What colours do you see on the nozzle check?
17:49:34 Customer Gary: same for copies
17:50:14 Customer Gary: b lue, yello red black
17:50:31 Agent Richard: Which black is showing? As you should have 2 blacks?
17:50:49 Customer Gary: next to/after red
17:52:06 Agent Richard: So no black before the colours?
17:52:12 Customer Gary: no
17:52:28 Agent Richard: That means it isn’t printing the normal black Gary
17:52:29 Customer Gary: 21 euro for pbk
17:52:41 Agent Richard: So it will need to do a few head cleans
17:52:41 Agent Richard: You may need to perform up to six head cleans to resolve this issue. As each clean will use a percentage of ink, it’s recommend to complete the head cleans in sets of two, printing a nozzle check in between to check the progress. If all the segments are showing, further cleans won’t be necessary.
17:52:44 Agent Richard: If the nozzle check is still incomplete and isn’t showing signs of improvement after six head cleans, it’s unlikely that further cleans will resolve the issue and therefore the printer would require a service.
17:53:19 Customer Gary: how much is a service
17:53:46 Agent Richard: I am not able to give that information, as i can only give options for the UK Gary
17:54:12 Customer Gary: in the uk then?
17:55:01 Agent Richard: It would come in at £118.80, but that is the UK price, so it can differ outside of the UK
17:56:06 Customer Gary: why wont it use the other black
17:56:21 Customer Gary: print as photo for example
17:57:11 Agent Richard: It looks like it is the heads that are blocked, not the ink being out, it will use the black for all normal black printing, if you try and print a photo with black ink, it should print
17:58:03 Customer Gary: i saw a setting somewhere “print as photo do you recognise that?
17:58:56 Agent Richard: You won’t need to do that, all it should take is a few head cleans Gary, then you can print normally
17:59:01 Agent Richard: That is a PDF option
17:59:24 Customer Gary: i was printing a pdf
17:59:38 Customer Gary: trying to
17:59:56 Customer Gary: ok ill try more hc s
18:00:26 Agent Richard: It would depend on the PDF reader you are using so it would be a case of contacting which ever one you are using
18:00:56 Agent Richard: We are confident this will resolve your issue, are you happy to run through this and reconnect if you require further assistance?
18:01:44 Customer Gary: https://conversation.which.co.uk/technology/printer-software-update-third-party-printer-ink/
18:02:38 Agent Richard: I am update to open that Gary
18:02:53 Agent Richard: I am unable, sorry, typing too fast
18:04:45 Agent Richard: We have had no response from you, do you wish to continue with the chat session?
18:04:46 Customer Gary: Judging by recent comments, Epson seems to be the main problem, Duncan. From their website it is clear that their solution is to get rid of the non-genuine cartridges: https://www.epson.co.uk/viewcon/corporatesite/products/mainunits/faq/2085/#toc1

Katie’s introduction states: “You absolutely should be able to choose to use third-party ink in your printer. The big consumer printer brands have all signed up to a voluntary agreement which includes a provision around not preventing third-party ink from being used in their printers.” A voluntary agreement is obviously not enough and what is needed is legal action against the manufacturers.
18:05:24 Customer Gary: it registers 3rd party inks as empty
18:05:58 Agent Richard: If that is the case, then you will need to forward and comment onto our customer service team Gary, as this is technical support, we have no update that has rendered Third party cartridges unusable
18:06:10 Customer Gary: I protest in the strongest possible terms because after atemting to use them the printer locks up
18:06:23 Customer Gary: i have done 3 hcs already
18:06:50 Customer Gary: now it says ink is not installed
18:07:05 Agent Richard: If you get to 6, you will need to contact the french team again Gary
18:08:52 Customer Gary: They referred me to print service shop 40 km away
18:09:12 Agent Richard: Then that will be the options you will need to do Gary
18:09:29 Agent Richard: I have no assistance i am able to give, as you are outside of the UK
18:10:26 Customer Gary: S R Hitch says:24 March 2018
I had an epson 820 that unfortunately had a different response upon different starts to an after-market ink. sometimes it would print, sometimes it would go through a sequence of steps to allow the ink to be used (and imply that I was a cheap and stupid person), and sometimes it would just stop and not give options to sign off and use non-oem. after several hours of this dance, I must say that the printer went to heaven. or maybe the other way. who knows. just not worth the mental fight with an epson to try to get through the minefield to use after-market ink. so I am using anybody else’s printer. good-bye epson. add bbq sauce while you are roasting.
18:10:42 Customer Gary: whuch.co.uk
18:10:58 Customer Gary: which…
18:12:13 Customer Gary: bye Richard thanks for trying, and bye epson
18:12:26 Agent Richard: Right, if all you are going to do is copy and paste comments that we are not able to check from a non Epson website, then i will have to disconnect the Chat, as you will need to contact the french support for more assistance
18:12:28 Customer Gary: mono printer here i come
18:12:30 Agent Richard: Goodbye.
18:12:35 Agent Richard: Please reconnect to Epson online chat should you require any further assistance.
18:12:35 Agent Richard: At the end of the chat session you will be asked to fill out a short survey. We would appreciate if you have the time to fill this out. Please note that this is a reflection on the agent handling the chat.

Thank you for using Epson’s online chat service. If you require further assistance please reconnect via http://www.epson.co.uk/contactus. Our chat lines are open 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday.
18:12:35 Agent Richard: Goodbye.

Guest

Thank you for that detailed online conversation with Epson Gary -a system I will never use as I refuse to speak to a Bot human or digital . Thanks also for confirming what I have been saying on Which Convo for as long as I have been here –in great detail over the years and showing Which that its patently useless to try to change a big US conglomerate ” INK ” company to change its policy on THIRD PARTY INKS . If that doesn’t sink into Which then all is lost in the world of reality and —-Welcome to La La Land.

Guest

Gary, I glanced through this exchange and gather that after using 3rd party inks in an Epsom printer it would not print every colour? If that is the case, one option would have been to install OEM ink(s) and see if that resolved the problem. You might then have told the 3rd party supplier that their inks were proving unsuitable and see if they would refund.

Whilst you “should be able to use 3rd party inks in your printer” that does not guarantee they will work. It may be a problem at the ink supplier’s end. We should not expect a printer manufacturer to support unknown inks. But we should not have 3rd party inks blocked either, if the user is prepared to risk using them.

I hope I haven’t misread your situation 🙂

Guest

Basically the printer manufacturers have got us by the short and curlies and they don’t give a damn what we think. In other areas if one is disgruntled with a firm one buys elsewhere, but since the three major printer firms are all at it, there is no choice and nowhere to protest at what they are doing, except here. The process of drying up third party inks should be a criminal offence since it is denying the consumer the right to choose which product to buy – not by prohibiting purchase, but by making that purchase useless, without telling anyone. No country seems to have the will to fight this, and the firms gaily plough their own paths, knowing that the public have to print. It is hard to see how we can fight back until someone with enough money and time takes these companies to court and shames them. I suppose the print firms would have a case if they made the ink cartridge part of the machine and patented it so that a third party would be infringing that patent by producing a counterfeit. This happens with watches, perfume and phones, but, of course these don’t have consumer parts in the same way that ink is usable and needs to be replaced. The cheap sale of printers is also underhand, since no one admits that this is to sell ink at inflated prices. It really is time that this was sorted out. I wonder if Which might do something? I thought not!

Guest

As far as I am aware blocking ink is not widespread – the complaints seem to centre around Epson.

Guest

Many of us manage to exploit the manufacturers’ business model of selling cheap printers and very expensive ink. I use compatible cartridges, Derek refills his cartridges and Banjo used to extol the virtues of adapting printer cartridges to use ink from reservoirs, in the same way that professional printers operate. If we don’t accept firmware updates we seem to get away with this. At one time the third party cartridges were poor and now they are often very good, so it might be worth telling friends and family to give the compatible ones a go.

What constitutes ‘counterfeit’ is open to interpretation, Vynor. If you copy a cartridge and attempt to sell it under the original manufacturer’s brand name or confuse the customer with a similar brand name (Epsom rather than Epson) or use copycat packaging then that would be a deliberate act to mislead consumers. Cartridges with separate and built-in printheads and other features are bound to be out of copyright by now.

Deliberately disabling a printer because someone has installed compatible cartridges is clearly anti-competitive and I wish Which? would set its legal team loose on the problem and maybe work with other European consumers’ associations to put a stop to the practice.

Guest
Guest

We have benefited greatly from the development of personal printers. It enables us to do far more than we could ever dream of before. My eldest son was appalled at the price of wedding stationery and produced all but the invitations himself – order of service, chapel seating, table plans, gift cards, menus, table names……it went on. They looked very professional and repaid the cost of his Canon inkjet printer (£49.99) and introductory ink many times over.

We have been able to buy third party cartridges (I don’t now) for years, and I had a Tesco refill outfit (black) for my first printer, so the business model is generally quite optional for the user.

Guest

If you read through all the posts on this and other Convos, the problem has affected all the popular brands.

I bought my first refill kit for an inkjet printer in Montreal in 1994, because original black ink (no colour at the time) was expensive. I remember printing wedding stationery a couple of years earlier, soon after I purchased my first Apple computer with a ‘free’ inkjet printer. Yes inkjet printers were a great advance from dot matrix and daisywheel printers and a great deal cheaper than contemporary laser printers (over £1000 in 1990) but that’s history.

Don’t forget that an earlier game of manufacturers was to ‘chip’ cartridges to prevent them working when refilled or alternatives being used. I think we need to teach business how to run a business fairly.

Guest

Currently I have not seen any complaints centering around Canon printers, the ones I have used. Perhaps you, or Which?, could review the evidence that shows which printer manufacturers are deliberately preventing 3rd party cartridges from being used. Given the number of 3rd party manufacturers/suppliers who presumably are successful in servicing this market, I await the results with anticipation.

There are a number of organisations that could do with reminding how to operate fairly, as alleged recently in the press.

Guest

The link is 2 years old, duncan (or so it seems).

Guest

Malcolm – You have not had problems with your Canon printers and I have not had problems with my HP printers. Canon gets a mention in the introduction to this Convo and some of their printers can waste a lot of ink: https://conversation.which.co.uk/technology/printer-ink-waste-cost-printing-test/ Some months ago I saw an example of how much ink a small Canon printer used when switching it on and off repeatedly, trying to get it to print a page without jamming. There is no need for any printer to use ink cleaning the heads if that has been done recently and I can only assume that this is a deliberate way of boosting the sale of overpriced ink.

Guest

Well, my perception from Which? reports is that there is a great deal of inconsistency in the way all printer brands use ink, both in cleaning and in the actual printing. I am not going to go through all past reports though to confirm this perception (or not). So I don’t see evidence that they are deliberately boosting ink sales, particularly given that many people will buy 3rd party inks anyway. However, if properly-researched evidence is produced to show a cynical and deliberate wastage of ink I’ll change my mind.

My cheap Canon printers have never seemed greedy in using ink; I’m quite happy with their performance. I am always impressed at the scope and quality of work they can produce.

Guest

That’s my understanding too, Malcolm. Having read Which? reports and other reviews the amount of ink used seems to depend on the model of printer and I am not aware of any brand that is consistently better in this respect.

It is a common recommendation that it is necessary to leave inkjet printers switched on to minimise ink consumption. That seems to be caused by printers going through a cleaning cycle each time they are switched on. We are surrounded by electronic devices that store information. For example, a computer remembers the last document used, a TV remember the volume and other settings, and so on. Why don’t printers remember the last time they did a cleaning cycle? Am I wrong to be cynical or have I overlooked something?

I used to have a Lexmark colour printer in my office at work. Each colour toner cost £100 and the black one was £140. The printer stopped working after any toner cartridge had completed the preset number of pages and not when they were empty. I decided it was more economical to buy another printer that did not have this feature. Am I wrong to be cynical or have I overlooked something?

Guest

Depending on the make and chip in the cartridge Wavechange some stop working when there is up to a third of ink still in the containers, one excuse was “running them to empty could cause irrevocable damage to the print heads ” as there are many cleaning cycles programmed in .They do remember when they were cleaned but that is not relevant to the programmed policy of using up your ink quickly –all data gets “telephoned home ” to the relevant maker.

Guest

I ignore the “may be empty” warning and override it as my printer allows. Wait until the ink actually runs out before replacing the cartridge, many copies later. No damage has resulted.

Guest

If print heads are left dry then they can be damaged, so the printer should be allowed to park the cartridges (don’t switch off the power at the socket when it is running) and not be left with a missing cartridge unless the cartridge has integral print head(s). Apart from that, it will take a lot to convince me that printers are not wasting ink. HP and probably other brands monitor ink use and can send new cartridges when ink levels are getting low. I won’t be taking up that option.

There are ways of disabling the warning on Canon printers, Malcolm I’ve always assumed that it is there to inform me that I will need to replace the cartridge soon. That happened this morning so I kept an eye on the printer and stopped it as soon as the black actually ran out.

Guest

Duncan – The compatible cartridges for my older HP printer have a transparent plastic reservoir, part of which contains a piece of sponge. There is never any visible liquid in the cartridges when they are empty. I’m not doubting what you say because it is well documented that unused ink can remain in ’empty’ cartridges. Unfortunately the cartridges for my newer HP printer are black, so I cannot see what is going on.

Guest

More options for cheaper printing if you do a lot. https://www.which.co.uk/news/2018/07/printers-reviewed-canon-and-epson-refillable-ink-models-can-they-save-you-money/
Apart from cheaper 3rd party inks, options are a cheap (can be very – £25 Canon for example) plus OEM inks that would be good for those doing relatively little printing, or a more expensive printer with very cheap OEM ink for those with a heavy demand.

I wonder if you can find a way to inject ink from these bottles into an OEM cartridge…………? Have Which? Computing looked at this – or anyone else.

Guest

I am afraid the “INK” companies- aka- printer manufacturers are well ahead of your thinking malcolm, their chips in the cartridges do a chemical analysis of the ink in them and yes- telephone home the findings . its been tried in the USA years ago , customers got away with it for a while then as ink sales went down -investigations – fess up and $xxxx come your way and-new chips . I actually didn’t know up till then that this sort of micro chemical analysis could take place in an ink chip . Any thoughts Wavechange as a Professor in that line of work? — The excuse for blocking it ? -well the usual Epson company policy statement which I have posted here many times – it could block the print heads/ it could damage the printer/etc etc.

Guest

Malcolm – Many people used to refill ink cartridges. I bought my first kit in Montreal in 1994 when I was wandering round the shops, but similar kits (a bottle of ink plus a hypodermic syringe and needle) were advertised in popular computer magazines at the time. All was well until disreputable manufacturers blocked this by the anti-competitive practice of chipping their cartridges – as Duncan has pointed out. Thanks to the chips, refilled cartridges appeared to be empty, if my memory serves me right. I recall printer manufacturers claiming that guarantees would be invalid if third party ink was used, even if the fault had nothing whatever to do with the cartridge or print heads.

Duncan – I don’t think a cartridge chip could do any chemical analysis of printer ink other than measuring conductivity perhaps, but it would be easy to carry out this sort of analysis in a lab, either testing what is in a cartridge or the waste ink tray that collects ink used to ‘clean’ print heads.

Printers fed from separate ink bottles rather than cartridges are in widespread use – e.g. roll printers used to produce banners and vinyl wrap for vans, and kits are available to adapt some consumer printers to continuous inking systems. I welcome more expensive printers with cheaper ink and hope that they will become popular for those who make regular use of their printers. I expect that many users would still choose cheaper third party inks.

Guest

In terms of chipped cartridges and ink assessment, as you say, electrical conductivity could be measured – but I think others also could be done fairly cheaply. With LEDs and photodiodes embedded various reflection/absorption coefficients could be monitored at different wavelengths. And with strategically spaced dots and volume dispensing within, so could viscosity and surface tension (at least to a first order). Whether any of that would be worthwhile would be another matter. Given the relatively low volumes involved and the precision of ink dispensing, I’d have thought dead reckoning on ink levels would generally be sufficient.

Guest

With the price of printer ink some thought it worthwhile Roger . I read up on the hi-tech. chemical analysis performed by those companies to prove customers were not using propriety inks and the talk was about making a chip for the containers that analysed at least some of the properties mentioned by Wavechange and yourself.

Guest

I don’t doubt that there is potential to measure and record a variety of characteristics of ink but have not seen anything to suggest that this is done. What is clear is that printers can transmit information to the manufacturer because users who have signed up for ‘HP Instant Ink’ will receive new cartridges automatically when those in use are becoming depleted. I assume that other manufacturers offer similar services. I read on the HP website that only the ink level and pages printed are transmitted though it seems possible that hackers could interrogate printers remotely.

I used to use printer ink as an example of a time dependent non-Newtonian fluid in my lectures.

Guest

Any new printer [other than the most elementary ones] will have its own e-mail address which is used, via the owner’s router, to carry data both ways between the manufacturer and the printer. Whether that could include copies of the documents printed I don’t know but it’s an exciting possibility. Could there be somebody in a darkened room at HP HQ reading my Sainsbury’s shopping list? or Norwich City Council’s senior management structure which I have just printed off?

Guest

It would certainly require an awful lot of people to read everyone’s printer output, John. Government talks about “job creation” as an objective (Heathrow runway 3, HS2 for example) as if that is an end in itself rather than the worth of the task accomplished. So here’s an ideal candidate.

Guest

Looking at my printer I see that it displays on the network configuration page the IP address, hardware (Mac) address and details relating to the wireless router. In a world where we are concerned about the internet of things, printers must be high up the list of products with a potential security risk.

Gone are the days when it was necessary for people to read information about what we are doing. It’s collected and processed automatically. At present, I expect that humans work out what is most useful to collect and how to make use of it but that could change.

Guest
Guest

….In a purported effort to identify counterfeiters the US government has succeeded in persuading some color laser printer manufacturers to encode each page with identifying information.” Not sure why this includes “purported” as that may be the intended reason. Nor does it appear to include inkjets, or black lasers, so unlikely to affect normal users. But I don’t care; most of my prints are for my own records only, and if the odd letter I send out is identified as coming from my printer, should it ever find its way into the authorities’ hands, why should I bother?

I think some spend far too much time bothering about being spied upon.

Guest

I chose not to open the correspondence personally addressed to Wavechange as I am unable to converse in links.

Guest

At least the yellow dots seem to be to monitor fraud, which is better than obtaining information for commercial purposes. Looking at the network configuration page for my printer I see that it shows several 802.11 networks and provides their BSSID codes. These are printers and maybe other devices in neighbours’ homes. I wonder if the printers speak to each other. It’s not just humans that network. 🙁

Guest

Ticker tape code – not seen that in a few years!

Guest

There is me thinking AI is the “new kid on the block ” Roger when all the time the new “big thing ” is quantum computing , seems the Chinese have got the American’s excited . You would think its all about altruism and helping world peace not in American eyes see https://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.260502 I hope you can access it I had to use “other means ” to get to it .

Guest
DerekP says:
5 July 2018

Duncan, thanks, that’s an interesting link.

As often on here, I cannot agree that the link in any way supports your applied spin, viz: “You would think its all about altruism and helping world peace not in American eyes see:”.

Guest

I know the Regulars here like the original story Derek but it was published in the Chinese -English speaking website -Global Times and they and other news websites quoted American spokesmen as saying it could be used for surveillance and military purposes so it’s not my “spin ” as such.

Guest

CSES (add dot org dot uk for a link) hosted the most fascinating lecture on Quantum Computing back in Oct 2016. I must dig out the slide pack if I have it and look through to remind myself. I remember being open minded at the end after scepticism was dispelled at the beginning.

Guest

I can’t find that but I see that some guy called Roger Pittock will be talking about The Night Sky and Space Imaging on 14 October: https://www.chelmsfordses.org.uk/index.php?option=com_attachments&task=download&id=38 Maybe he will mention the astronomical price of manufacturers’ ink cartridges.

Guest

I didn’t know you were such a wit Wavechange you must have had your students in stitches.

Guest

You have the choice of using 3rd party cartridges, printers with refillable cartridges, both much cheaper to print, a laser printer, not buying a printer at all, using a print and photo service….. Quite a few choices at different price points.

For myself, I’m more than happy with my Canon MG5750 for the amount of printing I do. It does a job inconceivable once for a private user – high quality printing of documents and photos on your desk. And saves huge amounts if you otherwise had a “professional” printer do your wedding stationery for example.There are more economical ones as Which? reviews show.

Guest

I know you are happy with your printer, Malcolm. I’m not happy with anti-competitive practices that manufacturers have used to make it difficult for owners to use alternative ink (the subject of this Conversation), which started off when they introduced a chip on each cartridge. I’m not happy that they can collect information from users’ printers via the internet. I’m not happy that inkjet printers use more ink cleaning cartridges than necessary. The amount of ink used should not matter whether a printer is left on continuously or switched off when not in use.

Yes it’s great having printers and we have moved on since my the early printers I used – a ZX printer which printed on metallised paper, the market leading Epson FX80 dot matrix printer and a Brother HR15 daisy-wheel printer that produced crisp text and a sound not dissimilar to machine gun fire. I once owned an Apple StyleWriter, which had a Canon engine.

Guest

As far as I know 3rd party (cheaper) inks can be used in most printers, so there is real competition. I’d like to see an expert view on printer cleaning, and it does seem to differ considerably from printer to printer so does not seem like a conspiracy to me; more information needed, I think. And of course it is not just printers that divulge information over the internet, but I’m not aware of any harm that has resulted to me. The internet has so much to offer at no cost; there are always downsides to a free lunch.

The first computer I used was a TimeShare services operated on a University of London computer. “Terminals” were installed at subscribers premises – teleprinters connected by phone line. Step one was to put your programme and input data onto punched tape, and output came back a little later in the printer. At the time, when the other tools we had were calculating machines, the first electronic calculators (neon numbers, +/-/x/÷/= ) and slide rules it seemed the bees knees.

Guest

Yes there are plenty of security issues with equipment, but that does not justify printers sending information to manufacturers, does it?

There is no valid reason why any printer should use ink ‘cleaning’ the print heads if it is switched off and on again at the mains socket within a few minutes, but this is very common. Whether it is poor design or deliberately done to waste ink I do not know.

Guest

You can. of course, avoid all of this by exercising choice not to purchase a printer, or to only use it on a computer not connected to the internet.

I’d like technical expertise put into these conversations to deal with technical issues. Perhaps Which? could track down people who can give us this help so we can assess the issue on firmer foundations.

Why switch your printer on and off at the mains socket? There may be good reason, but I left my old one on all the time, and my current one switches itself off after a long period of inactivity. When it wakes up it does not always clean the heads.

This Convo was initially about printers not recognising 3rd party cartridges and it says in the Intro “The big consumer printer brands have all signed up to a voluntary agreement which includes a provision around not preventing third-party ink from being used in their printers.“. I suspect that this practice would be illegal – if not, it should be. I haven’t trawled through all the posts to find out the extent of the problem. I wonder if Which? have collated information on
– does any brand or model always reject all third party cartridges
– are particular brands of 3rd part cartridges always rejected
– just what proportion of printer owners have experience cartridge rejection.

Guest

It’s standard advice from fire services to switch electrical products off at the mains and unplug them. Power switches often don’t switch off mains power and the one in the small Canon printer on my coffee table certainly does not.

It would be useful to investigate cases where users have updated the firmware of their printer and found that it no longer works with third-party cartridges, which seems to be fairly well documented. One approach would be to get in touch with those who post about this problem on Which? Convo.

There will always be some faults that are wrongly attributed. For example I saw a message that a new cartridge was not recognised but on inspection I realised that the chip was missing and found it in the pack of third party cartridges. Yes it’s necessary to check makes and models to identify where the problem lies but in the meantime it might be useful to issue advice not to update firmware because this can be difficult or impossible to reverse.

Guest

I have never switched any of my PC’s or printers off at the mains in case it interferes with system updates. I assume that when they are dormant the fire risk is negligible. I have other means of protection that would (1) contain a fire, and (2) sound an alarm. I hope that good quality apparatus is also designed not to cause a fire in the first place.

Guest

malcolm this link isn’t old (2017 ) but its for HP printers and read the introduction statement from HP I have never come across a more stupidity worded statement in my life . They say NO we are not blocking third party inks — BUT then they say the firmware looks for a genuine HP chip in the containers and if it doesn’t get it guess what ? https://www.extremetech.com/electronics/255957-hp-breaking-printers-killing-ink-cartridges I have more of the same if you want.

Guest

It’s standard advice from fire services to switch electrical products off at the mains and unplug them.” Any bets on how many people do this as a routine? Am I the only one who does not?

Guest

I dont either malcolm only my PC and thats to stop any covert downloading if it was left on standby or just “logged out ” . I was warned about that when using Windows by problems appearing due to MS,s “activities ” when not isolated from the mains electricity.

Guest
Janet Edgar says:
6 July 2018

For years my Canon MG5250 has rejected third party ink cartridges every few months The suppliers happily sent replacements and advised switching off the machine at the wall for at least 30 minutes and then reloading the new set. This has always worked. I concluded that it was better to buy a stock of third party replacements, which cost about £8 against Canon’s cost of £70+, and simply discard a set whenever the printer refused to recognise them.

I would like to buy a new printer now but I need better information about these ink problems. Is it time for Which? to bring together the available information so that consumers can make choices. Or perhaps a campaign is needed. I am not prepared to buy a printer that will not allow me freedom to chose my ink and it is time for printer manufacturers to see this message reflected in sales.

Guest

I’m not sure why turning the printer off and on again should work but with computer-controlled devices it’s always worth trying. When doing this it’s best to switch off at the mains because the switch often does not disconnect the power.

I have no feeling for how many people do have problems with printers due to rejected cartridges but having discussed this with quite a number of people I don’t think it is an insignificant problem.

I keep a stock of spare cartridges for both my printers because I never know when I might need to do a big print job. I could not afford to do that if I used the manufacturer’s cartridges.

Yes we could do with some up to date advice from Which?

Guest

You seem to be like many others who do not have to buy OEM cartridges and use 3rd party versions successfully. I don’t do much printing, can afford to keep a set of Canon cartridges on standby ( I actually think you could also 🙂 ) .and am happy with the results. I might try 3rd party cartridges if my printing escalates but don’t see that as imminent.

Perhaps we print too much, and waste a lot of paper in so doing, when so much can be presented and retained electronically. Having said that, I don’t trust electronics sufficiently to store personal documents in a cloud. I regret to admit that I print off bank statements, council tax receipts, society minutes, regular reports on my budget and finances……and store them away in ever-thickening lever-arch files. I know……. But I’m comfortable with that approach.

Guest

With many electronic devices – tvs, routers, computers, Ian’s satnav – it is often a solution when it freezes or stops working properly to disconnect it from the mains. This is the equivalent of the method used on their mechanical counterparts of approaching them with a Birmingham screwdriver.

Guest

How about saving your files as pdfs, Malcolm? Anything you can see on the screen can be turned into a pdf. After Alfa pointed out that putting a flash drive into the socket on the printer I now scan long documents and save them in case they could be useful in future. (I had thought that the socket was just to print photos without the need to use the computer.) There’s no need to store documents in the cloud but having backups separate from the computer is worthwhile.

I print minutes because they are easy to annotate with corrections and the comments I intend to make at the next meeting. I prefer to revise documents using printed copies because it’s easier to look at more than one page at once, which can avoid problems such as duplicates. Yes I know that it can be done with a large screen or two screens but paper is easier.

For whatever reason, many of us do print too much.

Guest

I do save a lot in .pdf, and send a lot out that way too – most people can then access it. However, I prefer to keep quite a bit of stuff on paper, that I can pick up and scan through at my leisure.

Beware flash drives for storage. My clued-up computer shop owner acquaintance tells me they have limited life. I do have a separate hard drive but regret that laziness sees it not used as much as it should be. A reminder to self…… I do not use Cloud – why give someone else all my stuff to look after, and maybe misuse?

Guest

They are called flash drives is that data can be gone in a flash, though the main problem seems to be that they are easily lost. I have a collection of external hard disks. My oldest flash drive has a grand capacity of 128MB and cost £80. It still works fine but is unpleasant to use because the plastic has degraded and is now rough and sticky.

Guest
Guest

It’s just another example of use of poor quality plastic, and for an expensive product.

Guest
Patrick Taylor says:
20 September 2018

Buy a DAS or NAS box and back-up all stuff to it automatically. I have an external burner for archive items like photos to 100 year rated DVD disks.

Guest

The August 2018 issue of the Which? magazine has an article encouraging readers to explore alternatives to expensive manufacturers’ ink and save a considerable amount of money in doing so. We are told that: “Compatibility can be a problem, but it’s rarer than you might think.” There is simple advice about reinserting cartridges and restarting the printer and hopefully most people would contact the supplier in event of a problem. Why no link to Which? Conversation for those that are having problems.

On page 46 of the same magazine is an enquiry from someone who had problems using third party ink. The writer said: “I think this is a bit controlling and removes my freedom to shop around.” Indeed.
One of the interesting pieces of advice alongside the reply is: “Ensure that you update the printer driver on your computer and the printer firmware. It often addresses printing issues you may have.” I invite someone from Which? to visit this Conversation and comment on the problems that have been reported here and elsewhere about printers failing to work with third party ink after firmware updates.

Guest
DerekP says:
21 July 2018

I think the whole problem of printers “needing” firmware updates originates from wifi printers.

In principle, a “hackable” printer might offer a security vulnerability on a computer network, so any internal software must be regularly updated.

In olden days, we only ever connected printers by wired connections and we never updated their firmware. My Canon MP 750 is from that generation. It readily accepts 3rd party ink and home refilled cartridges.

Guest
Patrick Taylor says:
20 September 2018

Absolutely right wavechange. Which? really does not seem to have grasped the ball on this matter. It would seem very simple to pressure the manufacturers to say that either they will always accept third-party inks or not, and then mention this strongly at all times.

And rate printers accordingly. I despair at our consumer champion sometimes.

Credit to Oki on their explanation of their system if not the motive behind it.

Guest
skittler says:
5 August 2018

For Wavechange. “the plastic has degraded and is now rough and sticky”. When I have encountered old sticky plastic, I CAREFULLY dust the casing with a light coat of cornflour. [My EPSON printer still won’t accept 3rd party inks though :~((]

Guest

Thanks Skittler – What I did after posting was to remove the sticky material with acetone and that did the job. I had planned to use French chalk from a bicycle puncture repair outfit – so the same principle as your cornflour – but the acetone was nearer.

I wish Which? would pursue the problem of third party cartridges not working since they raised the issue.

Guest
Steve says:
7 September 2018

I appear to have an interesting similar issue with Oki lasers. I have two printers of the same model. I took a toner cartridge, Oki original, registering 50% full, out of one and put it in the other, where it registered 0% full! Oki’s response “When you are putting brand new OKI Genuine Toner to the printer there is a little fuse that gets burned and the toner is being registered into this machine as brand new one and printer starts counting the life on this specific toner etc. If you then put that toner into the different printer then, as the fuse is already burnt, it will not be registered therefore not showing the correct life and will not work properly.” Have complained and await a response.

Guest

That’s interesting, Steve. I would be interested to know if the instruction manual says that toner cartridges cannot be switched between printers.

Guest
Shannon says:
20 September 2018

XP-830… January firmware update caused my cartridges to stop working. They were 2/3 used so I put in some new ones, also third party, and they worked until today. 5 May 2018 firmware update has rendered my cartridges useless again. The printer would hang up and stop working every time it checked for an update and found one until I went to the front console and responded with OK to the firmware message. I finally got tired of it, especially since at times I am send it something remotely.

Guest
Tony says:
25 October 2018

Yes, have hit this problem with a Brother printer. Several cheap cartridges had worked very well then suddenly the printer recognised that it was not a “genuine cartridge” and to save us from the problems that such cartridges might cause it refused to use it. The fact that a new genuine cartridge cost nearly as much as a new printer with a cartridge meant even if the claim was true we had nothing to lose.

Guest

The crux of the matter is the intellectual property of the cartridge. Does this belong to the original manufacturer or can differently designed cartridges and differently formulated ink be seen as legitimate competition? If Which was a true consumer champion it would have taken legal advice on this by now. Should a court of law decide that the competition was fair, then there would be a case for compensation for all those who have had their cartridges rejected. The competition would also be able to sue for loss of business. Until someone decides to challenge the effect these software updates are having, the printer manufacturers will simply carry on sabotaging their hardware and restricting consumer choice. There is only one way to end this, that is in the courts. The problem is compounded because for years, replacement cartridges have worked without a hitch and the consumer accepted the risks involved in buying them. Now, quite suddenly these are being rendered useless. This, too, is part of the case to be made against the printer makers.

Guest

As you mentioned intellectual property Vynor have a read of this EU law ruling .

https://europeanlawblog.eu/2013/09/26/the-efim-case-no-dominant-position-of-printer-manufacturers-on-ink-cartridge-aftermarket/
Quite a good website for referral to EU law .

Guest

Thanks for that Duncan. The report is more concerned with customer behaviour and its effect on the manufacturer than on intellectual property. It doesn’t really address the issue of rights to aftermarket sales. It mention coffee capsules and car parts and pressure on manufacturers to supply technical information so that others can copy these, but I don’t see any cogent discussion on the rights of others to reproduce these exactly. Usually, spares from other sources have to have some difference to the original in order to avoid exact copying, unless they are licenced by the original manufacturer to supply these. The issue with ink cartridges is not really about customer calculation of cost when they buy the printer, it is about acceptance that the cartridge will make up in revenue for the loss on the machine. I think this is a dishonest way of going about things, but given that this is how printers are sold, we do need a decision on the rights of others to sell their own cartridges. That decision should have some clout behind it so that any transgression is actionable and the remedy effective. As can be seen from the many comments above, the situation is far from clear and printer manufacturers are deciding for themselves what can and can not be sold. The frustration is that one can buy something that doesn’t work. It should work or not be available. One or the other.

Guest
DerekP says:
26 October 2018

When you buy a new printer, your contract is with the retailer, not its manufacturer, so you probably aren’t also contracting to only ever use OEM ink at that point.

One exception to that general principle comes when you buy anything that includes software – because you usually also have to accept license conditions from the software provider before the device can operate.

But, in general, once you own anything, you can do with it as you please, including using 3rd party consumables and spares, where these are available and will work.

This is, of course, standard practice with cars and motorbikes, to name but two common examples.

But, in IT, we see those rights being resisted by certain OEMs:

1. Many (if not all) current printer models now seem to make it hard or impossible to use 3rd party ink.

2. Apple are trying very hard to prevent 3rd party options for the repair of their phones and PCs.

It seems that printer manufacturers have now come up with the cunning plan of including proprietary elements (i.e. software and/or hardware) in each and every printer ink cartridge.

Hence, if 3rd parties cannot reverse engineer those functions, then they cannot sell working ink cartridges. [And if they do, under precedents being established by Apple, they might get prosecuted for selling counterfeit products.]

The above article that was web-linked by Duncan shows that the EU is not inclined to do anything about this, because tech savvy business are inclined to consider the costs of consumables when they choose their printers.

That leaves tech clueless consumers in a bad place, at least while we’re part of the EU.

Finding EU siding with the OEMs is nothing new for me.

Many years ago, I was involved with motorcyclists “consumer” organisations MAG and FEMA, when we successfully campaigned to stop motorcycle manufacturers from making 3rd party spares illegal, as an extension of the EU’s type approval legislation, which essentially supports health and safety and environmental controls on motor vehicles.

So, given that us hairy bikers managed to safeguard our rights to use 3rd spares, suitably engaged and empowered consumers ought to be able to defend similar rights in the IT arena.

Guest
Sigrid Egan says:
18 November 2018

I have an EpsonXP 430 series All in One printer. Last year, rather than paying ridiculous prices for their cartridges (which have not a lot of ink anyway I purchased on line from Swift Ink at a fraction. At that time, Swift Ink warned me NOT to update Epson printer. I did not for almost a year until recently, when there wer problems. I have spent hours and hours trying to connect to the printer via wireless . Since there were problems with my Cox Communications provider, I attributed this to my wireless. I had to set up the printer, which I did again and again and it won’t work. Just realized the story with the printer cartridges from other than Epson. I WANT TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT. IT IS OUTRAGEOUS. SO, IF I CAN DO ANYTHING TO STOP THEM OR ANYBODY ELSE I’LL BE HAPPY TO.

Guest

Sigrid as I have posted before even if you don’t manually update your Epson printer as “big ink USA ” (printer manufacturers ) have an arrangement with MS Redmond-Win.10 the updates get classed as “security updates ” by MS and are “force-installed ” on your computer after a period of time .

Its not Cox Communications as you could have used a LAN cable to get it working if there was a problem with wi-fi in relation to your printer which some users experience.
Your display should have come up with some error message –what was it ?

Epson have good company lawyers and made out a case to the US government.

This still seems to be the case as I went to -the Recycler website in the USA which is the trade magazine for the industry (not available in the UK ) -read-
https://www.therecycler.com/posts/epson-accused-of-bricking-out-cartridges/

FULL EPSON AMERICA STATEMENT:

“Many Epson printers are designed for use with only genuine Epson-brand cartridges. Other brands of ink cartridges and ink supplies are not compatible and, even if described as compatible, may not function properly or at all. This can be true regardless of firmware updates.

“Periodically, Epson updates its firmware to ensure that the printer operates as designed.”

Guest

This “trick ” is dated FEB -2018 for Epson printers , I am not guaranteeing anything -do it at your own risk !!

Start by installing the cloned ink cartridge, and automatically the printer will issue a prompt an ink cartridge cannot be recognized.
Proceed to Start, then Control Panel on the computer and double click on the printer
Look for the icon on the Epson Printer and right press and select Printer Preferences regularly found at bottom of the dialog box.
Click on the tab showing Speed and Progress and look at the Epson Printer monitor box.
Turn off the ink monitor by checking off the Disable Epson Status Monitor found within a box.
And lastly, click Save and close the window. Thats about it the printer and the cloned ink cartridges can now start printing operation.— and if that doesnt work–see below.

Okay here is a guide for your model Sigrid and and a range of XP from -300-830 (at least )

Again absolutely NO guarantee from me but worth a try.
Connect a USB Printer cable from the back of your printer to a computer or laptop. You must use a Type A/B printer cable and plug it into the correct USB port on the printer (square) not the standard USB input port on the front. When in recovery mode, a USB connection is required to transfer the firmware to the printer, even if you already have it connected wirelessly.

Remove all of the ink cartridges from the printer. This will ensure that all cartridge-related errors will be reset after applying the alternate firmware.
Power off the printer. As soon as the printer is completely shut down, perform the following key combination until the firmware update screen appears in white text [if the printer instead boots to its regular screen or IPL mode with red text, you may have to look-up or experiment to find the proper recovery mode combination for your printer model]:
For many series from XP-300 to XP-630: Press and hold the STOP button, LEFT ARROW button, HOME button and POWER button simultaneously
For the XP-440 to XP-446 and XP-640 to XP-646: Press and hold the STOP button, LEFT ARROW button, DOWN ARROW button and POWER button simultaneously (thanks to Ken for the combo)
For the XP-800 to XP-830 and similar single button models: Press and hold the TOP-RIGHT corner of the TOUCH SCREEN and POWER button simultaneously.

Download the older firmware onto the connected laptop or computer. For your convenience, a table containing older firmware for the most common printer models (XP-200 through XP-960) is available below. If you have a different model, it may take some research to find the desired firmware since most printer manufacturers remove obsolete firmware from their site immediately and provide no downgrade instructions. Epson’s printers use a self-installing firmware updater that can be run directly from Windows or MacOS. In the case of the XP-630, the earliest firmware update that is the most compatible with third party cartridges is NQ10F8.

After launching the downloaded firmware installer, step through the wizard by following the on-screen instructions. In the case of Epson, you mostly have to click next through a few pages of disclaimers. Assuming the printer is connected to the PC with a USB cable and powered up to the recovery screen, you should see a single entry in the Model list and it should be checked. Click Start to begin the firmware downgrade, and then click Yes to confirm. The prior firmware will be transferred to the printer, where it will begin flashing automatically. This process can take several minutes, but when it is completed the on-screen display will indicate that it has finished.

Once the downgrade is complete, press OK or unplug the printer to power it off. Then power it on again. When prompted, insert the ink as usual and then let the printer complete the ink initialization.

If this doesn’t work the only other option is to pay a USA company to re program the firmware which will cost you up to $50 online.
Again I must emphasise neither I nor Which ? state /imply / acknowledge/ approve of this –

This is a disclaimer ! —its a last resort.

Guest
123 HP Printer Setup says:
29 November 2018

Quality blog, keep up the good work. You may check our website also 123.hp.com 123.hp.com/ setup

Guest

Although its commercial I don’t see any problem with this website , not many trackers , no sign of malware.