How do I fix faint or faded laserjet printouts?

If you have printed a document or photo and the print is too light, patchy or faded, a common cause is the toner cartridge nearing the end of its life. However, there can be other reasons behind the deterioration in quality such as the toner density, humidity and the type of paper being used.

This article relates to faded laserjet printouts. If you have an ink cartridge which is producing a faded print, please click here.

What can I do to improve the print quality?

Check the toner level

The first step for light and faded prints is to check that your toner cartridge is not running low or empty. If your laser printer has a built-in LCD screen, you should be able to view the toner levels on screen or via a printed test page accessed in the settings menu.

If the toner level is very low or empty, it is recommended to install a new toner cartridge to ensure that the printer is producing the best quality print possible.

Check the paper type

Although it may not seem important, selecting the correct paper type for your printer is essential for achieving a high-quality output. Laserjet paper is designed to allow the toner to be fused to the surface at high heat and within seconds. Inkjet paper is more porous and contains chemicals to speed up the ink drying process. If inkjet paper is used in a laser printer, the chemicals may affect how the toner bonds to the surface which can result in faded prints and even reduce the life of other components in the printer such as the drum, transfer belt and fuser.

As well as the type of paper, it is also worth considering the overall quality of the paper when printing - If the surface of the paper is too rough, it may lead to a uneven image transfer which can make the print appear patchy or faint. If the paper is too smooth, it may prevent the toner from fully fusing to the surface resulting in a lighter printout.

Check the toner density setting

If you have checked that the correct paper is being used and the toner cartridge is not empty or low, the next step would be to check the print density setting on your printer. Most laserjet printers have a toner save mode which allows the user to alter the amount of toner being used during the printing process. To view and amend this setting you will need to use your computer and follow the below steps:

1. On your computer, go to the Start menu and click on Settings / Control Panel.
2. Select Devices & Printerson the settings menu.
3. Select the model being used on the printer tab and click Manage to access the printer menu.
4. Go to Printing Preferences then select the option listed for your printer brand below.
Brother, Canon, Konica Minolta, OKI, Ricoh, Xerox - Toner Save Mode
HP - Economode
Kyocera - EcoPrint
Samsung - Eco Mode

Increasing the print density may help to improve the print quality as more toner will be used during the printing process to make the text and images darker. If you are printing internal documents or drafts that may not require a high-quality finish, it is good practice to switch back to a lower print density. Alternating the toner density depending on the type of document being printed ensures that you are only using the appropriate amount of toner and keeps the overall cost per page low.

If you are still experiencing an issue, please contact us for further assistance.

Categories: Product support