Canon iP1800 Troubleshooting

By Daniel Barrows

The Canon iP1800 is a photo printer designed to allow the home user to produce borderless prints of their digital images on a variety of media, including glossy, matte and double-sided photo paper. The iP1800 supports a maximum print resolution of 4,800-by-1,200 dpi and can generate documents at a rate of up to 16 color pages per minute. If you experience difficulty installing or operating your Canon iP1800, the following tips may help you diagnose and solve the problem.


If your computer is unable to communicate with the printer after installation, first check the cable connections to ensure that all plugs are properly seated. Next, reinstall the printer drivers by first running the uninstaller program (check the "All Programs" tab in the Start Menu and look for the entry that corresponds to your printer). Insert the installation CD and run the installer (temporarily disable any currently-active antivirus software, as this may interfere with the installation process). If this fails, or if you no longer have the installation CD, download the appropriate software directly from Canon's website (see Resources below). Avoid connecting your printer to the computer via a USB hub, as this may interfere with your system's ability to recognize the device; connect the printer directly into one of the computer's USB ports.

Poor Image Quality

If your documents appear blurry or you notice streaks, splotches or similar imperfections, there may be a problem with your ink cartridges. First, generate a print nozzle test page by accessing the "Maintenance" tab of the print properties window and clicking on the appropriate option (Macintosh users can generate a test page via the "Canon IJ Printer Utility" application). If you notice streaks or missing lines on the test page, click on the "Cleaning" button when prompted; the printer will begin cleaning the print heads, a process which may take several minutes to complete. If you are unable to diagnose the problem from the test page, open the printer cover and confirm that the ink cartridges are properly seated and the contacts are free of dust and debris.

Paper Jams

The paper tray on the iP1800 is designed to hold up to 100 sheets of plain paper; exceeding this maximum capacity may prevent the printer from loading paper properly, resulting in a paper jam. When a jam occurs, grip the paper and pull it out gently from whichever end seems easiest. If any paper tears off, turn off the printer and open the cover; remove the torn pieces and close the cover. Any pieces that you are unable to reach should be expelled in the course of normal operation.

The Alarm Lamp

The iP1800 comes equipped with an alarm lamp which will blink when the printer experiences an error; you can use the number of blinks to help diagnose the problem. Two blinks means the printer is out of paper; three blinks indicates a paper jam; four blinks means the ink cartridges need replacing; eight blinks indicate the ink absorber needs replacing; and five, seven, 14 or 15 blinks indicate a problem with the FINE cartridge (check to make sure the cartridge is properly seated; if necessary, replace the cartridge).