How do I Fix a Black Line Down the Center of the Page on an HP Officejet Printer?

by Erin McManaway

An HP Officejet printer is designed to handle the print load of an office with the speed of inkjet prints. However, with time, an office printer may show signs of wear and tear, such as leaving streaks and lines down printed pages. Usually, this is an issue that can be fixed without the need for a new printer. Poor print quality can be the result of a number of different factors.

Pull out the ink cartridge and check it for damage on the printer head. If the cartridge has ink buildup or leaks, it may cause streaks on your pages. Clean the printer head with a soft cloth to remove buildup, then place the cartridge back into the printer. Replace the cartridge if it appears to be leaking.

Install a new ink cartridge in the printer if needed. While cartridges that are low on ink usually do not cause black lines on a page, if the cartridge is old or worn, it may be time to change it.

Install the correct type of HP brand ink cartridge in the Officejet printer. Reused, refilled or off-brand cartridges may cause streaking or printing issues.

Check the printer for paper jams or other debris. If pieces of paper from a previous jam are stuck in the rollers, this could cause lines on your printed pages.

Use the proper quality of paper for your printer. Low-quality paper may cause streaks and lines. Also, paper that is too thin or thick may cause printing issues.

Clean the rollers inside of the printer with a damp rag. If ink buildup or debris is stuck on your rollers, this could cause black lines on your pages.

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About the Author

Erin McManaway holds a B.A. in professional writing from Francis Marion University, where she earned the Richard B. Larsen Memorial Award for Business and Technical Writing. She has worked in materials development, media and information technology in the nonprofit sector since 2006. McManaway has also been a writer and editor since 2008.

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