Sometimes, you unbox a new, shiny printer with all the latest bells and whistles and it just won’t work. It may power up, the drivers may load, but the thing just won’t print! It’s maddening! But we’re going to give you a few printer troubleshooting tips that just might help.

Firstly, make sure the printer is getting power and the right kind of power. Just today, I encountered a situation where a printer, despite everything else looking fine, would just not print. The power cord was plugged into a surge protector that had a number of other devices hooked into it. The printer only began to work properly once the power was plugged directly into the wall. So, important lesson: the printer may seem to have power, but if there’s something wrong with the source – dirty power, or an overused power bar – it still may not work. Check that power cable!

Secondly, check how the printer is connected to the computer or network. I’ve seen cases where everything appeared to be fine, but the printer would not work without having it’s usb or ethernet cable swapped. If nothing else seems to work give it a new cable a try; USB and ethernet cables can and do go bad.

Third, if you’re having trouble installing the drivers, make sure you’re loading the correct ones. If you’ve a 32 bit version of Windows, a 64 bit driver package won’t do you any good. If you’re not sure which version of windows you have, just find the “My Computer” icon on your desktop or in your start menu, right click and choose properties. It will tell you which version of windows you have, and if it’s 32 or 64 bit.

If you’ve any printer troubleshooting tips, please share them in the comments section – you never know when the smallest tidbit might save someone from hours of frustration!