3800 flush cartridges not recognized

I tried the external clean method in accordance with your video but it did not clean both the Cyan and Magenta nozzles. Ink is very expensive and I’d flushed hundreds of dollars of ink already into the maintenance cartridge over the last few months so I thought I would buy a set of refillable carts for my Epson 3800 and fill them with PiezoFlush to clean my print head. Initially the Photo Black, Light Light Black, Cyan, and Magenta carts were not recognized but after some adjustments to the Black cart it is recognized and at times the Light Light Black will be recognized. I if the Cyan is pushed in hard and taped in place the Cyan will be recognized but the panel and driver read the carts as empty. I will restart the printer and then usually the Light Light Black, Cyan, and magenta carts are no longer recognized. The best I’ve seen is only the Magenta cart not being recognized. I can push in on the Cyan cart at times and then all carts will again be recognized, but will show as empty. I’ve tried the gaffers tape to the bottom and tried a different Cyan chip from an Epson ink cart, but still no joy. Now if I put all original cart in the printer the Light Light Black, Cyan, and Magenta carts are not recognized. I checked the contacts in the printer and they appear to be undamaged or bent. I have checked the three small plastic tabs and all seem good. I’m at a loss as to what to do next.

Thanks, Dwight

It sounds like it’s the Cyan cartridge causing the problems, you said if you push on the cart it will recognize. In this case you can apply 1-3 layers of masking tape to the top of the cartridge, where it snaps into the printer itself. You will see where there is an indent just behind the control chip, this is how it’s held into place in the printer, apply the tape 1 layer at a time until you get a good fit.

You will find when 1 cartridge gives an error, that others will do the same, normally 3 that are side by side to the culprit cartridge. You may also have the same fit issue with the M cartridge as well, you won’t know until you solve the Cyan fit problem.

Let me know your results, Kindly-Kelly

Three layers of gaffers tape to the inside lip of the recessed rectangle next to the control chip on the top of the Cyan cart cleared the Cyan cart. I could not get the Magenta cart to seat/be recognized after using several variations of tape. What I did was take the Magenta cart’s two chips and installed them in the Matte Black cart I had not filled and it was recognized with no additional adjustments.

Ok, so you have the Cyan cartridge being recognized, but not the M cartridge still. For a solution you used an MK cartridge and put the MK chips on it and used it as an Magenta cart. Obviously the original M cartridge had a fit issue that couldn’t be solved with any amount of adjusting, so do you want me to issue a replacement for the M or MK cartridge?

Please replace the MK cartridge.

I have everything back operating…but. I power cleaned twice with PiezoFlush let the printer sit a day. power cleaned again and let sit another day, ran nozzle checks, replaced the PiezoFlush carts with ink carts, ran 2 power cleans ran nozzle checks (auto) and the Magenta is just as blocked up as when I stated this ordeal. Any ideas on a next move?

Thank you,

how did your nozzle check look (specifically the M channel) with PiezoFlush after three power clean cycles (before reinstalling the ink carts)?

The ink print looks about the same for Magenta

I have put together a replacement order for your MK cartridge that has replaced your ill fitting M cartridge. You should receive this package at the beginning of next week in the post.

As for your stubborn clog in your Magenta channel, there has been many posts in the forum regarding replacement of the Ink Selector Unit, otherwise known to house the Dampers for each ink in your 3880 printer. It is recommended by Epson that this unit be replaced annually and no more then every 18 months. We haven’t established the age or the usage of this particular printer, so before I go into great detail about this recommended procedure please answer the following questions:

1.How long have you had this printer?
2.How much has it been used, vs. sitting unused since you’ve owned it?
3.What kind of regular maintenance have you performed on it to keep it printing well, without clogs?
4.What prompted Flushing the entire system of pigment inks?

1.How long have you had this printer? 7-8 years
2.How much has it been used, vs. sitting unused since you’ve owned it? it may sit a month or two at times between printing
3.What kind of regular maintenance have you performed on it to keep it printing well, without clogs? Auto nozzle checks/clean and try to print regularly.
4.What prompted Flushing the entire system of pigment inks? Magenta nozzles clogged and PiezoFlush is cheaper than Epson ink.

Thank you,

Epson recommends replacing the Ink Selector Unit once every 12-18 months depending on usage. With some mechanical abilities you can perform this replacement yourself. If your printer is 7-8 years old and hasn’t had this replaced, then it is certainly due. This will eliminate any clogged nozzles you are experiencing for sure, as well as give you a like new machine again, which may last you another 7 years with any luck at all.

I must say, you are one of the lucky ones, 7-8 years with little to no maintenance done on any printer and still functioning almost perfectly, minus a few missing nozzles is pretty unbelievable!

The Ink Selector Unit is purchased as an assembly at Compass Micro found here https://www.compassmicro.com/parts_detail.cfm?ID=7462&form.mfg=Epson&form.printerstyle=Inkjet&form.printername=Stylus%20Pro%203880
You will need the repair manual, which can be purchased here http://www.2manuals.com/product_info.php?products_id=1361