Epson 7890 using 1 maintenance tank a day since switching to refillable carts

My Epson 7890 is literally filling up a maintenance tank every day since I switched over to refillable cartridges. I’ve started emptying out the tanks and resetting the chips so I can reuse them but this can’t be normal.

I’m using my epson with all black ink through a RIP software to print film positives for silkscreen printing. Up until recently I’ve had no problems with art printing cleanly with very sharp edges but lately the edges of my printed look blurry. There are tiny extraneous dots all along the edges of the printed art that make burning a good screen very difficult. I’m wondering if that could be related to the fact that I’m burning through so many maintenance tanks as well.

Any help you can offer would be greatly appreciated!

Hi Jesse~

NO, this is certainly NOT normal!!!

Is your printer set to automatic nozzle checks and cleaning cycles? How do your nozzle checks look, are there missing and/or mis-firing nozzles?
After reviewing your order history, I see you’re using the 850ml model cartridges in your 7890, which you purchased last December. When did you install the refillable carts? When did you start noticing the non-crisp print output, and start filling up maintenance tanks on a daily basis? Do any cartridges seem to have significantly less ink in them than the status monitor reads? Note, the chips read 350ml, although the carts hold double that volume, so the status monitor will be counting down thinking it has 350ml carts installed.

Please let me know so I can help you resolve this and get back to happily printing.
Thanks~ Dana

Hi Dana,
My printer is set to do nozzle checks and cleanings automatically, there does not appear to be any missing nozzles, but under a loupe I can see a little inconsistency in the lines printed. Also, the nozzle check outputs some info at the bottom and there is significant horizontal banding throughout that info.

I installed the carts as soon as I got them and noticed that the frequency of my maintenance tank replacement went up from around once a month to once a week. I usually had good clean prints unless the cartridges were getting really low on ink. As time has gone on, the frequency of the maintenance tank filling up has gone to every day and my prints never really look good anymore. The daily maintenance tanks started about a month ago and the poor print quality became a problem last week.

Thanks for the additional information Jesse.
Does your printer seem to be cleaning it’s self more frequently since installing the refill carts?
I always have auto nozzle checks and cleanings turned off, then print manual nozzle checks every morning and clean if needed.
Please remove the cartridges and inspect them to make sure the exit valves are sealed, and ink doesn’t drip out.
Are the maintenance tanks actually full, or is it possible the chip read is off?

Please let me know, thanks- Dana :slight_smile:

It is definitely cleaning more frequently since installing the cartridges. As for having auto nozzle checks and cleaning off, I can try that but I don’t think it will help the print quality issue I’m also having very much. I removed all of the cartridges yesterday and they appear to be sealed properly, no leaks or anything. and the tanks are actually full.

Thanks for the additional information Jesse.

Cartridges will not cause a printer to clean it’s self more frequently, though I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that Epson may program their printers to work differently/poorly with non-OEM carts installed… I know many customers who are happily using these carts with their printers auto cleaning/nozzle check both on and off, but we recommend using the manual control.

It would be great if other users would pitch in to share their experience with refill carts in a 7900/9900 or 7890/9890 printer, and if their using the auto or manual cleaning/nozzle checks.

It sounds like the carts are working correctly, and I’ve never heard of anyone having problems with our refill carts causing issues like you’re experiencing, so suspect it may be a cleanliness issue, and recommend you 1. turn off the auto cleaning and nozzle checks, and 2. manually clean your printer’s capping stations, wiper blade, and flushing box. It may also be good to gently clean the bottom of your print head. All these manual cleaning procedures can be found here:

I have no knowledge of the ink you’re using, so that’s part of the puzzle I can’t troubleshoot/support.

I Hope this helps, keep me posted~ Dana

Okay, I just got done cleaning the printer manually. There was a lot of built up gunk in there so I’m glad I did it but it doesn’t appear to have solved my problem yet.
I agree that the cartridges really shouldn’t cause the printer to clean more frequently or anything like that but I can’t ignore that it started when I changed. I wonder if it has to do with changing the ink out. The dealer I bought it from said to just run a bunch of cleaning cycles and it would be fine but maybe I should have flushed the lines our with something stronger before I made the switch.

The ink is called blackmaxx it’s a black dye ink for printing film positives. I don’t know much about it either except that the density is awesome for what we do here.

Thanks for the update. I’m glad you manually cleaned your printer, it sounds like it really needed it (manual cleaning should be done regularly, like maintenance to any machine to keep it clean and working well), though I’m sorry to hear it didn’t resolve your problem…

Please scan (300ppi so I can see detail) and attach a printed nozzle check for me to examine. I will be able to see a lot more detail if the nozzle check is printed on the print side of a piece of coated paper, so if you have a scrap piece or edge of a ruined print, that would be best. By reviewing your nozzle check, I can tell you what I see in regards to your printer output health and cleanliness, but this is as far as I can go, and recommend you contact Blackmax for support using their ink and the RIP you’re using for the silkscreen process. Using a RIP makes your printer work differently than printing thru the regular Epson driver, and RIPs have many settings that could be contributing to your print quality and maintenance tank issues. We have many customers happily printing with the same refillable carts you have, so are confident your issues are not caused by our cartridges.

Best regards~ Dana

I really appreciate your help. I agree, I am confident that the cartridges are not causing the problem but I have reached out to all of the companies involved and you are the only person who has made any attempt to help so thank you!

I’m trying to attach my scan but I’m getting an error on the upload form so I’ll try again in a little while.

Okay, got it working!
Here’s a scan of a nozzle check.

It’s hard to tell, but from what I can see it looks like you may have some nozzles that are printing at the same level, instead of stepping down as they should from left to right. Do you see this on the print as well, or is it just the scan? I attached the cyan section of a nozzle check from our 9900- see how the individual nozzles are one nozzle thickness down from the one on the left, so the nozzles make an even step down pattern from left to right? I also attached a crop section of your nozzle check, and added an arrow to point out an example of two nozzles printing at the same level. If this is accurate to your printer’s output, then this is likely what’s causing the print quality issue you’re experiencing, and the printer’s nozzle check sensor may detect as a problem, and be causing excessive cleaning.

I hope this helps.
Best regards~ Dana