Flawless printer performance

Flawless printer performance:

I’ve been running carbon and Piezio inks for about 11 years now. I’ve printed enough to be on my 6th Epson 1400/1430. So I’ve had my share of printer problems. The most frustrating problem for me used to be clogged nozzles and trying to get them clean. The head cleaning function wastes a lot of ink and is limited to only a few cleanings at one time.

I normally don’t print every day or every week. This exaggerates the clogged nozzle problem. It is recommended to use the printer often, even if you make just one print. My workflow saves my processed images to a “To Print” folder and I may not actually crank up the printer for a month or two. As a result, I’ve had my share of frustration cleaning the heads and getting the printer to work properly.

But that’s all in the past now. Here’s how I solved it:

When I complete a run of prints and am ready to shut down the printer, I remove the ink cartridges, reinstall the tabs at the back of the cartridges, place them in a plastic bag and store them on the shelf.

I then pull out an extra set of ink cartridges that are filled with PiezioFlush and install them in the printer. I run a small image on copier paper to make sure the PiezoFlush has replaced all the residual ink and then turn off the printer!

When it’s time to print weeks or months later I pull the PiezioFlush carts, grab the ink carts, pull the rear tabs off, fill the ink carts, chip them as full, install them and run a small image to make sure the ink has replaced all the residual PiezioFlush.

I have run this protocol for over a year now and have yet to do a nozzle check or head cleaning. I save on ink, paper and printer longevity. But best part of this system is I look forward to cranking up the printer because I’m 1000% confident I’m going to great prints without hassle or frustration!

NOTE: I am an enthusiast and not a printer professional. I urge InkJet Mall staff to comment on this post and please correct anything they feel I may have gotten wrong. This is my personal experience. If the InkJet Mall staff thinks this is a good process, please respond as well. My whole attitude towards printing has changed as a result. If Special Edition wasn’t so fabulous, I would have quit long ago. Now I’m thrilled I kept with it and am able to produce brilliant prints hassle free!

BTW: One more 1430 tip I learned at Jon’s workshop in Santa Fe, (which is absolutely worth the cost and effort to get there). I used to get banding on the top of my images. I was told it’s an issue with the 1430 driver that cannot be corrected. At the workshop I learned that all you have to do is leave one inch margin and your banding problems will vanish! It works!

Good luck in the New Year and have a ball making great art with Jon’s inks!

Great post on issues I am just stepping up to.

I’ve been printing on the 1400 for the past two years using Eb6 inks and QTR. Lightroom is my post of choice.

My plan now is to switch to Piezo.

I just picked up a 1430 and want to set it up as well. Thoughts are to use it for my B&W and use the 1400 for color, but as I progress I can see I might use both for B&W and set up for different ink sets. Part of my thinking has been on CISS, but I like your approach in using the flush carts when putting the printer off-line.

You’ve been through a few of these and I’m wondering what’s the primary cause of the 1400/1430 printer failure. Have you ever installed waste ink tanks or reset the counter?

My 1400 has been quirky but rock solid. I hear tell that updating the 1430 firmware will preclude using non OEM carts, any info on this?

Many thanks


I am surprised that Bluefin didn’t get a response to his post, as the use of flush carts for periods of inactivity is standard operating procedure, and is often discussed here. The ability to do this easily and relatively inexpensively is one of the big attractions of the carts-on-print-head printers, which are now very rare.

One of the disadvantages of these printers is the micro-banding in the first and last inch problem. There is a workaround to this issue solution, which is not as tedious as it sounds, and is how I deal with the problem.

The 1400 (and 1410 in some markets) were the exception to this rule, in that they didn’t seem to suffer from this problem. I would encourage anyone who still has one of these to keep it going for as long as possible. In Chuck’s case, if I were him I would use the 1400 for Piezo and the 1430 for colour, although that may depend a little on the condition of the 1400.

There have been reports of firmware upgrades for the 1430 preventing some refillable carts from working. There was a report or two here a couple of years ago. If I was a 1430 owner then I would be careful not to upgrade the f/w. My understanding from the earlier reports is that OS X users need to be particularly careful, as IIRC these updates were slipped into OS upgrades and not described explicitly as printer f/w upgrades.

Brian, thanks for the tips and Bluefin I would love to hear from you and any others as well,

I would have to say my 1400 is in rather good condition.

I bought it new in the box about 5-6 yrs ago anticipating printing my work again and have only been using it on and off for 2yrs.

I’ll be starting a new post in the general forum to intro my story and what I’m hoping to accomplish. I’m an old B&W guy who’s been away from a darkroom for close to 30yrs.



Do you ever return to the printer and find that, despite not having used it, the flush carts are empty? I had a 1400 that used to do this, and the only thing I could guess was that the non-OEM carts with their vents were allowing the ink to trickle out while parked. So far I haven’t noticed this with my 1430 but I’ve been putting a bit of tape over the vent holes at the end of the day.