After receiving my gallon of Piezo Flush last week, I proceeded to to do two initial fills on an Epson Pro 4900 letting them both soak in for two days each. Happily, all channels but one cleared. Unhappily, the Green channel has shown no change at all from before the Piezo flush initial fills flushing. So I am wondering if the head is bad just because I can’t get green, or is there something else I should be looking into for this. I should say I recently updated the firmware to M102F7 just in case there are any known issues.
Good idea. So I just took a look. If the green channel line is 6th from the top actually in the middle of all 11 - (looking at all the lines together as in a ribbon cable), then perhaps - that is indicative of the problem I am having. Yes IT IS STILL DARK where the others are pink. The question then becomes: is it the green cartridge or is it the pump or dampers or still the head?
Hi Doug_A. I recently had a similar problem with a 7880. The Epson Field Manual recommended replacing the ink tube (I had already replaced the dampers). Although I was able to buy a replacement ink tube, it looked like a very fiddly process to replace it, so, I unscrewed the ink tube at each end and rigged up a syringe to try and force some warm water into the ink tube. After a few minutes of pressure, I was able to force about 12 inches of solidified ink out of the tube. After that I flushed another few hundred ml of warm water through the ink line until I was fairly sure that it had been cleared. After reconnecting both ends of the ink tube, the Field Manual recommended a power clean to get the ink through the tube and get rid of air bubbles. Flushing or replacing the ink tube may be a solution for your printer too.
I have brought two printers back from the dead - a 3800 and, recently, a 7880. Both of them had sat unused for extended period. PiezoFlush was important in cleaning out stuff that was clogging the head, but both had ink tube problems too. These were harder to identify. The 3800 had a slight air leak. With this, I could get a perfect nozzle check immediately after a head clean but a second nozzle check shortly after showed gaps. These got worse with subsequent nozzle checks.
With the 7880, I replaced the dampers before doing anything else. The ink deposit in the Magenta damper was noticeably different to the others. There was less ink and it seemed dryer. With hindsight I should have paid more attention to the ink tube straight away, but access to the other end of the tube was more difficult than just re-tightening the tube and trying to flush it.
It took very little flushing, through head cleans and a few power cleans, to get perfect nozzle checks on every colour apart from Magenta. This encouraging result led me to the bigger step of getting access to both ends of the ink tube and rigging up a flushing system. The internal diameter of the 7880 ink tube is 1.8 mm. I was subsequently able to purchase a needle with an outside diameter of 1.8 mm from a medical supply company (I already had some 60ml syringes to use with it), so I have a better system for flushing an ink tube if the problem arises again.
I mentioned all this because I have often seen the logic expressed that if replacing dampers doesn’t fix a problem then the next step is to replace the head. Checking the ink tubes is a cheaper next step, but if the tubes are clear then the head must come under scrutiny.
I’ve been looking at the manual for the 4900 today trying to find the best way then to access the lines. Though I’m reasonable handy, I’m not familiar with these mechanisms as yet. On the other hand, I’ve become so frustrated with these printers I probably will just go ahead and see what happens. I’m beginning to think that unless there is a convenient and not too expensive repair facility next door, we have to start maintaining them ourselves.