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How to Fix Paper Jams without Calling for Service

Josh - ASE Service Manager
Posted by Josh - ASE Service Manager on Apr 8, 2022

Printers are highly-efficient machines with a wealth of moving parts. Unfortunately, all those moving parts can sometimes cause problems. Every printer is different, but they can all suffer from paper jams.

We can help. We’ll break down many of the common causes of errors, and then show you how to remove paper jams. With this guide, you’ll be able to fix most problems without calling for service.


1. What is causing your printer to jam?

2. How to remove a paper jam

3. How to clear a false paper jam error


Help! My Printer Keeps Jamming

As complex as your printer might be, there are a few common causes behind most paper jams:

1. Misaligned Paper: Paper that has been incorrectly stacked into trays can shift and jam loading mechanisms. Be sure to use only the suggested amount and make sure it is straight.

2. Dust Particles: Dust particles inside the printer can reduce friction on the rollers and cause the paper to jam. Recycled papers might be a great cost-saving measure, but they can contain more dust particles.

3. Incorrect Paper Weight or Tray: Printer trays are designed to automatically feed paper according to specific and pre-determined paper weights and sizes. Using the wrong paper can cause misfeeds.

4. Sticky or Dirty Paper: Before you load the trays, make sure your paper is clean. Paper that is sticky can jam the feeder or roller. Sometimes a glue from the paper manufacturing company can also remain on the paper causing problems.

5. Used Paper: When a paper is reused, it can have a paper clip, staple, sticker, or stamp that can cause a paper jam. Make sure to use only clean and fresh paper.


If you have a printer that suffers from paper jams, try to identify what is causing the problem. The reason may be simple to fix.


How to Remove a Paper Jam

Let’s look at how to remove a paper jam. Following these simple steps will fix most problems with paper stuck in a printer.

1. Open the Cover

Start by turning off the printer. Leaving it on can be dangerous to you and cause permanent damage to the printer. Next, carefully remove any loose papers outside the printer. Finally, remove the main cover of the printer.

2. Remove the Paper

Hold the paper firmly and pull it from the printer slowly. Do not let the paper tear, as this can leave fibers or small pieces of paper stuck in the printer. Pulling too fast can also cause an injury and damage to the printer. If you need to, use tweezers to remove the paper from tight areas. Alternately pull from either side of the paper to prevent tearing. You should also try to pull with the printer, in the direction the paper is fed, rather than against the printer.

3. Check the Output

If the printer stopped due to a paper jam, you may need to remove a paper from the output tray. Inspect the slot at the end of the output tray for pieces of paper. If you find some, slowly remove it as you did in step 2. Please note, some printers have a knob or mechanism for removing paper from the output slot.

4. Test the Printer

Turn the printer back on to see if the paper jam has been removed. If it hasn’t, turn the printer off and continue with this step. Next, remove the printer head (for inkjet printers) or toner (for laser printers). Look for paper jammed beneath or around these mechanisms. Finally, test the rollers deeper in the printer for paper jams. You may need to remove the side or front covers from the printer.


How to Fix a False Paper Jam

Occasionally, you’ll come across a printer that insists there is a paper jam, but you can’t seem to find the problem. A false paper jam can be caused by a blocked sensor in the printer. A procedure known as a bottom plate cleaning might solve the problem.

Start by cleaning the inside of the printer. There should be instructions in your printer maintenance kit for this action. You’ll want to remove any stains or dust from the printer. You may also need to replace the rollers in the printer.

If the problem persists, take a clean, plain piece of paper, and fold it in half along the width. Unfold the paper and load it in the rear tray. The open side of the paper should face you. Feed this paper through the printer. This will clean the sensors inside the printer. Finally, check the paper when it is finished. If there is ink on the paper, try this procedure again.



If your printer keeps jamming, even after going through the steps in this guide, you may need to get in touch with a service technician at ASE. The good news is that our team of service technicians have served as the go-to for printer service and repair for years. Make sure to record the steps you took to fix the printer, so the our experts can quickly identify the problem and keep downtime to a minimum.

Fill out the form here to schedule your service call. 


Topics: SDVOSB, Buy American Veteran, Repair, Printer, Service, Maintenance, Paper Jam

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