MacInTouch Amazon link...


Thanks to James R. Cutler for the link to the ManualsLib site with the Epson cleaning procedure. Unfortunately, I find Epson's suggestions to basically dust off the rollers woefully inadequate. For P Tinder, yes, if a rubber roller or pad is very hard from age, it will have to be replaced. However, I have resurrected many printer feeds by rubbing down the rubber rollers and any pads with 200 or 400 grit emery paper and then cleaning them thoroughly with >90% isopropyl alcohol (not rubbing alcohol). Some disassembly may be required to effectively access the rollers and pads. Both the physical abrasion and chemical interaction of this approach make the rollers and grab pads more tacky. If the procedure doesn't work the first time, repeat it. If it still doesn't work, you'll have to replace the parts. Certainly worth a try.
I remember a product called Rubber Rejuvenator that I used on my old reel-to-reel tape recorder rubber parts. Don't know if it is still available or is appropriate for print rollers.
 



Back in the late ’90s, when HP still made good printers, I bought an LJ 2100M, which, augmented with a JetDirect ethernet card, has been on my home LAN ever since. It never got a lot of use over the years but it was nice to have. About six or seven years ago, however, it started to get tired. Specifically, we began to get paper jams, and they eventually got worse until we couldn’t rely on the main paper tray input.

To avoid the aggravation, we simply started feeding pages in through the manual slot, one piece of paper at a time. For a few pages, this was not a big deal, but for the occasional (once a month?) longer print jobs, it was kind of a nuisance. I looked on the interweb and found that HP was selling an overhaul kit to solve this very problem, which was caused by the rubber parts getting old and thus hard, dry or smooth and, as a result, no longer grabbing and feeding the paper properly. But, the kit was something like $49.99, and I thought that that was a bit exorbitant, especially since the printer was getting older by the day, and who knows when some more serious, too-costly component would fail, requiring a complete replacement of the device? So we lived with it, the way it was.

Then, about a year ago, I found a Chinese outfit online that had a similar kit for $16, including shipping (!), so I ordered it. I found good instructions on the 'net. I had all the necessary tools. I took my time and worked carefully. There were five parts to replace: two pads, two rollers and a pinch-wheel. Four of the five were completely simple, but the fifth, the pinch-wheel, was deep inside the machine and required pretty much a complete tear-down to get at. Finally, a couple of hours later, I was done. I hooked it back up and — voila — it worked! As good as new!

Even knowing that this ol’ beauty could crap out tomorrow, for $16 and the fun I had in doing the job, I’m glad I finally got around to it. :-)
 



... ink wasted by maintenance cycles doesn't matter.
Inkjet printers I am familiar with (HP, Epson, Canon, Brother) all have thick felt pads in the bottom of the printer that catch the unused ink that comes from the startup, shutdown, and cleaning cycles. These pads will eventually near saturation. I have had ink jet printers give me error messages saying the printer had reached the end of life, and I expect the total unused ink is a major factor in that calculation, since theses printers were typically working well just prior to that "permanent" shut down. There could be some real liability should a printer start dripping dirty ink (blended colors) out the bottom of the unit.

Personally, I use a high-end Canon Pro inkjet for photos, and a Brother multifunction color laser for all else. The latest color lasers do an amazing job for color (relative to what the color lasers were capable of ten years ago), and it does handle photos pretty well (well, nothing I would frame and put on the wall). I find the Brother mechanicals, software, features, and price hard to beat, and have gotten more than ten years out of a few Brother inkjets and lasers. I tend to prefer HP mechanicals, but certainly not their software. The lasers are so much faster, and trouble-free, and cheaper to use, that anyone doing regular printing should consider them over inkjets. Inkjet cleaning cycles are a pain! However, high quality photo prints are not there yet with lasers.
 


I remember a product called Rubber Rejuvenator that I used on my old reel-to-reel tape recorder rubber parts. Don't know if it is still available or is appropriate for print rollers.
I was a newspaper press operator for many years, and we used Rubber Rejuvenator on our press rollers. Definitely softened up the rubber rollers. The fumes from this stuff are nasty. Be sure to use it in a well-ventilated area.
 


Rubber Renue should not be used for one thing that interests me - rubber capstan pinch rollers, according to the top-rated review of Rubber Renue on Amazon:
Amazon review said:
Do not use MG Chemicals Rubber Renue to clean rubber capstan pinch rollers that come into direct contact with audio/video tape!
...
Conclusions:
For cleaning audio and video pinch rollers that come into direct contact with audio and video tapes, this product should not be used according to exerts, including those at MG Chemicals. If you do need to restore rubber pinch rollers that contact audio and video tape, be careful to not use a product that infuses oils into the rubber as this can damage or destroy the audio tape. American Recorder confirmed this, and said that if you need a good cleaner that will not dry the rubber roller, use their product: S-721H-4.
 


I, too, use a high-end Canon Pro printer to make archive-quality prints, some for sale. It is an amazing piece of equipment, and I also use it to print some graphic jobs I do for a non-profit. It has a separate maintenance cartridge for excess ink, which needs to be replaced every so often. The ink is very expensive, but for our needs, it is the best solution.

But for most of our printing, black-and-white is fine, and for that I have a perhaps 10-year-old Brother HL-5250DN that has worked flawlessly since I got it – I think it may have cost around $250. It is fast, and the output is incredibly sharp and clean. I often use the duplex printing option. I haven't replaced the toner cartridge yet, but it was one of those models that came with a full toner cartridge, unlike other Brother laser printers I've seen that come with a skimpy starter cartridge. Don't know if they still do that.

For fast color prints, I use a 4-year-old Brother MFC-J880DW we got when we still had need of a fax machine; it also serves as my wife's printer, when she has a (rare) need to print. Yes, inkjet cleaning cycles are a pain, and the only way to possibly avoid them is to use the printer regularly; but my inkjet printers inevitably have always had periods of rest, at the end of which I find clogged jets. In my experience, Canon and Brother have always been a little better in that regard than Epson, but I haven't used an Epson in many years.
 


Inkjet printers I am familiar with (HP, Epson, Canon, Brother) all have thick felt pads in the bottom of the printer that catch the unused ink that comes from the startup, shutdown, and cleaning cycles. These pads will eventually near saturation. I have had ink jet printers give me error messages saying the printer had reached the end of life, and I expect the total unused ink is a major factor in that calculation, since theses printers were typically working well just prior to that "permanent" shut down. There could be some real liability should a printer start dripping dirty ink (blended colors) out the bottom of the unit.
For at least some Epson printers, the "diaper" can be changed (at high cost) and the firmware reset to allow continued printing. You can also find online kits that divert the excess ink to a bottle outside of the printer. I did this several years ago with an Epson 1400. There was an Epson utility for resetting the printer, but it was only available for Windows. The amount of ink that went to the bottle was pretty shocking!
 


A comment on the economics of various printers:

Manufacturers' cost-per-page estimates should not be seen as standalone estimates. To be considered accurate, estimates are made in the context of "printer duty cycles," which assume a certain number of copies/prints over a specified period of time, typically expressed on specification sheets as "up to X copies per month." This helps to capture the impact of indirect costs, like the loss of ink due to automatic inkjet head cleaning, waste, or other maintenance tasks.

To give an idea of common duty cycle ranges, a basic consumer inkjet might have a duty cycle of 1,000 prints per month, while a business class printer shared by an office might have a duty cycle of 75,000 prints per month or even substantially more.

What does this mean in the real world? If your intended printer usage is significantly different from the printer's specified duty cycle, the manufacturer's cost-per-page estimate may be significantly different from what you will actually see in the field.

To take a relatively extreme case, we used to have an old Brother multifunction device in the office that was used primarily as a networked scanner, but rarely as a printer. Despite getting relatively light use as a printer, the device consumed a surprising number of ink cartridges due to frequent automated cleaning cycles and occasionally clogged heads.

When we actually did the math, the actual cost per page of that printer was approximately ten times higher the manufacturer's estimated cost per page! Had we purchased a comparably priced multifunction laser printer with a higher estimated cost per page, our actual costs would have been far lower than the "cheaper" inkjet, but only because our usage was so much lower than the associated duty cycle.

Especially for people with low volume personal printing requirements, a color laser printer can be substantially less expensive over time than an inkjet, given the absence of cleaning cycles and clogged head replacements. Indeed, I've seen examples in my extended family where people took several years to empty their starter cartridges, resulting in extremely low costs per page. For those occasions when someone required higher quality photo output, it was simple enough to visit the local FedEx Office location or print shop and print there, or even to use a friend's printer. (The caveat, of course, is that people who buy laser printers need to be prepared to pay the higher unit cost of laser consumables, even if their per page costs are much less.)

As with automobiles, your mileage may vary.
 


Yes, inkjet cleaning cycles are a pain, and the only way to possibly avoid them is to use the printer regularly; but my inkjet printers inevitably have always had periods of rest, at the end of which I find clogged jets. In my experience, Canon and Brother have always been a little better in that regard than Epson, but I haven't used an Epson in many years.
Yes, even the best inkjets are a pain, but that has been my experience with Epson as well. I also use a Canon Pro 10. Possible disclaimer: I have a small museum of Canon cameras dating back to the Canon TL that was my high school graduation present... ;-)
 


For at least some Epson printers, the "diaper" can be changed (at high cost) and the firmware reset to allow continued printing. You can also find online kits that divert the excess ink to a bottle outside of the printer. I did this several years ago with an Epson 1400. There was an Epson utility for resetting the printer, but it was only available for Windows. The amount of ink that went to the bottle was pretty shocking!
My (now retired) Canon i9100 actually gave a specific error code that the "diaper" was saturated. The replacement was neither particularly expensive nor difficult (but, yes, it was a good thing I did it outside... ;-) I got a few more years out of it. I honestly don't know how my Pro 10 handles this.
 


Since my installation of Catalina, I've experienced terrible loss of wifi connections with my HP all-in-one (HP 8620 series) printer/scanner.

I guess this model must be considered "old" by HP, because they haven't updated any drivers or firmware since about 2018. No matter how many times I "reinstall software" (HP's answer to every problem, it seems), the printer connects, but then loses its wifi connection within just a few minutes (fewer than 10), disabling printing, of course.

HP's online support is OK, but is, essentially, a closed loop: "What's wrong? Download and reinstall software. Connected! Problem solved."

Makes me wonder if this is a Catalina-related problem? Rebooting the printer successfully reconnects, but the printer drops the connection again within a few minutes. It's just not practical to have to reboot a printer every time I want to use it.

I've tried connecting by ethernet (which works great on my desktop), but in HP's world, connecting by ethernet automatically disables wifi (which means no printing from my laptop).

It's otherwise a very good printer, and not that old. I'm wondering whether there's some setting in my wifi router which I could adjust to ensure the router "sees" and "locks in" my printer?

Or someplace in Catalina printer settings to prevent my printer from being "kicked off" after a few minutes of idleness.

Or some way to access the printer's internal settings to trigger an "automatic" reboot when it loses its wifi connection. (That seems silly, to me.)

I'd welcome suggestions for troubleshooting.
 


Since my installation of Catalina, I've experienced terrible loss of wifi connections with my HP all-in-one (HP 8620 series) printer/scanner.
... I guess this model must be considered "old" by HP, because they haven't updated any drivers or firmware since about 2018.
According to HP's support page the most recent firmware for this printer is version 1828A, dated July 31 2018. It sounds like you already have this version, but if you don't, I would start by updating it.
I've tried connecting by ethernet (which works great on my desktop), but in HP's world, connecting by ethernet automatically disables wifi (which means no printing from my laptop).
What kind of Ethernet connection are you talking about?

I wouldn't try connecting the printer directly to your computer. While that might work, it pretty much eliminates the possibility of sharing the printer (unless you configure your desktop computer as a print server for it).

Instead, connect your printer's Ethernet port to an Ethernet switch. Connect another port on that switch to your Wi-Fi router (one of its LAN ports). If you like, you can connect other devices (like your desktop computer) to the switch as well.

In this configuration, everything connected to that Ethernet switch (and any other switches connected to it) should be accessible via Wi-Fi. The router will route packets between the Ethernet and Wi-Fi network segments as necessary to maintain connectivity.

In my experience (with various HP and Brother printers), this configuration allows both Ethernet and Wi-Fi printing for everything you have on-site. It even allows AirPrint if your printer's firmware has the capability.

If you haven't tried this configuration yet, give it a try. You may need to buy an Ethernet switch if you don't already have one, but they're pretty cheap these days.
 


What kind of Ethernet connection are you talking about?
... Instead, connect your printer's Ethernet port to ... your Wi-Fi router (one of its LAN ports). ...
In this configuration, everything connected to that Ethernet switch (and any other switches connected to it) should be accessible via Wi-Fi. The router will route packets between the Ethernet and Wi-Fi network segments as necessary to maintain connectivity.
In my experience (with various HP and Brother printers), this configuration allows both Ethernet and Wi-Fi printing for everything you have on-site. It even allows AirPrint if your printer's firmware has the capability.
I have always had my printers (HP, Epson, and now Canon all-in-ones) configured with WiFi off and connected via Ethernet in various ways to the WiFi router. I can print and scan from any wired or WiFi connected device. I highly recommend it since it is very reliable and avoids another potential WiFi security vulnerability.
 


I have always had my printers (HP, Epson, and now Canon all-in-ones) configured with WiFi off and connected via Ethernet in various ways to the WiFi router. I can print and scan from any wired or WiFi connected device. I highly recommend it since it is very reliable and avoids another potential WiFi security vulnerability.
The first time my Canon Pro-10 dropped its WiFi connection 90% through a 13x19 print was the last time it was connected wireless.
 


According to HP's support page the most recent firmware for this printer is version 1828A, dated July 31 2018. It sounds like you already have this version, but if you don't, I would start by updating it.
... What kind of Ethernet connection are you talking about?
... Instead, connect your printer's Ethernet port to an Ethernet switch. Connect another port on that switch to your Wi-Fi router (one of its LAN ports). If you like, you can connect other devices (like your desktop computer) to the switch as well.
... If you haven't tried this configuration yet, give it a try. You may need to buy an Ethernet switch if you don't already have one, but they're pretty cheap these days.
Thanks, David, very much for your help. Yes, I've already downloaded the HP driver(s) and reinstalled several times.

I was connecting the printer directly to the iMac using an ethernet cable. Worked great. But, as you say, it disables Airprint and any wifi connection. (Not sure why. Not sure I need to know why.)

I'll have to think about how to use an ethernet switch in my situation. My router is in a different room from the printer and the computers... so running an ethernet cable from the printer to the switch-at-router is physically challenging. But I'll think about how that might be accomplished. (Printer-to-switch-in-same room via ethernet cable. Switch-to-router-in-other-room via CAT-5 in walls. Might be do-able, as long as the switch doesn't have to be in immediate physical proximity to the router.)

Thank you again.
 



... I was connecting the printer directly to the iMac using an ethernet cable. Worked great. But, as you say, it disables Airprint and any wifi connection. (Not sure why. Not sure I need to know why.)
If the iMac and printer are in the same room, can you try using a USB cable?

You could also try a 3rd-party Wifi router (e.g, Linksys), because some ISP routers (e.g, Hitron CGN3 models) don't seem to pass the "Bonjour" traffic to wake up the printer after it has gone to sleep (even if wired with ethernet). So, if you try a different Wifi router (and have both iMac and printer join the network), that would allow to test if the issue is Catalina, or the router.

So the network would look like:
Internet <-> ISP Modem/Router (with wifi turned off) <-> 3rd-Party Router (with NAT, DHCP, and WiFi turned on) <-> your network and devices​

You could also try moving the printer so it is near enough to the router to test it with an ethernet cable, to see if that helps (and if it does, consider running ethernet from the router to the room where the printer belongs).

Connecting the printer to the iMac directly with an ethernet cable is problematic. Ethernet is a network protocol, and both the iMac and printer expect to be given an IP address by a router - without which they won't find each other. When you connect the iMac and printer directly without a router in between, there is no network defined, and the iMac will assign itself an IP address of 169.254.x.x, and the printer may simply ignore the ethernet port. If it worked at all, it would be by accident.

You might also go in to to System Preferences > Printers & Scanners > and delete the instance of the printer, reboot, and then go in and add it again - pay attention to whether it chooses an "Airprint" driver, or an HP driver (both should work, but if it chooses one, try the other...).
 


I'll have to think about how to use an ethernet switch in my situation. My router is in a different room from the printer and the computers... so running an ethernet cable from the printer to the switch-at-router is physically challenging. But I'll think about how that might be accomplished.
Depending in the layout of your home, running cables through the walls might be easy or it might be a really messy procedure.

My first house was a ranch where the basement had a dropped ceiling (meaning I could move tiles for easy access). I ran cables by drilling a hole (inside the wall) through the floor and fished them into the basement. It was pretty easy to pull the cables together to a common location near a power outlet and put a switch there.

My current house, on the other hand, is two stories and the basement is finished with a drywall ceiling. Trying to run cables here would involve opening walls and ceilings and then patching/painting afterward – a job which I will not do.

In order to extend your Ethernet network without running cables through walls, there are a few options you can choose:
With a mesh Wi-Fi solution, you purchase two or more nodes and set them up throughout your house to form a mesh Wi-Fi network. Each node in the network should have at least one LAN-side Ethernet jack. You can attach an Ethernet device or switch to this jack, allowing its wired devices to communicate with everything else in your home.

With a powerline network, you buy two or more adapters and pair them together. You then plug them into power outlets in different rooms in your home. Each one will have at least one Ethernet jack. Plug Ethernet devices or switches into these jacks. The adapters will send Ethernet data over the power lines in your home to establish the network. This is the solution I use in my home.

A MoCA network sends data over the coaxial cable in your walls used for cable TV. Some broadband services (e.g. FiOS) are actually based on MoCA, so you can extend the wired side of your network by simply attaching a compatible transceiver to any room with a cable TV jack. The only catch here is that there are different MoCA frequencies so you need to make sure to get adapters that don't interfere with any other services on the coaxial cable (e.g. cable or satellite TV). Your service provider may be able to help you select compatible adapters.

A HomePNA network is similar to MoCA. It may use coaxial cable or it may use the phone lines in your walls. Like MoCA, you will want to make sure any adapters you get don't interfere with existing services (cable TV, DSL, etc.) Your service provider may be able to help if this interests you.

- - -

As I said above, I'm using powerline networking in my home. This is pretty easy to set up and use. There are a few different standards to choose from. Be sure to select adapters based on the HomePlug AV2 standard. You can get AV2 adapters that (theoretically) can go up to 2 Gbps. In actual practice, you won't come close to that speed, but a fast adapter should give you all the bandwidth you actually require.

My home is using the older HomePlug AV standard with 500Mbps adapters. I've never come close to 500 Mbps, but there is more than enough bandwidth for my 100Mbps cable modem and whatever local LAN connectivity (printing, file sharing) I require.
 


Since my installation of Catalina, I've experienced terrible loss of wifi connections with my HP all-in-one (HP 8620 series) printer/scanner.
… "What's wrong? Download and reinstall software. Connected! Problem solved."
… Rebooting the printer successfully reconnects, but the printer drops the connection again within a few minutes. It's just not practical to have to reboot a printer every time I want to use it.
… I'm wondering whether there's some setting in my wifi router which I could adjust to ensure the router "sees" and "locks in" my printer?
… printer settings to prevent my printer from being "kicked off" after a few minutes of idleness.
Or some way to access the printer's internal settings to …
It seems that the IP address of the printer keeps changing. Installing Catalina might have triggered it, as well as just breathing might do it. I suggest that you consider setting a static IP address for the printer. Then in System Preferences, add the printer as "IP", inputting the static IP address with the Line Printer Daemon protocol. See video on
Assigning Your HP Printer A Static IP Address.
(Note the video uses Windows, but regardless, the information is relevant.

FYI: I used to experience the sudden no-printing as you described, which drove me nuts. So, I set a static IP address for each of my printers.

One other option to consider is restoring network settings to defaults. Hope this helps.
 


It seems that the IP address of the printer keeps changing. Installing Catalina might have triggered it, as well as just breathing might do it. I suggest that you consider setting a static IP address for the printer. Then in System Preferences, add the printer as "IP", inputting the static IP address with the Line Printer Daemon protocol. See video on
(Note the video uses Windows, but regardless, the information is relevant.
FYI: I used to experience the sudden no-printing as you described, which drove me nuts. So, I set a static IP address for each of my printers.
One other option to consider is restoring network settings to defaults. Hope this helps.
I have to agree, and I forgot about this. I have static IP addresses assigned to my Canon all-in-one and our aging HP laser jet.
 


I suggest that you consider setting a static IP address for the printer.
That is a very important thing to do for any device providing server-like capabilities to your network (printers, NASs, etc.)

Just remember to not use an address that might also be assigned by your DHCP server. Your DHCP server is probably running as a part of your router (unless you've disabled it and set up a different one somewhere else). Its configuration should let you specify the range of IP addresses that it hands out (the "dynamic pool") or a range of addresses that it will not hand out (the "static pool"). When creating static addresses for devices, make sure to pick an address in the static pool's range.

FWIW, on my LAN, I reserve a hundred addresses (192.168.1.1 through 192.168.1.100) for my static pool, leaving the rest of the subnet (192.168.1.101 through 192.168.1.254) as the dynamic pool. (Addresses 192.168.1.0 and 192.168.1.255 are reserved for the "null" and "broadcast" addresses. Don't assign them to any devices, ever.)

I configure my major equipment (desktops, laptops, printers and routers) with static addresses in the static pool, leaving everything else (phones, tablets, home appliances, etc.) with dynamic addresses that the DHCP server assigns from the dynamic pool.
 


I want to thank all of you for all this excellent advice! I'm experimenting with several of your suggestions, including setting a static IP address for my printer, switch dispersal of ethernet (Netgear switch arrives today) and "reserving" an address.

I don't use an ISP router; I have my own (Netgear), which works quite well. I have already reset the printer's network settings several times, to factory default, etc. And I have already deleted/re-created the printer in the Mac's printer preference pane, several times, using both Airprint and HP's Bonjour-equivalent software.

Meantime, I'll try not to "breathe" while using Catalina <grin>.

I'll report back. Thank you all, again!
 


That is a very important thing to do for any device providing server-like capabilities to your network (printers, NASs, etc.)

Just remember to not use an address that might also be assigned by your DHCP server. Your DHCP server is probably running as a part of your router (unless you've disabled it and set up a different one somewhere else). Its configuration should let you specify the range of IP addresses that it hands out (the "dynamic pool") or a range of addresses that it will not hand out (the "static pool"). When creating static addresses for devices, make sure to pick an address in the static pool's range.
My, it's all these tasks that some have learned to do over the years that are important...
Access the router LAN TCP/IP setup for a list of the IP addresses dynamically assigned to your devices. That will help in choosing the IP address to assign.
 


Regarding printers and other shared resources, another good reason to use a static IP address (or to have your router assign a "permanent" DHCP address, depending on your preference and your router's capabilities) is to avoid problems with Bonjour and other networking quirks.

For example, some routers will not route Bonjour/mDNS packets between wired and wireless networks or between 2.4GHz and 5GHz wireless networks. For example, if you have one of these routers and you connect your printer wirelessly to your network via the 5GHz band, devices using Bonjour won't be able to reach the printer if they connect through the 2.4GHz wireless band. However, if you use a static/reserved IP address, you'll be able to connect to the printer as an IP printer.

I've seen similar issues (too complicated to go into here) involving IPv6 multicast configuration that blocked some Canon printers from being seen across networks. They were nightmares to troubleshoot, and it was far easier just to use traditional, static/reserved IP addresses.
 


I have to agree, and I forgot about this. I have static IP addresses assigned to my Canon all-in-one and our aging HP laser jet.
I use static IP's on everything that allows them on our LAN. It also helps in keeping tracking of all the IoT, not to mention the useful stuff, with the device count > 20.
 


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