How to Clean Your Laser Printer – 3 Helpful Tips

Male hand holding color printer toner

All electronics collect dust over time. Unfortunately, laser printers are particularly prone to damage due to debris, as the particles can enter the toner and cause the narrow parts of the printer interior to become clogged. 

However, regularly cleaning your laser printer can restore the machine to its original condition and give you a smooth high-quality printing experience every time. Here are our tips and tricks to help clean your laser printer properly. 

1. Use the Right Tools

When it comes to cleaning inkjet vs. laser printers, laser printers are more sophisticated machines that require special tools to get the job done. Having the right tools for the job will make cleaning your printer faster and easier so you can get back to work. The equipment you need to clean your laser printer includes:

  • An activated toner cloth that features a non-oily coating to statically trap dust particles without scratching the toner cartridges.
  • Isopropyl alcohol, as it quickly evaporates, leaving behind no residue on sensitive parts.
  • Cotton swabs specially designed for printers, which typically feature a 6” long stick to get into tight corners.
  • A soft-bristled paintbrush approximately ½” wide.
  • A dust mask for respiratory protection against powdered toner particles.
  • Gloves to prevent chemical skin irritation.
  • (Optional) toner vacuum specifically designed to remove powdered toner from inside the laser printer. It is a worthwhile investment if you need to clean the interior of your printer regularly.

Toner cartridge against laser printer

2. Let Your Printer Rest

Before you start cleaning your laser printer, switch off and unplug your machine from the power outlet, and then let it sit for at least an hour. This allows the toner powder to settle and the mechanisms to cool down before you handle them and prevents electrical shocks for safer, easier cleaning. 

3. Be Systematic

It is vital that you handle every part of your laser printer carefully, as even minor damage to parts can affect how laser printers work and could mean an expensive replacement. Also, some of the components of the printer, such as the fuser-roller, can become extremely hot, causing burns. 

Be systematic when disassembling, cleaning, and reassembling your laser printer to ensure that every part is in the correct position and functioning correctly. 

  • Begin by opening the printer according to the manufacturer’s instructions to expose the interior, and then remove all the detachable components from the exterior casing for easier access to the internal parts. Be careful not to expose the printer drum to direct sunlight, as it is light sensitive. Avoid handling the drum with bare hands, as the oil from your skin is also damaging. 
  • Gently remove the toner cartridge and activate the toner cloth by pulling the sides of the sheet. Wipe all sides of the cartridge, and then place it on top of a clean toner cloth and dispose of the used one. 
  • Now is the time to use your toner vacuum if you have one. Position the toner vacuum on the inside of the printer. Using a slow motion, move from left to right, lingering for at least three seconds in each area to remove any toner powder that may have spilled inside the printer. 

If you do not have a toner vacuum, use another activated toner cloth to remove excess toner from inside the machine using the same systematic left-to-right movements to ensure that no part of the printer is overlooked. 

  • Use the paintbrush to remove any dust and powder from hard-to-reach nooks in the printer and vacuum or wipe up the debris.
  • Dip the cotton swabs in the isopropyl alcohol and very gently wipe down the delicate corona wires inside the printer. Twist the swab when it becomes dirty on one side to continue cleaning the rest of the wires. You can also use the alcohol-soaked cotton swabs to clean the paper feeder.
  • Once the interior is free from dust and toner powder, reassemble the internal parts. Keep your user’s manual close by for easy reference and reassemble the parts in the reverse order that you removed them, making sure they are secured at their attachment points.
  • Wipe the exterior of the printer down with a lint-free microfiber cloth and isopropyl alcohol, and your printer is ready for use. 

Repair and maintenance of the printer

Final Thoughts

If you are unsure about how to clean your printer, call a professional technician for advice. Cleaning and maintaining your laser printer can prolong the life of your machine and guarantee high-quality printed documents.  

To replace your toner cartridges, or to find out more about the range of ink and toner products we have available, call us at (888)-745-4316. You can also get your ink and toner questions answered with our live customer support chat service.