HP Deskjet 400

I have a HP Deskjet 400 and it worked great till...
One day I went to print and the ink cartridge slid to the center position and the ink cartridge change light was blinking. What I just described is exactly what happens when you push the ink cartridge change button and the cartridge slides to the center position and waits while the light on top blinks.  It had a non-empty cartridge in it when this happens. I shelved it and used a backup Deskjet 500 from my office (uses the same cartridge).  THe Deskjet 400 sat for about 4 months till I installed it on a new PC last week (used latest driver from HP). It still has the same problem. It bahaves normally (makes noise at PC startup and shutdown) till you go to print. Last week I was using a new ink cartridge (different one from the discovery of the problem) when the printer duplicated the problem. What's going on?? Is it still good??

Thanks in advance,
Ploppin,  Omaha NE
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Asta CuConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Does the test page print ok?  Is this shown as your default printer?  Did you uninstall the other printer before moving this this one?  What is your Operating System and version?  

Correct printer and driver shows in Device Manager?

Is it a new cartridge?  If not, they can get plugged up, dried out, etc., and cause problems.

Asta CuCommented:
I'd also check the Printer's manual to run the "clean" cycle; I assume it is the right/approved cable.  I also assume it is directly connected, versus using a switch box, but if not so, let us know.
ploppinAuthor Commented:
The test page did not print, the print cartridge moves to the middle and stays there and the light blinks.
There was no printer installed prior to this printer being installed.
I am using windows 98SE.
The printer & driver is correct in the device manager.
The rpinter cartridge is new.
The cable is the same cable used when it did work and it is plugged into the PC directly.

Hope this helps,
Thanks for the replies,
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Asta CuCommented:
I'm doing some research on this a little later today.  This PDF file may help in the meantime.  Check the section entitled Printer is not Printing for a few checkpoints; they also recommend checking the Quick Start Guide.  It sounds like the Printer Cartridge isn't installed correctly, or perhaps the back cover isn't closed or the rear access door isn't installed (but unclear).  Which printer lights are on?


Could there be some kind of obstuction or dirt build up?

Is the cartridge a new one, or do you refill it?  


Asta CuCommented:
This general troubleshooting information is helpful for the HP Deskjet series (in general terms) to check the "won't print problem", although the cartridge appears to be the problem at this point.  I'll check back when I can.  The part that I refer to here is the information below this line (though previous information is also helpful):
Restart the computer after making these three adjustments.


Asta CuCommented:
Your cartridge stays in the center, this talks about cartridge stall and solution for the DJ 400, and hopefully helpful (still looking).
HP DeskJet 400 Printer - Recovering from a Carriage Stall when the Carriage Stays on the Right Side of the Printer
Asta CuCommented:
Blinking lights and meanings/solutions

HP Inkjet Cartridges - Cartridge Compatibility Chart for HP Deskjet and HP Deskwriter Printers

HP DeskJet 400 Series Printers - Blinking Cartridge Light with Wrong Cartridge Selected During Communication Test

Sometimes when the black and color print cartridges are changed; the spring that holds the top of the print cartridges in place can get bent out of shape. If the spring can be bent back, replace the cartridge.

I sure hope this helps you resolve the problem.

":0) Asta
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