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Can an old print fuser affect the amount of toner used?

Posted on 2016-07-27
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Last Modified: 2016-11-22
We have Dell 3130cn Color Laser printer that is showing a message "Replace fuser now". However, the printer is still printing fine.

I was wondering if the fact the fuser needs replacing could affect the economy of the toners and how much toner is used when printing? If so, then its worth replacing the fuser sooner rather than waiting until the printer stops printing.
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Question by:leo135
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by:☠ MASQ ☠
☠ MASQ ☠ earned 125 total points
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If anything the amount of toner used goes down with older fusers.  Remember that the nag isn't based of quality checks going on inside the printer, it's just you've hit the page count that on average is the recommendation to replace (and, you can call me a cynic if you want, that's the number the manufacture who'll be taking some of the cash for the fuser sets!).  I look on it as a reminder that from now on I'm going to need to keep an eye on the print quality and as that deteriorates (streaks, faint prints etc) I will need to put a new kit in.  If it's a business critical machine you'll need to get things organised faster than if you are able to take it out of service for a week or so.   Print quality is everything.  The nags are advisory.
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hdhondt earned 250 total points
ID: 41732190
No, the fuser does not affect the amount of toner used by the printer. By the time the paper gets to the fuser, the toner is already on the paper.

As for replacing the fuser, as long as the printer works correctly, there is no need to do so, at all. When the fuser starts failing you may notice spots on the paper where toner does not stick, there may be smudges, etc. The fuser normally comes as part of a "maintenance kit", which can also include new pick rollers and other parts. Again, if there are no frequent jams and other issues, there is no need to replace any of them. The internal counters in the printer may eventually decide the fuser needs replacing. This is what's happening to yours. Until the printer actually stops, there is still no need to replace it.

Of course, you may get fed up with users continually asking you to "fix" the message...

In conclusion, if the printer has no problems, don't try to fix them.
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by:Dr. Klahn
Dr. Klahn earned 125 total points
ID: 41732354
Agree with both the above.  The amount of toner deposited on the paper in a laser printer depends mainly on the high voltage and the charge scrubbing.  The only thing that a fuser should affect is how well the toner sticks to the paper.

But:  Depending on what company OEMed the printer to Dell, there may be a page lifetime counter associated with the fuser.  Some printers refuse to operate after that counter runs out, regardless of whether the fuser is still operable or not.

Side note:  Unless you have the printer's service manual, I recommend against pulling print engine parts without necessity.  Some Samsung and Dell units blow anti-tamper fuses in print engine parts so that once a part is in, it has to stay in until it fails.
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by:leo135
ID: 41738779
Guys thanks for your comments, they were really helpful!
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