HP Printer Black Ink Blurry [Quick Fix]

To fix your HP printer black ink blurry problem, do the solutions provided in this article.

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1. Reinstall your HP Printer Driver on Windows

Note: You should only do this if you also notice that the color ink is not printing as well.

Do the following to reinstall the driver:

Step 1: Go to the Printers folder on your computer.

Step 2: Then select your HP printer.

Step 3: Click on “Uninstall Device” or “Remove Device” to remove your HP machine from the list.

Step 4: Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the removal. If you have more than one icon for your HP printer, ensure that every one of them is removed.

Step 5: Visit HP Software and Driver Downloads page to get the printer driver.

Step 6: Install the new driver.

Step 7: Run a test print.

If it prints clearly, then the issue has been fixed. Therefore, you don’t need to try the remaining troubleshooting options.

However, if your HP printer’s black ink remains faded, you should move to the next option.

2. Ensure that you are using Genuine HP Cartridge

The use of a non-genuine HP cartridge can also cause your HP printer’s black ink to have streaks on the paper. This is a result of the incompatibility between the printer and the cartridge. Therefore, to fix this issue, confirm that the cartridge in your printer is from HP.

If it is not, then you have to replace it with a genuine HP cartridge.

However, if it is a genuine HP cartridge, then continue troubleshooting.

We recommend that you read this article: HP Printer Black Ink [Issues & Solutions] if you are interested in learning more about how to solve other HP printer black ink issues.

3. Confirm if the Paper in Use is Appropriate

You should confirm if the paper in use is suitable for the kind of print job you are currently running.

Here are some things to check:

i. Ensure that the print side is facing down in your printer’s main print tray.

Not all papers print on both sides. Hence, if you use such paper and print on the non-print side, your HP printer’s black ink will be faint. Therefore, confirm that the side you are printing on is indeed the print side.

ii. Ensure that you are not using curled or wrinkled paper.

Make sure you always use paper that is free of any kind of wrinkle to get the best print quality.

iii. Use the right type of paper.

There are different types of paper and not all can be used for the same type of print project. You should find out if the paper in use is fit for the project you are printing if the black ink is blurry.

If the above doesn’t fix the issue, do the next troubleshooting.

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4. Check your Computer’s Print Settings

The print settings on your computer might be the reason why the black ink of your HP printer is blurry on paper.

The steps to check the settings differ depending on the computer’s operating system. Nevertheless, we will show you how to do this on both Windows and Mac OS.

How to Check Print Settings on Windows Computer

Follow the steps below to check the print settings on your Windows computer:

Step 1: Click on “File” from the application you’ll be printing from.

Step 2: Click on “Print”.

This action will cause the print window to open.

Step 3: Click the button labeled “Properties”, “Preferences”, “Printer Setup”, “Options” or “Printer”.

This variation is due to the various operating systems. Whichever one you see, it means the same thing.

Step 4: You might have to change the settings below depending on the print project at hand:

  • Paper type
  • Paper size
  • Print quality
  • Black and white

Step 5: Once you have made your desired changes, click on “OK”.

This action will apply the changes you have made.

Step 6: Now click on “Print”.

How to Check Print Settings on Mac Computer

Follow the steps below to check the print settings on your Mac computer:

Step 1: Open the document you want to print; then click on “File”.

Step 2: Click on “Print”.

Step 3: Select the menu for “Media & Quality” or “Paper Type/ Quality”.

Step 4: You might have to change the settings below depending on the project you are printing:

  • Paper type
  • Quality

Step 5: You can choose the save the changes for subsequent print jobs. To do this, do the following:

i. Locate the “Presets” menu; then select “Save”.

ii. Name the preset.

Step 6: Print a document.

Examine the print job to see if it is still blurry or faded. If it still is, then continue troubleshooting.

5. Examine the Estimated Ink Levels

If the black ink level in your HP printer is low, it can cause it to print blur or faded text. Therefore, you need to confirm if the ink is low or not. To do this, simply follow the instructions we shared in this article: HP Printer Black Ink – How to Check HP Printer Estimated Ink Levels.

If the ink level is empty or low, move to the next troubleshooting.

If it is not, then skip the next troubleshooting.

6. Replace Empty or Low Cartridges

The black ink might be blurry because the black ink cartridge level is either low or empty. You can determine this by carrying out the previous troubleshooting.

If the cartridge is empty or low, then you should replace the cartridge. To do this, simply follow the instructions here: HP Printer Black Ink – How to Replace HP Printer Cartridge.

After replacing the cartridge check if the issue is fixed. If it is, then you should stop troubleshooting. However, if the problem persists, then try the next option.

If the cartridge isn’t empty or low, then you should try the next option.

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7. Print out a Print Quality Diagnostic Report – HP Printer Black Ink Blurry

Printing a Print Quality Diagnostic Report via your HP printer’s control panel will allow you to evaluate what is wrong with the printer.

How to Print a Print Quality Diagnostic Report via HP Printer Control Panel

Follow the steps below to print a Print Quality Diagnostic Report from your HP printer’s control panel:

Step 1: Load the main print tray with white paper.

Step 2: On your HP printer’s control panel, swipe left.

Step 3: Tap the “Setup” icon.

Step 4: Tap “Tools”.

Step 5: Swipe up.

Step 6: Tap “Print Quality Report”.

Your printer will print out a Print Quality Diagnostic Report.

Step 7: Keep the report as it will be used as a reference as you continue troubleshooting.

Move to the troubleshooting option below…

8. Check if there are Defects on the Report’s Color Blocks

At this point, you will have to examine the report you printed. On the report, you will notice color blocks. Since you are having issues with your black ink, check if the black block is showing white lines and if it is missing or faded

If you can’t find any white lines and the block is not missing or faded, then skip the next troubleshooting and move to item 10.

If you find white lines on the black block or it is faded or missing, then you need to clean the black ink cartridge.

9. Clean the Black Ink Cartridge

The print quality of your HP printer can be improved by cleaning the cartridge. This can be done from the control panel of your printer. After the cleaning is done, then the results can be evaluated.

How to Clean HP Printer Cartridge via Control Panel

To clean your HP printer cartridge via the control panel, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Load the main print tray with paper.

Step 2: On your HP printer’s control panel, swipe left.

Step 3: Tap the “Setup” icon.

Step 4: Tap “Tools”.

Step 5: Tap “Clean Cartridges”.

Your printer will print out a Print Quality Diagnostic Report.

Step 6: Examine the report.

• If you are satisfied with the print quality, click on “No”. You don’t have to continue troubleshooting.

• If you are not satisfied with the print quality, click on “Yes”, when you are prompted to carry out another cleaning level.

Note: The printhead might have a huge clog which will require that you perform another cycle of cleaning. If this is the case, do not initiate the second cycle till 30 minutes elapses since the initiation of the first cycle.

10. Check if there are Defects on the Alignment Lines and Green Block

After cleaning the second time, examine the printed report. Your focus should be on the alignment lines and the green block. The alignment lines must be straight and joined. Also, there shouldn’t be white gaps or dark lines in the green block.

• If there are no defects, then it means there is nothing wrong with the cartridge or print mechanism. However, if you are not still satisfied with the print quality, you can use the guidelines below. Apart from following the guidelines, don’t continue with the next troubleshooting option.

i. Ensure the image that you want to print is of a high resolution. Enlarged images with low resolutions tend to be blurry when printed.

ii. If the blurry printing is noticed at the printout edges, apply a 180-degree rotation to the image via the print settings.

iii. Ensure that the cartridge is not kept out of your HP printer for a long time.

This will prevent the ink within the cartridge from getting exposed to air which could dry it out. Since HP printer black ink is more expensive than human blood, it is wise you prevent ink wastage of any kind.

iv. Always turn off your printer using the power button.

If you find defects, move to the troubleshooting below.

11. Align your HP Printer

At this point, you need to align your printer to ensure that the printhead is in alignment with the printer. After the alignment is complete, you can then make an evaluation of the result.

To align your HP printer, follow the steps we shared here: HP Printer Black Ink – How to Align HP Printer Cartridge.

12. Replace Defective Cartridge

The cartridge even though it contains ink might be defective. If you’ve done all the above without the issue being resolved, then you need to replace the black cartridge. To do this, simply follow the instructions we shared here: HP Printer Black Ink – How to Replace HP Printer Cartridge.

After replacing the cartridge and the problem still isn’t resolved, then you have to try the last resort.

13. Service your HP Printer

If the issue is not resolved even after replacing the ink cartridge, then the solution is beyond you. At this point, you’ll have to service your HP printer.

If you bought it from HP, you can contact them to schedule a repair date. If the product is damaged and it is still under warranty, then you will get a replacement from HP. You will have to pay repair fees if your printer is no longer under warranty.

If the printer was purchased from a third-party store other than HP, then you’ll need to check their terms and conditions concerning faulty products.

The solutions above will also fix the issues of HP printer black ink being too light and HP printer black ink missing lines.