• HP Officejet 6500 Won’t Print Black

    Home » Forums » AskWoody support » PC hardware » PC hardware-General Questions » HP Officejet 6500 Won’t Print Black

    • This topic has 37 replies, 10 voices, and was last updated 3 months ago.
    Author
    Topic
    #2419964

    Hi and plea for help! Suddenly my printer will not print black. Here’s what I’ve done so far:

    1. Ensured all cartridges were full or partially full. (2 were very low; assumed that was the issue so replaced both with new cartridges – no change)
    2. Confirmed all printer settings were correct (unchanged since it did print black just fine).
    3. Worked through HP help document, all but manual printhead cleaning.
    4. Removed and reset black ink cartridge.
    5. Printed printhead page had a band of colors at the bottom of the page, but no solid black box and no text at all.
    6. Ditto for test page: everything looked fine but no black lines, no black text.
    7. Ran latest version HP Print and Scan Doctor; it reported everything was fine.
    8. Turned off, unplugged, let sit for 5 minutes; restarted. Sigh.

    Printer is not new, but has printed perfectly until this week. I’m sure stumped and none of the research I’ve been plowing through has helped.

    Any suggestions to get this working again will be very much appreciated!!

    Thanks,

    Linda

    Viewing 23 reply threads
    Author
    Replies
    • #2419966

      I’ll get the silly one out of the way first 🙂
      Of the two that you replaced, was one of them the black ink?
      If so, have you completely removed the ink seal before inserting the cartridge?

      "-rw-rw-rw-" extreme computing
      • #2419976

        I saw the same thing happen on a Canon all-in-one. The user complained it would no longer print black immediately after replacing the black cartridge because of an “empty” warning. I checked the indicated ink levels – fine. I opened the printer – no flashing red lights from any cartridges. I thought the black one looked just a bit shinier than the others. I removed it and discovered the cellophane wrapping was still on. The orange twist-off ink seal had been removed (no way the cartridge would have gone in with the seal still on) but the cellophane covered the electrical contacts on the cartridge causing the no no black print condition. Removed the cellophane and it printed perfectly!

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2419991

      If it’s not the ink, it’s can only really a problem at the head or a bubble inside. Take out the head and look at it – can you see a “black line” of dots on the narrower head (which would indicate ink is supplied) or is it dry with messy edges as ink isn’t being supplied (clean the black head only, using a lint free, slightly damp cloth, wiping centre outwards so as not to wipe dried ink across the jets making matters worse – mind the colour head! Try cleaning from the driver and look again to see if ink is being supplied. Check the gold contacts on the back are clean – you can clean them the same way but don’t do so unless you have to – you really need to drain static (eg touch a PC metal case) before going near that part, and leaving greasy fingerprints there is also bad..

      If there is still no inky line, look at the “grey gauze” under where the black ink cartridge goes – does it look shiny and wet (it should) – Try a deep clean and if the dirt on the head returns but no ink line is visible it could be a problem with the service station if the gauze is “wet” – possibly a paper jam has left paper fibres over the rubber cup which seals to the head during cleaning – wipe around the top of those parts gently with a cotton bud extended with a chopstick – you’ll need a torch to see I suspect, and beware the ink will make hell of a mess – straight into a bin with the cotton bud. In desperation literally a drop of isopropanol (tape head cleaner, rubbing alcohol) on the grey gauze will drop the surface tension aiding the union of the ink wad in the ink tank and the gauze and thus might help the bubble pass through. The downside is the cost of the ink you use trying to get it going if the “funnel” beneath the gauze has drained or the ink there has managed to dry out under there plugging the head (in which case a new head is even pricier – some would suggest a soak in hot water but that is very bad for the electronics side as it stays trapped under the foil circuit for days even if you use IPA to try to displace it.. but I guess if you’re going to replace the printer (screwy pricing, a decent printer can be cheaper than an old model print head sometimes. It’s worth checking.)

      https://support.hp.com/gb-en/document/c01643079

      https://partsurfer.hp.com/Search.aspx

      Sorry the printer’s quite old – there are no part photos on partsurfer so you’ll have to wing it a bit.. the service station is at one end of the head travel and has the only rubber bits you’ll see in that area bar possibly the platen rollers.

       

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2420009

      I second @Oldguy‘s cleaning suggestion it is a good worth while last effort to get your restore your printer.

      Also, a very long time ago the replacement print head with starter ink cartridges price was nearly equal to the cost of a new printer. (different manufacturer, make and model.) So attempting to clean the print head was the way to save money. The print head lasted seven years, much longer than the recommended six month or so replacement cycle.

      I hope that cleaning the print head will work for you,\; If you have gotten up to one decade of more of service out of the print head until now the printer was a good buy!

      P.S. Wear gloves!

    • #2420745

      First, sincere apologies for not replying earlier. I hadn’t received email notice that you guys were in here and forgot that sometimes happens even when one checks the “email reply” box. Thank you all so much for your time and suggestions.

      Microfix and DrBozo: black ink cartridge not replaced; about 1/3 full. I did inspect it to ensure the spout was clear (used pin to clean just in case to be double sure) and reset it a couple of times, too.

      Oldguy and Anonymous: excellent detailed instructions – thank you! Okay, I dreaded going near a print head, especially since I’ve never even seen the blasted thing. I’ll find it and try your suggestion to pull it out and look for the dots. Will then continue with next steps.

      Will post back with any questions that arise as I work through your superb instructions.Thanks for trying to find me pictures of my poor old once-reliable printer! I’ll let you know if I can’t find the print head!

      Question: HP warns about leaving cartridges out more than 30 minutes. Any thoughts on that? I’m pretty sure following the instructions will take me longer than 30 minutes.

      Off to a printer adventure,

      Linda

       

    • #2420872

      UPDATE SO FAR

      Take out the head and look at it – can you see a “black line” of dots on the narrower head

      No black line of dots or any black at all on the circular gray “screen”/gauze? (see attached image). Not sure if that’s where I should be looking or should I look underneath the head (see second image). There are 4 of these screens; the largest is for the black ink.

      Gray screen is dry and totally clean so I didn’t wipe it. Also not sure if that should be wiped!

       Check the gold contacts on the back are clean

      Gold contacts all clean.

      Try cleaning from the driver

      How do I do this?

       … look at the “grey gauze” under where the black ink cartridge goes – does it look shiny and wet (it should)

      No, it is dry looking … but the colour ones don’t look wet either. I checked without the “cleaning from the driver” step however.

      The underneath part of the head did have messy black ink deposits on it.

      After putting all back together, the printer aligned the cartridges and there was no black ink anywhere on the page it printed automatically … although it used up what was left in the yellow cartridge, which had been low-ish.

      Any suggestions as to what next?

      Thanks for your help and guidance!

      Linda

      • #2420886

        I’m not familiar with HP printers, but on a Canon, “cleaning from the driver” means open a document, select Print and on the menu that comes up there is a Maintenance or an Other tab which has various options like Clean Printer Nozzles, Clean Printer Head, Deep Clean Printer Head, etc. Click an option and follow the prompts.

        I’ve also run into oil or grease, presumably from fingers, on the electrical contacts of a cartridge even though they look clean. A very gentle wipe with a clean cotton rag did the trick.

    • #2420901

      Aha, thanks, DrBonzo. I’ll give that a try on my printer. UPDATE: Phooey. No such options anywhere when I print a Word doc. I’ll see if an Internet search turns up a way to do it on an HP and post back results.

      Also like your idea about the electrical contacts. Will try your trick and keep my fingers crossed.

      Thanks and back once I’ve tried your hints (likely tomorrow – I’m “printer bushed” right now!).

      Linda

       

       

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2420916

        Looks like the clean by driver procedure might be a bit different on an HP. Scroll about halfway down the link below to the section “How Can I Clean an HP Printhead From My Computer?” You might also find some other cleaning options. The exact procedure might change a bit from one printer model to another but I’d guess they’re all pretty similar. Somewhere in the link they said you have to clean the printhead 4 or 5 times.

        https://www.hp.com/us-en/shop/tech-takes/how-to-clean-printhead

        Seems odd that the problem came on so suddenly. I’d have thought you might have noticed at least a bit of print quality deterioration. The only other thing I’ve ever had to do to get a printer working was to uninstall the software and then reinstall it

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2420932

      Linda-

      Please try purchasing a new black cartridge and see what happens when you replace your cartridge that you say is still one-third full. I’ve had several cartridge simply dry out in the space of a week or so, and just maybe what happened to you…the ink dried out with the cartridge still one third full.

      Also, check to see if there’s a date printed on the cartridge. They have a warranty of sorts…HP won’t guarantee that the cartridge will work after a certain date, and that date is on the box the cartridge came in and I think it’s also on the cartridge.

      • #2422726

        Please see end of posts for my final update and validation for your suggestion! 🙂

    • #2421056

      Thank you DrBonzo and anonymous.

      I tried cleaning the electrical contacts to no avail. Read the article on how to clean from computer (thanks for hunting it up for me!), but think I’m going to try a new ink cartridge first.

      Printing was clear and perfect until the black just stopped suddenly. That makes me think anonymous is right: it could be dry ink. Current black ink cartridge was out of warranty August 2021 (I kept the box) and I think it’s been in the printer for the better part of a year, certainly way more than a week.

      So I’m off to purchase a cartridge. $30 is a gamble, but it’s sure better than buying a new printer or even printhead!

      Will post back results.

      Hopefully,

      Linda

      • #2421152

        Printing was clear and perfect until the black just stopped suddenly. That makes me think anonymous is right: it could be dry ink

        I’m the anonymous who posted last night while perusing the site from my phone. I’ve had the same thing happen twice in the past, about a month apart. It first happened with the yellow cartridge then with the black cartridge, and BOTH had been in light use for less than a month after having bought them at a big box retailer.

        The colors printed just fine one day and then a couple of days later, nothing, not even a hint of pending failure by the color fading while printing a page!

        I thought something was wrong with the printer, so I dug into what I could find. My research led me to the warranty on the cartridges themselves. After that date, no warranty at all and a simple statement on HP’s pages back then that they couldn’t guarantee the cartridge would work at all after that date. This was almost four years ago, so I doubt that statement can be found any more.

        BUT, it DID get me to look at the boxes for the cartridges for that date, and I found that the cartridges I’d bought less than a month prior had been out of the warranty period for almost five months! Ever since then, I look at the dates on the boxes before I but any ink for my printers to make sure that I’ve got a good shot at using them up before the date on the box. Yes, I’ve annoyed a couple of folks at the big box retailer where I buy my ink when I tell them that the ink’s expired that they just pulled off the shelf, but they’ve always come back with a much fresher cartridge.

        If you DO decide to try soaking the cartridge in water, please let us know how it goes by posting back here. Same goes for the purchase of a new cartridge, let us know how it goes.

        After doing a little research with the help of links above in this forum, I’ve found that a new print head for my aging OfficeJet 6000 is only $35 or so, so not nearly as expensive as they used to be. Funny thing…it’s the same one for your printer from what I saw on HP’s parts site after doing a search using the supplied part number for my printer. Hooda thunkit??

        2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #2421063

      One further question: any sense in soaking cartridge in warm water (top half, keeping copper contacts dry) to get dry ink flowing?

      • #2421106

        Given the fact that the cartridge is only about 1/3 full, my own opinion is what have you go to lose? I’ve never tried it and don’t remember hearing of it, but if you’re satisfied you’ve done enough , go ahead and try it. Make sure everything is totally dry before putting it back in to the printer.

        Also, I would definitely try the suggestion offered by anonymous of trying a new ink cartridge before uninstalling/reinstalling printer software.

    • #2421203

      Bob99, that story about your cartridges and their dates is very interesting. It does suggest my August 2021 cartridge could be suffering the same fate. Being extremely budget-wise (a euphemism for cheap?), I’m still on the fence about buying the black in case it isn’t the issue. I purchased new cyan and magenta a few days ago (from HP, 2022 and 2023 dates) and they are now over half gone thanks to all the printhead cleaning I’ve done. Agh! The yellow and black now both register “!” (empty or close to) due to cleaning as well.

      Found an inexpensive ($69) HP Printer at Walmart that looks as if it could do the trick. Trying to decide whether it makes more sense to spend another $30 on ink for our 2010 printer or go through the hassle of setting up a new printer for just a few dollars more! Will sleep on it and see how things look in the morning.

      Re. soaking cartridge: I did try it (immersed nozzle half only in warm water). The ink on the nozzle came off in the water; no more ink flowed out, nozzle looked white, but after removing cartridge from water and pressing nozzle against clean paper towel, black ink did show on the paper towel. Unfortunately, no black ink printed when tried.

      Oh, great tip about the dates on ink: had no idea until you mentioned it. Just glad I save the old boxes until I order new cartridges. Will be sure to check now before opening!

      Back tomorrow with a clearer head (I hope!),

      Linda

       

       

    • #2421215

      Do you really NEED color capability?

      If not, seriously consider getting a (black only!) laser printer. There have been occasional discussions here on Woody that tout the benefits of going laser-only.

      • #2421315

        Thanks, Paul, but we do need color on occasion. I know the lasers are better: our first HP years ago was a LaserJet and it was fantastic. Right now, cost and space prevent our getting one.

    • #2421285

      This works for clogged cartridges:

      Spray a paper towel with Windex.  Fold till several layers thick of Windex soaked paper towel.

      Set the cartridge on the paper towel so the jets are in contact with the paper towel.  The ammonia in Windex will dissolve ink, but you don’t want the ammonia to seep into the cartridge.  Most clogs are loosen with 15 minutes soaking on the paper towel.  When finish soaking , blot with a dry paper towel, replace cartridge and immediately print a black text document so the printer spits out the clogs while still loose.  Can repeat a second time for really dried up clogs.

      Also: If the printer has not been sitting for a while and this is a printer that has been used a lot, that can cause the ink to dry up on the jets, then the clog could happened again to a new cartridge because the most likely cause is a full ink absorber sponge.  Under where the heads go is a sponge to absorb left over ink form each print job and when it gets full it doesn’t clean the jets or even adds half dried ink to the jets.  The procedure to check/replace the sponge is different for each printer so you will need to find how to check the sponge for your printer.

      HTH, Dana:))

    • #2421319

      Love the Windex idea, Dana. Don’t have Windex, but do have ammonia. Before trying that, however, wanted to report cartridge status.

      When I pulled it this morning, I noticed its nozzle was solid black which suggests ink was flowing since nozzle was mostly white when I returned it to the printer last night. Cartridge also produced black ink on towel after soaking in water (#2421203). Still won’t print black.

      QUESTION

      What is difficult to figure out is: given the ink seems to be flowing to the nozzle, is the ink dried out? Or is there something else going on that a new cartridge won’t solve. Or will I have to purchase a new cartridge to know? Or will the ammonia do a better “clearing” job than the water soak did?

      Appreciate any further thoughts. I know I’ve taken up a lot of Loungers’ time on this!

      Linda

       

      • #2421390

        What is difficult to figure out is: given the ink seems to be flowing to the nozzle, is the ink dried out?

        Possibly.

        Or is there something else going on that a new cartridge won’t solve. Or will I have to purchase a new cartridge to know?

        Maybe more people will have other ideas to apply to your problem, you can try a new cartridge if soaking doesn’t work or if your preferred solvent mangles the cartridge.

        Or will the ammonia do a better “clearing” job than the water soak did?

        Ammonia may very well unclog a cartridge, it is worth a try.

        Soaking for a short time in at least seventy-five percent isopropyl alcohol can unclog inkjet printer parts and print heads. (Seventy-five percent is a safe compromise.)

        Ninety-one percent isopropyl alcohol is a strong solvent which may clear any clots, however it can also destroy things on contact.

        After a gentle shaking can you feel ink sloshing in the black ink cartridge?

        • #2421435

          Thanks for your suggestions. Unfortunately, can’t hear any sloshing. Of course, by now the ink cartridge is registering “time to replace” so there likely isn’t much ink left in it.

          I did try the ammonia without success so think that’s  as good as the alcohol. Yes?

          Appreciate all your answers!

          Linda

        • #2421666

          I did try the ammonia without success so think that’s as good as the alcohol. Yes?

          I do not know, it was a surprise to read about that use of ammonia. It is probably just fine to cleanse a printhead with ammonia. The recommendation of using isopropyl alcohol was another option, it is better for cleaning circuit boards, and also recommended for several kinds of printer parts.

          Noticed you are trying another cartridge, I hope the new cartridge works.

          Thank You for being willing to try all of the trouble shooting steps.

          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2421376

      UPDATE: Did 2 runs with diluted ammonia. Got black ink on soaked paper towel, but no black ink printed.

    • #2421474

      but no black ink printed

      Either the cartridge is dead or the printer is. Only one way to find out….

      cheers, Paul

    • #2421542

      Thanks, Paul. Okay … black ink on order. Will post results.

      Linda

    • #2421712

      IreneLinda: These are my two cents in cryptocoin not very valuable after its market value collapsed last week:

      The cartridge might be OK, or not OK, but not be alone in this: The printhead could be also clogged. This is a sort of funnel where the ink of the cartridge goes through to get to the paper. It could be a part of the printer or a separate component of the printer itself.

      In your case, the 6500 printhead is a part of the printer itself, not of any cartridge.

      To clean your 6500 printhead (after looking here, I suspect it could be quite a job if you chose to do it yourself):

      https://support.hp.com/us-en/document/c01643079

      This one also has instructions that might or might not apply to your printer:

      https://www.ldproducts.com/blog/how-to-clean-an-hp-printhead/

      Good luck!

      Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur 11.6 & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

      MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
      Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
      macOS Monterey; browsers: Waterfox "Current", Vivaldi and (now and then) Chrome; security apps. Intego AV and Malwarebytes for Macs.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2421721

        I wrote:

        “It could be a part of the printer or a separate component of the printer itself.”

        When I meant to write:

        “It could be a part of the cartridge or a separate component of the printer itself.”

        My mistake, sorry.

        Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur 11.6 & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

        MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
        Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
        macOS Monterey; browsers: Waterfox "Current", Vivaldi and (now and then) Chrome; security apps. Intego AV and Malwarebytes for Macs.

        1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2422727

      Hi all and good news to report.

      Bob99, Anonymous, Paul et al, you were right: it was the old August 2021 cartridge. The new cartridge arrived from HP just now (March 2023); I inserted it and printed a page! WOW!

      This has been an excellent learning process for me in that I discovered where the printhead was and how to remove it for cleaning if needed. Even better, I learned to check “best by” dates on ink cartridges and to suspect the cartridge if it has been in the printer for a long time or has an out of date time stamp. Also picked up a few tips on how to check for and clear out clogged ink in a cartridge and to carefully wipe the connections. On the down side, I also discovered how much ink the printer uses when it goes through a printhead cleaning!! Yikes.

      Hope others who helped me out here picked up some ideas, too. I am so grateful for all the help and specific instructions you all offered. As always, the Ask Woody forum has saved the day for me.

      Thanks again,

      Linda

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2422890

      Oh no! I spoke too soon. After printing one document in black and one receipt in color, the next document was faded and the following one was even worse: no print on bottom half of page.

      Does this mean a manual clean of the printhead should be my next step? Or…?

      Yours in frustration,

      Linda

    • #2422907

      Start with the cleaning options in the driver – it could be all the activity has got an air bubble to move and its now got to the printing nozzles, in which case you just need to keep it moving. As the head is likely thermal rather than piezo (mainly an Epson tech), you need to try to move the ink but try NOT to print anything extensive in testing, as running a thermal print head empty can destroy it as the ink helps cool the head – it has electronic components in it after all.

      .

    • #2422909

      Thanks, oldguy. I’ve given the printhead cleaning a go using directions in OscarCP’s second link.

      Start with the cleaning options in the driver

      Wasn’t sure what you meant by this. Is that the cleaning cycle that I can run automatically from the printer?

      Will post back cleaning results.

      Linda

    • #2422925

      Final Update

      I’ve officially given up. Completed manual cleaning of printhead with no change. Some color printing, but no black at all. Guess the first 2 pages were a fluke caused by the new cartridge.

      Will have to buy a new printer after all. Oh well, as mentioned above, lots of learning! If anyone can use a new HP 920 black cartridge, I’m happy to mail it to you!

      Once again, a sincere thank you to everyone who tried to help and provide troubleshooting advice.

      Linda

    • #2422937

      IreneLinda, I can fully sympatize with you: Before I bought my current HP 4650 (by now an old model) I bought two other models that I had to stop using and replace in turn a few months after I bought each. My current one has already given me over three years of service with no other problems that a need, now and then, to replace a cartridge. It was recommended to me by a friend that has one.

      Reading printer reviews may be somewhat useful, as a first cut in seeking guidance on what’s available, but then asking people one knows beats only reading reviews any day, or night, because I too often find reviewers (and reviews that have lead me to buying a lemon) can be suspect of conflicts of interest. This conclusion is not even paranoid, just sad.

      Ex Windows user (Win. 98, XP, 7) since mid-2020. Now: running macOS Big Sur 11.6 & sometimes, Linux (Mint)

      MacBook Pro circa mid-2015, 15" display, with 16GB 1600 GHz DDR3 RAM, 1 TB SSD, a Haswell architecture Intel CPU with 4 Cores and 8 Threads model i7-4870HQ @ 2.50GHz.
      Intel Iris Pro GPU with Built-in Bus, VRAM 1.5 GB, Display 2880 x 1800 Retina, 24-Bit color.
      macOS Monterey; browsers: Waterfox "Current", Vivaldi and (now and then) Chrome; security apps. Intego AV and Malwarebytes for Macs.

      • #2424460

        I don’t touch HP printers for years. Malfunctioning after a year, ink problems…
        Current printer is a Samsung laser AIO color printer (Samsung has sold its printers to HP but I don’t need their support).
        Lately I bough for my partner an Epson ET-2720/L3160 with 2-3 years of color ink replacing a 2 years old horrible HP DeskJet 2630 (ink stopped printing after 6 months).

        In Israel, this week, HP lost in class action suit and ordered to pay 6m ILS (~$2m) to anyone who have bought an HP printer between 2010-2020, reason : blocking installation of none-HP compatible cartridges.
        Each customer will get ~30 – ~$200.

        • #2424504

          Oops, sorry, Alex, your message wasn’t showing when I replied to Oscar.

          You have had bad experiences with HP for sure. Our experiences have been excellent, beginning with our first HP, a LaserJet way back in the early 90s. Guess it just depends. Our only complaint with our recent machines, all ink jets, has been the cost of their ink!

          Thanks for your input!

          Linda

          1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #2424419

      Thanks, OscarCP. Did read several user reviews and did a lot of reading about features to decide which inexpensive printer to buy. As a result, we went with a slightly more expensive ($100 vs. $70) model. It’s been set up and working for a few days now and is just fine. It takes a bit of getting used to after having higher end printers, but was the right decision until we upgrade all our tech.

      Best news: we can print stuff again!

      Linda

    Viewing 23 reply threads
    Reply To: HP Officejet 6500 Won’t Print Black

    You can use BBCodes to format your content.
    Your account can't use all available BBCodes, they will be stripped before saving.