THE PAPER TOWEL AND WINDEX TRICK
it worked in the past, so why not now?
Used to be your parents walked twenty miles, uphill, in the snow, with bare feet to go to school. Now kids cry about taking the bus. Crazy right? Well think of Epson’s latest generation piezoelectric printheads, with twice as many nozzles per inch, much the same as today’s kids. They’re fragile, they’re high maintenance, and they don’t respond to old tricks.
You can wet a paper towel with Windex, you can park it under the head mid-stroke, you can let it sit all night. From what I can tell from my own experiences, and from what I’ve been told by others, it does no harm. Unfortunately I have not heard yet of this helping clear anyone’s un-clearable X900 clogs. The reason for this I expect is the dried ink stuck in-between the channel walls is so tiny, and so impacted that it is very difficult for Windex, or any cleaning solution for that matter, to access the core of the actual clog.
…but who knows, maybe you’ll be the first.
As for cleaning solutions, some home grown concoctions have been used to clean clogged heads for decades – be they OEM inks or die inks. Here is one such suggested concoction:
Use any window cleaner that has ammonia in it. In the USA that means either Windex original formula or any generic version – but MAKE SURE it has ammonia in it. If you can’t use Windex Original Formula you can substitute it with NON-SUDSY ammonia, but first mix it with distilled water (do not use tap water, spring water, or toilet water please). Mix the ammonia with distilled water at a ratio of one part ammonia to 9 parts water.
You can read about the difference between distilled water vs tap water HERE
Now take either your window cleaner or diluted ammonia and mix 8 parts of it with 2 parts of isopropyl rubbing alcohol. Please be sure the isopropyl rubbing alcohol is either 70 or 90%, that it is transparent, clear isopropyl containing no additives, no oils, no skin conditioners, etc. (Isopropyl is a humectant, it helps things retain moisture, so sometimes it is sold over the counter with conditioners added to it so people use it as moisturizing cream. We DO NOT want that).
…and there you go – you’ve got your home-grown cleaning solution.
If you would rather use Epson’s Cleaning Solution you should first understand that you are crossing the threshold of typical user fixes, and now are taking the life of your printer in your own hands. I award you wholeheartedly. And I hope you have bandaids handy cause you could hurt your own feelings here pretty quick. Epson’s cleaning solution, code named RED, is not readily sold – you have to search for it. And once you have it, consider it like you would chemotherapy. Yes it melts dried, hardened, clogged-up ink but it doesn’t stop melting things there. Leave it in or on your head too long and soon your precious printhead will melt into oblivian.
If you want to chase down Epson’s cleaner it comes in two parts – RED (the cleaner) and CLEAR (the rinse). I have a bottle of each and here is what lives on both bottle’s labels:
The numbers for the RED are as follows:
Name: (Japanese writing, google interpreted – “Godzilla is coming!”)
Maker: nichiwa kogyo co.ltd/chino factory
Once you’ve got your cleaning solution of choice you’ll want a safer way to stop your printhead mid-stroke, rather than simply unplugging the machine while it’s running. Start it up in maintenance mode and do it right. The process is as follows:
Hold the DOWN button, the MENU button, and the OK button simultaneously – then click the ON button. Once she wakes up you can let go of all buttons, you’re up and running in Service Mode. Now go to Menu/Maintenance/Wiper Exchange/Sequence/OK. This will release the head and park it mid-way through it’s printing stroke. Now you can power the machine off and try your old paper towel and windex.
One word to the wise; Once you are done soaking or spraying or whatever you decide to do with whatever you decide to do it with – do a standard cleaning and run a few prints through the machine. Best to get the home-grown juice replaced with ink asap.
If you feel you’ve got something valuable from MYX900.com, please help keep it alive! Any donation you feel is appropriate will go toward funding the research, development, and maintenance of this site. For your security and convenience we accept paypal donations, please follow the link below. And thank you for helping back!