Modern color printers excel at reproducing color images with ultra-high resolutions. However, it can be frustrating if your high-performing printer stops making color documents.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • If your printer is not printing in color or simply not printing in true color, there are several steps you can take to troubleshoot the problem.
  • Check out the status of the ink or toner cartridges, as the cartridge or cartridges that handle color could be depleted.
  • Be sure to update your driver software and take a look at what grade of paper you are using.

What Printers Excel at Color?

Generally speaking, inkjet printers are the best choice when it comes to high-resolution true color images. In recent years, though, laser printers, whether using ink or toner cartridges, have been steadily making up the difference. Since there are different types of printers you may have to confirm if laser printers require ink before investing in one. In other words, you have your pick when it comes to color printers.

Why Your Printer is Not Printing In Color

There are a number of reasons a color printer can revert to just printing in monochrome or failing to print in true color. Each printer is different, but here are some universal guidelines to think about as you troubleshoot the problem.

Check the Cartridges

The first thing you should do when you are trying to figure out why your printer stopped making color documents is to check on the cartridges. Ink cartridges tend to run out quickly, being able to print just 220 to 350 pages before becoming depleted. This can be especially true if you have been printing a lot of color images recently, as the color ink cartridge or cartridges could have been taxed while the black ink cartridge could have remained untouched. Open up your printer driver software and check on the status of your ink or toner cartridges. Replacing these cartridges could immediately solve the problem.

Insider Tip

If you do not know where to find updated driver software, we recommend checking your printer instruction manual or heading to the manufacturer’s website.

Update Driver Software

The driver software that accompanies your printer should be updated regularly, as this could impact the printer’s ability to print in true color. If you do not know where to find updated driver software, we recommend checking your printer instruction manual or heading to the manufacturer’s website. The driver software could become out of date when you update your operating system or just from the passage of time. Install the software, restart your computer, and restart your printer. This may solve the problem. You may also want to check your driver software if your wireless printer isn’t printing.

Check the Paper

If your printer is reproducing color images, but you suspect that it is not creating images in true color, we recommend checking out the paper you are using. The paper grade can impact what colors look like when printing as the paper itself is colored. Be sure to choose the correct paper grade for your printer. You can find a list of appropriate paper grades and sizes in the instruction manual that came with your printer. You should also make sure that the right paper t ype has been selected in the printer’s menu and that grayscale has not been turned on.

Warning

Ink cartridges tend to run out quickly, being able to print just 220 to 350 pages before becoming depleted.

F.A.Q.

Why don’t printed colors match what I see on the monitor?

There can be a number of reasons for this problem. Your monitor could be calibrated incorrectly, you could be out of color ink or toner, or your driver software could be out of date.


My printout has incorrect colors. What should I do?

Make sure the paper is right for your printer and do a double check on the printer’s menu to ensure that grayscale has not accidentally been turned on.


Why is my printer printing pink?

There are a number of reasons your printer is printing pink. We recommend performing some simple calibration tests and some maintenance tasks.



STAT: If you have your monitor set to 100% brightness, images could look bright and punchy, but that isn’t what is sent to your printer: it may receive a darker version – the true version. (source)

Lawrence Bonk

Lawrence Bonk is a copywriter with a decade of experience in the tech space, with columns appearing in Engadget, Huffington Post and CBS, among others. He has a cat named Cinnamon.

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