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Author Topic: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head  (Read 705 times)

narikin

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Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« on: October 15, 2020, 01:15:24 pm »

Hi all, I have a stubborn clog in the LLC of my P20,000. It's not huge, but it's big enough to ruin some images.
I've tried nozzle cleans, powerful nozzle cleans, service level powerful cleans, and printing purge sheets, but it doesn't budge.

Does anyone have a suggestion on what to try now? Is moving the head over a Windex soaked paper towel still a thing or is that frowned upon now?

The head is only about 18 months old, but out of warranty, and it's nearly $3,000 to replace, plus the technician's charge, plus tax! Quite honestly it's borderline that you should just buy a new printer with its warranty, at that price.

I can move the head to the left side and access underneath in head cleaning mode, but I'm unsure whether I should touch under there at all with a wipe stick or any solvent. Any suggestions gratefully received!
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deanwork

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2020, 06:31:58 pm »

Windex will destroy the coating on the printhead.

Have all the dampers and the ink selector unit replaced. The ink selector unit contains half your dampers ( the filters that protect the head from debris and ink sludge) . Unless your head is delaminating ,( which it probably isnít ) this should solve your problem.


Hi all, I have a stubborn clog in the LLC of my P20,000. It's not huge, but it's big enough to ruin some images.
I've tried nozzle cleans, powerful nozzle cleans, service level powerful cleans, and printing purge sheets, but it doesn't budge.

Does anyone have a suggestion on what to try now? Is moving the head over a Windex soaked paper towel still a thing or is that frowned upon now?

The head is only about 18 months old, but out of warranty, and it's nearly $3,000 to replace, plus the technician's charge, plus tax! Quite honestly it's borderline that you should just buy a new printer with its warranty, at that price.

I can move the head to the left side and access underneath in head cleaning mode, but I'm unsure whether I should touch under there at all with a wipe stick or any solvent. Any suggestions gratefully received!
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narikin

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2020, 10:02:24 am »

Thank you, but when did Windex become bad stuff?! - it used to be the savior for printheads!
some new generation of heads with a 'protective film' are now permanently damaged by it?

A helpful local engineer says its most likely the head.
They are over $2800 from Epson/Micro. Insanity.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2020, 10:15:29 am by narikin »
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Jim Metzger

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2020, 10:21:32 am »

While I can't  comment on the source of the problem I will second NOT using Windex. People used it for years but it was never a good idea, Windex is designed to dry quickly, the exact opposite of what you want. There are dedicated head cleaners on the market, Ive been using "Symphonic Ink" Inkjet cleaner for 15 years on an old Epson 7600 with good results. It is available at https://americaninkjetsystems.com. The owner who unfortunately passed away a few years ago knew as much about Epson printers as anyone I ever spoke to.

Good luck, the upkeep costs on some of these machines is excruciating.

Jim
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deanwork

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2020, 11:14:12 am »

You can tell if your print head has delaminated by printing out a nozzle check and asking people on the Epson forum to help you evaluate it. You can usually tell in that the nozzle grid is distorted showing dual unaligned vertical lines.

Epson forum - https://groups.io/g/EpsonWideFormat/topics

Replacing the dampers should be done every three years or so according to the Epson specialists I know. If you print with cotton matte paper as I do tyat link can really clog those filters in a few years or even one year if a lot goes through it. Rc papers are the opposite but still end up needing replacement.

Replacing the ink selector unit is about $300.00 for the part plus labor. My 9890 print head was missing two nozzles completely. I replaced the head which fixed the delamination but I couldnít bring back those missing nozzles until the dampers and ink selector were replaced. Since the former series of Epson large formats the heads have a Teflon coating that will be ruined with ammonia windex. I have always cleaned my heads either with distilled water on a damp cloth or the piezo flush fluid which is totally safe and effective.


While I can't  comment on the source of the problem I will second NOT using Windex. People used it for years but it was never a good idea, Windex is designed to dry quickly, the exact opposite of what you want. There are dedicated head cleaners on the market, Ive been using "Symphonic Ink" Inkjet cleaner for 15 years on an old Epson 7600 with good results. It is available at https://americaninkjetsystems.com. The owner who unfortunately passed away a few years ago knew as much about Epson printers as anyone I ever spoke to.

Good luck, the upkeep costs on some of these machines is excruciating.

Jim
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ssgphoto

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2020, 01:57:20 pm »

Any chance you purchased the unit on a rewards card? It may have purchase protection that doubles the manufacturers warranty.
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narikin

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2020, 04:39:38 pm »

Thanks for that suggestion. It was bought on a c. card but so long ago both will have expired.
I was an early adopter of the new 60" model.

scrambling around to see how much a Decision One service call will likely be.
and/or looking at a brand new Canon...

do Epson want you to junk their biggest and best pro printers every few years?

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BrianWJH

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2020, 05:47:30 pm »

A helpful local engineer says its most likely the head.
They are over $2800 from Epson/Micro. Insanity.

That's because the P20000 and P10000 have dual print heads which gives the higher throughput, similiar to replacing 2 x SC9000 printheads.

Brian.
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narikin

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2020, 08:34:33 pm »

I just got a quote from Epson: $5,075 plus sales tax, which means a total of over $5,500 !!
Truly insane.

You can get a brand new P20000 for under $8,000, which will be warrantied and have starter ink set.
So Epson are basically telling you to discard a machine as soon as the head gets a clog outside of warranty.

Or... You can buy a 60-in Canon, with user replaceable heads.
I've used Epson wide format printers for nearly 20 years now. But I think I'm done at this point.
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BrianWJH

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2020, 10:43:20 pm »

You can get a brand new P20000 for under $8,000, which will be warrantied and have starter ink set.
So Epson are basically telling you to discard a machine as soon as the head gets a clog outside of warranty.

Or... You can buy a 60-in Canon, with user replaceable heads.
I've used Epson wide format printers for nearly 20 years now. But I think I'm done at this point.

True if you're located in the U.S. but in some countries it's more economical to just replace the printhead, here in Australia a new P20000 is currently "on special" for $13500.00.

Also the Canon won't have the throughput the P20000 has as the P20000 is designed to be a production printer if that's important to you.

Brian.
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narikin

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2020, 08:35:24 am »

True Brian, thank you for reminding me how international this forum is!

What Epson actually do is have their Service/Repair co. send a quote with all the possible parts on there, plus the technician hourly rate etc. So everything from the head to capping stations/ cleaning assemblies, mainboard, etc. are all shipped to you, and what is needed is used. The rest is returned and not charged for. Sensible approach in one way, as all the parts are on hand for the call. So it most likely would be less than the $5000+ worth or parts and labor on the quote.

That said, the most expensive thing -the head- is invoiced at $3500, when Compass Micro sell them here in the USA for $2800. So you're clearly being gouged 'paying full list' on parts. On Alibaba the heads are under $2000. Hmm.

Anyways, what I am going to try first is soaking the head in ink cleaner overnight. These machines have a 'head maintenance' routine that parks it over to the far left and allows easy access to the underneath, so that's not hard to do. Likewise you can attend to cleaning the wipers and capping station on the other side.

If nothing works. well. Yes the Canon is a little slower, though the newer ones (Pro-6100, vs old iPF9400) are a lot faster, with bigger heads. And a new head is $445! & user replaceable!

Or... a new P20000 for that matter, I mean its just a few thousand more than a head swap, and you get a brand new warrantied machine (with option for extending) and a set of starter inks. That kind of makes more sense. Its just so retrograde to do this. Makes me mad at Epson for not considering the environmental cost of their approach to repairs and replacement parts.
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Idololab

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #11 on: October 17, 2020, 09:38:23 am »

My 9890 print head was missing two nozzles completely
[/quote] I suppose you mean 2 entire color channels. I think it is different than a small fraction of a color.
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George Marinos
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BrianWJH

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #12 on: October 17, 2020, 05:11:58 pm »

That said, the most expensive thing -the head- is invoiced at $3500, when Compass Micro sell them here in the USA for $2800. So you're clearly being gouged 'paying full list' on parts. On Alibaba the heads are under $2000. Hmm.

Yes Alibaba does have what seems to be considerably lower prices than local prices however I have found that the advertised price of suppliers on Alibaba is misleading, the suppliers request you to ask for the latest pricing, what you receive (in my case) were prices 25% to 30% higher than local pricing from Epson.

Another tactic is the well known bait and switch where the advertised pricing shown is actually for a larger quantity  not single items.

Some suppliers advertise low pricing for "remanufactured" printheads not new printheads.

Anyways, what I am going to try first is soaking the head in ink cleaner overnight. These machines have a 'head maintenance' routine that parks it over to the far left and allows easy access to the underneath, so that's not hard to do. Likewise you can attend to cleaning the wipers and capping station on the other side.

Hopefully that will clear the clog, if not then as a last resort, (you need the serviceman software, pm me for a link) perform an Initial Ink Charge which does use a fair bit of ink (make sure the maintenance cart has enough room) but not too noticable with 700ml carts.

Makes me mad at Epson for not considering the environmental cost of their approach to repairs and replacement parts.

Couldn't agree more, Epson need to step up their environmental game here and realize the world is moving to a sustainable future.

Good luck, hope you are successful.

Brian.
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deanwork

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #13 on: October 17, 2020, 07:46:13 pm »

If you donít replace the dampers you are just wasting time.

Heads delaminate, dampers clog. This has been going on with Epson for 10 years. Nothing new.





quote author=BrianWJH link=topic=136497.msg1190312#msg1190312 date=1602969118]
Yes Alibaba does have what seems to be considerably lower prices than local prices however I have found that the advertised price of suppliers on Alibaba is misleading, the suppliers request you to ask for the latest pricing, what you receive (in my case) were prices 25% to 30% higher than local pricing from Epson.

Another tactic is the well known bait and switch where the advertised pricing shown is actually for a larger quantity  not single items.

Some suppliers advertise low pricing for "remanufactured" printheads not new printheads.

Hopefully that will clear the clog, if not then as a last resort, (you need the serviceman software, pm me for a link) perform an Initial Ink Charge which does use a fair bit of ink (make sure the maintenance cart has enough room) but not too noticable with 700ml carts.

Couldn't agree more, Epson need to step up their environmental game here and realize the world is moving to a sustainable future.

Good luck, hope you are successful.

Brian.
[/quote]
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Lessbones

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #14 on: October 20, 2020, 10:54:36 am »

Get some foam wiper sticks, they sell them on amazon or ebay for very very cheap, and get some non-woven wiper cloths.  Get some cleaning solution too from one of the inkjetmall type places.  The p20000 has a removable cover on the left side accessible by a pair of thumb screws that become visible when you open the ink cartridge bay.

Usually I will start some kind of operation and then pull the plug to get access to the head uncapped-- I haven't been in the service mode for this particular model yet, I'm not sure if anyone here knows how to access it?  deanwork, if you actually have the serviceman program for the p20000 I would definitely take a copy--

Anyway, once you get the head over to the left side (just by pushing it with your hand once the power has been cut) you can gently wipe the nozzle plate with your foam wipers.  You could also soak a cloth in the cleaning solution and hold it against the nozzle plate with a sponge or something soft-ish like that which will apply a gentle upwards pressure--

The machine does not have two heads, I'm not sure where that rumor is coming from.  It uses the same head as the brand new Epson DTG printer F3070, which actually does have two, and a "user replaceable" version to boot.

Also, what kind of clog is it?  I had a single magenta nozzle missing on this machine from the very beginning, and after about a YEAR it cleared itself.
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BrianWJH

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #15 on: October 20, 2020, 04:49:29 pm »

The machine does not have two heads, I'm not sure where that rumor is coming from.  It uses the same head as the brand new Epson DTG printer F3070, which actually does have two, and a "user replaceable" version to boot.

Yes that is correct it does not have two seperate printheads but it it does have 'dual printheads' i.e. 2 x sets of 10 colors ink channels (equivalent to 2 x SCP9000 printheads) which means that doubling the channels will naturally make the printhead more expensive.
Brian.

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Lessbones

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #16 on: October 20, 2020, 05:12:07 pm »

I guess that's one way to look at it, but since it uses a completely different type of arrangement, and the nozzles are base 200 instead of 180 I guess I just don't view it as equivalent to  "2 x P9000" heads...  There are plenty of printers out there with 2, 4, 6, or more heads, and the alignment is a nightmare if you're going for quality as your #1 requirement.  I didn't actually realize that each row had two sets of nozzles-- the way it starts out printing is so odd I thought it was just somehow overlapping...
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narikin

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #17 on: October 20, 2020, 07:28:37 pm »

Well I managed to fix it!

One great thing about these new printers is they have a head maintenance routine, which pushes the head all the way over to the left, and has removable panels there so you can directly access under the head.
I simply used a long foam swab dipped in inkjet cleanser to gently wipe the particular color that was giving me the blockage, it took two goes, but then it cleared it. Amazing. $5000 saved ! (Of course I cleaned the wiper blades and capping station at the same time)

Thanks all for your advices.

Yes, it's a big head, with two rows of nozzles in the one head, that are locked aligned together at the factory. It's one piece of metal, so there shouldn't ever be any alignment issues, if I'm understanding it right.

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Lessbones

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #18 on: October 21, 2020, 10:38:37 am »

Yes, it's a big head, with two rows of nozzles in the one head, that are locked aligned together at the factory. It's one piece of metal, so there shouldn't ever be any alignment issues, if I'm understanding it right.

One of these days I'm gonna try to disassemble it--  the Epson docs Brian pulled that image from refer to each pair of nozzles as a "blade," so i'm wondering if they're not all independent within the total package of 10, which would be much more like the old DX4 days and the way that most other manufacturers still make heads.  How great it would be to be able to replace a single channel (or pair) in a printer like this....  At least it feels like Epson is *kind of* heading in a more user-maintenance friendly direction since the intro of the supertank printers and the more recent eco-solvents...
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Paul_Roark

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Re: Clearing a stubborn clog on P20000 head
« Reply #19 on: October 21, 2020, 11:18:45 am »

On a slight tangent, I thought I'd share what I found to be the most powerful surfactant that was easily available and seemed appropriate for my purposes.  A surfactant is a chemical that tends to surround particles.  (Surfactants are a huge field in chemistry, and I'm not a chemist.  However, my brother was a PhD chemist, so I could pick his brain on these issues.)  Detergents are surfactants.  They surround particles and allow them to be easily cleaned away.  At any rate, in my efforts to make the best inkjet base for my own DIY dilutions of matte black ink (I do only black and white printing), I found that a darkroom chemical called "LFN wetting agent" did an amazing job of cleaning my pipettes.  Carbon pigment particles that had been stuck to the walls of my pipettes for a long time just floated away when LFN was part of the clear base formula.  So, this surfactant became part of my generic base.  See https://www.paulroark.com/BW-Info/Ink%20Mixing%20Generally.pdf for this generic base.  See https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/16726-REG/Edwal_EDLFN3_4_LFN_Wetting_Agent_for.html for the surfactant source.

Paul
www.PaulRoark.com
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