How to Clean Your Laser Printer

Justin Chung9/10/19


Before we begin, here is a list of things we will need:

1. Toner vacuum: You will need a powerful, specialized vacuum called a toner vacuum to suction and store toner powder dust. Do not use a normal vacuum to clean toner powder. Toner powder is so fine that it can seep out of a regular vacuum container and fly into the air - potentially leaving you with an even bigger mess than what you started with. Toner vacuums appear in the form of large black boxes and are equipped with a special hose and HEPA filtering system designed to collect and trap the tiny toner particles.

2. Toner cloth: Toner cloths are made with a specialized fiber and treated with mineral oil to collect and trap fine dust. Before use, these cloths must be “activated” by being stretched out. Once activated, the cloth will be enlarged and its now unhinged fibers will allow you to pick up toner powder with great efficacy and ease – saving you time, headache and additional labor. Toner cloths are typically not reusable and must be disposed after use.

 3. Mask: A face mask will prevent you from inhaling any airborne toner particles during the cleaning process. Toner powder is essentially granulated plastic and can compose of material compounds such as styrene, acrylate, ethyl benzene, xylene isomers, polyester resin, and other polymers. Toner powder can serve as an irritant when inhaled and can be especially troublesome for people with respiratory diseases such as asthma or bronchitis. If you are particularly sensitive to respiratory irritants, it would be wise to invest in a high-quality mask that filters odors and fine dust particles.

4. Latex gloves: Protects your hands and keeps toner residue off your skin.

5. Small Brush: A small, soft bristled paintbrush can be especially helpful when cleaning small, hard to reach crevices, corners, and angles of your printer. Avoid any hard-bristled brushes such as a tooth brush which can potentially damage your printer's surface and parts.

6. Isopropyl alcohol or Duster spray: 99% Isopropyl alcohol is commonly used to clean contact sensitive surfaces such as CDs and cassette drives. It is very quick drying and will not leave a residue trail. Avoid using rubbing alcohol. Duster sprays are commonly used to remove dust and other fine particles found in hard to reach areas of your electronic equipment.


Here are the steps on how to clean your laser printer:

  1. Turn off your printer and unplug the cord.

  2. Put on disposable, latex gloves to keep your hands clean and wear a face mask to prevent yourself from inhaling any airborne toner powder.

  3. Open the printer and gently remove the toner cartridge or toner bottle. If applicable, remove the drum cartridge as well. Keep drum cartridge away from exposed light to avoid damage.

  4. Get your toner wipe and “activate” it by stretching it out. Then use it to wipe down the outer shell of the cartridge.

  5. Use your toner vacuum to suction up the spilled toner powder on the exterior and interior walls and compartments of your printer. Use your vacuum hose to carefully maneuver around your printer’s interior compartment to avoid any damage.

  6. Use a small, soft-bristled brush to clean the hard to reach angles,corners, and crevices of your printer. Then, use your toner vacuum to pick up any loose debris.

  7. If your printer has any exposed wire, gently run along its surface with a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol. Be sure to clean along the underside of the wires. Wires can be quite fragile so be sure not handle them too aggressively.

  8. If you feel the need to add extra cleaning, take your printer outside to an open area away from people. Use a duster spray and point the thin nozzle straw at the sullied areas of the printer. Once finished, bring the printer back inside.

  9. Place the toner cartridge back into the printer and plug the printer cord back into the outlet. Turn the printer on and get ready to print!

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