Forum Thread

Troubleshoot - My Brother HL-L2380DW printer randomly prints blank pages with just one or two lines of random characters

GBAstar 5,137 1,916 January 23, 2016 at 09:29 AM
Hello,

I got this printer around Thanksgiving 2015. It's my third brother printer, previously owning the HL-2170W and HL-2280DW and this is the only printer I've had this problem with.

It started about two weeks ago when my girlfriend called me while I was out of the house to inform me my printer was making weird noises. When I returned my printer had gone through the entire tray (several hundred pages) and printed a line or two of random characters on the top of the each page. I'm not sure how long it would have gone on for as there was an "out of paper" error so I hit the cancel button on the printer, flipped the paper over, and put it back in the tray so I could use the otherside (I only print invoices at the tune of 10-20 day).

I didn't have any more problems until this week when the same thing happened twice, once while I was out of the house and again while I was actually sitting at my computer.

When I'm out of the house obviously I can't interfere and it prints through the entire tray. When it happened while I was sitting at the computer I was able to hit the cancel job button on the printer (I thought it was odd that it was printing while I was just web browsing and hadn't sent anything to the queue).


Does anyone know how to trouble shoot this? Its getting to the point where I only want to have 10-20 sheets in the tray at a time so it doesn't run through a few hundred.

I have ran CCleaner and Malwarebytes looking for malware but haven't yet found anything

8 Comments

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#2
I would keep < 50 pages in the tray until you figure this out.

How is the printer connected to your computer: USB, ethernet, or wifi?
Try updating drivers, printer firmware, factory reset printer, disabling 'cloud' services on printer
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#3
Quote from jkee View Post :
I would keep < 50 pages in the tray until you figure this out.

How is the printer connected to your computer: USB, ethernet, or wifi?
Try updating drivers, printer firmware, factory reset printer, disabling 'cloud' services on printer

It's connected via WiFi. I think only have two computers connected, my stationary laptop and my travel laptop. We have a secondary printer that other devices are connected too but they have very different ID's.

I thought about updating the driver. I guess I'll delete and install it and the printer software. I was hoping to try and find a way to archive the print job history to see if I could find where those print jobs were originating from (what device, website, etc.).

We don't share our WiFi network with anyone else. I was thinking Malware but Malwarebytes didn't detect anything
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#4
Quote from GBAstar View Post :
It's connected via WiFi. I think only have two computers connected, my stationary laptop and my travel laptop. We have a secondary printer that other devices are connected too but they have very different ID's.

I thought about updating the driver. I guess I'll delete and install it and the printer software. I was hoping to try and find a way to archive the print job history to see if I could find where those print jobs were originating from (what device, website, etc.).
I can appreciate wanting logs if any exist. Maybe just start with the printer and leave your computers out of it. Check if there's a log in the printer's web interface or settings for a syslog server.
You might try a factory reset of the printer and then hooking it up via usb leaving your network out of the equation. See what happens over the course of a week or two.

I suspect either a device on your network is sending something corrupt to the printer or something is wrong in the printer like a problem with RAM.
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#5
In the past I've seen printers do that when someone submitted a PostScript print job to a printer that couldn't decipher PostScript. But, supposedly your printer can deal with PostScript. Since it's just a couple of months old I would either return it to place of purchase for a swap or start a trouble ticket with Brother.
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#6
Quote from HarryH3 View Post :
In the past I've seen printers do that when someone submitted a PostScript print job to a printer that couldn't decipher PostScript. But, supposedly your printer can deal with PostScript. Since it's just a couple of months old I would either return it to place of purchase for a swap or start a trouble ticket with Brother.

Okay...

I didn't look over all the characters to see if I recognized any coding (not that I would; not my expertise) but on the most recent one, that I was able to cancel after a few pages printed... there was some characters I noticed from when I used to tinker in HTML a decade or so ago...

something like img001.scr

Not sure if that means anything.

I could swap it out, I got it from Staples in November when I had them price match Amazon for $79.99. I bought two and gave one to my mom to replace a HL-2170W that at best had a bad drum and at worse needed to be repaired since ever print was dirty looking.

I'll try a ticket this weekend and if it's a simple fix I'll go that route. If not I do enough business with Staples they should take care of it.

Just annoying I've had problems with every Brother printer and the only reason I go back is how cost affordable they are. I end up replacing them every year or two just because I get tired of dealing with problems.

My HL-2170W were my first ones, printed tens of thousands of pages, but the quality just degraded over time even when I replaced the drums. I just tossed it up to using generic ink and drums and not knowing how to properly clean the insides.

My 2280DW is my back up, but the included software for the scanning feature doesn't play nice with Windows 10. I'm sure there's an easy fix with that but the AIO features have become useless.

And now this with the 2380DW.


Still hard to complain as the savings compared to using ink cartridges with my old HP printers have saved hundreds, if not more but I'd like to think I should be able to get one with next to no upkeep other then swapping out toner every few months and drums after every few toners.
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#7
The .scr is an extension that is usually used for Windows screen saver files. Perhaps your girlfriend tried to print one that she liked? EEK!
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#8
Quote from HarryH3 View Post :
In the past I've seen printers do that when someone submitted a PostScript print job to a printer that couldn't decipher PostScript.
I agree with this. I've seen similar behaviour when I've used the wrong print driver.

Is there no log showing where the last job was submitted from? I assume that when you print all is OK.
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#9
Sounds like a driver issue... try reinstalling it. Also try another driver, or a basic universal driver if that doesn't work.

Good luck
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