Everybody that has ever worked in an office environment has dealt with the dreaded paper jam. Murphy’s Law dictates that these paper jams must happen at the most inopportune times, with deadlines looming and bosses waiting for their reports or materials for The Big Meeting. There have been television shows and movies where the frustrations of the office copier have played a leading role. Offices all over the country have copier machines adorned with derogatory signs taped to the front labeling these hard working machines with clever phrases such as; We call our copier Bob Marley ‘cause it always be jamming. Let me share some of the ways to eliminate or at least minimize paper jams in hopes of minimizing potential frustration and removing the often unwarranted titles assigned to your overworked, under-appreciated copy machine.
Tip #1 – Don’t set paper clips on top of the copier – from all pages prior to putting them in the document feeder – Don’t laugh. As a long-time owner and employee of a company that responds to copier repair requests, I can assure you that nary a day goes by that we don’t respond to a copier problem that occurred because a paper clip or staple fell into the automatic document feeder, which understandably created a jamming problem.
Tip # 2 – Take care when loading paper in the copier machine – A frequent cause of copier paper jams is when there is a piece of paper with a folded corner in the paper drawer. It is always a good idea when loading paper into the drawers to load the paper approximately 100 sheets at a time, and make sure that all of the edges in the stack are neatly aligned with no rogue piece of paper sticking out askew. When attempting to load an entire 500 sheet ream of paper in the copier, the stack of paper can be unwieldy and slide apart as it is being placed into the paper drawer. This can result in a piece of paper within the stack having a corner folded or crinkled which can easily create a paper jam.
Tip #3 – Have regular preventative maintenance on your copier to clean paper feed rollers – Every piece of paper that runs through your copier machine is carried through the process by a series of paper feed rollers. Over the course of time these rollers become worn down and coated with paper dust and ink making them less able to transport the paper effectively. Make sure that you regularly schedule copier service to have your paper feed rollers cleaned and replaced. A properly maintained machine is one of the most important aspects minimizing paper jams.
Tip #4 – Store your paper supply in a temperature controlled environment – Another frequent cause of paper jams is paper that has absorbed moisture. The most common cause of a paper jam in a copier machine is when paper is stored in a warehouse or garage where there is likely to be frequent temperature shifts and moisture in the air. Paper will absorb any moisture in the environment and even when that moisture in the paper dries out it leaves a pebbly surface on the paper making it challenging for the copier to grip and feed the paper.
Tip #5 – Don’t overfill the paper drawer of the copier machine – One of the most frequent causes of paper jams and copier service requests is when the paper drawers in the copier machine are over-filled. Every copier machine has indicators inside of the paper drawer showing the maximum level of paper to load in a drawer. If a 500 sheet capacity drawer gets down to the last 25 sheets of paper and a proactive employee adds an entire 500 sheet package of paper to the drawer, there is instantly an overflow situation. Take care to never add paper that exceeds above the maximum paper level indicator. Contact us your professional copier service provider for more information on copier troubles.