How to Troubleshoot Swingline Staplers

by Jeffrey Brian Airman; Updated September 26, 2017
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Swingline manual and electronic staplers are available in a variety of designs to suit the stapling needs of almost any home or office. Operating a Swingline stapler incorrectly or filling it with the wrong staples may lead to jams and malfunction. Quickly and safely troubleshooting a Swingline stapler will make the cause of the problem apparent and lead you to a few solution options. Keep a Swingline stapler working like the day it was purchased by addressing any noticeable issues right away.

Items you will need

  • Manual Staplers:
  • Instructions
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Staples
  • Paper
  • Electronic Staplers:
  • Instructions
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Instructions
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Staples
  • Paper

Manual Staplers

Step 1

Review the instructions for the specific model of Swingline stapler you are using for information on the type of staple that is to be used and directions on accessing the staple tray for refills. Some Swingline models slide staples in through the back of the stapler instead of dropping them in from above. Larger industrial models often have a face plate in the front of the stapler that must be take off for access.

Step 2

Access the current staples inside the Swingline stapler to determine whether they are the proper type for the model you are troubleshooting. A manual Swingline stapler that jams on a regular basis is most likely using the wrong staples.

Step 3

Take out any staples that are jammed into the Swingline stapler by twisting them as you pull with a pair of needle nose pliers. If the staple breaks into two pieces when you are twisting, be sure to pull the second piece out as well.

Step 4

Replace any staples that are not the correct type with staples suggested in the manufacturer's instructions. Reassemble any other parts that were removed from the stapler. See the link in Resources for information on staple varieties available from Swingline.

Step 5

Test the Swingline stapler on paper in an attempt to recreate the situation that caused the problem, now that the stapler has been loaded with the correct staples and cleared of jams. Review the instructions to be sure you are properly operating the stapler.

Electronic Staplers

Step 1

Unplug the Swingline electronic stapler from the power source to avoid an injury during the troubleshooting procedure.

Step 2

Review the instructions for the specific model of electronic stapler you are using for information on the type of staple that is to be used and directions on accessing the staple tray for refills. Some Swingline models slide staples in through the back of the stapler instead of dropping them in from above.

Step 3

Access the current staples inside the electronic Swingline stapler to determine whether they are the proper variety for the model you are troubleshooting. Some electronic stapler varieties are capable of using more than one type of staple.

Step 4

Take out any staples that are jammed into the Swingline stapler by twisting them as you pull with a pair of needle nose pliers. If the staple breaks into two pieces when you are twisting, be sure to pull the second piece out as well.

Step 5

Replace any staples that are not the correct type with staples suggested in the manufacturer's instructions. See the link in Resources for information on staple varieties available from Swingline.

Step 6

Plug the refilled and cleared electronic stapler back in and test it on paper to see if any of the problems persist. Some electronic models have adjustable precision guides that can be customized for the specific job. Review the instructions to be sure you are properly operating the stapler.

Tips

  • Many Swingline staplers are sold with limited lifetime warranties that allow you to return a non-working stapler for a new or similar version. Look at the instruction manual and warranty card for information.

About the Author

Jeffrey Brian Airman is a writer, musician and food blogger. A 15-year veteran of the restaurant industry, Airman has used his experience to cover food, restaurants, cooking and do-it-yourself projects. Airman also studied nursing at San Diego State University.

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