How to Reset a Canon Pixma Printer

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Is your Canon Pixma printer experiencing an error? Sometimes a quick reset is all the unit needs to move past a problem. Each Pixma model features a slightly different factory reset procedure, but all are quite similar. Issues are easily tackled through the control panel of the printer itself. However, a full reset may not be necessary if you are experiencing common problems, such as delayed printing or an ink cartridge issue.

Factory Resets

The menu of a Pixma printer provides access to a factory reset option. Using this option will return all settings to factory specifications and can necessitate reconnecting to your home's network and moving through the entire setup process again. To access the factory reset option, turn on your printer and open the menu. Use the directional arrows to navigate to the setup menu, followed by "Device settings." Press "OK," and select the "Reset settings" option; hit "OK" again to start the process. On some Pixma printer models, the "Device settings" menu is accessible from the main menu without moving through the setup option.

Ink Cartridge Resets

When you install a new ink cartridge, the Pixma will guide you through a cartridge realignment process before allowing you to move forward with new print jobs. Follow the menu prompts for alignment and printing a sample sheet of paper.

Refilled ink cartridges create a reset issue for Canon Pixma printers, and there are several ways to move the printer through the problem. For printers in the Pixma MP/MX/MG series, ink cartridge resets require you to reset the printer according to BCH technology. For printers in a different Pixma line, consult the instructions provided with your ink cartridge refills or refill kit. To avoid dealing with ink cartridge reset problems, purchase cartridges directly from the manufacturer or an authorized provider.

Ink reset instructions:

  • Turn off the power. 
  • Push the power button down while holding the "Stop" button. Release the stop button while still holding the power button before pressing the "Stop" button two additional times. After approximately 30 seconds, the printer's display shows "O." 
  • Press the "Stop" button four times before pushing the power button twice. Press the power button one more time to turn off the printer and complete the reset of the printer. 
  • Reset cartridges by unplugging the printer's power and USB cables. Open the ink cartridge door while holding down the power button and reconnect the power cables with the power button pressed. Close the cartridge door, and then let go of the power button.

Troubleshooting Common Problems

Common problems with your printer – such as a paper jam, ink cartridge replacements or random technical glitches – can interfere with a specific print job and keep it from moving through the system. The job then remains in a processing stage and can act as a logjam keeping future print jobs from processing. Clearing the item from the queue will serve the same purpose as a reset by freeing up other print jobs.

On a PC, search for the "Devices and Printer" option in the start menu. Select your Canon Pixma printer and right-click to select "See what's printing." When the queue pops up, click on the item that is still processing to highlight the print job, and then click "Cancel."

Mac users need to open the "System Preferences" menu, and then select the Canon Pixma printer. Click "Open Print Queue" and highlight the job causing problems. Click "Jobs" in the main toolbar and then "Delete job."

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About the Author

Ashley Mott has 12 years of small business management experience and a BSBA in accounting from Columbia. She is a full-time government and public safety reporter for Gannett.