If your HP printer is refusing to print, there can be several reasons behind it. It can stop printing when there are multiple print jobs spooling in the print queue. The spooling can crash the print spooler service and prevent the printer from printing your documents.
Similarly, if you are using the printer over a wireless network, poor signal strength may result in the issue too. Moreover, you may also have run into this issue due to incorrect printing preferences or an incompatible printer driver.
Since it is difficult to figure out what actually stopped the printer from printing, you can go through the list of all the possible fixes below.
Table of Contents
Run HP Print and Scan Doctor
First, we strongly recommend you use the HP troubleshooting app, HP Print and Scan Doctor. This application helps you diagnose any issues with the HP printer and also automatically apply the necessary fixes. It is very effective in solving almost all the issues with your printer and does not even require your effort to implement the fixes.
- Open HP Print and Scan Doctor app on your PC.
- Click the Start button.
- Select your printer profile and then click Next.
- Wait some time till the troubleshooter diagnoses the issue and solves the problem.
Check the Connection Status
HP printers can be connected to your PC via USB, Wi-Fi or LAN cables. If the connection is not set up properly, your printer simply won’t print the document. In case you are using USB or LAN cables, try reconnecting the cables. You can also try swapping the connection ports.
Similarly, if you are using the printer over Wi-Fi, make sure the connection is proper and the wireless signal is strong enough for the printer to operate correctly. You can print the network configuration page, then analyze the report to know the status. Also, make sure your device and printer are connected to the same Wi-Fi network and there is no VPN running on your PC.
- Simply press the Wireless and Information buttons simultaneously.
- It will eject a network configuration page with wireless connection details.
Check the Printer Status
Generally, you see the error message on the printer’s control panel when there are any issues. For example, an E2 error message on the printer’s display panel means there is a paper size mismatch error. Alternatively, you can also use the HP Smart app for checking the status.
- On your computer, launch the HP Smart app.
- You will see the printer status directly on the application’s homepage. The status should be Ready. If the status is other than Ready, you should seek the fixes accordingly.
Assign a Manual IP
If you find that your printer has an Offline status, it indicates an IP conflict between the printer and PC.
Generally, the printers get IP addresses using DHCP protocol, which has a certain lease time. When the lease time of the previously assigned DHCP IP ends, the printer gets a new IP. The new IP should also be updated on the computer. Otherwise, you can not print. To get rid of this IP conflict, you may assign a static IP to the printer.
- Connect the printer to your computer using a USB A-B cable.
- Launch HP Smart.
- Hit the Printer Settings.
- Go to Advanced Settings.
- Click the Network tab.
- Click Network Address (IPV4) under Wireless (802.11) tab.
- Select Manual IP and fill in the details.
- To know the details, open Command Prompt.
ipconfigin the command window and press Enter. You will get the Default Gateway and Subnet Mask value.
- After that, type
arp -aand hit Enter key.
- See the arp list and note down a unique IP to assign to the printer. With respect to our case, we can assign any unique IP between
- Fill in all three details in the Manual IP section of HP Smart.
- Then open Settings on your computer and select Bluetooth & devices > Printers & scanners.
- Hit the Add device button and then click Add manually.
- Check mark Add a printer using an IP address or hostname and click Next.
- Fill in the IP address that you assigned manually on the HP Smart and click the Next button.
You can consult this detailed guide to fix the offline issue on the HP printer for further troubleshooting.
Update the Printer Driver
You should always use HP-compatible printer drivers to operate the printers correctly. To verify, if there are driver issues, you can first try printing from your iPad or smartphone using HP Smart and see if the print command executes successfully. If it does, we suggest you install the correct printer drivers on your PC.
- Open the Software and Driver Downloads page of HP.
- Search for your printer model in the search box.
- Expand the Installation Software section. Then click the Download button.
- Launch the
.exefile once you complete the download.
Choose the Default Printer
You can generally choose which printer to use for printing when giving a print command. However, if you have more than one printer connected to a computer, you may end up giving a command to the wrong printer. So, making your HP printer a default printer can help avoid such mistakes.
- Open Control Panel.
- Then navigate to Hardware and Sound > Devices and Printers.
- Right-click the HP printer and choose the Set as default printer option.
Set the Correct Printing Preferences
If you are using non-HP compatible papers with your printer, it may prevent the printer from printing. You should avoid using any glossy, coated, and design papers—they can cause paper jams in the printer and stop you from printing.
Likewise, you should also see if there is enough ink on the printer. Low ink level is another cause your printer refuses to print. You can consult this article on how to check the ink levels on your HP printer.
Moreover, you should set the appropriate paper size and paper quality in the printing preferences of your HP printer too. Most of the time, specifying the incorrect paper size and type leads to printing blank pages. But, sometimes it may also entirely stop the printer from printing.
- Launch Control Panel and click Hardware and Sound > Devices and Printers.
- Go under the Printers section, and right-click your HP printer.
- Click Printing preferences.
- Go to the Paper/Quality tab.
- Select the proper Paper Size.
- Then choose the Paper Type.
- Click OK.
Clear Pending Print Jobs
If there are multiple print jobs pending in a queue, we suggest you wait till those documents get a printer or, cancel them. It prevents the new print commands from executing and you won’t get a printout.
- Open Control Panel and go to Hardware and Sound > Devices and Printers.
- Right-click the HP printer profile and choose See what’s printing. It will show all the pending print jobs in a queue.
- Click the Printer tab and select Cancel All Documents.
- Now try to print the document.
Configure Print Spooler Service
After clearing the print jobs, you should also check if the print spooler service is running properly. This service is responsible for handling all the print jobs on your computer. But, it can crash due to a piled-up print queue. So, you can try restarting the service and see if it fixes the issue.
- Open the Services application on your computer.
- Scroll down to Print Spooler and double-click it.
- Click Stop and wait for the service to stop.
- Then click the Start button.
- Select the Startup type as Automatic and click OK.
Reset the Printer
If none of the above fixes works, you can reset your HP printer as a last resort. It will reset every personalized setting and configuration on the printer that might be preventing the printer from working normally. However, you should again set up the printer from scratch after resetting it.
- Launch HP Smart on your computer.
- Click Printer Settings.
- Go to Advanced Settings.
- On the next window, click the Settings tab.
- Expand the Restore Defaults menu on the left-hand side.
- Choose Restore Factory Defaults.
- Click the Restore Factory Defaults button.