Laser printers are using an electrical charge that attracts the particles of toner to the transfer roller. And then it will press the toner particles onto your paper. Need more details about the complete laser printer process? You’ll find the answer below.
Laser Printer Process Step by Step
Some people look at their laser printer and get mad because the tool is full of problems. Before cursing your printer, you may want to learn about how your laser printer is working. By knowing the intricate process, you’ll understand more about the printer and possibly gets more patience.
The first step of how your laser printer works are sending. To begin the process, your computer is going to break the document you want to print. Your document will be digital data and the computer will send it to your laser printer.
Magically, your printer is going to receive the data and reassemble the computer data into a ready-to-print image. Your laser printer is going to capture the data before processing your digital document. And then the printer will enter the next steps.
A laser printer is going to leave a residue on the laser printer drum. The cleaning process is an electrical and physical process to remove the previous printing job. This process will also prepare the printer’s photosensitive drum for the upcoming printing job.
This cleaning process will scrape away the toner remnants on the printer drum. During the cleaning process, the rubber cleaning blade will clean the remnants into a debris cavity. And then the laser printer’s electrostatic erase lamps will defuse the drum’s electric charges from the previous printing job.
The next laser printer process is applying the lubrication to the printer’s heat roller. This step is to make sure that heat in an adequate amount is applied evenly so that the printer can transfer the incoming image and print properly.
This conditioning process involves applying the charge to the printer’s drum unit and also to the paper. The conditioning process will occur as the paper is passing through the corona wire. The laser printer will add a static charge to your paper. It will transfer the image electrostatically to the printer page.
Then the primary charge roller will spring to life and spin the adjacent OPC (organic photoconductor) drum. Next, the corona wire’s ions will coat that drum with static electricity. This process of electro-photographic will start at the molecular level.
And then the drum will complete the revolution and will have a negative charge. To ease you in understanding this process, imagine static electricity as a force that sticks your socks to sweaters. This usually happens when you pull them out of your dryer. The same force also works inside your laser printer.
The next laser printer process is exposing. This is when the printer is exposing the photosensitive drum to the laser beam. The process will expose each area of the printer drum. It will reduce the surface charge of each drum’s area to about a hundred volts DC.
As the drum of your laser printer turns, it will generate a latent print that is invisible. And then the image you are about to print will exist for the first time. But it will be a thin layer of electrons, on the organic photoconductor drum. The laser glow is going to break the darkness within your printer cartridge.
Your laser printer’s beam is going to bounce off the multi-sided and spinning mirror. And then the beam will break into countless information rays. The rays will spray the information into the OPC drum and turn the negative charges into positive charges.
Line by line, your printer’s laser is speaking to the drum unit’s revolving surface. This process describes the page with a language that has toner particles. The drum is wearing the image that has a positive charge on the surface and it is now ready to transfer the image onto your paper.
In this stage of development, the machine will apply the toner to the drum’s latent image. The toner consists of powdered plastics with negative charges: yellow, magenta, cyan, and black. A control blade is holding the printer’s drum a microscopic away from the toner.
Your printer’s toner is between 85 and 95 percent finely ground plastic. Some other ingredients of the toner include control agents, fumed silica, and colored pigments. Here are some details about each ingredient of the toner:
- The silica keeps the particles of toner from sticking together and clumping. It will also make the toner flow from the cartridge smoothly.
- The control agents contain chromium, iron, and zinc. They will retain the toner particles’ negative electrostatic charge.
- The toner’s pigments come in different variations. Those pigments will create color in the toner cartridges. Below are the pigments of the toner:
|Yellow||Pigment Yellow 180||Benzimidazole|
|Cyan||Pigment Blue 15:3||Copper Phthalocyanine|
|Magenta||Pigment Red 122||2,9-Dimethyl-Quinacridone|
|Black||Carbon black powder and powdered plastic|
The next laser printer process is transferring. In this process, the transfer roller or secondary corona wire will apply the positive charge onto your paper. Inside the printer’s toner cartridge hopper, there is an agitator unit that will spin. And then the printer’s toner will start heating up.
The toner adder will spin and pull the toner in while gathering the dust of the toner on the surface. Then the doctor blade will sweep over the developer roller that is adjacent and level the toner to the right height. All the commotion and spinning leave the particles of magenta on the surface with a negative charge.
When it touches the image with a positive charge on the OPC drum, the attraction laws will take over. The toner with a negative charge on the drum’s surface will be magnetically attracted to the paper areas that have a positive charge. The process will also pull the particles of magenta toner.
It will pull the particles from the developer to the drum, following the instruction from the laser. Some particles of magenta toner will blend with blue, black, and yellow. They will form beautiful colors. The paper sheet will pass over every color cartridge as the printer is transferring the image onto the paper.
Fusing is the final stage. In this stage, the fuser unit will apply pressure and heat to the toner. And then the toner will generate a permanent bond as the fuser presses it and melts it into the paper. A Teflon will cover the fuser unit when the machine is applying the silicon oil.
This process is going to remove any possibility of the paper sheet sticking to them. The fuser unit is going to melt the powder or toner onto the printer’s page and create an image. And then a wiper blade will clean any remaining particles from the OPC drum. It will also deposit them in the waste bin.
Next, the cleaning process will start. This process will erase, restore, and refresh all latent charges that are left on the drum surface areas. This way, the laser printer will be ready to start a new printing job. The cleaning process will also scrub the excess toner that is not transferred.
It will clean the developer unit and return the excess toner to the hopper. This way, the laser printer can use the excess toner again on the next printing page. The toner that stays on the organic photoconductor drum and is not being transferred will be wiped into the waste bin for toner.
Laser Printer Types
Now, you know how your laser printer works by order. You may also want to know the different types of laser printers. In 1969, Gary Starkweather invented this laser printer technology. Since then, this printer becomes a famous printer for various industries. Here are some famous laser printer types.
This monochrome laser printer is the simplest one. This printer is going to print only in black and white. The monochrome laser printer process is simpler than the process above. Moreover, the price of a monochrome laser printer is also lower than the price of a color laser printer.
To use this printer, you only have to use a black cartridge. Right now, many monochrome laser printers are available everywhere. This printer comes to cater to different preferences and needs of the consumer. Some monochrome laser printers are available at $100, those are the best budget-pick ones.
The first laser printer was only able to print black and white only. But now, you can find color laser printers easily in different models. Many businesses choose color laser printers because of their reliable performance and practical advantages.
Some of the best color laser printers allow you to print more quickly and efficiently. This is going to let you finish many high-volume projects easily. People also love this laser printer because it is cheaper and easier to maintain than many inkjet printers.
Multifunction laser printers are combining various devices. You can find a laser printer that can also work as a scanner, printer, fax, and copier. People know this type of printer as an all-in-one printer. This laser printer type is the most famous option for offices and businesses.
If you have a small business or home office, a multifunction laser printer is what you need. It is more versatile than the previous types of laser printers. Besides, this laser printer is giving you many advantages of laser printing.
Which Printer Is Better?
After learning about the laser printer process and the three types of laser printers, you may want to compare it with an inkjet printer. Which one between an inkjet printer and a laser printer is the better one? If you are about to print thousands of pages or will print at high volume, consider using a laser printer.
A laser printer is going to lower the overall cost of printing per page. However, laser printers come at a higher price than inkjet printers. But if you want to find a printer that will print glossy photos of much better quality, you need to consider an inkjet printer. Inkjet printers are also perfect for home offices.
Home offices don’t print at high volume so they don’t have to get a laser printer. But keep in mind that inkjet printers are using ink and ink replacement is expensive. However, if you don’t print a lot, you don’t have to replace the inks often. That is why inkjet is a nice solution for smaller offices.
|Advantages of Laser Printers||Advantages of Inkjet Printers|
|Superior printing quality than inkjet printers.||Smaller and lighter, perfect for home uses.|
|Minimal printing noise.||Ideal options to print images and photos.|
|Superior printing speed than inkjet printers.||More affordable than laser printers.|
|More economical than inkjet printers.||Can work with various media.|
Learning the laser printer process will help you understand how your printer works and give you the document you want. Make sure that you understand each process to appreciate your printer more than ever. Also, learn about the differences between laser printers and inkjet printers to find the best one.