How to Fix an Offline HP Printer

By Nina Nixon

Deadlines are a part of a typical day in the life of the office worker. When an HP printer goes offline, it can easily stifle your workflow, which in turn can cause frustration. But there are a few troubleshooting steps you can try to get your printer back online.

Step 1

Check the cables connecting the printer to the computer and make sure they are secure.

Step 2

Turn the printer off and back on.Resetting the printer can sometimes bring it back online.

Step 3

Check the toner or ink cartridge. If your ink is low or empty, the printer won't function.

Step 4

Check for torn paper, paper clips, sticky label residue and other items that could be the cause of printer jams. Any of these will stop a printer in its tracks.

Step 5

Set the printer as your default printer and see if this resets it to online status. From the Start menu, select "Control Panel," then "Printers and other Hardware." Select the printer that is offline. Select "Printer" from the pull-down menu. Click on "Set Printer as Default".

Tips & Warnings

  • Be prepared and have a set of extra printer cables and ink or toner cartridges on hand so that you are always ready to replace faulty cables and replenish your ink supply.
  • Do not attempt to repair a printer or cable that has its electrical parts exposed. The electrical shorts could affect the life cycle of your printer and cause damage to your computer. Damaged wiring also poses as a potential fire hazard.