Ink Cartridge Refill Help Center

0xc19a0020 Error Message

0_Problem with Printhead errorThe 0xc19a0020 error, with accompanying message “Problem with printhead”, represents there is either an Ink System Failure, a PRINTHEAD alignment problem or the internal PRINTHEAD has electrically failed. In some cases the mis-alignment of a cartridge’s smart chip may cause the issue – refer to ‘Missing or Damaged’ errors support page to check chip position. Printer models which may exhibit this error state include:

  • HP Officejet 6812
  • HP Officejet 6815
  • HP Officejet 6820
  • HP Officejet Pro 6230
  • HP Officejet Pro 6830
  • HP Officejet Pro 6835



For refilled HP 934/935 ink cartridge series printer models which display printer/cartridge error messages such as “cartridge missing or damaged”, “cartridge problem”, “cartridge depleted”, etc., and printing is not permitted, there is a new printer firmware update available for your printer model which will enable refilled ink cartridges to function normally (as of Sept. 2017).  Click on the link below; this will explain the issue & offer a printer firmware download to fix the issue and allow you to continue using refilled ink cartridges: click here



Perform the following steps to see if the error state can be cleared:

1. Select PRINTER MAINTENANCE and chose CLEAN PRINTHEAD. Check to see if the print quality test print is generated / successful.

2. Select ALIGN PRINTHEAD to calibrate the printhead.  If successful, then test with a different document (via computer).






It is suggested to perform the following steps before you decide on replacing the printhead or obtaining a new/replacement printer.


1) Plain paper should be used for testing to ensure this is not a paper sensing issue. However, depending on how much you have printed to date, there could be ‘ink mist’ interfering with the media sensor/sensing optics (a very common problem in the large format printer models). Run thru our quick checklist to evaluate all variables that may be causing the issue:


2) Remove ink cartridge and inspect cartridge’s smart chip surface (i.e. gold contacts) – check for scratches or ink residue. Verify cartridge’s smart chip position is correct.

– Retest printer using plain paper or a different paper type (standard bond is suggested).

– Replace cartridge ‘smart chip’ if suspected to be physically damaged.

– If smart chip position looks incorrect, return ink cartridge to your refiller for evaluation and/or chip replacement. The replacement chip should be present, located/aligned in the correct position (see photo below) and there should be NO ink residue or gashes on chip surface as this may render the cartridge unusable.



3) PRINTER DIAGNOSTICS. Perform Tap 41 (43) PRINTHEAD Health Diagnostics Test, along with supporting service level/diagnostic tests (NOTE: service menu access procedures do vary by HP printer model, refer to HP printer diagnostics document to view normal display messages,  )

Tap 41 PRINTHEAD Health Diagnostics (NOTE: the following procedure applies to touchscreen printer models only):

  1. At the printer’s display screen select the following buttons in the order shown until the ‘Service’ or ‘Support’ menu is displayed:
    1. Back
    2. Cancel
    3. Back
    4. CancelReturn-Icon_sm
  2. At ‘Service’ or ‘Support’ Menu, using the arrow key, navigate to the ‘Service Menu’, press Ok. NOTE: Procedure varies by printer model.
  3. Use arrow keys to advance to the ‘Special Reports’ Menu. Select OK.
  4. Use arrow keys to advance to the ‘print mech button tap’ menu. Select Ok.HP-OJPRO-8600_Print-Mech-Button-Tap-menu_small
  5. ‘code = 0’ will be displayed. Use arrows keys to change value to ‘41’ (i.e. press and hold right arrow key).
  6. When ‘Code = 41’, select ‘OK’. The diagnostic test pattern will print.
  7. Check the 4th line at the top of the printed report; an electrically good/stable PRINTHEAD will state “Pen Status: Pen OK”………if any other message is displayed then the PRINTHEAD may have failed and may need to be replaced. Re-seat PRINTHEAD and/or clean rear electrical contacts and repeat ‘Tap 41’ test to verify connectivity is not the issue.*



4) Perform a Semi full reset. 

NOTE: This will return printer to the factory default condition; regional setup will be required following this action.

  1. At the printer’s display screen select the following buttons in the order shown until the ‘Service’ or ‘Support’ menu is displayed:
    1. Back
    2. Cancel
    3. Back
    4. CancelReturn-Icon_sm
  2. At ‘Support’ menu navigate to the ‘Semi Full reset’ menu and select Ok to activate.



* An internal electrical failure of the PRINTHEAD generally has nothing to do with refilled ink cartridges as failures will normally occur over time and with average print usage. The PRINTHEAD assembly is a separate electronic unit in which the cartridges plug into and feed ink into.**


5) CLEAN PRINTHEAD assembly. To rule out printer/cartridge connectivity remove all 4 ink cartridges, inspect smart chip surfaces (clean as necessary) and reinstall into the printer. Lower or lift the release lever at side of printhead. Refer to User Guide for specific removal instruction for your printer model.

NOTE: Not all printer models (i.e. select Officejet models) have a customer removable printhead assembly.

1. Lift printhead release latch (lever) to remove printhead assembly – procedures vary by printer model (if removable – refer to User Guide).

Carriage Release latch (B210)

2. Remove printhead and clean printhead contacts. Use the damp cloth (de-ionized water or isopropyl alcohol) to wipe the electrical contacts from the bottom to the top. Coffee filters and glass-cleaning cloths work well.Do not go past the edge between the electrical contacts and the ink nozzles. Repeat this motion until no ink remains on the electrical contacts.

Printhead Removal(B210)


3. Re-install printhead assembly; lower the latch handle to securely lock the printhead assembly into place.
4. Print a test pattern to determine if the problem has been fixed. If not, refer to Step 7.


6) If after thorough PRINTHEAD inspection and electrical contact cleaning the problem persists, you may need to replace the PRINTHEAD assembly (i.e. available via Amazon or HP)*.  However, as a last ditch effort, you might want to perform a hot water flush on the PRINTHEAD (i.e. this procedure is normally used for missing colors or severe streaking or microbanding in printed output):

  1. Remove all ink cartridges from the printer.
  2. Remove the PRINTHEAD – for most printer models you will need to pull up on the lever adjacent to carriage assembly to unlock the printhead (NOTE: printhead cannot be easily removed on Officejet series printer models as partial printer dis-assembly is required). Lift printhead straight up to remove.
  3. Over a sink, run warm tap water directly into the 4 ink ports for approximately 2 minutes – this will effectively saturate the foam ports and blow ink out/thru the nozzle plate bottom.
  4. Using a lint-free towel, remove water from rear/bottom electrical contacts. Ensure printhead electrical contacts and exposed surfaces are fully dry.
  5. Install the printhead into the printer. You may observe a “Replace Printhead message” so you will need to cycle printer power by turning printer off and then on to clear the error.
  6. Install ink cartridges and retest printer. You should observe a New PRINTHEAD alert message followed by an approx. 4-minute preparation countdown prompt.
  7. If permissible, activate the ‘Clean Printhead’. This can be done from the printer’s control panel or software printer driver (for example, by selecting ‘Tools’ – ‘Clean Printhead’, or similar).
  8. If you have reached this point of the troubleshooting and all the previous troubleshooting steps did not work, then the printhead is likely damaged or at end of life* and may need to be replaced.


*If you are unable to remove the PRINTHEAD assembly (via release lever) then consult your User’s Guide for specific instructions or refer to


7) If this does not remedy the problem, then you may have a defective PRINTHEAD in the printer (worst case scenario), unrelated to the refilled cartridges.**


How an Inkjet Printhead Works (4, 5 & 6 Ink Cartridge Printers):






However, if you observe missing colors or poor image quality then air may have been accidentally ingested into the ink lines between the cartridge(s) and PRINTHEAD. To recover from this problem, you will have to run the “Clean Printhead” procedure 2-3 times to recover the ink system. Watch the video on the HP support page which describes some of the common issues you may encounter with refilled ink cartridges. This type of problem is common and completely recoverable.


NOTE: The HP 934/935 ink-series printer models have an electronic PRINTHEAD within the base of the carriage assembly (responsible for pulling ink from the 4 ink cartridges and then firing the ink droplets onto the paper) – these will eventually fail depending on print usage type and printer duty cycle (i.e. generally rated for an estimated 15,000+ printed pages over printer life, but the consumer average may typically be closer ~7,000+ pages over printer life). The printhead may be replaceable and genuine parts can be ordered from Amazon, or similar.



Printhead**Typically the printhead should not reach it’s end-of-life until after a minimum of 8 or more complete sets of cartridge changes. While some printheads may last up to 20,000+ pages others may only last 3,000-4000 pages, actual results will vary. The printhead will eventually fail in time due to an internal micro-electronics failure, due to the following leading factors: general customer print usage and printer care, printer duty cycle (i.e. # pages printed per month), printing frequency (i.e. time between each print job), print mode (i.e. draft vs. normal) and content printed (i.e. photos vs plain pages), media/substrate thickness, curled paper (i.e. caused printhead plate strikes which can lead to damage) and color mode (black and white only vs. color/greyscale printing). Premature printhead failure (i.e. less than 2000 pages) is abnormal.


Paper types used (i.e. plain paper, photo papers & matte/heavy bond papers) and paper edge curl (i.e. duration in printer and/or exposure to low relative humidity) can also quickly lead to premature printhead failures due to physical ‘head strikes’ of the paper edges making repeated contact with the printhead nozzle plate surfaces.


Printhead Life

The built-in PRINTHEAD will eventually fail over time with usage and age (may or may not be replaceable depending on printer model – see User Manual)

Possible Printhead Failure? 



Advanced Printer Diagnostics

To view advanced diagnostics tests for your HP printer, click here:

HP Printer Diagnostics



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