Common Designjet System Error Codes & Warnings - An Explanation

As HP factory trained Designjet plotter engineers we have had 20 years of daily exposure to faulty HP plotters and have experienced every single type of error. Some are so rare we only see them once a year but the majority are commonplace that every HP plotter will experience at least once in it's life. Some errors are followed by 'Call HP Support' Feel free to call us as a lot of there errors can be cured over the phone by resetting a parameter in the 'service menu'.

In order to help end-users we have listed below the top 3 errors for each Designjet plotter model:-

Designjet 430/450C:-

Error lights on steady not flashing:-

  • Ready + Cartridges + Data

Mark Encoder not detected  -  During initialization the sensor on the r/h side of the carriage has to find a reference point called the mark encoder located on the l/h side of the drive roller.  You will hear the drive roller being rotated as it attempts to detect the encoder mark.  This error state results if the mark cannot be found.

  • Align Media + Media - Y-axis shutdown

The onboard diagnostics have detected some resistance in the left to right movement of the carriage. Can be caused by worn main drive belt, faulty y-axis motor or dry carriage rails requiring lubrication.

  • Load Media + Cartridges + Data

Problems when initializing the carriage.  This error occurs when the carriage fails to communicate with the main electronics module. Caused either by a faulty trailing cable that connects the carriage to the main electronics board or a faulty carriage itself.

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Tips for keeping your HP Designjet plotter in A1 working condition


Here are our tips for keeping your HP Designjet plotter in A1 working condition:-
If in doubt call the experts on 07835 777628


How to troubleshoot poor print quality 
• Check that your Printheads are in warranty and have not exceeded 100% usage
• Align your printheads (this can be performed via the front panel in the ‘Ink’ menu)
• Perform the colour calibration (this can be performed via the front panel in the ‘Ink’ menu)
• Calibrate the paper advance (this can be performed in the ‘Calibrations’ menu)
• Replace your printheads. Before installing check the ‘install before’ date on the back of the box to make sure the printheads are in-date.


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Free HP Designjet Drivers, Software And Firmware Downloads


Find your HP Designjet model and follow the link to HP's website:-


  • Designjet 430/450C Drivers & Firmware - Click Here  
  • Designjet 1050C/1055CM Drivers & Firmware - Click Here
  • Designjet 5500 Drivers & Firmware - Click Here 
  • Designjet Z6100 Drivers & Firmware - Click Here

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