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Disassembly (partial) and clean Epson C88+ Printer

Have an ‘old-ish’ Epson C88+ inkjet printer that was leaving ink marks on the end of every page printed.  Figured I could take it partially apart and try to clean the print-head and perhaps eliminate the obtrusive ink marks.

Epson C88+ Printer

Getting under the print-head without some disassembly was impossible, so I figured to take off the end-caps, move the print-head to one end of it’s travel and then be able to get under the print-head to do some basic cleaning.

First note, the dark plastic part of each end-cap is a cosmetic part only. Don’t remove it, you have to get the whole gray end-cap off each end. There’s a couple of clips on each end-cap that you use to release and remove. One on the back of each end-cap that is marked with an arrow, then one end-cap has two plastic clips you squeeze together to unlock the end-cap. the other end-cap as a square hole (about 2″ in diameter) that you have to pry up over a dark plastic center piece. Pull and bit and you can get both end-caps off without destroying anything.

End result looks like this:

Epson C88+ with end cover removed

Note that the end-cap with the two squeeze clips I found it easier to remove the two screws holding the printer port in place. that lessened things up a bit and make it easer to take that end-cap off

Epson C88+ remove screws here before removing end cover

Once you’ve got the end-caps off, power up the printer again and hit the “ink” button so the print-head moves out of the “park” position. once the print-head is in the center of the printer, remove power. This will leave the print-head in a position where you can slid it back and forth.

Slide the print-end completely to left side (as facing the front the printer). Some rubbing alcohol and q-tips and you can clean most of the ink off the bottom side (and underneath) the print-head.

that was easy, except…..

when I cleaned the ink, I ended up pushing ink over the paper sensor which is underneath the print-head. If that happens, then every time the printer tries to feed paper, it thinks there is a paper jam. Non-functional printer 🙁

So you have to remove more of the print-head so you can get to and clean the paper sensor.

To get to the paper sensor you first have to remove this piece of plastic from the side of the print-head

Epson C88+, remove plastic cover before accessing paper sensor

There’s a small tab on the top you can pull back and when that’s pulled back, pry out the rest of the plastic piece (which exposes the plastic bit holding the paper sensor as well as the ribbon cable going into the rest of the print-head)

Epson C88+ paper sensor cover. Added green tape after removing as it was kind of loose

The green tape above is on the plastic piece containing the paper sensor.  (green tape was added by me after the fact).  the plastic piece holding the paper sensor pushes down to come off.  there’s a good size hole near the left side of the printer mechanism that is a good spot to push down and remove the plastic bit holding the paper sensor.

The paper sensor is a small green circuit board connected to a small ribbon cable.  Don’t remove the circuit board from the ribbon cable, but bend it around a bit so you can use a q-tip and alcohol to clean the paper sensor.

Reassembly is a bit tricky.  I ended up using a small bit of electrical tape about 1/4″ square to hold the paper sensor circuit board in place while I re-attached the plastic holder.  Once the plastic holder snaps back in place, then the plastic coving the main ribbon cable can be re-inserted.

that should be it.  I re-assembled and the printouts are now clean of any ink marks.