HP Technical Support

If you require help or advice please use the contact us button

HP Technical Support Contents:

Recent HP Printer Ink Problems mainly with HP 934/935XL & 950/951XL inks - Bad Publicity

HP 301XL HP302XL at the bottom of the page

Recent HP Printer Ink - Bad Publicity

On the 13th of September, several HP printer types started to reject non-HP ink cartridges. An online ink retailer found that HP pre-programmed a date in its firmware on which private label non-HP ink cartridges would no longer be accepted.

HP admitted that it had made changes to its software and stated it did so to, “protect its intellectual property, innovation and to protect the communication between the cartridge and the printer.”

In the same statement HP also said that, “affected printers will continue to work with refilled cartridges if they contain the original HP security chip. Other cartridges possibly don’t work.”

Following all the bad publicity HP received over this they had to release a firmware update that allows usage of non-HP ink cartridges again for its Officejet, Officejet Pro and Officejet Pro X printers that allows them to accept non-HP ink cartridges again. The printer manufacturer marks the firmware update as optional.

Some users were hoping the issue was a bug nevertheless, as they were told so by the HP help desk. A HP spokesperson later told the help desk was wrong and confirmed the rejection of non-HP cartridges was intentional.

After a lot of press attention the printer manufacturer apologised and stated to be working on a firmware update that would make its printers accept non-HP cartridges again. This is the update that has been released today.

Despite this, the company hasn’t made it as easy as possible for users to obtain the firmware. Printer owners with a device affected by the ‘non-HP ink reject’ feature can look up their device on HP’s driver page to end up on the individual page of the printer. As an example we use a HP Officejet Pro 8610.

On the page it’s unclear that there is a firmware available that will make the printer accept non-HP ink again. Instead the page displays, and marks as important, an older firmware that doesn’t allow non-HP ink cartridges. Users need to perform an additional click on the firmware tab to see that another, newer, firmware is available.

In case of our example Officejet Pro 8610, version 1640B is available of which the details state, “This firmware update removes previous security firmware that may prevent the printer from working with certain ink supplies that contain non-HP security chips. Please note that even with this change HP cannot guarantee the quality or reliability of non-HP supplies.”

Users who installed the new firmware report that their printer now indeed accepts non-HP ink cartridges again.

You can find the above with precise instructions and diagrams by visiting this page:


Next time you need to buy a new printer and want to save money using compatible inks please read ourNew Printer Guide 



To begin with, install the black HP 301/302 cartridge.

Centralise the ink carriage by opening the printer door.

Remove your new ink cartridges from their outer packaging.

Remove the blue tape from the cartridge if fitted

With a sheet of kitchen paper, wipe the ink cartridge head. This will release the ink.

Place the ink cartridge in to the carriage, making sure it clicks in to place.

Now, we will install the colour cartridge using the same method as the black.

Note that the colour cartridge will not have blue tape to remove.

Close the printer door. The cartridges will now initialise.

The printer’s low ink warning LEDs may light up. These can be safely ignored, as re-manufactured (Compatible) HP 301/302 ink levels cannot be reset.

When you start to print with your new cartridges, you will receive a number of on-screen messages.

The first pop-up message to appear will ask you to align your print heads. We recommend you do this, following the instructions on-screen.

The second message is a ‘used or counterfeit cartridges detected’ warning. Simply click ‘NO’.

The third and final message that will appear will be another used cartridge warning, on this pop-up click ‘OK

If you have installed two re-manufactured cartridges at the same time, you will receive the previous two pop-up messages a second time. Click ‘no’ and ‘OK’ again.

You have now installed your HP 301/302 ink cartridges and are ready to print.

Other warning messages for the HP 301/302 and troubleshooting may include:

'Cartridge is empty' - Depending on the printer model. Most compatible and remanufactured HP 301's will show the ink levels as empty. This does not always mean the ink cartridge is empty. Try and print a test page or page on your printer, ignore the warning messages you should be able to print. Ink Levels are just a way to monitor how much ink is left before you purchase new cartridges. You will notice this when you get streaks or blanks across your printing page. If you have printed a lot of pages then your cartridge may be empty.

'Check ink/print cartridge' - HP printers mostly can't check that you have reinstalled a new ink cartridge when using compatible or remanufactured ink cartridges. Check all the warnings below.

-Check the warning message - The warning message will sometimes give you an indication to what problem is on the printer, make sure you take a screenshot or write down the message. Sometimes these messages can be simply ignored and clicked through to continue printing.

- Check ink cartridges are installed and clicked into place correctly -Sometimes, the cartridges are simply not installed properly or clicked into place. Mild force is needed and you should here a faint 'click' when the go into place. If you're unsure if they have been put in correctly, just take them out, check the colour and black slot are in the correct places and re-insert the ink cartridge.

- Check the ink cartridges are the correct cartridges for your printer -Make sure you have the correct ink cartridges installed for your printer. As HP printer cartridges look very similar this can be an easy mistake to make. If you're unsure of the cartridges that your printer takes, check the printer manual or ask your local ink cartridge dealer, then you can be sure that you have the correct ink.

Get 10% Off