An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure
How does the saying go…. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure?” When dealing with expenses in the e-commerce world the last thing that we want to grapple over is the expense of printing labels. Proper maintenance and care (prevention) for your label printer will add minimal costs compared to the expense of purchasing new equipment (pound of cure).
A quick Google search will show you that the average cost of a label printer (pound of cure) can range from $70 all the way up to $4500 and more depending on the technology and printer capabilities. For some this could be the difference between turning a profit or not in a given month if new equipment is required.
The following are ways to find out quickly if your printer needs maintenance or is in the beginning stages of failure:
- Easiest is that your image is beginning to fade
- Others may be streaks of white running horizontal indicating clogs in a printer head
- Does the printer quickly heat up and then quickly cool down with the current settings?
- Is extra pressure or extra heat needed to print darker readable labels?
The standard lifespan of label printer should be 10 million labels however if you are seeing much less than this you may want to find out what is causing your label printer to have a shorter lifespan
Steps that can be taken to prolong the life span of your printer:
- Clean the printer heads with a print head cleaning pen after every roll of labels
- If the printer is in an area where there is extra amounts of dust or changes in temperature, then daily cleaning may be needed
- Check the manufactured recommended settings to make sure that your printer settings are properly set for your model of printer
- Using the proper ribbon size will not only prolong the life of your printer, eliminate label scratching but will also allow you to use less heat and less pressure in your printer settings for an accurate and quality print
Like your online marketplace/website, daily care for your warehouse equipment is required to accomplish optimal productivity and satisfactory throughput. Neglect for equipment, like a label printer, will lead to increased expenses, increase shipping costs and increased shipping/fulfillment failures. Shipping carriers will reject labels if labels are unreadable. Many parts of a shipping label are unrecognizable to the human eye but extremely important when creating automation at the machine sortation and distribution levels. Neglect to ensure these items are readable by a machine can be the difference between a package being delivered or returned. This is why learning how to clean and maintain your printer is essential.
Regular maintenance, label testing and environmental checks (ounce of prevention) will prevent failures and undeliverability of packages which will ultimately result in a need to purchase new equipment (pound of cure).