Ribbon Issues
Ribbon Issues

Ribbon Issues

This table identifies problems that may occur with ribbon, the possible causes, and the recommended solutions
For videos of some common procedures, go to zebra.com/zt500-info.
Ribbon Problems
Possible Cause
Recommended Solution
Broken or melted ribbon
Darkness setting too high.
Reduce the darkness setting. See DARKNESS for how to change the darkness setting. Clean the printhead thoroughly. See Cleaning the Printhead and Platen Roller.
The ribbon is coated on the wrong side and cannot be used in this printer.
Replace the ribbon with one coated on the correct side. For more information, see Coated Side of Ribbon.
Wrinkled ribbon
Ribbon was loaded incorrectly.
Load the ribbon correctly. See Loading the Ribbon.
Incorrect burn temperature.
For optimal print quality, set the darkness to the lowest possible setting for your application. You may want to perform the Evaluating Barcode Quality to determine the ideal darkness setting.
See DARKNESS for how to change the darkness setting.
Incorrect or uneven printhead pressure.
Set the printhead pressure to the minimum needed for good print quality. See Adjust the Printhead Pressure and Toggle Position.
Media not feeding properly; “walking” from side to side.
Make sure that media is snug by adjusting the media guide, or call a service technician.
The printhead or platen roller may be installed incorrectly.
Call a service technician.
The printer does not detect when the ribbon runs out.
The printer may have been calibrated without ribbon or without the ribbon loaded properly
Make sure that ribbon is loaded correctly so that it can be detected by the ribbon sensor. Under the printhead, the ribbon should track all the way back, near the printer’s firewall. See Loading the Ribbon.
Calibrate the printer. See Calibrating the Ribbon and Media Sensors.
In thermal transfer mode, the printer did not detect the ribbon even though it is loaded correctly.
The printer indicates that ribbon is out, even though ribbon is loaded correctly.
The printer was not calibrated for the label and ribbon being used.