Printer Is Jammed


When working with your personal printer, it's inevitable that you'll encounter a paper jam. Follow the steps below when this happens.

If a University printer has a paper jam, contact the Help Desk. Be sure to include the blue VU tag number on the printer.


  1. Turn off the printer.
  2. Inspect the location or tray where the printed paper comes out.
  3. Remove all paper trays and any paper that may be stuck between the trays and the printer.
  4. Open the printer door that allows you access to the printer ink cartridges or toner and look for any stuck paper.
  5. Turn the printer back on.
  6. If you continue to receive a printer jam error, try repeating the above steps again.

If the issue persists and you see no paper stuck in the printer, it's likely your printer is experiencing another hardware issues and we suggest contacting the printer manufacturer for additional assistance or repair.

Removing Stuck Paper

To manually remove stuck paper, pull on the paper with both hands being careful not to tear the paper while pulling it. If you're unable to get to an edge of the paper that allows you to pull it, you may need to manually rotate the gears that feed the paper through the printer.

Preventing Paper Jams

If you're encountering frequent paper jams, following the below steps can help reduce the frequency of paper jams.

  1. If your printer has a paper tray, don't fill the tray to capacity. Reduce the amount of paper you place in the tray each time it's filled.
  2. Make sure the tray feeding the paper into the printer is aligned properly. Many printers have sliders that allow different types and sizes of paper to be fed into the printer, and it should be snug against the sides of the paper. If the slider is not properly positioned it can cause paper jams.
  3. Use standard office paper; folded paper, paper with labels, and specialty paper such as hard bound paper can often cause paper jams. If you're uncertain what paper you should use with your printer, check the manual that came with your printer for a list of compatible paper.
  4. Don't mix the paper you're feeding into the printer at one time. If you need to change the paper being used, remove any other paper currently in the printer before inserting the new paper.
  5. If your printer uses a slot or tray for the paper, make sure to not push the paper too far into the slot or tray.
  6. Examine the printer for any previous stuck paper in the printer. Previous paper jams, torn paper, printing labels or other foreign objects in the printer can cause reoccurring printer jams.

Still need help?

For additional assistance, contact the IT Help Desk.