8 Tips to Prevent Damp Paper Photocopier Jams

Office Environment: Preventing Damp Paper Photocopier Jams

As an office manager or admin professional, you’re no stranger to the frustration caused by photocopier jams. They disrupt workflow, waste time, and can be a real headache. 

Here at Evolve, we can reveal (drum roll please) that one of the major culprits behind these jams is damp paper. Yes, you read right! Damp paper can wreak havoc on your photocopier and cause those pesky jams that no one wants to deal with.

Even though it feels dry enough to touch, paper can soak up moisture like a, well … like a sponge. And this could spell bad news for your next copying task.

In this blog post, we’ll show you how to put an end to this paper-induced chaos and keep your photocopier running smoothly.

Optimal Storage: Protect Your Paper Sanctuary

Let’s start with the basics: paper storage. To prevent damp paper from causing photocopier jams, you need to provide your paper with a safe haven. Store your paper in a dry, cosy spot, just like you would want for yourself during a rainy day. Make sure it’s snug and protected.

Top Tip #1: Store your paper in a warm, dry place.

If your office is located in a damp environment, such as a basement or garage, consider purchasing a dehumidifier. This little gadget can work wonders in reducing the moisture in the air and keeping your paper dry.

Top Tip #2: If your paper store is located in a damp environment, consider purchasing a dehumidifier.

Dehumidifiers are designed to extract excess moisture from the air. When you store paper in a humid environment, the paper can absorb this moisture, causing it to become damp or even slightly wrinkled. Damp paper is more likely to stick together, leading to paper jams when it goes through the photocopier. By reducing the humidity level, a dehumidifier helps maintain the paper’s dryness.

At the risk of digressing, the benefits of a dehumidifier go beyond just moisture control!

  • Preventing Mold and Mildew: High humidity can create conditions favourable for mould and mildew growth. Mould and mildew can damage paper, making it not only unsuitable for photocopying but also potentially ruining important documents. A dehumidifier helps to create an environment less conducive to mould and mildew development, preserving the quality of your paper.
  • Enhancing Paper Durability: Damp paper tends to become weaker over time, which can result in tears and misfeeds in the photocopier. By using a dehumidifier to maintain an optimal humidity level, you ensure that your paper remains strong and durable, reducing the likelihood of jams and paper-related issues.
  • Consistency: Photocopiers operate best in consistent environmental conditions. Fluctuating humidity levels can cause paper to expand and contract, affecting its dimensions. This expansion and contraction can lead to paper jams and misalignments within the photocopier. A dehumidifier helps to maintain a stable and consistent humidity level, promoting smooth paper feeding and reliable copying.
  • Improved Print Quality: Damp paper can affect print quality, causing ink or toner to smudge or bleed. By using a dehumidifier to keep the paper dry, you ensure that your photocopied documents come out crisp and professional-looking.
  • Cost Savings: Preventing paper damage and photocopier jams due to moisture issues can save you money in the long run. You’ll reduce the need for service calls, repairs, and replacement of damaged paper, ultimately lowering your operational costs.

If dampness is a persistent issue – then it may be worth investigating. Anyway, we promised you tips. Back to our damp paper challenge:

Fresh Paper, Happy Copier: Say No to Damp Paper

Now that your paper has a safe haven, let’s talk about the quality of the paper itself. Using fresh, dry paper is crucial to preventing photocopier jams. Avoid paper that’s been exposed to the elements for too long, as it can absorb moisture and become your copier’s worst enemy.

Top Tip #3: Only purchase paper sold in sealed reams.

Sealed reams ensure that the paper remains dry and free from moisture until you’re ready to use it. Remember, your photocopier deserves the best!

Top Tip #4: Avoid recycled paper, as this is often the worst type for damp issues.

Recycled paper may have a higher moisture content, so it’s best to steer clear if you want to keep your copier happy.

Regular TLC: Maintenance Matters

Your photocopier is a workhorse, but even the best machines need a little TLC to perform at their best. Regular maintenance is the key to spotting and preventing unexpected hiccups, including those caused by damp paper.

Top Tip #5: Keep your photocopier in tip-top shape with routine maintenance.

A qualified technician can clean and inspect the photocopier’s rollers and other internal components to prevent paper jams. Don’t neglect this essential step in keeping your office running smoothly.

Fan it Out: The Paper Prep Ritual

Now, let’s get hands-on with paper preparation. Before loading your paper into the photocopier, there’s a simple yet effective ritual you should perform. Gently fan out your paper before loading it. This seemingly small step can make a world of difference in preventing jams.

Top Tip #6: Gently fan out your paper before loading it. This keeps those pesky sheets from sticking together.

Fanning the paper helps separate any sheets that may have clung together due to moisture or static electricity. Think of it as giving your paper a breath of fresh air before its journey through the copier.

Cover Up: Give Your Copier a Cosy Blanket

When your photocopier is not in use, give it a little love by covering the paper trays. It’s like tucking it in with a cosy blanket, ensuring that no stray moisture sneaks in and causes trouble.

Top Tip #7: Cover the paper trays.

A simple cover can go a long way in keeping your photocopier and its paper dry and ready for action.

Only Load What You Need: The Goldilocks Principle

We’ve covered the importance of storing paper correctly and maintaining your photocopier, but there’s one more crucial piece of the puzzle: loading the right amount of paper. Overloading the paper tray is a common mistake that can lead to paper becoming damp and sticky.

Top Tip #8: Only load the amount of paper you need for one day into the printer or copier.

If you only use half a ream, leave the rest in the packet and seal it back up with tape. This simple practice ensures that your paper stays fresh and dry until you need it.

Remember Dry Paper is Your Photocopier’s Best Friend

(Apart from Evolve, of course! There’s no better friend for your photocopier!)

Preventing photocopier jams caused by damp paper is all about creating the perfect environment for your paper and your machine.

Store your paper in a dry place, use sealed reams of fresh paper, maintain your photocopier regularly, and follow simple paper preparation steps like fanning it out and covering the trays.

By implementing these practices, you’ll not only save time and frustration but also extend the lifespan of your photocopier. Remember, a happy photocopier is a productive one, and it all starts with keeping that paper dry. 

So, go ahead, take these steps, and say goodbye to damp paper-induced photocopier jams once and for all! Your office will thank you for it.