Should I update my printer?

Should I update my printer?


That should be end of the blog.  It’s that simple!

Nowadays, with almost all printers having wi-fi capabilities it is a lot easier for printer manufacturers to send updates over the air and update your printer.  Majority of the time, printer owners do not know that they’ve updated their printer because updates are usually done automatically.  The default setting in your printer is to receive printer updates automatically.  For some models, you will get a message on the printer or on your computer telling you an update is available for your printer and asking you if you want to update.

What happens when a printer is updated?

When your printer receives an update the majority of the time (if not all the time) the only change that occurs is the firmware of your printer.  The update installs a new firmware into your printer.

Why do they want to update my printer?

The main reason is to prevent you from using aftermarket cartridges such as compatible cartridges or remanufactured cartridges.  By upgrading the firmware on your printer, the latter can no longer recognize the chip that is on the aftermarket cartridges.  As a result, these cartridges will stop working and give you an error message making you believe that there is a problem with your cartridges.  In some cases, the update will let you finish using the cartridges already installed but when you try to install new cartridges you will get error messages and the new cartridges will not be recognized.

I’ve updated my printer!  Now what?

Unfortunately, in most cases once you’ve updated your printer, there is no way back!  Downgrading the firmware on a printer used to be possible on some printers but printer manufacturers have found a way to stop that too!!!

If your cartridges still work, print ahead!  However, when you need new cartridges it is very possible that aftermarket cartridges will not work.  In that case, you have no choice but to buy original cartridges at outrageous prices until the aftermarket comes up with a newer version of the chip, which can take a few weeks or months!

I want to keep using compatible cartridges.  What can I do?

Find out on your printer settings where you can turn off automatic updates.  You can view a video of how to do that on some HP printers here.

Does all the companies do firmware updates?

Brother was one of the last one to start updating firmware on their printers.  All updates were done when manufacturing new batch of printers.  However, we encourage everyone to turn off the automatic update on their printer because the option is there in the settings.  They have never done an over the air update but if it is an option in the printer, it is better not to take a chance.

There has been some instances where Canon has upgraded their firmware in some laser printers.  We have not seen it in their inkjet printers though.

Yes.  Epson does firmware updates all the time and one who probably uses this tactic the most out of all companies.  Even after turning off your automatic update, you might get a screen telling you an update is available and if you want to update the printer!

Yes.  HP sends firmware updates on their inkjet and laser printers all the time.  View the video link and turn off your automatic update now.


Yes.  If they are not the first to start using this tactic, they are one of the first for sure.  However, with the latest printer models that are out this has not been a tactic they have used because they do not need to anymore.  The biggest aftermarket chip company bought Lexmark a few years ago and as a result they do not make aftermarket chip for Lexmark anymore.  That is the reason compatibles for the newer Lexmark are unavailable.

Firmware updates are common in Samsung printers as well.  Turn off your automatic update and if you are asked to update, do not.

Posted in
Tagged with