Additional Information ¶
Formatter board problems ¶
The HP P2015 series is prone to regular formatter board failures. The odds of these printers failing as they age increases, especially if the printer sees regular use.
How to identify a formatter board failure ¶
Note: While these common failures are easily repeatable for testing, the printer may fail differently. Consider these pointers common failure indications.
- Printer lights are stuck on
- False paper jams
- NIC failure (Network only)
- Computer connection problems (Can also indicate cable or driver failure. Try these before assuming a bad formatter board.)
Is it possible to repair this reliably? ¶
No. The boards can be reflowed in many cases, but the printers often fail again. This can also happen on replacements that have been reballed.
HP no longer makes parts for this printer, so it is not possible to get a new replacement unless it is NOS. That said, these boards tend to be just as failure prone as the old one you are replacing. Due to the problem being unrepairable once it happens, it is best to replace the entire printer. There is no reliable fix for the problem.
Why do these printers fail this way? ¶
The primary reasons for failure appear to be related to 3 problems:
- Lead free solder
These printers use first generation lead free solder, which has more reliability issues then leaded solder. The solder on the board has a tendency to expend and crack, which eventually causes the printer to fail.
Because the problem is caused by a bad chip, the only permanent fix to get the printer working is replacement chips. These cannot be purchased, so the board must be replaced. This is not cost effective.
- Lack of heatsinks
HP did not use heatsinks on the processor or NIC from the factory. These chips run somwhat hot and this doesn't help the situation. As the chips heat up, the solder fails which causes the failure. If the chips are still good it may be possible to prevent failure by installing heatsinks to help mitigate the problem.
Newer models are okay with passive cooling because of cooler running chipsets. The chipsets in this printer probably don't need heatsinks, but installing heatsinks will increase the lifespan of a working printer.