The print head may need replacing if failed attempts at cleaning the print head still produces faded or spotted prints or documents.


No parts required.

  1. Unscrew these three 12.1mm screws holding the control panel in place.
    • Unscrew these three 12.1mm screws holding the control panel in place.

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  2. Lift up the front panel from the device.
    • Lift up the front panel from the device.

    • Gently lift up and pull out the data cables that attach the panel to the printer.

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    • Before removing the unit, apply 2 or 3 pieces of tape to secure the top and bottom of the unit.

    • Lift the scanner unit.

    • Gently twist the top portion of the arm. The top portion should release from the scanner unit.

    • Rotate the arm approximately 45 degrees to remove the bottom portion of the arm from the device.

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    • Slide the unit either to the left or right and begin the push the unit away from the device.

    • Once one hinge is separated from the device, begin to remove the other hinge from device.

    • Gently place the unit on the work surface.

    • Be careful not to pull too hard. The wires connecting the unit from the device must be removed.

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    • While it is not necessary to use a prying tool, using one may make it easier to lift the panels.

    • Starting from the back of the printer, use the exposed portion of the panel to gently pry the panel up from the printer.

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    • From the back of the device, use the exposed portion of the panel to begin to lift the panel away from the device.

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    • Before removing the cables, create a diagram of the locations of the different cables. Then, label the cables with some tape or Post-Its.

    • Remove the three power cables that connect the scanner to the motherboard.

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    • Unscrew the 12.1mm screw to remove the ground wire.

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    • Gently pull the data cable away from the motherboard.

    • Slide the cable out of the slots to remove the cable from the device.

    • The scanner unit is now separated. Place the unit and ground screw in a safe part of the workspace until needed for re-assembly.

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    • Unscrew the three 14.1mm screws.

    • Unscrew the 12.1mm screw.

    The diagram shows two of each size, but the instructions list (3) 14.1mm and "the" 12.1mm screws.

    Joseph Usher - Reply

    • Pull the paper tray away from the device.

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    • Unscrew the 8mm screw at the center of the device.

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    • Unscrew the two 14.1mm screws holding the panel in place.

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    • This cable needs to be removed to allow the removal of the device cover.

    • Gently remove the red power cable from the motherboard.

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    • Gently push the upper-left tab of the cover and separate the hinged portion of the cover from the rest of the device.

    • Once one side is free, slide the other side away from the device.

    • Pull the cover away from the device.

    Step 15 It takes more than a gentle push. A fingertip is not sufficient. Use the spudger carefully

    Naldo - Reply

    • Using a spudger, loosen the two clipped portions of the cover located at the back-center of the cover.

    • Once the clips are free the rest of the cover can be lifted up and away from the device.

    Pull the front of the cover up about 2-3 inches and the two pictured clips at the back will release easier.

    Naldo - Reply

    • Gently pull the wire to the left so the end of the wire is released.

    • Slide the wire away from the top of the print head unit.

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    • Using a spudger, press down on the plastic housing of the carriage that the print head rests on.

    • Slide the print head to the left of the device.

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    • Slide the print head until it is at the end of the rail.

    • Push the print head unit towards the back of the device and lift the unit from the back rail.

    • Gently, release the other end of the print head to release it from the front rail.

    Do Step 20 before doing Step 19.

    Naldo - Reply

    • Using the spudger, press the spring section of the white pulley.

    • Release the conveyor from the pulley while the spring is still compressed.

    • Remove the conveyor from the gear on the other side of the device.

    • Optional: Slide the conveyor off the print head.

    Doing Step 20 prior to doing Step 19 will make Step 19 easier and likely less damaging to the conveyor belt.

    Naldo - Reply

    • Squeeze the ends of the cover, then release the cover, revealing the processor unit.

    Not even close. Three clip points need to be released before the cover will come off.

    #1. Un-clip the end nearest to where the ink tubes attach.

    #2 and #3. Release the clips on each side of the cover where his left thumb and pointer finger are holding the cover.

    Naldo - Reply

    • Slide the black cap away from the port.

    • Slide the data cable out of the port.

    Some basic knowledge of how these tape connections function is very helpful.

    Naldo - Reply

    • Lift the processor out of the print head.

    • Slide the cables attached to the processor away from the print head unit.

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    • Remove the metal clip holding the nozzle unit.

    • Lift the unit from the rest of the print head unit.

    For Step 24, Kat makes a very good point about the rubber gasket that lies between the nozzle unit and the print head. If you don’t transfer that gasket, you will probably wind up with ink running everywhere but onto your paper.

    Naldo - Reply

    Nothing is mentioned about transferring the conveyor belt. Do it carefully.

    Naldo - Reply


To reassemble your device, follow these instructions in reverse order

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Henry Cho

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UMass Dartmouth, Team 4-4, Miles Fall 2014 Member of UMass Dartmouth, Team 4-4, Miles Fall 2014


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I did follow this guide for a Brother MFC-6490CW although they are not identical it was very helpful for me to follow up to the removal of the print head as I only wanted to clean some blocked nozzles but the principle was the same

crystalbic - Reply

*Note my new print head did not come with the rubber gasket that the sits between the inkjet nozzle unit and the new print head, remember to look for it and move it to the new one.

Kat - Reply

Also after putting the new print head on the inkjet nozzle unit lines / tubing is full of air and needs to be primed in order for the ink to flow again because there is a huge air bubble in the print head.

To do this best way is to (if it is back together without pulling it apart):

1) Start the printer to print a page and when it has started while the paper is still under the print head disconnect the power that way the print head is in the middle and not parked on the right side.

2)Put a couple pieces blotting paper or in my case I used folded up paper towel under the print head

3)Take out all the ink cartridges and using a large syringe and a small tube full of a cleaning solution or use a kit that u can buy online.

Kat - Reply

*Caught off guard not knowing I would need to do this I improvised breaking an old ink cartridge and cutting off the ink nozzle flush with the cartridge so i had the female rubber grommet end and about a ½" piece of plastic tube, I then cut off a bit of spare air hose for my fish tank and got an empty squeeze sauce bottle with a long nozzle and put in some alcohol. I put the plastic tube into the female end and the other end onto the sauce bottle.

Connect it to where the ink cartridge goes in and push the fluid through the line till you see ink / fluid come out of the print head, then do the other lines possibly changing the blotting paper in between colors depending how much mess it makes

Kat - Reply

Then replace the ink cartridges and run a cleaning or to and print a few full color pages .... dont panic if the colors dissapears for a while and it comes out blank because the alcohol needs to fully come out but the new ink will flow up the tubes after the alcohol .... this actually took quite a while to start printing colors again but it did get there and a few more cleans once it was and it was fantastic

The Printer has not printed as well for years :)

Kat - Reply

Great advice, Kat, Thank you! I wouldn't have thought of doing that.

Joseph Usher -

Thank you for the information removing those ink pipe was difficult but your guide helped

Attibutt - Reply

Hi do you have to do step 18 in reverse when you reassemble?

Djdje - Reply

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