brother printer not printing

Nothing is more frustrating than the moment when you’re desperate for a document but find the printer refuses to work. Depending on different printer brands, the solutions may vary. In this post, we’ll introduce 7 specific fixes for the Brother printer not printing issue, and help you get back in action with a few steps.

Here’re the fixes:

You don’t need to try them all. Simply work your way down the list until you find the one that works for you.

  1. Check the connection
  2. Set your Brother printer as the default device
  3. Restart the Print Spooler service
  4. Update your printer driver
  5. Clear the print queue
  6. Print from other programs
  7. Factory reset your Brother printer
The screenshots below are from Windows 10, but the fixes also apply to Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Fix 1 – Check the connection

It’s necessary for us to do some basic checks before heading into the more complicated fixes. To begin with, you have to make sure the connection status between the printer and computer is in the normal state.

If you’re using a USB printer

Sometimes, the hardware not working issue is caused by a loose or incorrect connection which is very easy to deal with. If you’ve connected the printer to your computer via a USB cable, simply re-plug it and also try another USB port on your computer in case the one you previously used is broken.

If you’re using a wireless printer

When you’re using a wireless Brother printer, it’s essential to confirm your printer is connected to the same Wi-Fi network with your computer.

The steps above may seem redundant, but it’s worth eliminating the poor connectivity at the start. If the Brother printer still doesn’t work, try the next method below.


Fix 2 – Set your Brother printer as the default device

Your computer tends to use the default printer every time you print. Therefore, to make your Brother printer work properly, you should set it as the default device to undertake all the print jobs. Here’s how:

1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to invoke the Run command.

2) Type control in the field and click OK.

3) Select Small icons from the drop-down menu next to View by. Then, click Devices and Printers.

4) Right-click your Brother printer and click Set as default printer.

Now print from your Brother printer and test if this method helps. If yes, then congrats! If not, don’t frustrate, and there’re more fixes below for you.


Fix 3 – Restart the Print Spooler service

Your computer will fail to send the print jobs to the Brother printer if the Print Spooler service isn’t working properly. To make your printer back to running, you can simply restart this service.

1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and R at the same time to open the Run box.

2) Type services.msc and click OK.

3) Right-click Print Spooler. If it isn’t running, Start this service; if it’s already started, click Restart.

4) After the Print Spooler service is restarted, right-click Print Spooler again and click Properties.

5) Set the Startup type to Automatic. Then, click OK.

Now see if your Brother printer returns to normal and act the way it should. If the same problem occurs, the culprit may be your printer driver and please check out Fix 4.


Fix 4 – Update your printer driver

A range of printer-related problems is caused by the wrong or out-of-date printer driver. So if you’re troubled by the non-working Brother printer, be sure to update its driver and see if the problem gets resolved. There’re two options for you: manually or automatically.

Option 1 – Download and install the driver manually

Brother keeps updating drivers for its printers. You can search for the latest driver on Brother’s support website, find the one corresponding with your specific flavor of Windows version (for example, Windows 32 bit) and download it.

Once you’ve downloaded the correct driver for your system, double-click on the downloaded file and follow the on-screen instructions to install the driver.

Option 2 – Automatically update the printer driver

If you don’t have the time, patience or computer skills to update the printer driver manually, you can do it automatically with Driver Easy.

Driver Easy will automatically recognize your system and find the correct drivers for it. You don’t need to know exactly what system your computer is running, you don’t need to risk downloading and installing the wrong driver, and you don’t need to worry about making a mistake when installing.

You can update your driver automatically with either the FREE or the Pro version of Driver Easy. But with the Pro version it takes just 2 clicks:

1) Download and install Driver Easy.

2) Run Driver Easy and click the Scan Now button. Driver Easy will then scan your computer and detect any problem drivers.

3) Click the Update button next to the flagged Brother printer driver to automatically download the correct version of that driver, then you can manually install it (you can do this with the FREE version).

Or click Update All to automatically download and install the correct version of all the drivers that are missing or out of date on your system. (This requires the Pro version which comes with full support and a 30-day money back guarantee. You’ll be prompted to upgrade when you click Update All.)

You can do it for free if you like, but it’s partly manual.
The Pro version of Driver Easy comes with full technical support.
If you need assistance, please contact Driver Easy’s support team at support@drivereasy.com.

The up-to-date printer driver is expected to boost your Brother printer’s performance. But if it couldn’t solve your issue, please move on to the next fix.


Fix 5 – Clear the print queue

Failed or stuck print queue is also likely to hold your Brother printer from functioning smoothly. In this case, you need to clear the queued output jobs so as to resume the printing process.

1) Click the Start button. Then, type services in the search box and click Services.

2) Right-click Print Spooler and click Stop. Then, minimize the Services window.

3) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and E at the same time to open the File Explorer.

4) Copy the address below and paste it to the address bar. Then, press Enter on your keyboard.

%windir%\System32\spool\PRINTERS

5) Delete all the files in this folder.

6) Open the Services window. Then, click Print Spooler and click Start.

After you finished these steps, restart your PC for the changes to take effect. Then, test if your Brother printer works as intended. If not, try the next fix.


Fix 6 – Print from other programs

Sometimes, the Brother printer not printing issue only happens with certain programs. To test the printer, try using another program. If it works well, the problem lies in the program you run and you should contact its vendor or developer for further assistance. If this method doesn’t do the trick, you can proceed to the last fix.


Fix 7 – Factory reset your Brother printer

If all the fixes above aren’t the right solution, a factory reset should be your last resort, but please note that this will remove all the printer settings and archives.

There’re a variety of Brother printers and the resetting steps are quite different. You can consult the documentation from the official website and follow the guide to reset your printer.


Hopefully one of the fixes here helps you kick the Brother printer back into gear. If you have further questions or suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment below.

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