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Nathan, Engineer
Category: Printers
Satisfied Customers: 47490
Experience:  Computer networking/repair. 20+ years experience printer repair
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I rarely use the colored ink in my ecotanks so over time the

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I rarely use the colored ink in my ecotanks so over time the ink has separated in the tanks so only prints vague colors. How do I clean out the resevoirs and put in new ink?
JA: Are you getting any error messages? If so, what do they say?
Customer: No. as far as the printer is concerned the colors are fine
JA: The last time you changed your cartridges, did you replace them with new ones or refill the old ones?
Customer: I have the ecotanks, so the levels are full, just the ink has separated from none use
JA: Anything else you want the Printer Expert to know before I connect you?
Customer: nope that's it

Hi, I'm Nathan.
Sorry to hear that you're having trouble with this but I'll do my best to help you.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.

You would need to use a syringe (with a needle, or preferably a piece of plastic tubing) to suck the old ink out. You likely don't need to actually replace it but could give it a good shake/stir to get it back together and put it back in.

If you opt to remove it entirely, it would be a good idea to pour a bit of rubbing alcohol in the reservoir to clean it out, and wipe it out as best you can with qtips and let dry well before putting fresh ink in.
After, you'll want to run several cleaning cycles (nozzle clean) in the printer settings/maintenance menu.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
how do you remove the tank?

You cannot remove the tank. I meant if you remove all of the ink out of the tank to replace it with new (rather than just trying to remix and reuse)

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Are the tops of the tanks open to insert a needle? Looks like a closed system

You have to access it from the same port you use to squirt new ink in, that is why a syringe/tubing is needed.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
where do you find a syringe with a needle? You can't just go to a pharmacy and purchase one

You don't really need the needle portion, just the syringe portion.

Diabetic syringes are sold at any drug store without a prescription, but the needle on those is much too small too be useful.

You can also buy a printer cleaning kit (for a different type of cleaning, but the syringe works just as well for this):

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
I tried putting a small rubber tube in the top of the tank. The problem is the top is circular but has plastic splitting the round opening in half into semi-circles for the refill bottles to attach to.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
the two semicircle openings are tiny!

That plastic piece should be able to pull off/up, it is just a press fit piece that inserts into the fill hole.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
I just tried to remove the top with a needle nose pliers. It didn’t come off. Just crushed the opening

There may be some dried ink holding it in, but you can pull it off or even cut it if needed

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Cut the bar across the opening?

Correct, if you can't lift it off, you can cut it out to make the port more accessible.

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
The refill bottles are designed to fit in the two semicircles while the bottle rests on the bar

Yes they are but you can just hold the bottle in place for the rare occasions you need to fill them

Customer: replied 11 days ago.
ok will try it thanks!

You're very welcome, and best of luck to you!

Nathan and 4 other Printers Specialists are ready to help you