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Hp Officejet Pro K550 / printer is hopeless!

1 United States Review updated:

I am totally misguided by the misleading advertisement of HP about its printer HP Officejet Pro K 550. The design of the printer is hopeless. Brainless design, mindless manufacturing and dumping on the customers for their fate. The printer jams more frequently. It takes its own sweet time for the print to come. It is not easy to feed the printer. You have no chance to see and feel, if you have placed the papers in the tray properly or not. The printed doc is thrown out. You had it, once there is a paper jam.

Customer is helpless, since he has made a wrong choice trusting HP and its brand name. I wish if HP can replace this model with another comfortable model printer purchased one and half month back.

I have two more printers namely Laser4000N and laser 4L scrapped for its faulty functioning.

K Pani,
Bangalore - 560 004.

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  • Ro
      26th of Sep, 2007
    0 Votes

    Like everyone else I was seduced by the price and the (at the time) favorable reviews and purchased one for our school. The first one we had lasted about a week before it started jamming - we use good quality paper and it was loaded correctly. HP eventually replaced this under warranty and we have had intermittent black ink problems ever since. Now it is out of warranty, it has finally decided that no matter what I do to the print heads it won't print black. The guy who "personally service these printers and the design is flawless" needs to get some experience in good design cos this ain't it.

  • Ri
      26th of Sep, 2007
    0 Votes

    It jams frequently, is noisy, but the biggest issue by far is that a printhead is lasting about 1000 pages. I am getting through printheads quicker than the ink.

    This is not right. After 15 years I have decided its goodbye to HP.

  • Lh
      4th of Oct, 2007
    0 Votes

    Just purchased the K550 for our school. Right out of the box it wouldn't print black ink. I spent 2 1/2 hours talking with technical support at HP (in India) yesterday in order to resolve this issue. They are sending out a new black print head, but after reading these reviews, I have a feeling this is just the beginning of problems, not the end solution. I do appreciate the post on how to get the print heads to move over so you can remove or insert them.

    This printer makes more noises and squeaks than you would ever believe. I thought I must have installed something incorrectly, but the HP tech guy said those are the normal noises! Plus, if you have this printer on anything but an extremely study table, you're going to have it shaking big time. Good luck to all of us that are using this printer. I feel that HP should replace all of them with a printer that works. I should have found these comments prior to having ordered this printer. Sheesh.

  • Br
      19th of Nov, 2007
    0 Votes

    I hate it!

  • Hu
      28th of Nov, 2007
    0 Votes

    I bought a K550. Two weeks after purchasing, it started making a loud grinding noise. Got a replacement from HP because if you buy online from Office Deport you're pretty much SOL. HP sent me a printer that worked for about 6 pages and then I got the ominous Paper Jam error. I've cleaned and worked on it according to HP's service instructions to no avail. They wanted a ten touch test page, but I can't even get the printer through startup without the Paper Jam error occurring.

    They'll graciously send a replacement. I offered to let them have this POS, give me credit and buy a 5400. Well, they can only give me $36 in for the K550. What!! The printer has never worked, new or the replacement model. Does HP care what customers think?

    I have several older laserjets and they're great. Their newer stuff, though, seems to have been 'self-destruct' engineered.

  • Er
      17th of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    Printer has actually worked great since we got it, printer 50+ pagers/day in color & B&W. Only complaint is it won't let me select a single page to print. It gives me some sort of draw error. Any ideas anyone?

  • Gk
      20th of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes


    I read all these comments as I was trying to fix my K550 which had stopped printing black - wish I'd done that before forking out for a new catridge to no avail
    However, I emailed HP supper via their webpage at and had a reply within an hour (evening, UK time)
    I'ts a shame the info they gave me (which worked fie) was not available on the website, but I can't fault their customer service.
    I find the printer very fast, and gives good quality colour even on 'normal' paper - for the dreaded christmas letters!
    Hopefully their fix and flash hardware update will solve the problem in the longer term too.

  • Gu
      20th of Dec, 2007
    0 Votes

    I will never buy HP Product again...

  • To
      12th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    I've had lots of problems; also very good results. Steep learning curve. Also, lots in the manual and takes time to absorb it. Also, drivers upgrade helped. Finally: black/yellow printhead seems iffy. Black frequently dries out. Short term fix seems to be briefly dip nozzles in hot water, jog a bit, blot a bit, reinsert, print a page or two to get clear water and get to ink, and it's good to go ... for a while.

    When working, and used constantly, seems even after 1-1/2 years, to go pretty well, so I'm not complaining. When I've something BIIIG to print I can pump out a few hundred pages in a jiff. If it's 2-sided, I just flip and refeed; so for big jobs, this is a good printer. But for time-intermittant and low-volume stuff, it's unreliable and too quirky. Just last evening, for example, I had a simple 2 page job and 1 page streaked the black; I just printed on my other computer's Epson R300, but I oughtn't have to do that.

  • St
      18th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    Totally agree with problems experienced. Why does it seem that HP certified so often means 'unable to comprehend customers legitimate complaints'? I had two of these printers, first one lasted 6 months - a ridiculous amount of money was spent on replacing cartridges/printheads to no avail. I experienced false readings of remaining ink levels, inability to print consistently without jamming (on branded IQ paper 80gsm), and noisy, clunky operation. I find it astonishing that someone has the audacity to call this a 'flawless design'. That's company loyalty (read: brainwashing) if ever I heard it. The second unit lasted three months, same problem of paper jams, but the printer really spat the dummy when printing on HP labels, and decided to wrap them around the print carriage to such a point that the printer was inoperable.

    The low(ish) cost of the printer does not excuse this being a bad product. We are all very much aware that printers are produced with a view to profit being made from consumables (ink/printheads/paper/toner/etc.) A previous comment of 'what do you expect for such a low price' is utter nonsense.

    Incidentally, I have now changed to a HP Officejet K5400, hoping the teething troubles of the K550 may have been ironed out. Wrong! It is sat near to me with an amber light flashing (suggesting that there is a problem with the magenta colour cartridge). Guess what - I have replaced the cartridge with 2 different brand new HP colour magenta cartridges and the problem persists.

    The ink level indicator told me yesterday that the magenta cartridge was half full. Today, after printing fewer than twenty sheets in draft black, it now tells me that the magenta cartridge is empty.

    Half a day's work was lost trying to solve the problem, including a call to HP technical, only to be asked 'have I been to the website to try and solve the problem myself? The answer was 'yes' so I was put on hold. Eventually I was transferred to another 'techie' (again a lady with a very poor grasp of the English language) and was put on hold again. After listening to 'Love Is All Around' (Wet Wet Wet), 'Just The Way You Are' (Barry White), 'Wonderful Life' (Black) and 'I'll Make Love To You' (Boyz 2 Men) it was eventually decided that the printer may be 'broke'. Top of the detective class for that one.

    This would not be such a problem as I know the ink cartridge is full, but as if to rub salt in the wound, the machine will not let you print whilst the light is flashing so therefore all productivity stops. Not only that you are also unable to print a diagnostic page, test page or alignment page. Thanks HP.

    I stick with them because the printers are great when they work - but at what cost?

    I am to receive a replacement K5400 printer in a weeks time - don't know what I'm supposed to do in the meantime. Perhaps I'll buy in a large quantity of cartridges and printheads (just in case).


  • Ki
      29th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    My K550 worked great for a while, then the black printing problem appeared. I changed the printhead twice with only marginal improvement. I just installed the firmware flash available on the HP support site, however, and it worked like a charm. Try flashing the firmware so it's current (SPP0013H) if your K550 refuses to print in black. Worked for me.

  • Gi
      7th of Feb, 2008
    0 Votes

    Having read so many complaints I should say that I am lucky. I printed 2277 pages until yesterday and had no serious problems. In accordance with the configuration page "First installation date 2007-03-26. Printhead Health
    Status all "fair". In the Event Log it shows 7 Firmware error and one paper jam. No errors since November 28 2007. Firmware version 20061019 SPP0013H. I am very happy with my K550 printer. I believe that the habit of printing a purging test patter once a week helps to keep the printhead clean and also avoid the drying of ink.

  • Bi
      19th of Feb, 2008
    0 Votes

    I have owned about 24 HP printers in my computer lifetime. The K550 is the first HP I can honestly say is not up to expectations. Paper jams, skipping pages, and black printing problems began plaguing me after about 6 months of use. I would not buy an HP inkjet printer again.

  • Je
      29th of Apr, 2008
    0 Votes

    I agree with the poster. This printer is absolute crap. We bought 10 of the them for our school. We've had an 80% failure rate in the first month! We've even had them "repaired, " and sent back and they still don't work.

    To the first poster, I too am HP certified and I'm certifying this printer as a piece of junk.

  • Ja
      31st of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    I agree. This is the worst printer I've ever had. I have the duplex unit and have printed thousands of pages through this printer. After thousands of prints over the past 2 years, I can honestly say that this printer jams every 20 to 30 pages when using the duplex unit. When it begins to run out of ink, instead of politely stopping printing and flashing a warning light or some such thing as most modern printers do, it simply begins to negate that color on your prints. This is very frustrating, especially when you've queued up 50 prints, walked away, came back and found that your printer ran out of ink on the 5th print, rendering the remaining 45 useless. I can't tell you how many times this printer did this to me. I can honestly say that this printer, and the free replacement that HP sent me has cost me hundreds of man-hours. THE ONLY GOOD thing about this printer is that I got so sick of working on it that I went out and leased a $2, 500 color laser that works flawlessly and prints far nicer looking flyers. The next weekend that I have the time, I'll be taking this printer out into the desert and shooting holes in it with every weapon I can get my hands on. I truly hope that whoever designed and tested this printer before HP began selling it was strung up and keelhauled. They desperately need it.

  • Bi
      4th of Aug, 2008
    0 Votes

    I have worked with a great many printers in my life and the K550 is the biggest piece of trash HP has brought to market. I can understand those that work for HP sticking to their guns saying this is a good machine, well. I have (7) seven of these and sorry to say that only (2) are in working order and that is basically due to their lack of use. The last unit purchased was DOA right out of the box, so I called HP and they walked me through testing the unit - the printers paper feed mechanisn that pulls paper from the first tray (our unit had the extra paper tray) would drop down and stay down, so when you pulled out the tray, inserted more paper and pushed it back in the mechanism would crunch the top sheet causing a paper jam on the next run and the only way to correct the problem for maybe one print job was to manually push the mechanish up, unplus the unit and cycle the power. So they sent me another unit, which was a refurbished unit even though mine was onely one day old, did the same thing, and the second one they send did the same thing. Now I have pulled all but two from service and replaced them with other HP printers but nothing that resembles the K550 as I was told by the reseller and the HP tech that they were discontinued for this and other technical reasons.

    I still use HP printers but this model is the worst that I have seen in a long time. I will say that I do have one in service for over a year, but, that unit does not get the use that the others do, and for those that have had good luck with them, then it must be a change in production somewhere that is causing these issues.

  • It
      2nd of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    I have to agree with those complaining about this model in particular and HP's quality in general. I had purchased many of the K550's for my company, they were not cheap but the quality certainly was. Little plastic pieces dropped out of God knows where on most of them, poor design quality of the tray causes many headaches because it jams up. The paper doesn't ever seem to fit right. Some of these printers will feed half of the page THEN starts printing the top of the page halfway down the paper. This is not the only monumentally screwed up HP printer I have dealt with this year either. We have several HP 1020's which are utter crap! Their duty cycle must be 5 pages per month then the damn things start squeaking and squealing, eventually it starts shedding a somewhat thin, plastic sheet which I assume is coming from one of the rollers. On top of that, the print spool service is now crashing when users attempt to print PDF files to it. It is well documented on the HP forums, but nobody other than the poor souls who are relying on these printers is helping. Not even a single HP tech. support person has chimed in or explained why the printer is incompatible with one of the most common file types out there. HP has lost my business and now Brother has a shot to impress me. HP, what has happened to you? I know your motives are shady! I have an HP 4Plus that has to be 15 years old and it is going strong (I have never had to replace any parts on that printer and it is a true work-horse). Now consumers are being forced to buy over-priced, plastic-filled, low-yield junk that has to be replaced in a year or less. What a scam.

  • Je
      11th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    i also bought a hp compaq--had a problem--they have had my new computer for a month and a half now--and now they say it will be that long again--

    take my advice don't buy aa h-p product or compaq computer

  • Jo
      12th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    I have had a k550 for about 18 months, during which time I have produced about 2600 prints mostly of black text. My observation is that there is a problem with these printers due to frequent poor feeding where additional sheets are drawn through the printer. This renders the duplex printing unreliable to the point of useless because it almost always occurs and destroys the duplexed page order. The machines are also excessively noise during start-up.

    Additionally, although I don't do much colour printing the cyan cartridge has just failed. I regret purchasing this printer. My regret is increased by the fact that I have also owned a HP Designjet 100 A1 printer for about 5 years which was replaced as a complete unit about a year ago due to an electronics module failure, which cost me about $1, 000 including items wrongly purchased due to bad advice from HP technicians. The replacement unit has just failed due to a ink assembly failure, resulting in a $77 repair if I repair the unit myself, or minimum $280 repair if HP repair the machine. Fortunately I can repair it, but I don't expect this sort of failure rate from a printer costing initially more than $2, 200.

    From my overall experience of HP products I am convinced that the quality of HP products has fallen considerably in recent years, and as a result, I will never buy another HP product.

  • Ca
      18th of Nov, 2008
    +1 Votes

    Wow, I must be an unusual person. I have had this printer for about 2 years now and I have never had any problems with it at all- except an occasional paper jam if the paper is not seated correctly in the paper bin. Other than that, I have really been happy with it, and I use it constantly for printing school papers and business stuff.

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