Inkjet PVC Card Printing Problems

Canon J Tray - Cards Print About 0.5 inches (13mm) Too Low

So, you've designed your perfect ID card, and it comes out printing like this?

Canon J Tray - Inkjet PVC - Misprint

So, what to do? Luckily this is a simple fix.

Instead of selecting "Canon J PVC Card Tray - 2 cards", you want to select: "Canon J PVC Card Tray (Alternate) - 2 cards".

Any Tray - Cards print in completely the wrong location and/or cards are not the right size

It sounds like you are NOT setting Scaling to 100% when printing. This setting has different names in some applications/drivers, but you want to find the setting that lets you change "Scaling" or set "Actual Size". Important note: Some applications don't let you set this at all! For example do not use the built in PDF viewer on Windows 10!

When you miss the Scaling setting, not only do the images end up being the wrong size, but because of the scaling it throws off the alignment of the entire Printable. So everything ends up being wrong.

Example scaling print problem

Canon Tray - Printer Rejects Tray - Support Code 1001

Support Code 1001 means the printer is unable to find the tray. 
The first thing to confirm is that you have the correct tray for your printer. A common error is if you are using the M tray instead of the MP tray, or vice versa.
Confirm you are putting 2 cards in the tray before printing. Next, check that there are 2 metal squares on the tray. If one or both of the squares is missing, this is your problem. As a temporary fix you can put aluminum foil where the square was. To avoid damage to your printer we do recommend a more permanent fix or replacement of the tray.

If both squares are intact, you may need to try pushing the tray further in before printing. To do this, push the tray in as far as it will go without and force. When the tray stops push with a small amount of force to push the tray another 1/2" inch (1 cm). This will place the tray under the rollers that move the tray and should make it easier for the printer to pull the tray in.

Lastly, if you've been using your tray a lot try gently washing it with soap and water and letting it dry. Sometimes the metal squares on these trays can get dirty from ink/dust and the printer won't be able to identify them.

Ink Doesn't Dry or Smears After Printing

The most common reason for this problem is that plain PVC cards are being used instead of Inkjet PVC Cards. Some higher-end printers (such as the Epson SureColor P600) use "Matte Black" ink - this ink will not dry properly even on inkjet PVC cards. When you print there should be a setting to change to use "Photo Black" instead.

Canon Printer - Prints on Paper Look Good, Prints on Inkjet PVC Don't Print at All, or Print Poorly

This is caused by clogged print heads. You should initiate a head cleaning from the printer or your computer. To find the procedure for your specific printer just head over to Google (or Duck Duck Go), and search for your printer model number followed by "clean print heads". For example, if you have the Canon TS8320 search for "TS8320 clean print heads". If this doesn't solve the problem you may also need to do a print head alignment, same thing search for "TS8320 print head alignment".

Ink Gets on Back of Cards, or Printer Leaves Dots on the Cards

If you're using a bleed: After printing, turn your tray upside down to remove the cards from the tray on to your desk, then wipe the tray with a paper towel/cloth/rag to get excess ink off the tray. This is important because excess ink left on the tray will find its way on to the rollers in your printer, fingers, and eventually on to your other cards.

If you have ink on the back of your cards this could be due to the cards not being seated properly in the tray, or because too much ink is being printed in your bleed. Try to reduce the size of the bleed you're using to see if this resolves the problem.

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