Office equipment is an essential aspect of every business. If your office equipment begins to show signs of breaking down, then your business might have to purchase new equipment, which can be extremely costly for small businesses. As a result, it’s not uncommon for many companies to continue to operate with outdated equipment as long as they possibly can.
It’s okay to keep using your current equipment as long as you keep up with consistent repairs and maintenance. A critical factor in determining if your business is up to date with its office equipment maintenance is whether or not it has a direct impact on your productivity. If your productivity won’t be severely hindered, keeping up with office equipment repairs is often a much more cost-effective solution than buying new.
Does My Office Equipment Need to be Repaired?
One of the biggest challenges many companies encounter is not knowing when it’s time to put in a call for a repair. However, if you learn to recognize the signs of a potential problem with your equipment, you can get it evaluated and, if needed, repaired before it’s too late. Here are some warning signs your equipment probably needs a little to be looked at by a professional:
- Frequent paper jams – It’s common for machines to have a paper jam occasionally, but if this repeatedly happens even after you’ve ensured users are properly loading and using the right paper sizes, there is probably an underlying issue. This is when it should be looked at by a professional.
- Wrinkled pages – If your documents are continuously coming out wrinkled, this signals you might have a problem with worn-out feed rollers or have accumulated moisture in the fuser assembly.
- Lines on printed documents – This can be a simple fix, or it may be a more complicated repair. If you see lines on your printed documents, be sure that the glass on the machine is completely clean. If it continues, this may signal a drum blade malfunction.
- Toner keeps running out – If the toner indicator signals it’s running out more frequently than it should, you should get this looked at by a professional. One crucial factor to look out for is if your copies and printouts aren’t the correct color because you must ensure that the toner isn’t collecting somewhere else in your machine.
- Warning lights always on. Modern office equipment is designed to warn users when there is a problem. If any call for service indicators or warning light flashes, this is happening for a reason. Don’t ignore it, because it could lead to more complicated repairs.
As a general rule of thumb, before you call a repair company, be sure to follow the instructions on the equipment’s control panel. Often, you can resolve issues on your own. However, if the problem persists or you don’t feel comfortable handling it on your own, you can request your office equipment repair company to come and take a look at your machine.
Office Equipment: Repair or Upgrade?
Many businesses, especially small- and medium-sized companies, often put off investing in new office equipment due to it being a significant expense. If everything is running efficiently and not interfering with productivity levels, you can continue using your equipment as long as its needs are being met through office equipment repairs as opposed to purchasing new machinery.
On the other hand, if you’re operating with printers, fax machines, and copiers that are not from this decade, you might want to consider an equipment upgrade. It’s important to keep in mind that the older machines get, the harder it becomes to find replacement parts. Due to scarcity, they often cost a lot more than replacement parts do for newer machines.
These days, multifunction printers (MFP) are not out of financial reach as they once were. As a result, many smaller companies end up investing in these because they take up far less space than housing multiple types of equipment, and they can give productivity a boost. Not to mention, it’s cheaper to run one machine than several if it can perform all the necessary functions.
If the costs associated with maintaining and repairing an old machine are creeping up upon what it would cost to buy or lease a new machine, it’s probably time to seriously consider an upgrade. This is especially true if repairs are starting to put a heavy strain on your budget.
Office Equipment Maintenance Best Practices
Much like your car, you should have routine maintenance performed on your office equipment if you want to avoid costly repairs. Preventative maintenance can go a long way towards extending the life of your machines. By ensuring your office equipment is running in tip-top shape, you can avoid many of the hassles and expenses associated with office equipment repairs.
- Keep it clean. Countless issues can quickly arise when copiers, printers, or copiers get dirty. Make sure to keep printer heads cleaned regularly, free of clogs. Additionally, make sure that the scanner screen is kept clean.
- Follow control panel directives. If there are messages on your machine’s control panel, be sure to investigate the potential problem or follow any maintenance suggestions. Ignoring these messages often leads to needing office equipment repairs.
- Properly position your equipment. Office equipment should be kept far away from your office’s heat or air conditioning source because it can cause problems. Avoid exposing your machinery to extreme temperatures.
- Safety first. Never open office equipment while it’s still plugged in, and be sure to remove the battery before investigating. It’s good practice to wear protective gear if you’re going to tackle any machine maintenance in-house.
- Follow manufacturer suggestions for maintenance. Make sure to test motors, ensure that firmware and software are up to date, and perform routine cleanings.
Many companies prefer to avoid the risks associated with equipment maintenance and have a professional perform the cleaning and upkeep. Aside from reducing the risk of personal injury, it also ensures no damage occurs with the machine, and its warranty isn’t voided.
If you take good care of your office equipment, it’ll take good care of you. To learn more about how we can help your San Francisco-based business maintain or repair your office equipment, contact Golden Gate Office Solutions today.