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Productive Office Tip #16: Proper Slit Glass Cleaning

Many service calls can be prevented with some simple user maintenance. One of the most common problems in copier machines is the printing of extra lines on the reproduction, lines that do not appear on the original document. Often, these are caused by a dirty or obstructed slit glass.

How did the slit glass get dirty?

Every digital copier with a document feeder uses a slit glass to transmit the image to the printing drum. The original document moves across the slit glass as it’s fed through the machine. As the paper moves across the glass, the edges of the feed mechanism pick up traces of ink, toner, lint, or debris. These particles get passed along the feed tray and collect on the slit glass. A dirty slit glass occurs in every machine that sees regular use. Copier machines should always have their slit glass cleaned on a regular basis.

Clean it with the provided cloth.

Many copier machines have a small compartment on the top of the device which contains a dry microfiber cleaning cloth. Locate the compartment and remove the cloth. Make sure the glass and feed tray are empty. Lift the lid of the copier to expose the slit glass and scanner bed. The slit glass is located in front of the scanner bed directly behind the mouth of the paper feed.

Using the microfiber cloth, gently but firmly wipe any debris away from the slit glass. You do not need to press hard or scrub the glass. When you are finished, close the lid and replace the microfiber cloth in its compartment for later use. If you do not have the provided microfiber cloth, any dry microfiber cloth suitable for cleaning eyeglasses can be used to clean the slit glass.

Clean it with an alcohol wipe.

Alcohol wipes are disposable, single-use wipes saturated in rubbing alcohol or another highly volatile cleaning solution. The wipes are lint-free, non-abrasive towels. The cleaning solution is either pure alcohol or a specially formulated cleaner. Never use benzene, ammonia, or detergent-based cleaners to clean a slit glass.

When using an alcohol wipe, ensure the package has not been previously opened. If the package is open, there are foreign particles on the wipe, or the wipe is not completely saturated, discard the wipe and get a replacement. Locate the slit glass and gently clean the surface. Allow the glass to dry naturally.

Clean it with a lint-free cleaning cloth.

Lint-free cotton towels are also commonly used to clean sensitive glass surfaces. These cloths can be used either wet or dry. If dry, simply wipe the slit glass clean. If using a cleaning solution, spray it lightly on the cotton cloth and then apply the cloth to the glass. Never spray cleaning solution or other liquids directly on the slit glass. Always allow the glass to dry naturally.

With proper care and maintenance, your digital copier will produce perfect copies. Schedule a regular cleaning for the slit glass of your machine and always use the correct tools with a gentle touch.