Printers are some of the most difficult types of hardware to work with. Installing drivers for them can be incredibly tricky and if you happen to get a paper jam, you might need an entire afternoon to figure out how to fix it. In all these years, printer technology hasn’t improved much. We may have 3D printers but they’re a different class of printers altogether. Sometimes, to fix a problem, you have to do something as drastic as removing the printer and installing it again. Here’s how you can uninstall a printer on Windows 10.
SPOILER ALERT: Scroll down and watch the video tutorial at the end of this article.
Uninstall A Printer – Settings App
Open the Settings app and go to the Devices group of settings. Select the Printers & Scanners tab. On this tab, you will see a list of all scanner and printers that have been configured on your system. This will include both connected devices, and offline devices. You don’t necessarily need to have the printer connected to your system to remove it but it might be a good idea to do so if you can.
From the list, select the printer you want to uninstall, and click the Remove Device button.
Uninstall A Printer – Control Panel
The above method may not completely uninstall a printer. Some drivers may still remain on your system. That’s why it might just be a better idea to use the Control Panel to uninstall a printer on Windows 10.
Open Control Panel and go to Hardware and Sound and select Devices and printers. Expand Printers, and right-click the printer you want to remove. From the context menu, select Remove Device.
Once the device has been removed, it’s a good idea to return to the main Control Panel screen and go to Programs>Uninstall a program.
In the list of installed programs, look for any software that you might have installed for managing your printer. This applies only if you’re removing proprietary printer software. For generic printers that Windows 10 has installed, this won’t apply.
It’s a good idea to restart your system if you uninstalled the printer to fix a problem with it. While this will solve software problems, you might need to intervene on a hardware level to fix problems with your printer. Turning it off for a few minutes might help. Likewise, pressing and holding the power button on the printer will help clear anything that might still be left in its memory.
Printer technology is still very archaic. We’ve only managed to improve printing speed i.e., an inkjet printer is faster than a dot matrix printer, and a laser printer is faster than an inkjet printer but the problems with printers arise with how print jobs are communicated from your computer to your printer. The way these requests are sent and handled hasn’t changed much.