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Microtek ScanMaker 5900 Troubleshooting

Scanner does not power on

Despite your best efforts, the scanner won't turn on.

Scanner not plugged In

If the scanner seems unresponsive after all external problems have been eradicated, verify that its power cord has been plugged in. At times the female socket on the power cord loosely fits within the male socket found on the scanner. If this is the case, twitch the female socket to test for any response from the scanner. Some responses are sounds from the stepper motor or light from the fluorescent tubes from the top of the scanner. Also make sure that the AC wall socket has power to begin with.

Unusual Scans

Scans come out looking strange.


If the motor spins irregularly, your scanned copy may contain elongated or short sections of the original image. You can detect if the motor spins irregularly by its sound (a fast ticking noise). If you don't hear a sound at all, then your motor is most likely dead or no power is going to it. You can also open the top lid of the scanner to see if the motor shaft is spinning during scanning.

Motor Tread

If the teeth of the tread have become worn, your scanned copy may contain elongated or short sections of the original image. Open the top lid of the scanner to see if the tread is rotating. Facing the scanner the green tread will be found near the left wall of the scanner. The tread may also be slipping on the motor gear. If this happens you will hear a ticking noise.

Locking Mechanism

It is possible that the scanner may simply be locked. To unlock it simply use a small coin to turn the red lock on the bottom of the device. The lock may also be broken, in which case you will need to replace it.

Damaged Ribbon Cable

The ribbon cable connecting to the scanner bulb may be damaged preventing normal operation to occur. You will need to replace the current ribbon cable.

Distorted Colors

Colors are distorted on scans.

Substance on the surface of light bulb

If oily prints are found on the surface of the light bulb, the bulb may project different shades of colors on to the surface glass. This may cause your scanned copy to contain different shades of colors or dark spots.

Substance on scanner glass

Using a soft lint-free cloth clean either the exterior or interior surface glass of dust, finger prints and other debris. If debris is found on the surface glass during a scan, there maybe patches of dark or black spots found on the scanned copy.

Dark Scans

Scans come out darker than they are supposed to.

Adjust Brightness Settings

If the scans are coming out darker than usual try changing the brightness setting on the scanner. Sometimes these settings can be adjusted through third party software found on your PC. There will be cases where two different software on a PC can adjust the brightness on the scanner. In this case the adjustable brightness level becomes a ratio of the two brightness levels of the individual software.

Substance on the surface of light bulb

Clean the bulb with a soft lint-free cloth making sure not to leave finger prints on the glass of the bulb. Sometimes a oily fingerprint may cast a shadow on parts of the glass surface producing scans that seem dark in certain areas.

Bulb has burnt out

The scans could be coming out dark if the bulb has burnt out. Replacing the bulb will fix this issue.

Transparency Adapter Malfunctioning

Transparencies are dark and don't show details.

Upper bulbs have burnt out

If the Transparency Adapter ceases to work properly, the most likely cause of the problem is due to burnt out bulbs. Replace the bulbs in the upper lid and the problem should be resolved.

I can’t get the blinking blue light to stay on.

David Bowling - Réponse

I can’t get blinking blue light to stay on.

David Bowling - Réponse

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