Top Four Methods to Fix “Printer Driver is Unavailable” Error

Top Four Methods to Fix “Printer Driver is Unavailable” Error

/ Sedfrey Galope

Encountering issues when printing can easily get frustrating. One common error that many users report is the “Printer Driver is unavailable”. This error also typically happens with HP users; however, it can happen with any other brand. For example, “Epson printer driver is unavailable error” is usually due to the same issue and will have the same fix. In this article, we will take a look at the options that you can take to solve this problem. 

Reasons for Getting “Printer Driver is unavailable” Error

Driver problems are typically the most common reason why you may experience this error. A glitch or error in the driver can easily cause issues when you try to print. Sometimes, you can find this specific issue as a status on your printer’s driver. Another reason why this could be happening is when the drivers are not updated or corrupted. Sometimes when you update your Windows OS, it may cause incompatibility problems with your printer’s drivers.  

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Thankfully, there are easy ways to fix this. Encountering “Printer Driver is unavailable” will prevent you from printing, scanning, or copying altogether. Below we have listed some of the easiest ways to troubleshoot and fix any problems related to this error. Be sure to try the first method first before working on the next solutions. 

First Method – Reinstall a Fresh Copy of Your Printer’s Driver

As mentioned above, one of the most common reasons why you are experiencing “Printer Driver is unavailable” is when your driver is encountering an error. Therefore, the initial step will be to fix your printer’s driver. Sometimes, when you don’t update your Windows, you miss out on important files that will stop possible bugs. As a result, your printer will have problems connecting properly. 

  1. Click on the “Windows” key on your keyboard. Simultaneously press “R” to bring up the run line command window. Type in “control update” and hit enter.
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  1. Click the “Check for Updates” button in the Windows Update window. You will receive a notification such as “You’re Up to Date” if no updates are necessary.
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  1. Alternatively, if the Windows Update Tool finds you need a new update, download and install. You will be required to reboot your computer after an update.
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Second Method – Use the Disc That Came with Your Printer

Another way to truly reboot your printer’s driver is to reinstall using the installation disc. Most printers come with an installation disc which will be handy if you need a local installation (especially if you have a slow internet connection). 

Third Method – Download and install the driver from the printer manufacturer’s website

Unfortunately, not everyone will keep their installation disc. Alternatively, you can check your printer’s manufacturer’s website for the latest drivers. To do this, you can use any search engine and type in your printer’s brand, model, and adding the word “support” at the end.

Typically, you will find the latest drivers in the “Drivers” section of a brand’s website. Some websites will also allow you to locate the model directly using a search bar. 

Most drivers will self-install once downloaded. Once you download, you need to double click or double-tap to open a wizard installation. However, you will need to remove and reinstall your printer into your computer. 

  1. Right-click on the Windows icon located in the lower-left corner of your screen. 
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  1. Click on Devices and choose Printers & scanners.
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  1. Choose “Printers & Scanners”
  2. Under Printers & Scanners, find your printer model, click “Remove device”. 
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  1. Once you successfully removed the printer, you need to reinstall it.
  2. Under the “Printers & Scanners” tab, click on “Add a printer or scanner”.
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  1. Wait for your device to show, click on it and “Add device.”

Fourth Method – Check All the Connections

If you are using a plug-and-play printer, you can fix the “Printer Driver is unavailable” error by simply disconnecting and reconnecting your printer. 

  1. Unplug all cables that connect your printer and your computer. 
  2. Reconnect by plugging them again and following the setup wizard that should automatically populate. 
  3. In cases that the wizard does not automatically start
    • Right-click on the Windows icon in the bottom left corner of your screen. 
    • Choose settings and click on Devices. 
    • Click on Add a Printer or Scanner. 
    • Your computer should automatically detect all devices available. 

Final Thoughts

A “Printer Driver is unavailable” error should not be a cause of worry or distress. You can easily fix this error using the methods mentioned above. 

Sedfrey Galope
Meet the author

Sedfrey is an experienced writer, editor, PC hardware, and gaming enthusiast. In his spare time, he enjoys online gaming or reading about the latest innovation in the PC market. As a result, he is constantly challenged to find fixes to hardware and software errors. Sed believes that there is always a way to make software and applications work. As a result, you will find his articles and guides easy to follow.