If your printer stops working mid-service this can spell trouble for even the most seasoned pros.
This guide will give you a quick walkthrough of the steps you can take to troubleshoot printing problems.
Setting up printing for the first time? - then you should first check that your hardware is compatible with Lightspeed and then connect your printers with our easy-to-follow hardware guides.
What's in this guide?
- What are the common causes of printer issues?
- Frequently Asked Questions
What are the common causes of printer issues?
For printing to work reliably with Lightspeed, we rely on three key components working together to create a stable connection for your printers.
If one of these components isn't working reliably, this can spell trouble for your printing causing reliability issues like failed or delayed printing.
- Device Issues
- Lightspeed App Configuration Issues
- Network & Connectivity Issues
WiFi - A common cause of printing failing can simply be that the device you are using as your Lightspeed register is not connected to the WiFi Network that your printers are connected to.
Local Cache - The local cache is where we keep a record of what has been completed on your register.
If this has an issue or becomes corrupt, then that can cause issues with the wrong printer showing in-app or dockets reprinting etc. You can clear your cache by following these steps for iOS and Android.
(Note: This won't delete any of your Lightspeed sales data)
Check that your printers have the correct IP Address
The first step would be to grab the IP Addresses that Lightspeed has stored for your printers.
To get these, open the Printing menu from the POS by selecting Menu > Printers.
Once this is open you will be able to see the IP Address for your printers. This will vary based on the printer type you are using for Lightspeed, so we have included both of them below.
If you are using the App Printing method.
Each printer has its IP Address stored in Lightspeed, so you will be able to see them next to each printer's description.
If you are using the Intelligent Printing method, Lightspeed only communicates with your Intelligent Printer so there will only be a single IP Address and all other printers will be configured inside your Intelligent Printer.
To check that these match your printer, you can perform a status print on your printers.
To do this, hold down the reset button on your Epson printer for 3 seconds till you hear it start printing.
This will then print out a Status Sheet, you want to look at the top part of the docket where it will show your IP Address.
If this IP Address is different to what you see in Lightspeed, you can update them in the printing window.
Pro Tip - If you are using Lightspeed App Printing, you can select 'Search for available printers' and it will update the IP Addresses for your printers. This can often fix most issues!
Production Printing Settings
Are only some of your products not printing? There may be some products that aren't assigned to printers. You can check your Production Printing settings by following this guide.
Is your printing issue specific to orders from PassThru Printing?
We cover some steps to troubleshoot the causes for PassThru Printing failures in this guide.
Check if your printers IP Address is connected to the network
To check if these IP Addresses are valid we can use a term called 'Pinging', this allows us to exclude Lightspeed from the testing of your printer and it will let us confirm if your printer is able to be seen by your network.
To do this; grab the IP Address that we discussed in the section above and open the web browser on the device you use for Lightspeed.
Type in the IP Address into the URL Bar and select Go. If you are using an Intelligent Printer it will say Forbidden, and for non-intelligent printers, this will show a printer page.
If you are finding that you're getting the below page, then this means that there is a connection issue with your printer and it's not able to be seen on the network.
How can we fix this?
In the section above;
- We checked that your IP Address in Lightspeed matched the IP Address that your printer had stored.
- We also confirmed that the WiFi network your register is connected to is the same network that your printer/s are connected to. (For steps on checking this further, see the FAQ section below)
This would leave the issue being the connection between your printer and your network.
The most common reason why the Registers would not talk to the Printers is due to local network issues.
What is a local network? - A Local Area Network (LAN) is a network that interconnects computers and devices within an area even with the absence of an active Internet connection. Therefore, as long as your registers and printers are in the same 'Local Area Network', they should be able to communicate with each other.
How can we check where the issue is coming from?
Your printers should connect to your printer directly via ethernet cable, attempt to unplug and reconnect the ethernet cable both on the printer end & on the router.
Once that has been done, power cycle the printer (power it off and on) and then attempt to print another status sheet from the steps in the section above.
- If the IP Address has checked, go into Lightspeed and perform a search for printers.
- If there has been no change then you likely have a larger network connectivity issue, we have a great guide that shows some advanced steps to troubleshoot this here, but you'll likely need help from our Support Team at this stage (You can reach them by selecting the ? anywhere in Lightspeed and selecting 'Chat to the Support Team')
Frequently Asked Questions
How to check if the IP address on my POS Register matches my Printer?
You first want to print the Status Sheet from your Epson or Star Printer
- Epson Printer
- Using a pen, press the small reset button on the back of the printer for 3-4 seconds then release.
- A docket will print
- Note the IP address
- Star Printer
- Switch the printer off
- Press and hold the Feed button
- While continuing to holding the Feed button, switch the printer back on
- Release the feed button after 5 seconds
- A docket will print
- Note the IP address
Once that has been done, note the first 3 columns of the IP Address then grab the IP Address from your iPad device.
- Go to Settings
- Select WiFi
- Select the 'i' in a circle in line with the network you are connected to
- Note the IP address
The numbers in the first 3 x columns on both devices should match.
How can I check if my printer is DHCP Enabled?
When you perform a Status Print on your Epson printer, it will print out a status print.
Under the TCP/IP section there will be a section that says (Acquiring/ Get IP Address), if this is on Auto then you are DHCP enabled.
What does it mean if my printer's IP address starts with a '169'?
This means that there is a communication problem between the printer and the router. First ensure that the Ethernet cable is plugged into the correct and active LAN port on the router or try using another known working Ethernet cable to rule out the possibility of a cabling problem. You can also restart the printer and the router but it's advisable to do this during idle hours as there is a chance of the internet not working again if the problem is with your router.
What does Multicast mean in my iOS Lightspeed App settings menu?
By default, your Lightspeed iOS Application will be set to use the Broadcast method for printing.
The broadcast method is a one-to-all method of searching, this means we will attempt to contact all IP Addresses on your network.
There are some routers that may have issues with the Broadcast method giving them either no printing or delayed printing. Multicast is a one-to-few broadcast frequency and when this is enabled, we will only attempt to contact Epson devices.