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C73x & X73x — Mottle: Marks, Splotches, or Clouds of Toner

Document ID:SO6613

Usergroup :External


C73x; X73x; Mottle; X734de; X736de; X738de; C734dn; C736n; Marks, splotches, or clouds of toner, often, but not always on the edge of the page; Splotches; Clouds; Marks on print


Defect Symptom

Mottle, marks, splotches, or clouds of toner appear – often, but not always – on the page's edge. See image below.

Click Image to Enlarge
NOTE: For more information, please see KB Solutions ID: SO5340.




  1. Perform the "Color Adjust" procedure in the "Quality" menu".
  2. Print the "Print Defects Guide" from the "Help" menu. Use the defect rulers to determine if this is a repeating defect or whether the splotches/marks/clouds appear from top to bottom of the page.
  3. If the defect repeats at a regular interval and the defect rules point to a defective toner cartridge, photoconductors, or fuser, replace that specific part. Note: The fusers very rarely cause print quality problems.
  4. If the defect has the appearance of marks/splotches/clouds at the edge of the page in areas that should be white, from top to bottom and without a clear repeating interval — the toner cartridge is most likely the defective component.
  5. Print the "Print Defects Guide" after replacing the defective part. Should the print defect be not resolved or if the defect component is not identified, please contact Lexmark Technical Support for other troubleshooting suggestions. 



Contacting Lexmark

Please contact Lexmark Technical Support if you need additional assistance. NOTE: When calling for support, you will be asked for your machine/model type and serial number (SN). If you need help locating your printer's model type and serial number (SN), click here.

Please call from near the printer in case the technician on the phone asks you to perform a troubleshooting task on the printer.



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