Geek Speak

Want your Brother laser machine to last? Replace your drum unit!

Did you know that regularly replacing your Brother laser machine’s drum unit can extend its life, improve print quality, and put off the purchase of a new machine for years and years?

Check out our handy new guide to learn everything you need to know about Brother drum units, your new favourite thing in the world!

So, what’s a Brother drum unit anyway?

Drum_unitBrother laser machines have two gizmos—or consumables—that need occasional replacing: the toner cartridge and the drum. The toner cartridge contains powder (or toner) used for creating words and images on paper. The drum, or “organic photo conductor” is the heart of the machine: it takes the toner and gets it onto the page. (Colour laser machines have two additional replaceable gizmos, the belt and waste toner pack, but we won’t worry about those for now.)

Is the Brother drum a member of the percussion group of musical instruments (also known as a membranophone)?

You’re banging on the wrong drum. (But you’re our kind of cheeky.)

How do I know when to replace a drum?

Drums get worn out with use. It’s a fact of life. How do you know when to replace them? Simple. Most Brother printers will display a “Replace Drum Soon” message giving you ample time to buy a new one. When a drum unit reaches the end of its life, the message will change to, “Drum Life End.” You won’t be able to continue printing until it’s been replaced and reset. One big advantage with Brother machines is that the drum and toner are separate. So you can replace only the gizmo you need to.

How do I change it?

The instructions on resetting a drum vary from one model to the next, but you can find the reset instructions for your machine on our Solutions website. Just look up your model and check out the FAQs for “Replace Drum.”



Where do I get a drum?

Good question! You can buy them directly off our site or from your favourite office supplies store. Or get in touch with our highly trained, Montreal-based Canadian Consumer Sales & Satisfaction agents at They’re always ready to help.

For best performance, use only Genuine Brother drums and toner cartridges. Printing with a third-party drum or toner can reduce not only the print quality, but also the quality and life of the printer itself. You can also lose warranty coverage for problems caused by third-party drums or toner cartridges.

Our environmental commitment

Brother is deeply committed to the environment. We offer printers with highly compact bodies, and all-in-ones that print, fax, copy and scan. (The only thing they won’t do is make your coffee!) When creating new products, we always consider our environment and aim to reduce power consumption and save paper. Our laser all-in-ones offer several eco-conscious features like energy conservation mode, duplex (2-sided) printing, and Toner Saving Mode.

So, when you get that “Replace drum soon” message, don’t panic. It’s easy to buy and install a new one. And you’ll keep your machine in tip-top shape for years to come—while saving money and the environment!



Posted on by in Geek Speak, Tips & Tricks | 0 comment(s)

The refurb advantage
Why you should consider a Brother refurbished printer

Buying refurbished is often confused with buying used. That might feel like an unnecessary risk to some buyers, even with the savings. So we visited Brother’s Testing Lab in Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, Quebec, to meet with our crack team of mechanical engineers and product specialists. One of their top jobs? To evaluate and test returned printers to ensure they meet our high standards for recertification.


Passing the test

Bing Wang, a mechanical engineer, is Supervisor, Quality Assurance & Production. For 10 years, he has headed up Brother’s refurbishment and exchanges program, overseeing a team of six who are collectively responsible for evaluating and preparing every single refurbished printer that is sold or returned to Brother customers.

brother_refurb-3“We treat every product that comes through our doors equally,” Wang says. “First, the products are triaged, and then only those with no defects or damage, or evidence of having been heavily used, are then passed on to our Testing Lab where they undergo a series of stringent quality control tests.”

Wang says Brother’s refurbished products must meet the same stringent standards as new ones. “Every listed feature and functionality of the product is tested,” says Wang. “A product must perform as expected in 100% of these tests with no exceptions.” Once certified, refurbished products are eligible for exchange or resale, at consumer-friendly prices.


Top 6 reasons to go for a Brother refurb

1. Best value on the market

With Brother refurbs, you save up to 40% off the sticker price without compromising quality or reliability.

 2. Same warranty as new

Whether new or refurbished, all Brother products come with the same quality and warranty protection. What could be better?

3. Reduce waste

Electronic waste is a huge global problem. According to a recent study published by the United Nations University (an autonomous organ of the UN General Assembly), the global quantity of e-waste generation in 2014 was nearly 42 million tonnes. With Brother refurbs, you’re not part of the problem—you’re part of the solution.

4. Brand new toner

Brother delivers all refurbished products with brand new supplies, including a full toner or ink cartridge, to guarantee the best user experience possible.

5. Brother support

You get the same top-level technical support you would expect to receive from Brother for any of its products. We treat refurbished like new, and you should too. Visit our support centre for FAQs, online chat and more. It’s free!

6. A Canadian team

Brother Canada’s very proud of its refurb team. When you buy a Brother refurb, you can be sure it hasn’t been shipped off somewhere far away for its treatment. Our well-trained team has ensured that your machine meets the highest possible standards—right here in Canada.

brother_refurb-teamSo, no matter what size business you’re in, a refurbished printer offers great value, but it can be an especially appealing option to the small business owner looking to optimize the budget for office products. If you’re in the market for a printer, and looking to save a few bucks without compromising quality, check out Brother’s refurbished printer line. You won’t be disappointed. Guaranteed!

Refurbished products

Posted on by in From the Experts, Geek Speak | 0 comment(s)

Labelling Matters

P-touch labeller margin settings

ptAs a technical support agent for Brother Canada, a common request I get is, “how can I adjust the margins for my P-touch labeller?”  Some of our customers notice that there’s a small blank space before the words print out on their label.  This is the actual physical distance from the print head on the machine to the cutter blade and the distance is approximately an inch (slightly different depending on the model).

Changing the margins on your machine will reduce the amount of label used when printing. By default the margin is set to “full” which will center the text on the label and will give you about an inch of blank label before and after the text. The half margin setting will give you the full inch before the text but only half an inch at the end and a colon (:) will show you where you should cut the label to have half an inch before and after the text. The narrow margin setting is the one that I most often recommend since it gives 1/6th of an inch after the text and the full inch before. As with the half setting, the narrow margin will indicate where the label should be cut with a colon (:).

gtNeed more information on P-touch labellers?

Check out our FAQ section here:

Written by William H.

Posted on by in Geek Speak | 0 comment(s)

Colour Your World

“Geek Speak”: Scan to email server!

If you’re like me and always waiting until the last minute to email your reports, then this great solution is for you. I used to scan all my reports to the computer, attach them to an email, and send them out. This was tedious and I needed a better solution to be more efficient. That’s when I realized that “Scan to email server” was my solution.

geek speek2The Solution

The current lineup of Brother colour laser/LED series printers and all-in-ones have a feature called “Scan to Email Server”. As long as your colour device is configured on a network, you can set-up all your email recipients into a group or individually using One Touch and Speed Dial numbers directly on the all-in-one or printer. Once your document or report is scanned, select the individuals or groups you wish to email the report to. You can even configure your own email address to be a part of that group to receive a copy of the scanned report.

Now my reports are always on time and no recipient are left out.

Once your machine is setup, all you need to do is follow the steps below:

  1. Go to your printer or all-in-one and load your reports into the ADF ( Automatic Document Feeder )
  2. Press the Scan button
  3. Select “to email server
  4. Then select either your One Touch or Speed Dial number
  5. Press Start
  6. You’re All Done!

If you already have a colour Brother all-in-one or printer,  click here to configure your “scan to email server” feature. If you don’t currently have a Brother colour all-in-one or printer, check out our current lineup here.

Written by Gary M.

Posted on by in Geek Speak | 0 comment(s)

Monitor Your Printers and All-in-ones Using the Brother BRAdmin Pro

Imagine being able to monitor and make changes to your Brother SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) compatible printer from your desk?

geek speek1This was once an expensive option reserved for professional IT companies. Brother now provides it with all our SNMP-compatible models. The BRAdmin Professional software informs you of the page counts, provides you with the serial number information, enables you to change the paper size, and to mass-configure device settings. The BRAdmin Professional software broadcasts the settings you require to a single device or to a group of Brother network-connected printers/FAX/DCP or MFC machines devices for an identical configuration. The machine’s model name, node name, IP address, status, serial number, page count, and Mac address are available at your fingertips, and the columns are adjustable to meet your needs. BRAdmin can be configured to send e-mail notifications whenever user intervention is required on the machine. This helps provide minimal downtime for your business. What more could you want? Get all the details here:

Written by Robert P.

Posted on by in Geek Speak | 0 comment(s)