HP Printer Error Code 20 is caused by an issue with the HP printer not being correctly configured on your system. This error typically shows when using your computer to try and print a document, image or spreadsheet and you then decide to print that document with your HP printer the following error message might appear.
“Printer not activated – Error code 20”
What Causes The HP Printer Error Code 20 To Appear?
There are several reasons why the HP Printer Error Code 20 appears, including the following:
- The printer you are using is not set as the default printer.
- The printer driver is missing.
- There are conflicts in the device manager.
- Registry errors on your system.
To fix this error, you first need to ensure that you have your HP Printer set up correctly, and that you don’t have any damaged or corrupt settings on your PC, that might prevent your printer from working. Here are the steps you should take to resolve this issue:
How To Fix The HP Printer Error Code 20
Before you start to resolve the error you must first make sure the HP printer is actually working. To do this you can print a self-test page, and once you have done that, check the USB connectivity from the printer to your computer. Once you have successfully completed these tasks, you can then apply these methods to resolve the error.
Step 1 – Make Sure The Printer You Are Using Is Set As The Default Printer
The reason you should do this is because in future when you try to print a document out the same problem might occur. If you buy another printer you should always make sure that it is set as the default printer.
- Click Start > Printer and Faxes.
- Look through the Printers folder, and if the desired printer icon is not there, proceed to Step 2.
- However if the desired icon is there, see if it has a check mark next to it. This means that it is set as the default printer.
- If the check mark is missing, right-click on the printer and click the Set as Default Printer option.
- Once you have done that, right-click the printer and select the Print Test Page to print a Windows self-test page.
- If the page prints successfully, exit the printer folder and try printing out a word document.
- However if that fails, apply the methods in Step 2.
Step 2 – Reinstall The USB Composite Device
Reinstalling the USB device would just be like starting over again with a ‘new’ printer so to speak. Reinstalling the device might just be what it needs for it to work properly. To do this follow these steps:
- Right-click My Computer and select Properties.
- Click the Hardware tab and then click Device Manager
- In the Device Manager window, double click Universal Serial Bus Controllers.
- Right-click USB Composite Device, select uninstall and click OK.
- Disconnect the USB cable from your Computer and reconnect it.
- To install the drivers, follow the on screen instructions in the Found New Hardware Wizard.
- Click Start, then select Printer and Faxes to open the Printers folder.
- Find the icon which represents your HP printer and then click Print Test Page, which will print a self-test page.
- If the self-test page prints successfully, close all windows and try printing out a document.
Step 3 – Uninstall And Reinstall The HP Software
If the following steps do not work to resolve the HP Printer Error Code 20, then you should uninstall and reinstall the HP printer software. To do this you should the built in Add/Remove Programs utility.
Step 4 – Clean Out The Registry
One of the biggest causes of the HP Printer Error 20, is thanks to corrupt or damaged parts of the ‘registry’ preventing your compute from using the printer. The registry is a database inside the Windows system, which stores vital settings and files that your computer & software requires to run. Every time you use your software, it needs to read many registry settings to help it run, but unfortunately, many of these settings become damaged and corrupted, making it difficult for Windows to read them. To fix this, you should clean out the registry by using a ‘registry cleaner’ program. These tools are very easy to use, and you can download our recommended tool below: