How Does a Photocopier Work?

A photocopier uses the laws of photoconductivity and light to function. There’s a photo-reactive photoreceptor present in the machine, which reacts to light and transfers toner particles onto plain paper as soon as paper is scanned into the machine. The toner particles have the ability to change the colours of the resulting photocopied document

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It uses a photo-reactive surface (typically glass) that is charged electrically. When documents are scanned into the machine, and their photo-reactive surface is exposed to the positive charge on the surface of the paper, this places a charge on the document which is then picked up by the rubber roller that is located within the machine’s cabinet. The rubber rollers push the documents onto the paper and then the electric current causes the charge to be released and be picked up again by the ink ribbon on the paper, causing the image to be captured onto the paper. This process is repeated throughout the printer, and the result of this is that the pages of paper will have numerous duplicate images.

Photocopiers are just one of many essential pieces of office machinery, along with printers, fax machines and computers. For advice on photocopier and Printer leasing, visit

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Proper training for staff on the use of photocopiers is important as they can often be somewhat sensitive machines with multiple features. Most people are expected to know immediately how to use a photocopier but without a brief guide, many of the machine’s advanced features can be overlooked and not taken advantage of.