Newsletter Issue #878: Computer Speakers, Laser Printers and Circuit Breakers

September 26th, 2016

My efforts to solve a problem with the electrical wiring in my home, where outputting a document on my laser printer would sometimes trigger the circuit breaker for that room, has taken on some curious twists and turns. When it first happened, the landlord agreed to have an electrician install a more robust circuit breaker, from 15 amps to 20 amps. Yes, the wiring is capable of handling the larger current load.

After the installation, the problem continued to occur, only not as often. So I did a little online checking, and found that other owners of the low-cost Brother HL-5450DN printer had encountered similar problems, as did owners of other Brother lasers. So I contacted tech support, and talked with a supervisor who seemed very aware of the problem. He promised to offer a solution.

The first attempted resolution to circuit breaker tripping was to install a special version of the printer’s firmware. Only it cannot be installed using the Java installer available on Macs. Instead, I needed to use Brother’s admin utility for Windows. I ended up downloading the firmware via Windows 10 on a Parallels Desktop 12 virtual machine.

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