How to Clear the Printer Queue in Windows [Updated 2023]

Daisy updated on Mar 23, 2023 | Home >Computer Instruction

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Fix 1. Delete the Current Document First, you can try to cancel or delete the current or problematic document...Full steps
Fix 2. Restart Your Devices and Clear the Printer Queue If there is any problem with electronic gadgets, everyone first tries to restart them...Full steps
Fix 3. Erase the Printer Queue Manually If none of the methods had results, try erasing the printer queue manually on your device...Full steps

You are trying to print something and see another document queued up to go into the Printer. This gets annoying if the Printer does not print anything and displays the "Printing" status. Spooler, a program that manages all the printing jobs, does not work correctly, resulting in this error. Through the course of this article, let us learn how to clear the printer queue in Windows OS and get the Printer back to work.

The Printer queue helps the users to manage the printing operations like pausing, rearranging the order, and stopping the Printer. All these operations are handled by a program called Spooler. When there is a problem with the Spooler, the files get stuck and cause printer overload.

In such cases, it is recommended to clear the printer queue to remove the problem of printer overload. Sometimes, the printing may get halted due to background app conflicts and the Printer itself.

We can explore multiple fixes depending on the causes of the problem. Let us look at all of them to resolve the printer overload issues.

How to Clear Printer Queue in Windows 10

It is straightforward to clear the printer queue, and there are multiple ways we can use to do it, depending on the cause. So let us get to the fixes one by one.

Fix 1. Delete the Current Document

The first solution is to cancel or delete the current or problematic document.

Steps to cancel the current document on Windows 10:

Step 1. Open the "Settings" app and navigate to the "Printers and Scanners" section.

Step 2. Select your Printer and Tap on "Open Queue."

select your printer and tap on open queue

Step 3. Now right-click on the current document you are trying to print and click on "Cancel."

Try printing the documents now. If the problem persists, cancel all the documents and retry.

If you still face the problem, move to the next fix below.

Fix 2. Restart Your Devices and Clear the Printer Queue

If there is any problem with electronic gadgets, everyone first tries to restart them. If the first fix cannot solve your problem, restart your PC and the Printer. If your OS continuously works without rebooting for long hours, the system memory clogs up and halts some processes. A reboot will give a fresh start to removing the cache from all the hardware and software components.

Step 1. Shut down the system and Printer.

Step 2. Remove the power connection for both devices.

Step 3. Connect the power sources again, and restart the devices.

This gives a much-needed break to the OS, and a reboot also helps solve some internal glitches.

Fix 3. Erase the Printer Queue Manually

If none of the methods had results, try erasing the printer queue manually on your device. You can erase the queue either using the Services Window or Command Prompt. Remember to turn off the Printer before following these methods.

Using the Services Window:

Step 1. Press "Windows + R" to open the "Run" app simultaneously.

Step 2. Type "services.msc" and Click OK.

type on services.msc

Step 3. Now scroll through the services, right-click on "Print Spooler," and click "Stop."

click on print spooler

Step 4. Navigate to the below location to open the "Printer Queue" on your PC.


documents location

Step 5. Please manually select all the documents, or use "Ctrl + A" to delete them.

Step 6. Return to the Services windows, right-click "Print Spooler," and click "start."

Using Command Prompt:

Step 1. Search for "Command Prompt" on your computer and "Run it as administrator."

run as administrator

Step 2. Run the below commands one by one to clear the printer queue. Remember to hit enter after every command.

net stop spooler
del %systemroot%\System32\spool\printers\* /Q
net start spooler

stopping spooler

Step 3. The first command stops the Spooler, the second command deletes the files in that location, and the third command restarts the Spooler again. Now the printer queue is empty, and you can make new printing requests to the Printer.

Step 4. Switch on the Printer again and try printing the file.

Related Reading: How to Open Command Prompt in Windows 11

Other Cases

Even after doing all these, if you face the same issue again, it could be the problem with the printer software itself. You can try using the troubleshooters and updating printer drivers before the option for reinstalling the printing software. 

Final Verdict

The printing queue getting stuck is common due to the Spooler's malfunctioning (Printing Program). All we have to do in such cases is to clear the printing queue. The article has all the methods to solve the problem. However, there are some exceptional cases where you have to reinstall the printing software.

If you find this article, share it with your friends, and leave a comment below to let me know about it. Also, if you have any queries regarding the fixes, let me know in the comment box.

FAQs about How to Clear the Printer Queue in Windows

Do you need more help regarding clearing the printer queue on Windows or want to learn more about it? Below FAQs would be useful for you and cover your queries.

1. Why your printer queue is not clearing?

In Windows, the print files arrive first in the Spooler instead of being sent to the Printer directly. And the spooler is a program that manages all print jobs. Once it has a problem, the files will remain in the queue.

2. Why are my documents in the queue but can't be printed?

If a device stops printing but print jobs get stuck in a queue, there may be a variety of reasons:

  • Paper jam issues.
  • Low ink/ no paper.
  • Disconnecting internet.
  • Wrong or outdated printer driver.

3. How to cancel all print jobs in the queue?

If you want to cancel any print jobs in the queue, right-click the print job and then click Cancel. Besides, you can click "Cancel All Documents" on the "Printer menu" to cancel all print jobs in the queue.

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Updated by Tracy King

Tracy joined in EaseUS in 2013 and has been working with EaseUS content team for over 10 years. Being enthusiastic in computing and technology, she writes tech how-to articles and share technical solutions to resolve Windows & Mac data recovery, data backup, partition management, data transfer, Windows update issues, etc.

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Written by Daisy

Daisy is the Senior editor of the writing team for EaseUS. She has been working in EaseUS for over ten years, starting from a technical writer to a team leader of the content group. As a professional author for over 10 years, she writes a lot to help people overcome their tech troubles.

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