Understanding Paper Weight and Its Impact on Your Copier’s Performance

Selecting the right paper for your copier is essential for maintaining optimal performance and avoiding unnecessary issues. Paper weight is a crucial factor in this decision, but it can often be confusing due to different standards and measurements. Understanding these differences and their impact on your copier can help ensure smooth operation and longevity of your equipment.

Key Questions Answered:

  1. Why is paper weight confusing, and how can it vary between standards?
  2. What is gsm, and how does it help explain differences in paper weight?
  3. How does thicker paper affect copier performance over time?
  4. What should you consider when choosing the right paper tray or specialty attachments for thicker paper?

The Confusion Around Paper Weight

Different Standards and Measurements: Paper weight can be perplexing because the same “paper weight” can vary significantly depending on the measurement standard used. For instance, paper weight can be measured in pounds (lb) in the US or grams per square meter (gsm) internationally.

The weight might also be classified as bond, index, or cover, each of which refers to different types of paper thicknesses.

Understanding gsm and Paper Types

Grams per Square Meter (gsm): The gsm measurement provides a more straightforward way to compare paper weights across different standards. For example, 20 lb bond paper is typically around 75 gsm, while 90 lb index paper is around 165 gsm. Here’s a quick comparison to help clarify:

  • Bond Paper: Often used for everyday printing and office work. A standard 20 lb bond paper is approximately 75 gsm.
  • Index Paper: Thicker and stiffer, used for heavier applications like cards or covers. A 90 lb index paper is around 165 gsm.
  • Cover Paper: Even thicker, used for book covers or presentation materials. A 65 lb cover paper is roughly 175 gsm.

Notice in this example 65lb cover is actually thicker than 90lb index.

Pro Tip: Knowing the gsm of the paper is the safest way to determine if the printer will be able to handle your paper thickness.

Impact of Thicker Paper on Copier Performance

Increased Demand on the Copier Engine: Thicker paper typically requires more from the copier’s engine. While a new copier might handle thicker paper beyond its specified limits, over time, the wear and tear can cause the machine to struggle, leading to jams, decreased print quality, and increased maintenance needs.

This gradual decline happens because the copier’s internal components wear down and lose the capacity to manage the higher demands of thicker paper.

Tips for Proper Paper Handling

Check Specification Sheets: It’s essential to consult your copier’s specification sheet to determine the appropriate paper tray for different paper thicknesses.

Different trays may be designed to handle varying weights and types of paper. Using the correct tray helps maintain copier performance and prevent damage.

Consider Specialty Attachments: For ultra-thick paper or envelopes, specialty attachments can be a wise investment. These attachments are designed to handle heavier materials, ensuring smooth operation without overburdening the copier. They can also improve the quality of the output and extend the lifespan of your equipment.

Get a Copier for Thicker Paper from Pahoda!

Understanding paper weight and its impact on your copier’s performance is crucial for maintaining smooth operations and extending the life of your machine.

By recognizing the differences between various paper standards and measurements, such as gsm, and considering the demands thicker paper places on your copier, you can make informed decisions that benefit your business.

At Pahoda Copiers & Printers, we offer expert advice and a wide range of copiers designed to meet your specific needs.

Contact us today to learn more about selecting the right paper and equipment to keep your office running efficiently. Our team is here to help you optimize your printing processes and ensure the longevity of your copiers.


You'll Get a Real Quote in Under 2 Minutes!