How to Reset the Drum Life on a Brother HL-5470DW Printer

Resetting the drum life on a Brother HL-5470DW printer is a simple process that involves accessing the printer’s menu and resetting the drum counter. Once you complete this action, your printer will recognize the new drum, and you’ll be able to continue printing without any error messages regarding the drum life.

After you reset the drum life, your Brother HL-5470DW printer will stop displaying the “Replace Drum” message. This allows you to continue using your printer without interruptions or the need for immediate maintenance. Essentially, you’re telling your printer that you’ve installed a new drum, even if you haven’t, which can be useful if the message is appearing prematurely.


When it comes to maintaining your Brother HL-5470DW printer, one of the tasks you might encounter is resetting the drum life. But, why is this task important, and what does it mean for you and your printer? The drum unit is an integral part of your printer. It works with the toner cartridge to transfer toner onto the paper, creating the final print. Over time, the drum wears out and needs to be replaced to maintain print quality. Your printer keeps track of the drum’s lifespan through a counter, which triggers a “Replace Drum” message when it’s nearing the end of its life.

But what if you’re certain the drum still has some life left, or you’ve replaced it, and the message persists? That’s where resetting the drum life comes into play. This article is crucial for anyone who owns a Brother HL-5470DW printer. It’s for the office manager who wants to keep the office running smoothly without unnecessary interruptions, the small business owner who is looking out for expenses, and even for the home user who wants to get the most out of their printer. Knowing how to reset the drum life can save you time, money, and the hassle of dealing with print quality issues.

Step by Step Tutorial to Reset the Drum Life on a Brother HL-5470DW

Before we dive into the steps, it’s crucial to understand what we’re accomplishing here. Resetting the drum counter tells your Brother HL-5470DW printer that you’ve installed a new drum. This process doesn’t actually replace the physical drum; it only resets the printer’s internal counter.

Step 1: Open the front cover of the printer

To start, make sure your printer is on and then open the front cover.

Opening the front cover will give you access to the inside of the printer where the drum and toner cartridge are located. You won’t need to remove anything yet, just opening the cover will do for now.

Step 2: Press and hold the ‘Go’ button

With the front cover open, find and hold down the ‘Go’ button on the printer’s control panel for about four seconds.

The ‘Go’ button is usually easy to find—it’s often the only button with the word ‘Go’ or a start symbol on it. Holding it down will take the printer into a settings menu that you can’t access otherwise.

Step 3: Release the ‘Go’ button when all LEDs light up

When all the LEDs on the printer’s control panel light up, release the ‘Go’ button.

The LEDs lighting up indicate that the printer has recognized the button press and is ready for the following step.

Step 4: Press the ‘Go’ button twice

After releasing the button, quickly press it twice.

This sequence of button presses is part of the reset procedure and will tell the printer to reset the drum counter.

Step 5: Wait until the control panel’s LEDs turn off

After pressing the ‘Go’ button twice, wait until all the LEDs turn off.

The LEDs turning off is part of the process, indicating that the printer has accepted the reset command.

Step 6: Press the ‘Go’ button six times

To complete the reset, press the ‘Go’ button six times.

Pressing the button six times ensures that the reset command is fully registered by the printer.

Step 7: Close the front cover of the printer

Finally, close the front cover of your Brother HL-5470DW printer.

Closing the cover will save the reset and allow you to continue printing without the “Replace Drum” message appearing.


Extends drum unit lifeBy resetting the drum life, you can extend the use of your current drum unit, potentially saving money on a replacement.
Reduces printer downtimeIf the “Replace Drum” message is showing up prematurely, resetting the drum life can quickly get your printer back up and running without waiting for a new drum.
Easy maintenance taskResetting the drum life is a simple process that can be done in a few minutes, making it an easy maintenance task for anyone.


Does not replace physical drumResetting the drum counter only resets the printer’s internal counter; it does not replace the actual drum unit.
May lead to decreased print qualityContinuing to use a worn-out drum after resetting the life can result in decreased print quality over time.
Potential for error messagesIf not done correctly, you may still receive error messages, or the reset may not be registered by the printer.

Additional Information

When it comes to managing your Brother HL-5470DW printer, understanding how to reset the drum life is a valuable skill that can save you time and money. However, it’s also important to recognize when it’s genuinely time to replace the drum unit. A typical drum unit for this printer can last anywhere between 20,000 to 30,000 pages. If you notice consistent issues with print quality, even after a reset, it might be time to invest in a new drum.

Additionally, always ensure that you’re using the correct drum unit for your printer model. Using incompatible or low-quality drums can lead to a host of issues, from poor print quality to damaging your printer. The prompt keyword here is crucial. If you’re dealing with a Brother HL-5470DW printer and encountering drum life issues, always refer back to this guide for a quick and easy reset process.


  1. Open the front cover of the printer.
  2. Press and hold the ‘Go’ button until all LEDs light up.
  3. Release the ‘Go’ button when all LEDs light up.
  4. Press the ‘Go’ button twice.
  5. Wait until the control panel’s LEDs turn off.
  6. Press the ‘Go’ button six times.
  7. Close the front cover of the printer.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does the drum unit do?

The drum unit transfers toner onto the paper, creating the final print. It’s a crucial component of the laser printing process.

How long does a drum unit last?

Typically, a drum unit can last between 20,000 to 30,000 pages, but this varies based on printing habits and document complexity.

Can I still print if my printer says “Replace Drum”?

Yes, you can usually continue printing for a short time, but it’s advised to either replace the drum or reset the drum life to avoid interruptions.

Is it necessary to reset the drum life if I replace the drum?

Yes, when you replace the drum, it’s important to reset the drum life so the printer recognizes the new drum unit.

Will resetting the drum life fix all print quality issues?

Not necessarily. If the drum is physically worn out, resetting the counter won’t improve print quality. It’s important to assess whether the drum needs to be replaced.


In conclusion, resetting the drum life on your Brother HL-5470DW is a simple yet essential maintenance task that can keep your printer running smoothly. Whether you’re looking to extend the life of your current drum unit or you’ve replaced it and need to reset the counter, this guide provides a straightforward process. Just remember, while this reset can be a temporary fix, it’s not a substitute for proper printer maintenance and eventually replacing the drum unit.

For continued optimal performance and print quality, keep an eye on the actual condition of the drum and replace it when necessary. And there you have it—a hassle-free way to reset the drum life on your Brother HL-5470DW printer, ensuring that your prints remain sharp and your printer stays in top-notch condition.

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