Many MacBook users have complained that their printers have stopped working after upgrading to Big Sur. It seems that this version of macOS makes some printers unusable. Users wonder if this is just a temporary software issue or if the operating system has indeed dropped support for certain printer models.
Keep in mind that printer manufacturers can sometimes take a few days or even weeks to deploy new printer drivers to make their printers compatible with the latest version of macOS. The majority of printer manufacturers rolled out updated driver versions shortly after Apple released Big Sur. The situation may be a little different when it comes to older printer models. Releasing dedicated Big Sur drivers for older printers may not always be a priority for printer manufacturers.
Get an AirPrint compatible printer
If you want to make sure your printer is Big Sur compatible, get a printer that supports AirPrint. You won’t need to download and install printer drivers. In other words, you don’t have to worry about compatibility issues anymore. The AirPrint feature is built into the majority of new printer models. With AirPrint, your macOS and iOS devices can easily discover and connect to your printer instantly.
So if you are planning to buy a new printer, make sure the manufacturer explicitly advertises AirPrint compatibility. As a reminder, AirPrint is included in Big Sur and you can select this option when setting up your new printer for the first time.
List of printers compatible with Big Sur
For more information on the full list of AirPrint-compatible printers, go to Apple’s support page. The company regularly updates the list based on information provided by printer manufacturers.
Update your printer drivers
If your printer worked fine with your macOS Catalina MacBook but stopped working after installing Big Sur, go ahead and manually update your printer drivers. Go to your printer manufacturer’s website, select your printer model, and check if a new driver is available.
For example, if you have an HP printer, go to the Software and Drivers page and click Printer. Then enter your product name to identify your printer. Hit it Submit to download the latest Big Sur compatible printer driver.
If the system could not find the latest drivers for your printer, select your operating system manually. Check if macOS Big Sur is available in the list of supported operating systems. If not, it may indicate that your printer manufacturer does not provide driver support for Big Sur.
For example, we manually checked if a new driver was available for HP DeskJet 3050A. As you can see in the screenshot below, Big Sur is not in the list of supported macOS versions.
You can run this check for all HP printer models. Additionally, you can submit a ticket to HP and check if your printer manufacturer plans to release a new driver update to make your printer model compatible with Big Sur. Maybe they are already working on a driver update and all you have to do is wait for it to be deployed.
If you have a Cannon printer, go to the official Cannon page, click Support and select Software and drivers. Then select Printers and click on your printer model. Under Drivers and Downloads, see if Big Sur is on the list. If not, this indicates that Cannon does not currently offer Big Sur driver support for that particular printer model.
If you have a different printer model, the steps to check if your device is Big Sur compatible are pretty much the same. You need to go to your printer manufacturer’s support page, enter the product name, and check if a new driver is available.
If your printer stops working after upgrading to the latest version of macOS, update your printer drivers. If your printer manufacturer supports Big Sur, installing the latest printer drivers should resolve this issue. On the other hand, if you are looking for a faster solution, buy an AirPrint compatible printer and you won’t have to worry about compatibility issues anymore.
In the meantime, if you want to avoid printer issues, check out this guide on how you can prevent your Mac from installing Big Sur.
Have you experienced printer issues on Big Sur? How did you solve the problem? Tell us about your experience in the comments below.