How to Add Printers On Mac The Easy Way

All Mac computers have a printer list. You just need to add a printer to that list and you are good to go.  It is easier said than done, especially for newcomers. However, our guide will explain how to add printers on Mac in detail.

How to Add Printers to Mac

Macintosh computers make it a bit complicated to use printers. You need to treat each printer individually unlike other items such as a keyboard, mouse, or AirPods. There are different methods for connecting different printers based on their type, make, and connectivity options.

It is always helpful to read the user manual. But – the manual is a long and boring set of jargon with inexplicable instructions and examples. Having said that, the easiest printers to use with Mac are those that support AirPrint (Apple’s printing app). You don’t need to install any software or drivers for these printers. Just plug them in and you are good to go.

What if your printer does not support AirPrint? In this case, you have to check any of the following methods depending on your printer’s model and type.

The following video by Computers Dot Mom clearly explains how to add a printer to a Macbook Air or any Mac computer.

How to Add a Wireless Printer to Mac?

wireless printer may have other connectivity options such as USB. However, it is always better to connect a wireless printer through Wi-Fi. Connecting the printer with the Wi-Fi may present some difficulties. Sometimes, it requires a lot of effort. On other occasions, you only need to press a couple of buttons. Once again, it depends on your router and type of the printer.

The easiest way to connect a printer via Wi-Fi is as below.

  1. Ensure that you are adding the printer to the same wireless network as Mac.
  2. Press the Wi-Fi button on your printer
  3. Press the WPS button on the router
  4. Now, the printer must connect to the Wi-Fi network. If it doesn’t, check the documentation.

Once you have sorted out everything, it is time to install the printer on Mac.

  1. Go to System Preferences
  2. Open Printers and Scanners
  3. Press the Plus button to add the printer
  4. Your printer supports AirPrint if you see the AirPrint option next to Add button. Simply click on Add to install the printer
  5. If your printer is not compatible with AirPrint, select your printer available in the printer list.
  6. Click on Add and then download the printer’s drivers from Apple servers.
  7. Drivers should start downloading automatically
  8. Install the drivers and connect the printer to Mac

How to Add a Bluetooth Printer to Mac?

Connecting a Bluetooth printer to Mac works in the same way as connecting wireless headphones. However, you have to add the printer to the printer list before pairing.

  1. Updated your macOS to the latest version by going to System Preferences and then Software Update
  2. Once again, open System Preferences
  3. Go to Printers and Scanners
  4. Press the Plus button
  5. Press the Add button and select your printer

How to Add Printers on Mac via USB?

It is a piece of cake to add printers on Mac via USB. On most occasions, Mac instantly recognizes printers connected through a USB cable. You just have to follow the instructions and boom, the printer is connected.

However, the Mac may refuse to recognize the USB sometimes. You usually cannot do anything to solve the problem as well. It is recommended to install the latest drivers and updates from System Preferences and see what happens.

Sometimes, Mac does not automatically recognize the USB as well. The solution is to add the printer manually.

  1. Connected the printer’s USB cable to the Mac computer.
  2. Go to System Preferences
  3. Open Printers and Scanners
  4. Press the Plus button
  5. Search for the printer with “USB” in its title
  6. Click on Add
  7. Your printer will appear in the left sidebar after it is connected

How to Connect a Printer to Mac though IP Address

Using an IP address is an excellent method to adding a printer to Mac. It is a bit tricky as you must know the type of printing protocol and the IP address or hostname of your printer. You can contact support or consult the documentation to find this information.

Follow the below steps to connect your printer via its IP address.

  1. Go to System Preferences
  2. Open Printers and Scanners
  3. Press the Plus button to add a new printer
  4. Switch to the web icon or IP tab
  5. Add the hostname or IP address of your printer
  6. Select the right Protocol such as LPD, IPP, AirPrint, etc
  7. Type the name of your printer for example a color printer or a laser printer
  8. Add the location of your printer that is available in the Pop-up menu
  9. Go to “Use” and download the printer’s drivers. Sometimes, you also have the option “Select Printer Software”
  10. Press Add button to add the printer

Final Thoughts

Always buy a printer that supports AirPrint if you have a Mac computer at home. It makes it incredibly easy to connect the printer to Mac without having to download software and updates. However, our guide on “how to add printers on Mac” has covered all possible methods to use a printer with a Mac computer for your convenience.

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