Image on cards fading using a Zebra Card Printer

Article ID: 24980431


Topic or Information

Image on printed card fading, particularly when used in a plastic card holder.

Applies To

This solution is useful for

  • All card printer models (non-laminating)
  • Print quality / dye migration (print fading).



Symptoms addressed by this solution include

  • Print fading.
  • Dye transferred to plastic card holder.


Possible causes for dye migration.

It is highly likely that your printed image is "migrating" into the plastic of your card holder. If you remove the card from the holder and look at the plastic where it contacted the face of the card, you will probably see a ghost image matching the image on your card.

  • The clear overlay varnish panel of the YMCKO ribbon does not offer protection for this kind of usage. One solution would be to use a printer model like the P520, P630, P640 or ZXP that can apply a laminate patch to the card. These patches will prohibit the dye migration.
  • The overlay varnish layer will protect only against fading caused by UV light (i.e. sunlight), so if lamination is not an option, one solution would be to discontinue use of the plastic holders and to slot punch the badges after printing so that a clip can be used to attach the badge to your clothing.
    • Card lapel clips are available as part number 104527-001 (pack of 100)
  • There are some plastic holders out there that will not cause the dye to migrate. Call your media supplier to find out if they offer this type of card holder.


+ Product Codes

  • Card Printers
  • P100i
  • P110i
  • P120i
  • P330i Card Printer
  • P430i Card Printer
  • P630i Card Printer
  • P640i Card Printer
  • Performance Class Card Printers
  • Security Class Printers
  • Value Class Card Printer
  • ZXP Series 1 Standard Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 1 Standard Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 3 Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 3 Professional Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 3 with Security Enclosures
  • ZXP Series 3C Card Printers (China Only)
  • ZXP Series 7 Card Printer
  • ZXP Series 7 High Performance Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 7 Pro High Performance Card Printers
  • ZXP Series 7 with Laminator
  • ZXP Series 8 Card Printer
  • ZXP Series 8 High Security Retransfer Card Printer
  • ZXP Series 8 Secure Issuance Card Printer