How to set a default printer in Windows 10 so that it’s easier and quicker to print documents

Hollis Johnson/Tech InsiderTo set a default printer on your Windows 10 computer, go into your Printers & Scanners menu.


Windows will automatically set your printer to be the last one you used at your current location. However, you can turn this function off to manually set your printer to a preferred one, so it doesn’t change every time you move.

You can also re-enable that default setting later, if that’s your preference.

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How to set a default printer in Windows 10

1. Press the Windows key on your keyboard or click the Windows icon at the bottom left of your screen, and search for “Printers.”

2. Select “Printers and Scanners” from your search results.

3. Uncheck “Allow Windows to manage my default printer” at the bottom of the screen by clicking the check box.

How to set default printer in Windows 10Ross James/Business InsiderThe menu should look like this, with the checkbox at the bottom left.

4. Select the device you want to make your default from the list of printers and scanners. Click on it, then click “Manage.”

How to set default printer in Windows 10Ross James/Business InsiderThe ‘Manage’ button only appears after you’ve selected the device.

5. On the new screen, select “Set as default.” This should now be your default printer.

How to set default printer in Windows 10Ross James/Business InsiderHere I can change the ‘Print to PDF’ function to be the default print option.

6. To re-enable the default printer settings, recheck the “Allow Windows to manage my default printer” button.

This can be really helpful if you have a laptop that switches printers a lot. Changing the default printer manually like this still allows you to change your printer on a case-by-case basis if you choose to, whenever you print from an application.

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