Printers have revolutionized the way that we are able to work. Though printer sales have dropped in the past decade, most people still have a printer in their home.
Today, wireless printers, laser printers, and inkjet printers are among the most popular types of available. But owning any kind of printer brings with the cost—and often, the hassle—of having to replace ink or toner cartridges. The following are just some of the techniques and supplies you’ll need to keep your printer printing.
Printer Toner Cartridges
Toner is used in laser printers and copying machines. Similar to ink in an inkjet printer, toner forms the text and images printed on the page. Laser toner cartridges often come in single packs, and usually have the capacity to print between 1,500 and 3,500 pages. They cost between $40 and $150, depending on the brand of the printer. Buying toner in bulk may be more cost-effective option for businesses. Remanufactured or refilled toner cartridges tend to print fewer sheets, but they are less expensive and more environmentally friendly.
Printer Toner Cartridge Recycling
Depending on where you live, you should be able to find a recycling program for used printer toner cartridges. Toner recycling and refilling programs allow you to bring empty cartridges to a site, where they are then either recycled, or refilled and re-packaged for future use. Companies such as Staples, Canon, Dell, Brother, RICOH, Lexmark, Samsung and others have recycling programs which allow you to send used toner cartridges back to them by mail free of charge, using a printable label. Such labels can usually be found on the company’s website.
Refillable Ink Cartridges
Ink cartridges tend to be substantially less expensive than toner cartridges. However, they do not have the same capacity to print. Having to purchase new black and color cartridges poses environmental and financial challenges. Refillable ink cartridges are designed to be easy to refill when the need arises. You can using a printer ink refill kit to refill ink at home, or you can bring your empty ink cartridges to a refill-service. This costs a fraction of the price of buying a new cartridge, and creates significantly less waste. But many printer manufacturers caution against refilling ink cartridges, claiming that using refilled or recycled ink cartridges can eventually compromise the quality of the print. HP even went so far as to start creating printers that will not work when a recycled ink cartridge is inserted. In some cases, refilling ink cartridges may even compromise the printer’s warranty.
Printer Ink Refills & Printer Ink Refill Kits
You can find printer ink refills and printer ink refill kits in store and online. They are sold at major retailers, such as Walmart, Walgreens, Grand & Toy, Amazon, and InkSupply.com. They tend to cost between $5 and $20, and include instructions as to how to refill the cartridge.
Buying Printer Ink Online
If you’re not willing to refill your ink or toner cartridges, you can find deals on ink and toner online. It’s important to shop around, and generally, you can save money on ink and toner by buying in bulk.