How to Save Money on Ink Cartridges

How to Save Money on Ink Cartridges

Consumer technology keeps improving, but one thing stays constant: consumer complaints about the high cost of printer ink. In a 2015 Consumer Reports survey, almost half of printer owners said they are paying too much for printer cartridges. And among the 36,000 subscribers surveyed, more than a quarter say they have to buy new cartridges too often. There's a lot you can do to use less ink—from choosing draft mode to changing fonts. And in recent years, more products and services have come on the market claiming to help consumers save money.

Tip to Save Money on Ink Cartridges

1) Save on Printer Ink - Buy a New Printer!

You’re most probably thinking that if you’re trying to save money, then how do you reconcile that with buying a whole new printer? It’s quite simple really. Most inexperienced people end up buying those printers that are on sale. You know the ones we’re talking about – the less than R 1 000.00 printers. Well, that was your first mistake (sorry!) Those printers on sale are cheap first time but for the rest of your life, they’ll drain your pockets dry. The running costs of those printers are exorbitant. They consume more ink and they use more paper. Buying those printers that may be pricey initially usually have low running costs to save money on ink cartridges.

2) Save Money on Printer Ink - Change Printer Settings

Have you been using your printer with the setting that it came with? If your answer is a yes, then you’ve most probably been wasting a lot of ink. Your printer’s default settings are designed for best performance. This means great print quality but it also means excessive use of ink. You won’t need such high quality prints unless you’re printing for clients or exhibitions. You stand to save money on ink cartridges by simply switching these settings to draft mode. Draft mode prints are ideal for in-house printing as they use less ink. Additionally, we also recommend foregoing colour printing unless you absolutely need it. You can save money on ink cartridges by tons by just printing in grayscale.

3) Save Money on Printer Ink - Use The Printer At Least Once A Week

Use your printer at least once a week or you’ll end up losing your whole ink cartridge. When you don’t use your printer regularly, it causes the ink inside the cartridge to dry up. Ink needs to be in circulation to survive. So, by printing at least once a week you lose ink on that page but you save the rest of it in the cartridge. Essentially, you save money on ink cartridges by preventing them from going dry.

4) Save Money on Printer Ink - Watch When and How You Turn Your Printer Off

If you’re especially careful, then you most probably turn your printer off every day. That’s counterproductive! Every time your printer is turned on, it goes through a maintenance phase which involves circulating ink through all the little holes in the print head. Needless to say, this means you’re wasting ink every day. In fact, you can end up losing up to five percent of the ink in your ink cartridges simply by turning your printer every day. Now, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t turn your printer off for the weekend or an extended period like a week. Doing this will extend the life of your printer, so it’s recommended. However, you should turn your printer off properly. This means using the ‘Power’ button as that puts cartridges in the right position and keeps them from drying up! You can cut the power after you’ve done this.

5) Save Money on Printer Ink - Play With Fonts & Print Preview

This method to save money on ink cartridges is repeated a lot these days but people still don’t take it up. Let’s be clear on this! You can save heaps on your cartridges by using the right fonts. You most probably print in Arial or Times New Roman a lot. Avoid that as you can save money on ink cartridges by simply using Ecofont, Garamond or even Century Gothic fonts. It’s also advisable to use spell check your copy and using print preview before giving that final command. You have no idea how much ink people waste just by re-printing to correct mistakes!

6) Save Money on Printer Ink - Take Warnings with a Pinch of Salt

The low ink warning your printer gives is so convenient, isn’t it? It lets you know when to replace your cartridges. What if we tell you that your printer is wrong? Well, not exactly but your printer is being overcautious. It’s overcautious because a completely empty cartridge will ruin your printer. However, being overcautious here means giving warnings even when the cartridge contains 20 percent of its total ink capacity. Some printers even start giving these warnings at 50 percent capacity. Just by ignoring these early warnings, you stand to save money on ink cartridges by chunks. Just be careful not to let the cartridges go completely dry!

7) Save Money on Printer Ink - Get Software for Monitoring Ink Usage

While you can follow all the tips above to save money on ink cartridges, there are automated methods as well. There are software programmes that monitor your printing activities and give recommendations on what you can do to save money on ink cartridges. Even though most of these software programmes come at a price (very few are free), they can pay for themselves if you print a lot and regularly.

8) Save Money on Printer Ink - Choose Compatible Ink Cartridges

Every tip above to save money on ink cartridges is designed to make your printing more efficient. This increased efficiency helps in reducing ink consumption. However, you can save money on ink cartridges at the point where it all begins too – when you purchase them! First and foremost, instead of buying genuine ink cartridges, you should buy compatible ink cartridges. The right quality compatible ink cartridges give you print quality that is comparable to genuine ink cartridges. The difference is in cost and quantity. Compatible ink cartridges are cheaper (sometimes up to 83%), and contain more ink too. The only reason they’re cheaper is that aftermarket manufacturers don’t have to fuss about marketing. More importantly, these third party manufacturers aren’t looking to make up for selling you their printers for a loss. One thing you should keep in mind is that you should only these cartridges from a reliable vendor who gives you compatible ink cartridges with guarantees and warranties.

If you’re looking for affordable quality, click here to view our full range of ink and toners today. 

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