Anyone who regularly prints, knows that one of the main costs here is the ink. And if you are someone who plans on getting a new printer, then you should also know how expensive it is going to get down the road if you are not careful or cautious about how you use it.
Since a lot of people are not well versed in how to save printer ink, we have decided to do a little detailed piece for everyone out there. Whether you already use it regularly or plan on doing so, spending a little time reading these tips and tricks can save you a ton in the future.
So let us get right into it!
There are a lot of factors that directly and indirectly affect how much ink you are using, and more importantly, how much you are wasting. Some of these factors might not even seem related, but trust us, over time, they surely will!
Maintaining the health of your printer and being wise with what you buy, can all matter, so pay close attention to all these points!
How much money you will be spending on your printer over time is something you can get a rough estimate of before you buy your printer, using the information from the printer itself. Most printers come with detailed specifications as to which ink cartridges are compatible with them.
Once you know which cartridges you will be needing, you can do a rough estimate as to the number of pages you can print with one cartridge. And accordingly, you can pick and choose printers that have high capacity cartridges, so save up on ink costs.
What you need to know about the printer is the resolution used. If it is a high-resolution printer, it will use more ink, and vice versa.
Printers that are more expensive also tend to have lower ink costs over time. These usually are compatible with high-capacity cartridges, which can carry a lot more ink at one go, hence reducing the need for replacement, which would cost more when done in smaller intervals.
Basically, you pay a higher price upfront, but then have low replacement costs over time, which in the end would save you money.
Sometimes you have a report or journal to print, and you just press go. But, most of the time, these have numerous pages full of links, or references, or just information you won’t need. And then they come out printed often in 7 to 10 extra pages, or even more!
If you wish to know how to save ink on printer, then check the material you wish to print beforehand, and this will save you on the ink costs since you can eliminate a lot of the pages you don’t need. This includes reports, articles, books, anything you think you can work with digitally will save your cash.
If your printer is not performing up to mark, it will waste more ink. So pay attention to the speed and efficiency of the printer.
This includes taking care of printer jams, cleaning up dirty cartridge nozzles, and running the auto maintenance function that most printers have. As long as the printer is efficient, it will waste less ink.
Taking good care also refers to upgrading the printer if required. Meaning, if your printer is an old one, it will eat up ink like no other.
Modern printers have been optimized to save on ink, and find all the ways they can reduce ink costs. A new printer is a big cost, but if you print frequently, then it is an investment that will save you time and money in the long run.
More often than not, this is a point people end up missing, that you can tweak the printer’s settings so that it is more economical. You will find the option on your computer (the one connected to the printer).
Go to the Printing Preferences Tab, here you will find an option called the Ink-Saver Mode or the Toner-Saver Mode, which will allow you to save on ink. You will also find a “Print in Draft” mode, which uses less ink. You can use this for not-so-important documents or papers to save up on ink.
Of course, you could choose to print in monochrome instead of color for all the times you don’t need a colorful page, since that turns out to be further expensive.
Often with all the lucrative offers and prices, people end up purchasing third-party inks, since those come cheaper than the brand ones.
However, there is a reason they come cheap, they are not as good. And what happens in most cases is that you have to replace them or print out multiple copies until you get your desired results, adding to your costs.
Instead, stick with the ink the printer recommends, and follow the precautions, you will end up wasting less money this way.
A lot of times, printers will send out a low cartridge warning. This differs from printer to printer and is not always accurate. So instead of being alarmed and getting new ink, wait to see how your prints really come out.
Unless you see a drastic change in the print quality, you don’t need to change it right away. Chances are you can still use the ink for a good while.
In case we were to run out of ink for an important event, a lot of us stock up on ink beforehand. In the case you don’t actually need so much ink, it goes to waste, since it expires, and you waste a ton of cash.
While it is good to stock up, do it mindfully, so you don’t over-purchase. Keep in mind how much you normally print, and stock accordingly. If you are not a professional in this line, chances are you don’t need 5 bottles of extra ink as a backup.
We are pretty sure you have heard people complain about how expensive printer ink is. In fact, it can add up to cost more than your printer in the long run. But, there is always a way to do things right, and you too should know how to save printer ink.
You may or may not own a printer now, but if anytime in the future you do decide to get one, these tips will surely help you save up!
About Dror Wettenstein
Dror Wettenstein is a software engineer and entrepreneur with more than 15 years of experience in the industry. He is the founder of TechTreeRepeat, a company that enables technical writers to publish their work faster and share it with readers across the globe. Dror has a master’s degree in computer science from San Diego State University and a bachelor’s degree in physics from UC Irvine.
When he’s not working on software projects, Dror enjoys writing articles and essays on various topics. He also likes playing guitar and spending time with his wife and two young children.