We’ve all been there: It’s 2am and you’re printing out a last-minute report for a meeting the next day, only to find that your printer betrays you and refuses to print! This is frustrating at any time but especially so when you’re counting on your printer to deliver the goods. The takeaway? You should have thought more about how to extend your printer’s ink cartridge to last much, much longer. Even with digital options, many people still take printing very seriously and wish to save money and time when it comes to cartridges.
Printer ink can either be ridiculously expensive or a bit of a bargain depending on where you buy it. High street retailers can charge a fortune just for one ink cartridge, but you can also save a few pennies if you buy online at somewhere like TonerPartner, for instance, as buying in bulk is far cheaper and you can even pick up recycled cartridges. You should always use an economical printer in addition to cheaper printer ink, but we’ll focus on tips for getting the most out of your printer’s ink cartridge here.
Try to avoid large, bold fonts
The explanation for doing this is very simple: large and bold fonts require more ink, so it’s best to slim down the size of your font type. Arial and New Courier on size 11 are some of the best fonts for printing onto paper that will still be easily legible. Only use bold if absolutely necessary.
Make use of Print Preview
If you’re using Microsoft Word, then ensure you use the handy Print Preview before actually printing anything out. This will give you an idea of how the page will look, and you might find that some words have been moved onto an extra page by accident. This means you won’t have to re-print anything after you spot a mistake.
Check your printer settings
We don’t just have to accept the printer settings that are selected by default! You can do things like changing the print quality to “draft”, only print in grayscale instead of colour printing, and even print double-sided if it makes sense. Adjust anything that you think will only use up more paper and ink.
Do you actually need to print?
This is a question you should ask yourself every time you’re about to hit the print button! With email and cloud sharing, you may not even need a physical document. You could always ask a client or colleague if they require something on paper, and if not, just send it to them electronically.
Shake the cartridge
A bit like blowing into a video game cartridge in the 80s and 90s to make it work again, you can try shaking and warming up your ink cartridge to get some more out of it! This helps to remove any clogs that might have appeared over time and will help get several more printouts afterward. Try using a paper towel or even a hairdryer to clear the nozzles of the ink cartridge.
Of course, the best way to not ruin your printing efforts is to keep a spare ink cartridge in your home at all times, but those are some handy tips for how to prolong an ink cartridge for that little bit longer.