Saturday, November 29, 2008

Maximizing the Use of Your Ink Cartridges

by: Ismael D. Tabije

Printing forms an important part of any business. Whether it’s a menial job of taking out annual bills or a glossy printout of a high profile business brochure, printing is an essential part of business. Even at home, children frequently take out colorful printouts. In the beginning we tend to use the printer indiscriminately, not realizing the expense incurred. Later, realization of how expensive the printing costs are dawns when the cartridges have to be replaced. So now the question arises, how to save ink without compromising on quality? To know which measures can lead to optimum results read on...

Use your printer software supplied or Windows printer software to maximize the number of pages by selecting draft mode whenever possible. This is the simplest way to reduce ink usage per page printed. Economy modes are specially designed in modern printers that can also be used except when you need high-quality outputs.

More effective ways to save ink are given below:

• Avoid using color cartridges for black and white prints: Printing black and white with a color ink cartridge finishes it sooner as numerous colors are mixed to create the black ink. This results in your color cartridge getting depleted. Keep an exclusive black and white cartridge for printing out common tasks.

• Color management: Change the printer settings from best quality to draft while printing rough drafts. The draft mode is the lowest resolution setting you can use. This will use up ink cartridge much slower than a higher quality setting. You can switch back to high quality mode when you're ready to print the final version.

• Print “current page”: If you need to print only one page out of a multiple page document, check the “Print Current Page” option before clicking “OK”. Printing the whole document each time you need a page is sure way to deplete your cartridge soon. Also skipping the images will make your ink cartridges will last longer!

• Print “Selection”: If you need to print only a portion of a page, e.g., only one paragraph, highlight the said paragraph, and choose “print selection”.

• Black only pleases! Do you really need those beautiful colors when printing a fact sheet from the Internet? Print in colors only when you absolutely need to. Color cartridges are invariably more expensive than black ones.

Some more useful tips for saving on ink cartridges:

• Taking printout of a document for archival purposes such as an online bill? In such cases use the lowest possible resolution, which is just clear enough for you to read.

• Printer manufacturers usually tell that refilling ink cartridges damages printers. However it is not so most of the time. It’s worth trying if you have an inexpensive printer (ranging between $50 and $75). Damage, if any, rarely occurs.

Look at it this way: The new cartridges cost $30 while the refilled one is $15 refilled. After refill of three ink cartridges you have saved enough money to replace your expensive $50 printer cartridge with a brand new one.

• Next time bear in mind the price of the cartridges while shopping?? Prefer the ones with a lower cost of cartridges. The one in front might be requiring $30 cartridge but the one right beside it might use ink cartridges costing $17 only!

The printer surely is a one-time investment but the ink cartridges make it expensive to maintain. The above tips hopefully can help you sustain your cartridges for a longer time and lessen the holes in your pocket. Using your cartridges judiciously can save you a lot of money and help you derive maximum benefit from your printer.