This is a collaborative post with Amy (who you might be able to tell from context is from the UK). Thank you for supporting CFO!
There are literally hundreds of myths and old wives’ tales about printers and printing; some have been proven beyond doubt to be false, but still they persist. In an effort to break them down further, take a look at five particularly stubborn misconceptions, then erase them from your memory!
You have to stop printing as soon as you see the “low ink” message
Almost all printers like to send out a low ink message way ahead of time, and it’s not to help you, either! According to the manufacturer, you should immediately swap cartridges, but the truth is you will still have a decent amount of ink in the reservoir, so carry on printing until you see the quality start to fall. Only then bring in the new cartridge that you had waiting in the wings.
Only use original cartridges from the manufacturer
Most manufacturers will tell you to use only their ink cartridges and other consumables in your printer. Using compatibles will break your printer, result in poor quality prints that will mean your CV instantly gets tossed in the bin and so on. This just isn’t so. Of course, some compatibles are rubbish, but many retailers like Cartridge People specialise in proven, trusted compatibles that also come with a warranty. You can’t get much better than that, and they’re also significantly cheaper.
Originals give higher page yields
This myth really does need to be blown out of the water. If you use third-party cartridges, you’ll get the same page yield as you would with an original. In fact, you’ll probably get a higher yield because the big printer makers have been steadily (and stealthily) reducing their reservoirs in recent years. Compatible makers don’t tend to do this, so as well as paying less for each cartridge, you’ll find you’re getting more ink. Double-win!
Third-party ink cartridges will void your warranty
Many people think that using compatible ink cartridges will make their printer warranty void – the printer manufacturer can simply refuse to help them if a non-original cartridge causes a problem. This isn’t the case because the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Improvement Act (UK) means that your printer manufacturer can’t refuse a refund or help that would have been available otherwise just because you used a compatible.
Low print quality is always down to a dodgy or defective ink cartridge
Very often, people will just assume that faint or faded print-outs, as well as smears, blotches or streaks on the paper come from a broken or defective ink cartridge. They may also assume that fading or blank patches are the result of the cartridge running out of ink.
This is a bit of a rush to judgement, though, as sometimes using the cartridge cleaning function on the printer can sort things out. This function can help to shift out ink that’s clogged up and is blocking the cartridge from operating as it should. This can also be the case with toner cartridges if you’re using a laser printer. Gently tilting the cartridge from side to side can move the powder around so it can come out easily.
Of course, if you’re still having problems, you can always call your printer manufacturer or your ink supplier for help.