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Sooner or later, printer owners have to deal with the problem of replacing a cartridge. But it is immediately worth noting that this is not such a difficult task as it might seem at first. In addition, the instructions that come with each model of office equipment contain fairly detailed information on how to replace the cartridge in the printer. Please note that if you act in this case completely relying on your intuition, then this can lead to making mistakes that will certainly harm the operation of your device. But before we move on to the detailed instructions, it is worth defining the differences between different cartridges and how to choose them.
Types of printer cartridges
Printer cartridges are ink pigment containers designed for printing. They are usually divided into several types:
- Matrix – consists of an ink-soaked ribbon and can be used for monochrome and multicolor printing;
- Inkjet – usually contains liquid ink of different colors, such as HP 972 ink from Smart Ink, used on models of the corresponding type. This is the best option for printing photos;
- Laser – includes many components, such as ink, a waste container, etc.
- Toner tube – filled with dry ink for a laser printer, has a capacious storage capacity for ink.
It is quite easy to distinguish them by looking at the inscriptions on the package corresponding to the type of printing of particular office equipment. All of the above cartridges are also divided into:
- Original – this is a type of cartridge produced by manufacturers of office equipment;
- Compatible – these are consumables manufactured according to factory technology by companies that do not specialize in the production of printing equipment;
- Refilled – reusable cartridges with a possibility of refilling;
- Remanufactured – practically do not differ from the previous type, except that they have replaceable parts installed;
- Counterfeit – illegal goods sold as “original consumables”;
- Licensed – original and compatible cassettes that are licensed and widely sold.
The packaging of the cartridge manufacturers in the kit contains information about its resource – the number of pages that the printer can print. However, it often turns out that the stated figure is underestimated. Please remember, that before you buy a cartridge, you will need to find out the model and brand of the device.
How to replace the cartridge?
Step 1. Replace the old cartridge
Before removing the cartridge from the printer, you should turn on the device and access the consumables inside it. The easiest way is to deal with the cartridges that are equipped with laser printers because these are one whole box with a handle. So, to answer the question of how to remove the cartridge from the printer, you should pull it by the handle. The direction will depend on the rails located on the sides of the printer body. It should be removed carefully without any additional effort. Otherwise, if you remove it in the wrong direction, you may break not only this consumable part but also the device itself. In addition, it is no secret to anyone that plastic is quite fragile.
Step 2. Prepare the new cartridge
At this stage, you will need to install a new part in place of the old consumable. But before inserting the cartridge into the printer, make sure that it is suitable for your device. For example, if you have an HP printer, then you can replace the consumables with the same model or with a non-original one that is compatible with your printer model. In general, the market offers a wide range of cheap compatible cartridges to choose from, and the choice between the original and the compatible one is entirely up to you.
Step 3. Install the cartridge
Next, to install the cartridge correctly and competently, you just need to insert it into the corresponding place. At the same time, do not make significant efforts, because the consumable should be installed fairly easily. After that, insert it into the body of the device until it stops. If something initially went wrong, be sure to remove this part and try again. Try to avoid distortions, otherwise, the replaced cartridge will not fall completely into place. After that, you just have to close the printer and wait until the device goes into working condition. Thus, the question of how to put the cartridge in the printer is solved quite simply.
Can cartridges be refilled?
When choosing a printer, it is important to consider that not all cartridges are easy to refill. This results in high costs in the future. Manufacturers of printing equipment have realized that the most expensive item for consumers is not the purchase of the device itself, but its maintenance.
For this reason, the cost of the printer is lower relative to the prices of consumables. That is, it is more profitable for users to refill reusable cartridges, rather than buy disposable ones. Sometimes they are protected against the insertion of non-original consumables. Therefore, manufacturers produce models that are difficult to refill. This is especially true for inkjet models. The cost of such a device is lower than the cost of the most inexpensive laser printer. But this difference will be fully compensated by the difficulties with refilling – cartridges are not cheap, and they will last for a relatively small number of pages. When trying to fill the cartridge with your own hands, various difficulties arise:
- if the procedure is not performed correctly, the new ink will soon dry out, and the printer will not work correctly;
- when refilling inkjet equipment, the ink begins to flow out and stain all nearby objects;
- such inks have a limited lifespan, and if they are not used up in time, they will become unusable.
You will also have to spend a lot of time choosing the optimal ink for an inkjet printer. It is possible to do it yourself, but it is better to entrust this to a service center. If you work with the printer at home, then it is more profitable to buy new compatible cartridges for a specific printer model.
Thank you for reading!