5 Eco-Friendly, Money Saving Printing Tips

If you print heavily, share your computer and printer, or have children who print colorful webpages, you probably find yourself needing to replace ink cartridges frequently. Not only are these cartridges expensive, but an estimated 300 million ink cartridges wind up in landfills annually.

There are several things you can do to keep money in your pocket and lessen the landfill load when it comes to ink cartridges.

1. Choose refillable ink cartridges: Refilling ink cartridges can be a messy affair if you take it on yourself. A number of stores will refill them for you, Walgreens and Office Max being among them. However, not all ink cartridges are refillable. Find out from the stores that sell office supplies or have a photo department near you if they refill cartridges for your printer model. During printing, streaking is an indicator that the cartridge is running out of ink. This is the perfect time for a refill, as the cartridge should be filled before it runs dry.

When buying printers in the future, finding out if the ink cartridges it uses are refillable can save you money in the long run.

2. Recycle finished cartridges: Many libraries, Scouting programs, schools and office supply stores facilitate the recycling of ink cartridges. Don’t trash them; recycle.

3. Print in draft mode: Check out the owner’s manual for your printer to learn how to print drafts and unimportant documents in draft mode. (If you can’t find your manual, visit the brand’s website. They often have PDF versions online.) Printing in this mode uses less ink.

4. Print Preview: By simply previewing your document before printing, you can catch formatting errors and typos that will eliminate the need to reprint documents later.

5. Printing limits: If unsupervised, most kids will make endless prints from their favorite sites. Set a clear limit on the number of pages your children are allowed to print each day.

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Interstellar Daydreamer
Cosmic Price2 years ago


Aud Nordby
Aud nordby2 years ago


Sonia Minwer-Barakat Requ

Good tips,Thanks for sharing

Donna Hamilton
Donna Hamilton3 years ago

Thanks for the info. I recycle cartridges that I can't refill, only print when strictly necessary and, like other posters, use the back of junk mail for my own reference items.

Glen G.
Past Member 5 years ago

Good article. We should save our money to secure our future. You can save our money on printing activities by just following few things. Buy printers that consumes less electricity. See the document before printing so that you never have to reprint again. This will save your paper and ink.

Maria W.
Past Member 5 years ago

I found an interesting article about how changing the font can save money and ink:

mr Crowley
mr Crowley5 years ago

thought i's add ecofont to the tips: http://www.ecofont.com/en/products/green/printing/sustainable-printing-using-ecofont-software.html

Kerrie G.
Kerrie G.5 years ago

I heard about the CISS (continuous ink systems) and have ordered one off Ebay. Hopefully it will be worth it's weight in gold.

Philippa P.
Philippa P.5 years ago

I print only necessary pages and recycle all cartridges.

Pat Tyler
Pat Tyler5 years ago

Thanks for the assistance. I need recycled cartridges.