You got a great deal on an ink jet printer but did you ever wonder why. Printer companies are practically giving away their printers and we buy them thinking we scored a great deal, then we realize we are constantly changing ink cartridges and the expense of printing is spiraling out of control.
Here are 6 ways to save money on printer ink so you can keep printing all those awesome coupons we come across.
- Change Your Printer Settings: Try using the “Draft” or “Quick-Print” setting to save on ink. By setting your printer to a lower-quality setting you will help conserve your ink. You will want to test a coupon to make sure that your barcode is there and looks like it can be easily scanned.All printers are different, but you should be able to right click on the printer icon in your control panel and then click on “Properties”. Find the settings for Print Quality and pick the “Draft” or “Quick Print” Setting (my HP printer said Econo-Mode). You should also choose to print in black and white, if you have a color printer, because this obviously saves ink.
- Print more than 1 Coupon on a Page: If it is possible, try to print your coupons in batches because it cuts down on ink AND paper. We have coupons available for Coupons.com, RedPlum, or SmartSource and you can usually fit 3 on a page. Many of you know that when you print only 1 coupon some manufacturers have started putting half page ads on the rest of the page, wasting your ink. Try to choose 3, 6, 9 and on an on so that there is no extra room on the page. I would rather have an extra coupon than a giant ad!
- Hit the Stop Button: I have not personally tried this and I don’t know how reliable it is, but many of you have said that you hit the cancel button on your computer’s printer menu or manually stop the printer using the cancel button. The end result is that you get the coupon but stop the ad from printing on the rest of the paper.
- Refill Your Ink Cartridges: Many people like this method and claim that it is reliable and saves them money. Stores like Walgreens, Office Max and Costco refill cartridges for you. Walgreens refills are $12.99 each according to their website.
- Recycle Old Cartridges: Staples has a Cartridge-Recycling Program to save $2 per cartridge in Staples Rewards. Limit of 10 per month and you have to have a Staples Rewards Card to be eligible (free to join). At Office Depot starting 10/01/2010, every cartridge you recycle in-store you will receive $2 back in Recycling Rewards! (Up to a limit of 20 per month. You can recycle additional cartridges but Recycling Rewards will only be issued for up to 20 per month.)See the specific stores for the makes and model #’s of cartridges they accept on these programs.
- Buy a Laser Printer: Finally, consider investing in a laser printer if you are doing a lot of printing. While the cost of the laser printer seems like a lot of money up front, you will most likely save in the long run because you get so many more prints from a laser printer. Laser printers also print faster than the typical ink jet printer. A laser printer cartridge can print anywhere from 2,000 – 4,000 copies depending on what brand you buy. That’s a lot more copies than you will get from an ink jet cartridge! Amazon had a great deal on a basic HP laser printer that several of you recommended. It is around $89.99 with FREE Shipping.
How Do You Save on Printer Ink? Leave a comment below and let us know!