Printer manufactures sell you cheap printers so you knowing you will have to spend a fortune on their special printer ink.
Ounce for Ounce Some Ink Jet Printer Ink Cost More than Fine Champagne
#1. Buy Third-Party or Re-manufactured Inks
You can save by buying re-manufactured ink online. Re-manufactured ink cartridges cost less than half the price of store-bought cartridges but produce the same quality printouts.
Some manufacturers try to scare you into only using their ink but I have used third party ink for four years and never had a problem.
Some may say it is a gamble but I have saved hundreds of dollars and I can get a new printer less than $100 so even if I ruin my printer I come out ahead.
If perfect color is important you need to buy the better ink. If not, knock-off brand ink shouldn't damage your printer.
#2. Change Your Printer Settings
Printer companies set their default mode to use the highest amount of ink. Why? So you have to buy more ink. It is very simple to change the print quality but each printer has a different way to do it. So this is what I recommend:
#3. Refill Your Cartridges
Some companies collect empty printer ink cartridges and refill them. They are tested to verify that they perform properly and they frequently cost a fraction of price you pay for new cartridges.
An alternative is to buy a kit that enables you to refill cartridges yourself. The kit includes step-by-step instructions and printer ink. Once you get the good at it you can refill a cartridge in a few minutes.
#4. Buy a Laser Printer
If you have to have an ink jet printer a Brother is the brand known for the best printer ink prices.
I bought my $315 Xerox Phaser 6510 printer on sale for $219 (affiliate link) with free Prime shipping. I have printed over 200 full color pages for the Proverbs 31 class and still have not needed ink.
LASER PRINTER PROS
- Much cheaper in the long run (about .08 cents per full color page). Ink for inkjets are outrageously expensive and don't last long.
- Inkjet ink is water-based, so prints are susceptible to water damage and fading.
- Laser is much faster and crisper.
- Laser printers are better prepared to handle high-volume print jobs.
- This Xerox Phaser 6510 works great for all kinds of paper (I mostly print sticker and card stock) and I've never had a jam.
LASER PRINTER CONS
- It is bigger than ink jets and so may not work if your space is limited (too big to tote to room to room).
- This Xerox Phaser 6510 is NOT wireless unless you add the wireless cartridge for $50. I don't like wireless because of the EMF health issues so I was glad it is optional.
#5. Sign Up for HP InstaInk
HP InstaInk cards are a super deal for crafters becasue you do not pay for color ink you pay for the number of pages. You can print 100 full colors pages for $4.99 a month and everything is mailed to you before you run out of ink!
Two Months for the Prince of One Deal
HP Instaink is offering this deal: with you purchase this card, you get 2 months of HP Instant Ink service for the price of one.
No more running to the store for ink! With the plan, your printer orders ink when needed, so you get ink delivered to your door before you run out. Shipping and cartridge recycling are included.
Your first ink shipment will arrive shortly after you sign up with the prepaid enrollment card. No commitment. No annual fees. You can upgrade, downgrade, or cancel your plan at any time.
Note on Sticker Paper
Just reordered sticker paper and accidentally purchased ink jet instead of laser sticker paper. It printed perfectly. Tickled I have not have to get any more ink even though I printed out every art page from the Proverbs 31 lessons TWICE!
How Do You Save on Printer Ink?
Tell us in the comments. Do you refill? Use a laser? Use HP InstaInk? Is it working?