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Solved Does printer ink dry up?

February 7, 2007 at 05:07:17
Specs: XP, 3700 X2

Hello, I hardly ever use my printer (maybe twice a year) however this is the fourth ink cartridge I have gone through. It isn't like I am printing out heavy images, mostly black and white documents. However whenever I need to print something, I am out of ink. I have owned a total of three different printers and all of them had this problem. So does the ink somehow evaporate when not in use? Or perhaps it dries up in the cartridge. However it feels completely empty and if it did dry up I would think it would feel heavier. Anyone know? Thanks.

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#1
February 7, 2007 at 05:29:20

Well sorry I found out the answer and yes the ink dries up. I wonder if I take the ink cartridges out when not in use and place them in a ziplock bag would that prolong their life to prevent drying? Thanks.

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#2
February 7, 2007 at 05:30:41
✔ Best Answer

I think there are two things that can happen. First one is as you suspect, ink can dry up. If you look at the new cartridges there is an expiration date on them.
Also the ink can dry in the small passages inside the printhead. This can sometimes be corrected by using solvents on the printhead.
Overall, inkjets are problematic if only used occasionally. I gave up on them myself 2 years ago. I have a color laser printer for my primary printing. Still maintain a taboloid size inkjet, which gives me the same problems you have almost every time I use it. Do yourself a favor and switch to a laser. Probably be cheaper in the long haul too.

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#3
February 7, 2007 at 06:11:39

i reckon that if you keep taking cartridge in and out then the seal at the bottom where the ink comes out might leak.
I have a problem with mine due to lack of use and heads being blocked, presumably by ink drying.
I believe that it needs to be used often to keep it running best

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Related Solutions

#4
February 7, 2007 at 06:26:31

Probably best to use an inkjet at least once a week.

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#5
February 7, 2007 at 06:44:35

Thanks OtheHill. May I ask what the cost of your color laser printer? I was thinking about getting one myself. I may just stick with Kinkos though since they have quality printers and I barely print anything, however there may come a time when I need to use my own printer regularly

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#6
February 7, 2007 at 06:48:21

Does the laser print have to be color-based? You could get b&w laser printer cheaper than color. I have Brother MFC 4800 laser printer that I seldomly use for printing but when I do it always produce a grisp printout. The cost of the toner is also far cheaper than color toners.

i_XpUser


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#7
February 7, 2007 at 08:17:29

Yeah I was looking for color however I checked out the B&W Brother MFC 4800 you mentioned and it looks good. How long do toners last on average and how much do they cost to replace? Thanks.

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#8
February 7, 2007 at 12:34:57

The cost per page on color laser printers varies quite a bit. The newest batch of units aimed at home use are initally cheap but the toner more expensive per page than getting a unit designed for a small office. The Printer I have takes cartridges that are rated at 4500 page capacity. Most companies rate at 5% coverage. If you print labels or photos you might want to stay with an inkjet for the color stuff and just use a laser for B&W. Toner doesn't have the shelf life issue like inkjet ink.
Lasers work using heat so you can't print peel and stick labels. My printer actually does photos pretty good on plain paper.
If you are shopping for a laser printer be sure the unit accepts individual cartridges and look at the copy rating for the standard cartridges. One other thing to mention is that the cost of the four cartridges plus drum can equal the cost of the printer. Before you buy verify what comes with the new printer. I bought the Konica Minolta MC2300DL at Sam's Club about two years ago and it came with four HIGH capacity cartridges included. Evidently this is something that was EXCLUSIVE to Sam's Club as most vendors sold the same printer with STANDARD capacity cartridges. High is 4500 pages, standard is 1500 pages. These cartridges cost almost $90 each. Paid $500 for the printer. My model is no longer made. Replaced by a less expensive unit with smaller toner cartridges. My unit is also network capable. I have it connected by USB to my file/ print server though. Hope all this info helps.

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#9
February 7, 2007 at 14:04:26

I am able to print labels using the laser printer as long as the paper white & matte. At Staples Brother TN-250 Toner Cartridge cost about $29 and yields up to 2500 pages. The toner never dries out and have no life expiration.

The cost and yield of

http://www.staples.com/webapp/wcs/s...

i_XpUser


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#10
February 7, 2007 at 15:56:47

I gave up on my Canon BJC4000 coilor inkjet printer. With new cartridges it would go through all the motions printing but no ink got on the paper.

So I got a HP model 1020 B&W Laser printer. Has been working for 6 months now with no problems. One thing you need a printer for is online transactions. I do online banking and need a printer to print out my transactions. Also ordering online I print a copy of the invoice. So my printer is in regular use with these activities.

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#11
February 7, 2007 at 18:48:17

This will not work for all dried out cartridges but does sometime for me, soak a paper towel with rubbing alcohol and then rub the print head on the towel until you begin to see some ink smudges, put it back in and run a test page, that should do the trick....HTH

Keep the old stuff running


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#12
February 8, 2007 at 07:50:01

Do color laser printers produce photo quality?



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#13
February 8, 2007 at 08:11:11

I don't think you can use glossy photo paper with Laser printers so that would affect the quality. I am no photo buff but I have printed digital pictures taken with a cheap camera at low resolution and they look pretty good. You need to be your own judge. You may be able to get a demo at one of the office supply stores.

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