How to Conserve Ink and Toner

You already know how to manage greener business print jobs. But, how can you conserve ink and toner? You probably need that printer for odd jobs, but tools exist that can help you save money and conserve products that can damage the environment. It all begins with the type of printer you use and the ink it requires. But, if you’re stuck on that printer because of budget concerns, let’s go from there…


  • greenprintGreenprint: This software can help to eliminate unwanted pages, a process that helps you to save paper, ink, money and millions of trees. So far, this software has saved up to 562 trees!
  • Print What You LikePrint What You Like: Eliminate all the “junk” that comes with printing Web pages, like ads and empty space. PrintWhatYouLike is a free online editor that allows you to format any Web page for print-saving layouts in seconds.
  • EcofontEcofont: We’ve already introduced you to ecofont, a small font with small circles that requires less ink – up to 20 percent less! You can download this font for free, too.


  • Buy Compatible Cartridges: Compatible ink cartridges are much less expensive than brand-name inks. These ink cartridges can produce the same quality results as their more expensive counterparts, too.
  • Buy Re-manufactured: Re-manufactured ink cartridges are a great alternative to brand-name inks. Plus, they’re environmentally-friendly products, as the cartridges are re-used.
  • Buy Online: Even large retailers may offer better deals online than in their stores. The reason behind the lower online cost is the lower overhead. You also can find re-manufactured cartridges online.
  • Ignore Your Warnings: Even though computers will warn you when your ink is low, many times this warning is premature. Use those cartridges until the ink no longer shows up on the page. Be sure to have back-ups on hand, though, when those warnings first show up!
  • Shake It Up: Toner cartridges often clump up in humid environments, and ink sometimes dries up when not used for long periods. Sometimes all it takes is a good shake to get the most out of those cartridges.


  • Use Black Ink Only: Black ink and toner usually is less expensive than color. If you can, print in black and white or grayscales to save on color ink. Some printers do not allow this option.
  • Reduce Resolution: Some printers allow you to reduce the resolution. This option usually is found under advance settings. If you see something like “300 dpi” (dots per inch), then you’re using too much ink. Reduce that setting to 150 dpi, which provides enough quality even for many photographs.
  • Use the Ink Saver Option: Some printers provide draft ink or print saver options. If your printer offers these options, set them as default.
  • Use Print Preview: Before you print, make sure you check for typos. One way to do this is to make use of your print preview option. This way you can check for typos and make sure that everything you want to print is laid out correctly on your page. You can also deal with any print errors that may show up with this practice.
  • Print Two Sides: If your printer allows you to print two sides of one piece of paper, then go that route if possible. It won’t save ink, but it can save on paper.
  • Print Only What You Need: If you only need a paragraph, copy and paste that paragraph onto a notepad and print that out instead. This practice will help to avoid the mistake of printing out too many pages.


  • Keep the Flow: Inkjet printers, generally, require a steady stream of electricity to work. So, plug that machine into a wall socket instead of a power strip. Why? See below:
  • Use Manual Options: Don’t turn your inkjet off through the power strip, as when it starts back up again, it may print a test page. Instead, turn it off manually, and turn it on again only when you need to use it. Plus, turning off the machine manually parks the ink so it won’t dry out.
  • Use Recycled Labels: Once again, this tip won’t save on ink, but when you use these 100-percent Post Consumer Waste (PCW) labels, they may remind you to use good practices to save on ink and toner!

2 thoughts on “How to Conserve Ink and Toner

  1. Bobb E

    These are some pretty good tips on saving ink, a lot better than you read on most blogs related to ink and toner.

  2. Greg

    These are practical tips that every printer user must know. It is
    always good to check out options to make every printing experience worthwhile.

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