printer Ink Cartridges

murphy_zone7January 27, 2007

I discovered in Walmart the other day that you can mail your used ink cartridges to a recycling center in Franklin, Tennesee. There was a roll of postage paid "envelopes" plastic bag kind of thing near the ink cartridge display. Does anyone have any information on this, would hate to think they are just throwing them in the dump somewhere?


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I remember seeing those bags somewhere, I didn't remember Walmart.

In our area, if you take an empty cartridge to Office Depot (I'm not sure if Office Max or Staples do it) they will give you a ream of recycled printer paper. You can only take one at a time, but I keep a couple in my car for when I'm nearby.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2007 at 9:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have used those business reply mailers for used ink cartridges for at least 5 five years. I found them at the Post Office.

If memory serves, I think the business they go to has been in the recycling business for many years. When I worked for Sears Roebuck and Co.(from 1969-1988), we sent all of our used cash register ink ribbons and cartridges to that same company.

Then Sears bought the recycled products back. The cost was much lower than the ones IBM were selling new and the recycled products worked better too...

    Bookmark   January 27, 2007 at 9:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
diggerdee zone 6 CT

We have a local company that specializes in refilling cartridges - that's all they do. I just recently found out about them, so I haven't tried them yet, but I will probably give them a shot when my current cartridges run out. On one hand it eliminates the need for plastic bags (with the mail-in systems), but then again I suppose I'm using gas to drive there. Seems there's always some kind of trade-off to consider.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2007 at 8:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
squeeze(z8 BC)

those cartridges you send away are prolly being refilled - there's a company that started here in our "green" valley that has franchise operations all over N America now doing cartridge refilling

the only "recycling" that can be done with them otherwise is reusing the plastic somehow - find a way to refill and reuse


Here is a link that might be useful: Island InkJet

    Bookmark   January 28, 2007 at 12:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
steve_o(4a MN)

They're refilled and sold under various brands. I suspect the only ones that hit the dump are the ones that are unusable as shipped or maybe a few that already have been refilled a few times and, therefore, are no longer usable (for instance, HP bundles its print heads in the cartridge, so there will be a point at which refilling an HP cartridge will yield poor results because the print head -- never designed for multiple uses -- has deteriorated sufficiently).

Of course, as a "greenie", you need to buy those refilled cartridges to close the marketing loop! :-)

    Bookmark   January 28, 2007 at 12:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
diggerdee zone 6 CT

I forgot to add that I'm pretty sure, if I remember the ad correctly, that this particular company near me refills them while you wait, so you get the cartridges right back. I don't know the cost yet, but they advertise big savings over new cartridges.


    Bookmark   January 28, 2007 at 6:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Our local Staples gives out return bags every time you buy an ink cartridge. When you return the spent one in the bag you get a $3.00 store coupon (presumably to go towards your next ink cartridge purchase, but you can use it towards anything in the store).

    Bookmark   January 28, 2007 at 7:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for the responses. It is good to know that someone is refilling those cartridges. I have a cannon printer and Office Depot will not give you paper for them. I think Cannon is the only ones they don't accept. Don't live near a Staples but a coupon is a great idea.
Will keep my eyes peeled for a local "refilling company" and see what I can do.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2007 at 4:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You can take them to Walgreens as well. I think all Walgreens stores take used ones for recycling, and some stores actually refill them in the store for you.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2007 at 2:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I know this is kind of an old thread, but I had to chime in. My husband and I run a computer business and take cartridges for refill for our customers since we live in a rural area. They are far cheaper than buying new and even HPs can be refilled five or six times easily before having to be tossed. I would watch out for certain ink refillers that poke holes in the cartridge to add more ink though, since they don't get the old ink out so your print head is more likely to clog. The company we use opens and cleans them before refilling them and resealing them like the factory does. He even puts in more ink than if you bought it new. They do laser cartridges too. Some brands like Epson and Cannon will not refill however and Lexmark/Dell (same cartidge different label) don't always refill the first time, but are pretty good thereafter. But my ink guy sells the *new* cartridges for these for less than Wal-Mart or Office Max.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2007 at 3:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Our local Staples also accepts the used ink cartridges for recycling and gives you a $3 credit for each one. I wasn't aware of this when I went to replace mine, but since I had my ink cartridge with me to compare and make sure I purchased the correct one, I was able to save money on my new one. Of course an even better idea is to refill the one's you have.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2007 at 2:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Credit to everyone who is trying to recycle their ink cartridges, but I still have concerns about these printers and their consumables. Ink jet printers are just plain hard on the budget and the environment, and the cartridges can't be refilled indefinitely, many only once and very few more than two or three times.

Many applications don't really need an ink jet, I see lots of these printers being used in places where a laser or dot matrix would be much better suited to the job. Often people buy them because the initial printer cost is very low, frequently because it's heavily subsided by the expensive cartridges, sometimes the printer is sold for less than a full set of cartridges.

However, when you consider the price of ink and special paper, it's multiple times cheaper to take your digital photographs or images to a shop and have them use their state of the art printer worth thousands to print them for you. No need to clutter up your house with another printer, no need to change cartridges or anything. Best of all it's not more work, you can either go out to the store to buy cartridges or you can go to the store to have your pictures printed. The only major difference is price and quality, both of which are better. Some places do it mail order or over the internet now, so you could have your prints sent to you.

Of course some people do need a colour printer at home or in their office, there are genuine needs, but then it's fair to point out that the price of colour laser printers has dropped a lot now, and they're much better suited to high volume applications, but also don't dry up if not used for a while. They also work out much cheaper in the long term. Anyone who can justify their need for a high quality colour printer, for example a high volume of prints being made, can probably justify the initial expense of a colour laser as it will save them so much money in the long term.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2007 at 5:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
steve_o(4a MN)

bry, I think there are two reasons people shy away from laser printers. First is that, even though the per-page printing cost generally is cheaper than it is for inkjets, laser toner cartridges cost a lot of money up front. I think that scares people a little. In addition, a laser printer will last for years in typical home use before the cartridge needs to be replaced -- and, given how quickly printer manufacturers change cartridge designs, there is a risk that the toner cartridge you need is now obsolete and hard to replace.

Second is that color laser printers still do not reproduce color for photographs and art as well as inkjet printers (especially "photo" printers or those using archival inks). It would be a shame to spend that kind of money on a printer and then not get the color out of it that you wanted to.

For most businesses, though? Laser is the way to go.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2007 at 10:24PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I discovered something the other day that disturbed me. I bought my refilled cartridges, and when I got them home, I saw that a couple have a see-through plastic case. I could clearly see that they are only about half full. I took one still sealed in its plastic to a different company, and they said it should definitely have more ink than that. So my great price on ink isn't so great after all. I don't know the solution, although I do know where I WON'T be buying ink. I thought I'd share what I learned, for what it's worth.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2008 at 8:38AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I just changed my ink cartridges and have not printed anything and they are showing 1/2 empty. I purchased them at staples as new not refilled. Is anyone else having this problem?

    Bookmark   April 9, 2011 at 9:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Epson got sued in a class action suit for making owners of its machines replace cartridges that still had ink in them, and I did get $45 worth of Epson supplies out of them. But they are still doing it. One trick they use is the clean the print heads everytime you use the machine, including the color heads even if you are only using black ink. My daugher has had to replace her color cartridges several times even though she only printed using black ink. To top it off they have the software and hardware set up so you can't print in black if one of the color cartridges is empty.
Plus they put a chip in the cartridge that stops you from refilling a cartridge, although hackers are selling devices to reset the chip so you can refill it.
Brother is guilty too. My laser printer stopped printing and said I was out of toner. I read about a hack where you can defeat the false empty reading by covering up a photoelectric eye with a piece of tape. It worked, and I am still using the supposedly empty toner cartridge almost a year later.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2011 at 11:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ya I have the same problem..
Then I changed the ink cartridge...
Would you like to purchase a new printer ink cartridge then i have a address to buy in affordable rate.

Here is a link that might be useful: Entry level printer cartridge

    Bookmark   January 11, 2013 at 10:51PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I found a website that has a really great ink cartridge fundraising program. Its at Worth a look.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dazz Cycle

    Bookmark   October 17, 2013 at 3:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Great question. Most office supply stores can accept your old ink or toner cartridges and refill them. You can also bring them to a local Cartridge World to have them refilled.

Here is a link that might be useful: Cartridge World Orlando

    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 9:59AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Water bottle solution?
I'm taking steps at going green and learning so much...
Trashcan rain barrel?
we have a trashcan that we dont really use much so...
We Need Ideas!!!!
Hello , everyone we need people to submit ideas for...
rain barrel
I recently got a rain barrel and I was wondering if...
Changing to organic
I have a small garden I started in my balcony, I have...
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™