Refilling Ink Cartridges

You can save a small fortune by refilling your own ink cartridges. It's an easy skill to learn, and the cost of the ink is practically zero.

Printer manufacturers make their money by selling ink. They practically give the printers away for free, with the assurance that they'll make money by selling the ink cartridges.

For example, I purchased the printer below. The price on the link below should be constantly updated. I believe I paid about $20 for mine:

And here's a link to the same printer where I bought mine, at WalMart: Canon MG2120 Printer at WalMart icon. As of this writing, the WalMart price is about $30. You can order it online, and pick it up at a store the same day. The printer comes with a set of ink cartridges. Here are links to those cartridges sold separately:

You'll need one of each. As you can see, the total cost of the ink cartridges is actually more than the printer, which came with two ink cartridges! To buy two ink cartridges, it's actually cheaper to buy a new printer, remove the cartridges, and then throw the printer away!

There are a number of ways that you can save money. First of all, you can buy re-manufactured ink cartridges from other companies. These companies recycle used cartridges by adding ink. There are also shops where you can take the cartridge and swap it for a refilled one. You save some money doing it this way, but there is still some expense.

But the process of filling the ink at home is quite simple, and reduces the cost to close to zero. You buy a supply of ink such as the following one, which includes both the color and black ink:

Actually, I managed to buy a single bottle of the black ink (which is the only color I normally use) for even less than this. I haven't seen the single bottles for sale online, though, and the full kit is still a huge savings.

The full instructions for adding ink are available on the manufacturer's website. It's a very easy process. The first time, it's best to use a small drill. However, I did not have one available, and I used a small screw to make the necessary hole. After making this small hole, you insert the needle on the bottle into the hole and add the ink. Then, depending on the cartridge, you cover up the hole with a label or a small piece of tape.

The first time you do this, you might spill a small amount of ink. So you need to work over a thick pile of newspaper, and keep paper towels handy to clean up any spills. But once you have the hang of it, you are unlikely to spill any ink.

That's it! Depending on how much you print, the $20 kit will probably last you a few years!

Here are advertising links to some other cheap printers that are currently available:

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