by Michael D. Fortner


Once upon a time I was happily printing along when I noticed that what was being printed came out poorly, like the ink was running out. But rather than change the cartridge, I used some cleaner on it and reinstalled it. I then went through the cleaning process for my printer which puts out a lot of ink onto a page and the process cleans out the ink jets. The ink sometimes will dry and clog up the jets that shoot out the ink onto the page. After I cleaned it, it printed fine. You can go to your printer preferences to find out if your printer allows you to clean the jets through the printing process.

I wonder how many people think they have run out of ink when they only need to clean out the ink jets of their printer cartridge? I used special inkjet cleaner that came with a do-it-yourself refill kit, but you can use a damp paper towel to clean off the surface, then dry it off before reinstalling. If possible I recommend buying some ink jet cleaner from an office supply store if they even sell it separately.

Also, sometimes the ink jets will clean themselves out if you just print several pages, eventually it should start printing good again unless it is very clogged.

Another way to save printer ink is choosing the right program to do the printing. If you are going to print a lot of information from web pages I recommend that you not print the actual page, because the print will come out looking like it is bold; that is, it will be dark and heavy which means it is using lots of ink. I copy and paste the text from the web page into my text editor and save it as a text file, then print. The text comes out normal and probably uses half as much ink. Not all word processing programs are equal, test 2 or 3 to see which ones have default settings that print without the text looking almost bold.

Finally, I switched from inkjet to laser. Lasers use much less ink, at less cost, and the printers have come way down in price so you can get a good one for less than some inkjets. My present laser is by Samsung, and it works good and fast.

Happy Printing
Michael Fortner
Christian Media Search