03 Nov 2014

6 Ways to Help Your Office Save Money while Printing

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Tech Tip:

6 Ways to Help Your Office Save Money while Printing

Whether your laser printer is a workhorse that generates reams of documents or a rarely-used office necessity, you can save money by treating your printer right. We’re giving you 6 tips to help you get more from your printer—select the ones that will work best for your office.

  1. Change your approach to paper use:

Once high-end features are now available even on entry-level machines. Check to see if your printer is capable of double-sided printing, and do so for drafts.

If you’re working on a very long document and need to print one or more drafts, consider using narrower margins for your document so you use less paper. Both double-sided printing and margin control settings can be accessed by clicking on the ‘Properties’ button in the Print dialog box.

Adjust your Print Quality Settings

  1. Change your print settings to use less ink:

If you’re using the standard quality printer settings on every document you print, chances are you’re using a lot more ink than you need to. Click on the Properties button in the Print dialog box to get to your printer’s advanced settings. The options in your print dialog box might look different from the ones below—they vary based on your printer—but should be similar.

Take a look at the options listed under “Quality.” You should see a menu option called something like “draft,” “fast,” or “EconoMode.” Switch to these settings when printing drafts to use less ink. You can always switch back to “normal” or “high-quality” when you’re ready to print your final document.

Print dialog box - Properties button

  1. Find a good source for low-cost toner cartridges:

Saving money on toner cartridges means balancing the need for quality and reliability against cost and factoring in the time it takes you to identify the best price. Take the middle road by looking for the best deal you can find from a few well-known vendors with good return policies.

When you feel comfortable purchasing third-party toner, try it out once to see how it performs. If, for some reason, the third-party toner cartridge you bought is defective, you can return it as long as you chose a reputable vendor.


  1. Keep your printer clean between routine maintenance services:

Cleaning your printer can help extend its life. Over time, the toner and paper fibers build up on the rollers inside your printer – causing uneven adherence of the toner or spots. You can do some basic maintenance by purchasing cleaning sheets, which are designed to clean laser printers. They feed into the printer like paper, making them easy to use.


  1. Give your toner cartridge a good shake:

If you think you’ve run out of toner, don’t change that cartridge just yet. Instead, take it out and give it a good shake. This redistributes the toner inside the cartridge and you may get a few more days use out of it.


  1. Use MICR toner only when printing checks:

MICR toner is more expensive than regular toner because it contains magnetic particles so that bank equipment can read account numbers in an automated manner. Remember to replace MICR toner cartridges with regular toner when you are not printing checks. Alternatively, designate one printer in your office just for printing checks and print all other documents out on other printers that use regular toner.