Everyone who owns a printer can all agree on one thing: a new ink cartridge is costly. Printing expenses can reach premium levels that many of us are looking for cost-effective alternatives. For one, you might be tempted to use cheap, generic ink over branded cartridges, but that actually often leads to wasting more money than you should. Here’s why.
More often than not, a generic ink refill produces lower quality prints—images appear darker than they should, colors fade rapidly on photo paper, etc. Users who are meticulous on quality will end up reprinting the same document or photo, and that means wasting more ink and paper.
We all know print heads can get clogged, and that happens even more when using generic ink. Because of that, we’re now wasting time on cleaning these print heads, which can be a hassle if it requires taking the printer apart. There are even times when the printer gets damaged itself for using generic cartridges, and the manufacturer won’t repair it because you’ve voided the warranty. That means buying a new printer, which further means spending more money.
In terms of reliability, off-brand cartridges have higher defective rates than their branded counterparts. Many third-party cartridge makers don’t have replacement warranties for defective products. If you end up with a dud, you won’t get your money back. Even if they do work, they often aren’t fully compatible with your printer. For instance, the ink levels don’t display properly, you receive erroneous error messages while printing, and many more.
At first, it may look like generic ink can help you cut costs on printing. Unfortunately, this supposedly cheaper alternative introduces more problems than benefits. Unless you find a generic variety that is quite reliable and whose output quality is relatively good, you’re better off using branded cartridges.