and the differences between them….
This is a subject I frequently get asked about, either in the way of ‘will compatible cartridges damage my printer?’ or ‘are compatible cartridges cheaper than genuine/original ones?’
There are several answers to these questions to the subject in hand. But let’s start with the first one.
Will compatible cartridges damage my printer?
You may have heard this situation; someone put a compatible (sometimes known as a remanufactured cartridge) into their printer and it has caused all kinds of problems. The main one being image problems like poor print quality or even broken parts like fusers, drums or transfers units.
As an engineer, I have also been to service calls to repair a broken printer and find out they are using compatible cartridges which are causing the problems.
Although there is nothing wrong with using these toner cartridges, sometimes people buy the cheapest ones they can find. Unfortunately, it’s always the same scenario, ‘you get what you paid for’.
With a good quality compatible cartridge there won’t be any effects to your machine. Sometimes suppliers will give a money back guarantee or even a guarantee on your printer if anything does go wrong.
Are compatible cartridges cheaper than genuine/original toners?
The short answer is yes. This is one of the main reasons why these cartridges are such an attractive option. Although remember that poor quality produced cartridges can give your printer problems.
When trailing these compatible toner cartridges, try and stick to one brand, if they work well then carry on using them. The explanation for this is that, when you use original toners the toner source or the toner mix doesn’t change, only when the printer changes.
The main reason why compatible toners are cheaper is that they make their own toner. By changing a toner supplier you will, therefore, get a different toner and sometimes the toner will not mix in the machine. This especially goes for colour laser printers, the toner is much finer, and this could give a multitude of problems.
Always check your printer warranties from the manufacturer as it can be void if your printer breaks when you have been using compatible cartridges.
To summarise, here are a few things to consider when making the decision whether to buy genuine or compatible toners:
- Try to avoid the cheapest cartridge you can find.
- Stick with one supplier as changing suppliers could give your printer problems.
- When buying compatible toners always look at these T’s & C’s, as a good supplier will have a returns policy or even guarantee your printer.
- Check to see if the manufacturer of your printer voids the warranty, as you may want to take this into consideration when buying your next toner cartridge.