Dispelling Myths Regarding Original, Compatible, Re-manufactured and Refilled Ink Cartridges

Posted on May 30 2013 - 11:13pm by Peter Millikin

What Is The Right Ink Cartridges For You?

businessman throwing away files and documentsOn one hand, the manufacturer of your printer claims you must use an original toner or ink cartridge or your printer will fall apart or explode. Then there are the discount ink sites that claim their ridiculously low prices will save you time and money as well as erase wrinkles. So who should you believe?

What are the true differences between original, compatible, re-manufactured and refilled cartridges?


These are the original cartridges, obviously. They are designed to give you marvellous print quality but not at the cheapest prices. Experts say that printer manufacturers are willing to offer low prices on their printers because they know they make the real money on their ink cartridges. It’s easy to buy a £30 printer that requires a set of £40 cartridges. You then drain your stationery budget buying ink all the time. Especially when you consider that there may be 40% of that expensive ink left in the cartridge when your printer’s special electronic chip signals that it’s time to buy a new cartridge.


A compatible cartridge is not made by the original manufacturer of your printer but works just as well. It’s like buying a generic cereal. In most cases, you can’t see or taste the difference between an “original” and a “compatible cartridge“. The compatible cartridges are by far way cheaper than an original ink cartridge.


The process of re-manufacturing an ink cartridge is a little more involved than just refilling it. When they re-manufacture an ink cartridge the supplier should:

  • Disassemble the ink cartridge.
  • Clean it thoroughly.
  • Fill it with new ink.

These cartridges are a cost effective way to have a great working cartridge without breaking the bank. Do be careful where you buy these, though, as some less scrupulous companies will not take the time or effort to clean the cartridges before refilling them. Buy these only from a company you trust.


Some cartridges are made to be refilled without being re-manufactured. You can buy little bottles of ink and refill the cartridge yourself. You are basically doing the work of the aforementioned company that takes apart the cartridges and fills them before returning them to you. After a few refills, however, these cartridges may stop working if they are not properly cleaned in between uses and can damage your printer.

Know your options and try out some different cartridges to find a cost effective solution that works for you, even though it won’t erase wrinkles, we promise your printer won’t explode!

What are your thoughts about “Dispelling Myths Regarding Original, Compatible, Re-manufactured and Refilled Ink Cartridges ” Which ones to you choose to buy?

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Read about the Author

Peter has received many accreditation's including many from the Times Online. As founder of You Could Save (2005) and What Stationers (2007) Peter regularly helps consumers and national organisation ‘save money’. He believes that the only successful way to bring people together online is to provide an open marketplace where people can all work together in a friendly, unbiased environment.

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