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Original Ink Cartridge

Original Ink Cartridge, Black and Tri-Colour

HP N9J72AE 301 Original Ink Cartridge, Black and Tri-Colour, Pack of 2. – by HP

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10 Reasons Cheap Compatible Inks Aren’t That Cheap


1. The cartridge won’t fit

Compatible inks will say they fit in your printer, but when you come to put them in, you’ll notice it just won’t fit. Why? There are many reasons, but the most common is that the retailer sold you the wrong cartridge. Since most compatible inks come from abroad, you can have a tough time arranging a refund or exchange. Return shipping alone can be more expensive than the price of the cartridge.

2. And if it does fit, the chip won’t work

If you’re lucky enough for your compatible ink cartridge to fit, you’ll notice that it has an electric chip attached. This chip should tell your printer how much ink is left. However, many chips are damaged when the cartridge is being refilled or packaged, leaving you with an expensive paperweight. Even worse, some compatible ink cartridges come with no chip at all!

3. Your cartridge will be overfilled or under-filled

Genuine manufacturers put a lot of effort into making sure their cartridges are filled with exactly the right amount of ink. Compatible ink manufacturers don’t have the same high standards, and quite often put too much or too little ink in. So why is too much ink a problem? Well, what happens when you blow too much air into a balloon? It pops! And that’s exactly why overfilling an ink cartridge is a bad idea.

4. They’ll shorten your printers life-span

Genuine manufacturers inks are especially designed to work with your printer, and ensure your printer works as designed. The formulas used by genuine manufacturers not only ensure great print quality, but help keep your printer running smoothly. Compatible inks are just made to put out cheap ink, which can easily ruin your machine, and this can work in two noticeable ways…

5. The ink will clog the print-head

Compatible ink manufacturers can’t copy the formula genuine manufacturers use, so they take their best guess. And “best guess”-ink will not work well with your printer: leading to clogged print heads. So, while you’re scratching your head wondering why your page is only half printed, your printer is suffering from dubious ink.

6. And if it doesn’t clog, it will leak

If you’re lucky enough not to have a clogged print head, then you’re probably unlucky enough to have leaky ink. Compatible cartridges have inferior build quality to genuine manufacturer ones, and ink often finds its way through poorly-sealed gaps. What this can mean for you, is that instead of your page being covered in ink, the insides of your printer is. And cleaning that ink up is very messy, and very expensive.

7. Either way, the print quality won’t be good

Most inkjets require a little drying time after they’ve printed: but when you use compatible inks, be prepared for the worst. Your paper will be soggy with ink that is all to happy to smudge at the slightest touch. And as the ink is still wet, it’s likely to blur with surrounding colours. And if you leave it in the light, it will fade.

The quality of printing you get from compatible is so low, many genuine manufacturers commissioned Buyers Laboratory Inc. to research compatible ink quality. Search for “buyers lab compatible ink” and you’ll see multiple reports showing how poor compatible inks are compared to genuine manufacturers’.

8. Low cost ink is incredibly high maintenance

Just take a look at the troubleshooting tips from this website.

When you buy compatible inks, instead of getting a genuine manufacturer guarantee, be prepared to jump through hoops putting your compatible inks in the fridge for hours, re-installing drivers, and, our personal favourite, this complicated process:

Ensure that the tape covering the print-head is removed.

Wrap the cartridge in a paper towel and shake gently up and down (not sideways) 6 times.

Stand the cartridge upright for a few minutes before using. Then get a damp paper towel, fold it into quarters and sit the cartridge print head down onto it. Hold the cartridge against the damp paper towel for three minutes. This will help pull the ink out of the print heads, priming them and getting them ready to print. Clean the print head with rubbing alcohol. Finally, install the cartridge into your printer and print a few test pages.

Please make sure that the printer is set online (at the computer screen), and increase the darkness setting at the printer.

Clean the print-head with a warm damp paper towel. Reinstall into the printer, and run a cleaning cycle using the printer’s software tool.

Wrap the cartridge in a paper towel and shake gently up and down (not sideways) 6 times.

Place the cartridge in about 1/4 – 1/2 inch of warm water for a few minutes. When ink starts to slowly leak out take the cartridge out of the water and dry it using a soft cloth or a “Q-tip.” Then place it back in your printer and run the print head cleaning utility that comes with your printer software. You may have to run this 2-4 times before printing quality is reestablished.

Avoid touching the electronic printhead and chip contacts with your fingertips. Slide the printhead across a moist paper towel until you see clear horizontal bars of color. Clean the print head with rubbing alcohol. Reinstall and run head cleaning cycle.

Please select the “print head clean” option under “maintenance” on the printer, and run it. If there is any air bubble or dry ink on the print head, this will force it out, and allow it to print normally.

If your printout still has white lines or streaks, please run the alignment test again on your printer.
If you bought genuine manufacturer inks, then instead of cartridge-surgery, you’d simply exchange your ink hassle-free.

9. Printer updates can stop compatibles working

Every so often, an update will be released for your printer, which helps it to run better. Your printer will always recognise genuine manufacturer inks after an update, but if you use compatible inks, you’re in a bind. If you update, your printer will stop recognising compatible inks. If you don’t update, then your printer won’t run as smoothly as it could do, and while your compatible inks may work, they’re not guaranteed to.

Original Ink Cartridges Black and Tri-Colour
Original Ink Cartridges Black and Tri-Colour

10. Your warranty may be voided

Because genuine manufacturers know how bad compatible inks can be, their warranties usually won’t cover damage caused by compatible inks. Using compatible inks can cost you more than you bargained for if your printer stops working.

So if compatible inks aren’t that cheap, how can you lower your print costs?

Just because genuine manufacturers ink costs more than compatibles, doesn’t mean it’s expensive. Take a look at how cheap genuine manufacturer ink can be at amazon uk

By Louis Joe Smith