NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article
To Buy New or Refill, That is the Question
by Charles Blanchard, March 2001
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Whether tis nobler (better) to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous prices when buying new ink-jet printer cartridges or to take arms against a sea of ink and buy refilled cartridges for your printer, there are two aspects of the question. The first consideration is the cost and the other is the quality of the refilled cartridges. At Wal-Mart and other stores that carry new printer cartridges, the price for a new black ink cartridge ranges from $18 to $30. The price for new color ink cartridges ranges from $30 to $38. This doesn't include taxes.

When one uses the printer often enough to be concerned about the cost of new cartridges, then he should consider buying refilled cartridges. My own experience with refilled cartridges has been a good one and I recommend them for ink-jet printers. I have been using refills from Laser Perfect for about two years now, and I consider it a wise decision.

Also, there is a third consideration, as well. It is the choice of refilling the cartridge by oneself. I understand that it is more of an art than a science, so I'm not up to doing it, yet.

There are competitors of Laser Perfect, and here is a list of them. I have never used them, but if the reader has, our computer club would be glad to hear from you.

First, there is www.netwares.com, which sells only refurbished cartridges. The prices range from $18 to $20 for a cartridge. I shall try them, because Laser Perfect doesn't recharge half of the cartridges I use. Which means I buy new ones from them for $26 and $29 each.

Next, we have Fillmore (www.fillmoreinkjetkits.com), which gives some facts and dispels a few myths about refilling cartridges on its website and claims to be a granddaddy of sorts concerning the ink-jet industry. They even wrote a book about it (now out of print). They sell only refill kits. When you buy the ink kit, the price comes down to $4 to $6.38 a refill.

Then there is www.cytoink.com, which sells refill kits ranging from $25.50 to $65.50 per kit. The number of refills per kit soars from 3 to 180, and not according to price. The kit that gives you only 3 refills is for the Canon BJI-101 and costs $25.50. The kit that gives you 180 refills is for the Epson #7750 and costs $50. Both are black ink refills.

The above are typical examples. Also, there are many others. Inkjetman, InkjetRefills, Mother Earth Recycling, Mr. Ink Jet, Zebra and eHow are just some of them. They are easily found on the Internet by using the two words "printer cartridges". Some of these companies sell toner cartridges, both new and used, as well. When it is time to say "Goodbye" to a used cartridge, you can say, "Ah, poor Cartridge. I knew him well."

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