9. Refill your own inkjet printer cartridges
Can you really save money by refilling your own inkjet printer cartridges? To find out, I compared the prices for a rather common, older but discontinued Cannon “BJC" home and office printer. www.inksell.com sells the original Cannon cartridge (model BC-05) for $38.95. This cartridge is rated at 300 pages at an actual 15% coverage. Not much of what is printed by a color inkjet is not in color, especially if printing from a web browser, so actual endurance is much less than 300 pages. That’s not cheap!
Next I looked at Automation Consulting and Supply, Inc. refill inks and kits at www.oddparts.com. According to their FAQ, The first time you'll make a mess, the second time you'll spill a few drops, and the third time you'll be a pro. Perusing their website, I found that the BC-O5 cartridge uses cyan, magenta, and yellow inks.
I asked Brian Boley, president of ACSI Bulk Inks and found that the complete kit – a pint each of the colors, syringes for injecting the ink, and shipping runs $96.80. This will produce about 67 refills of this cartridge! However, the print head on the cartridge is only good for five to eight refills, so even with refilling, some new cartridges will need to be purchased.
What if you were buying a new inkjet or all-in-one printer and wanted to make sure it was economical to refill? Mr. Boley has some specific recommendations.