A Business Buying Guide for Toner Cartridges for Laser Printers
Laser printers are the perfect option for any business. They provide speedy and quick-drying results for the office environment. When you need to restock your toner cartridges then you have three different options when buying toner cartridges for your laser printer:
- The first is to buy a laser toner cartridge from the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM.) This is a toner cartridge that is made by the same manufacturer of your printer.
- The second option is a compatible toner cartridge – This is a new cartridge (made by a 3rd party) that is created to fit and be compatible with your printer model.
- The third option is to choose a Remanufactured toner cartridge – This is a recycled OEM toner cartridge that has been refilled and resold.
Cost of Toner Cartridges
The primary difference between the three types of cartridge is the upfront cost. When buying the cartridges you will find that the OEM are always more expensive than the compatible or remanufactured toner cartridges.
Here is a mock-up example. I went on the Cartridge Link website to compare prices for my Canon LaserClass 5000 printer toner cartridges. “I have run out of black toner.” The OEM toner cartridge would cost me a total of £92.21, whereas a compatible (and recycled) is £31.35.
Quality of Toner Cartridges
The compatible toner cartridge may seem the obvious choice with this huge price difference as shown above. However, you may be wondering, “do you get what you pay for?” in terms of print quality. There are some studies that will try their best to convince you that original toner cartridges somehow have a superior quality of print. Yet these studies are normally funded by the manufacturers themselves. For instance, this study by HP for example cites that, “original HP toner printed an average of 97% of sample pages which categorised as acceptable for all uses, compared to an average of 61% for the non-HP toner.”
You may want to consider the fact that for business use, many employees will be printing documents just for their own reference. This means that even if the studies are correct, by using OEM cartridges, you may be paying for a quality print quality every time. However do you really need it? This is something every individual business owner should consider as it will be different for each individual business.
From a personal perspective, I use both compatible and original laser cartridges on a regular basis and fail to notice a difference in quality. (Not very statistical but just my 2 cents.)
Reliability of Toner Cartridges
Though quality may not be the only issue that you are worried about when purchasing a cheap toner cartridge. Reliability is also an important factor for business owners. Buying unreliable toner cartridges could potentially harm your office production levels if there was a mishap.
Some common worries include:
- The toner cartridge may not fit your printer properly.
- The print quality with the toner cartridge is poor.
- The toner cartridge may cause damage to your printer and void your manufacture warranty.
Let us break these statements down.
The toner cartridge may not fit your printer properly.
Compatible cartridges are designed to fit perfectly with your printer. At Cartridge Link we only stock very high quality compatibles and have an easy-to-browse website which only displays the toner cartridges that will fit your printer.
The print quality with the toner cartridge is poor.
As stated above, there is not much evidence to suggest a huge difference in print quality (except for propaganda from the big manufacturers.) For many offices quality is not the most important factor as many documents are just for internal use.
The toner cartridges may cause damage to your printer and void your manufacture warranty.
In the fight against compatibles, many printer manufacturers tried to prevent other toner cartridges producers invading the market by using scare tactics to put customers off this alternative product. Rumours flew round that by using a compatible toner cartridge that this would be damaging to your warranty. This in fact is complete rubbish.
“The Magnuson Moss Warranty Improvement Act is an actual law that protects consumer rights. It states:
No warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer’s using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade or corporate name.”
So there you have it! If you have any other questions about buying toner cartridges for your business then get in touch with Cartridge Link on twitter or on our website.