F.A.Q.

Inkjet Cartridge Refill Systems

HOW MANY TIMES CAN I REFILL A CARTRIDGE
 
How many times can I refill a cartridge?
With some exceptions as explained here, we hereby put our corporate neck on the chopping block and say the rule of thumb is three straight refills - and maybe then some. To be exact, it depends which cartridge you've got. 
 
Some will tolerate more than the triple-whammy. Others are a bit iffy about three refills. A minority are even iffy about 2 refills. If a cartridge is known to rarely offer 3 refills, we point out that fact in its Starter Kit. 
 
In our embryonic melt and pour tests in 1996, a HP LaserJet 5L/6L cartridge printed perfectly until half way through the seventh refill. In 2003, while developing the HP1010/1012/1015 refill, we refilled and ran it out 4 times. Then we all got fed up of watching it print. It was pressed into service printing out all our receipts and delivery notes for the next two years. Our record for refilling an Epson C1100 cartridge is fourteen times, because it lacks all the design features that tend to make refilling life shorter in other cartridges. 
 
On the other side of the equation, we're recommending just 1 refill of the Samsung CLP-500 colour cartridges and the same goes for the Konica Minolta Magicolor 5430. Research is ongoing to see if this performance can be improved, but we don't control the underlying design of any laser printer that's made. 
 
You've got to expect manufacturing variations within a certain model. Like light bulbs, some cartridges inexplicably give up the ghost early while others perform above and beyond the self-serving claims of even our literature. The Starter Kit for a given cartridge goes into detail about the number of refills that can be expected based on our empirical research (a.k.a. trial and error) in the lab.

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