How to Check the Ink Level on an HP Inkjet Printer

by Jeff Grundy
George Doyle & Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Ink cartridges in HP inkjet printers usually contain enough ink to print a few hundred grayscale or color documents before you need to change them. Nevertheless, it is a good idea to have a couple of spare cartridges on hand just in case one runs out of ink during the middle of a print job. If you use your HP printer only occasionally, it might not be necessary to keep a stockpile of cartridges, but you should still monitor ink levels in the printer so you know when to buy a replacement. Checking the ink level in an HP printer is relatively simple and there are a couple ways of doing it depending on the model you own.

Printing a Test Page

Step 1

Click the Windows Start button, then "Devices and Printers."

Step 2

Select the device name of your HP printer in the Printers and Faxes section and right-click it to display a pop-up menu. Click "Printer Properties" on the pop-up menu.

Click the "Print Test Page" button in the Printer Properties window. After a few seconds, an HP test page prints from the printer that displays driver properties for the unit as well as a test pattern and current ink levels.

Using the HP Tool Box

Step 1

Click the "HP Tool Box" icon on the Windows desktop or in the Quick Launch taskbar.

Step 2

Click the "Status" button or link in the HP Printer Toolbox window, then wait a few seconds for the diagram in the window to refresh and display the current ink levels for each cartridge.

Close the HP Toolbox window.


  • If you have the HP Printer Toolbox or another HP print utility installed on your computer, use it to check ink levels instead of printing a test page, as this method does not require you use up valuable ink.

Photo Credits

  • George Doyle & Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images

About the Author

Jeff Grundy has been writing computer-related articles and tutorials since 1995. Since that time, Grundy has written many guides to using various applications that are published on numerous how-to and tutorial sites. Born and raised in South Georgia, Grundy holds a Master of Science degree in mathematics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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