Good Way to Store Ink Cartridges When Not Used Often

By Cameron Sherber

Business owners who make a point of getting the most for their money can benefit from properly storing seldom-used ink cartridges. If you and your employees do a minimal amount of printing, the ink in your office printer's cartridges is liable to dry out and subsequently cause streaky, unclear prints. However, there is a simple and yet highly effective way to store your office's ink cartridges and keep them in prime condition for years to come.

Prepping the Cartridges

After removing from your office's printer the ink cartridges you wish to store, you will need to prepare them for storage. Start by dampening an expendable washcloth or paper towel. Wring out any excess water. Once your cloth or paper towel is damp -- not dripping wet -- wrap it around one of the cartridges. Repeat this process for each additional cartridge. Wear a pair of protective gloves when handling the cartridges to prevent any residual ink from coming in contact with your skin.

Sealing the Cartridges

When storing printer cartridges that don't get a good deal of use, securely sealing them is of particular importance. This will limit the cartridges' exposure to air and go a long way in preventing the ink from drying out. Sandwich bags and airtight containers are effective tools to use when sealing printer cartridges. When placing your cartridges into their respective bags or containers, ]they should remain wrapped in the dampened paper towel or washcloth.

Storing the Cartridges

After your seldom-used cartridges have been successfully sealed, you'll need to find a dark, cool location in which to store them. Storage closets, drawers and file cabinets all work well for this task. Storing the cartridges in any one of these places will effectively limit their exposure to such drying elements as air, humidity and sunlight. If possible, try not to open the closet, drawer or cabinet in which the cartridges are stored unless necessary.

Reusing the Cartridges

Whenever you are ready to reuse your sealed printer cartridges, remove the cartridges from the bags or containers, make sure they are dry and reinsert them into your office's printer. However, before proceeding to print any documents, inspect the top of the cartridges for dried ink deposits. Should you come across any, carefully remove them with a lightly dampened sponge, paper towel or washcloth. Failing to take this precaution may make it difficult for your printer to draw ink from the cartridges.