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How Long Can I Store a Printer Cartridge?

It’s relatively simple to use up a lot of ink or toner at the office due to the requirement to print invoices, contracts, proposals, and other documents. As a result, you most likely need to buy replacement cartridges regularly. A few extra cartridges to have on hand is a good idea, but don’t buy too many because if they’re stored incorrectly or for too long, they might not be usable.

Sell By Dates

Always look at the “Sell By” or “Warranty Expiration” dates on the packaging when purchasing ink or toner cartridges for your printer. On the back of many cartridge boxes, there is a date label that shows the month and year after which the manufacturer no longer guarantees the ink will function with your printer. Manufacturers package cartridges in boxes and antistatic bags, but over time, air can enter and deteriorate the composition of the ink or toner inside. However, if you store cartridges properly, you can typically use them from their original, unopened packaging for up to two years after purchase.

Built-In Expiration Dates

The majority of manufacturers mark packages with “Sell By” or “Warranty Expiration” dates, but they rarely include the cartridges’ actual expiration dates. However, a lot of printer manufacturers encrypt a date for the ink or toner’s expiration into the chip of the cartridge. Therefore, use caution when installing and using the ink or toner if the cartridge package has a “Warranty Expiration” or “Sell By” date that is more than two years old. The cartridge might be okay and still be used, depending on how you stored it. However, you should first check for indications that the printer is having issues initialising or cycling the cartridge before the first print job before you start printing with an outdated cartridge. The majority of printers do let you disable the expiration date notice, but doing so isn’t always a smart idea. Therefore, remove the cartridge and replace it right away if you encounter any issues during the initial cycling or startup of the cartridge.

New VS Remanufactured

The state of a printer cartridge when you first purchase it also affects how long you may preserve it. In general, fresh printer cartridges can be safely stored for a lot longer than refilled or remanufactured ones. Simply put, this is because refilled or remanufactured cartridges frequently have less-tight seals than brand-new ones, or they might have extra injection holes that are used to add fresh ink or toner. The amount of time you can use refilled or remanufactured cartridges depends on how you store them, just like with brand-new ones. To use refilled or remanufactured cartridges, though, you should do so within six months of the date of purchase. When you purchase most new cartridges, as long as the “Sell By” or “Warranty Expiration” date is still valid, you should be able to store them safely for at least 18 months.

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