15 October 2013 ~ 0 Comments

Are Your Cartridges Perfoming Well?

High Performance CartridgeOK folks, today’s tip is going to be a quick one yet very useful. I had a customer recently who was sure that they were running through toner cartridges much faster that they felt like they should.  Now if you have an older model printer, there is a way to check the performance of your toner cartridges but it requires a little planning ahead. Newer models though, lay out all the information for you in a single report.

So, let’s start with the process of looking at the cartridge performance in the older model printers.  When you install a toner cartridge, print a configuration page. Then, at the end of the life of that cartridge, as you are getting ready to install a new cartridge, print another configuration page. By getting the difference in the page counts, you can determine how many pages were printed with that particular cartridge.  Like I said, you have to plan ahead just a little bit. If you need help printing out configuration page, check out our previous blog at http://aoslaser.com/the-configuration-page-a-secret-treasure.  A video is also provided.

On the other hand, if you have one of these new printers, look further into the information or the reports menu to see if you have a “supplies status page report” that can be printed. When you print this report, you get a wealth of information that can be used to determine the performance of that particular toner cartridge.  The “supplies status page” report for the HP 2420 gives you estimated pages remaining, pages printed and the install date.  The really cool thing about this report is that you can print it at any time to get this information.  So you can check the performance of the cartridge in the middle of its cycle.  What’s even better is that you can take that cartridge to a different printer, print the same report, and get the same information because the information is stored on the cartridge, not the printer.

There may also be a “usage page” that you can print that will give you the average coverage for that printer. Remember, expected yield is based on 5% coverage. After checking the two main printers in our office, I found that one was almost 8.5% while the other was under 4.3%. And one final note, printers with maintenance counters will give the information on PM (Preventative Maintenance) counts and color printers will give you a breakdown of all the different consumables that they use.

As for my customer, we took a look at these reports and it turns out that they were printing more than they realized.  I told them they should ask for a raise.

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