How to Keep Printer Ink From Drying Out

Updated: Feb 11, 2024 5:08 PM
how to keep printer ink from drying out guide

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Ink cartridges can dry out over time. It is just a fact of life. It does not matter whether you use a top-rated printer or not; ink cartridges will begin drying out in just a few weeks. However, with some simple tips, like using your printer occasionally, covering the printer, and more, you can help make sure your ink doesn’t dry out before you get to use it.

Keep reading below for more tips to help preserve your ink.

Key Takeaways_

  • Left unattended, a printer ink cartridge will begin to dry out in just a few weeks.
  • Make sure to regularly use and maintain your printer to help keep the cartridges from drying out.
  • You can also try moistening the ink cartridges and keeping them away from direct sunlight.

Keeping Printer Ink From Drying Out

Printer ink drying out is mostly due to a lack of use. When you’re regularly printing, the ink is in constant use. Moreover, if the average room temperature isn’t ideal for the ink, you can bet it’ll dry up those printer cartridges pretty quickly. 

Due to the overall high costs related to ink cartridge replacement, consumers have been wondering how to keep their printer ink cartridges from drying out prematurely.

On the other hand, you could save money by refilling ink cartridges yourself or knowing where to refill printer cartridges on the cheap.

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The most common reason ink cartridges dry out is that they have been sitting in an inkjet printer for weeks without being used.

A Simple Guide to Preserving Your Ink

We have assembled some simple tips and guidelines for consumers to help them maximize the lifespan of their ink cartridges and keep them from drying out.

We also have some tips and tricks about how you can maximize the lifespan of your ink cartridge to save on the cost of refilling or buying ink all the time.

STAT: According to PCMag, a standard ink cartridge will print an average of 220 pages (with 11 ml of ink). A high-capacity cartridge prints an average of 350 pages (it holds 16 ml of ink). (source)

Use Your Printer Regularly

Color printer test page

The most common reason ink cartridges dry is that they have been sitting in an inkjet printer for weeks without being used. We recommend regularly making use of your printer in order to prevent the cartridges from drying out.

If you have nothing to print, you can always run a maintenance program, perform some color tests, or just print out some stuff for fun. Printer ink will begin to dry out after sitting inside a printer for just a few weeks, so we recommend printing something every week.

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If you don’t plan to complete any major print jobs in the near future, we recommend keeping the cartridge inside the packaging until needed.

Keep the Ink Cartridges in the Packaging

printer cartridges in a package

Unfortunately, ink cartridges will begin to dry out from the very first moment they are removed from the packaging. If you don’t plan to complete any major print jobs in the near future, leave the cartridge inside the packaging until needed.

When an ink cartridge remains unopened in the original packaging, it should last months and even years before completely drying out. Of course, ink is made to be used for print jobs, so do not hesitate to open a cartridge if you need it.

Also, ensure that you store the cartridges properly; in an airtight container in an upright position away from any heat or moisture.

In the same vein, keep the printer covered when not in use. This helps prevent dirt and dust from getting inside and settling on the cartridges or print heads.

Keep Your Printer Away From Heat Sources

Another good thing to try to help prevent an ink cartridge from drying out is to keep your printer from direct heat sources, including sunlight. In other words, keep the printer and ink cartridges in a cool, shady part of your home or office.

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Printer ink will begin to dry out after sitting inside a printer for just a few weeks, so keep this in mind.

And unless you have a great ink subscription plan, you’ll need to be careful with your ink.

Moisten the Cartridges

A proactive step to take when it comes to ink cartridges is to moisten them with a damp paper towel. This will remove excess ink from the surface and help prevent clogs and premature drying out. Be sure to fully dry the cartridge before reinserting it into the printer.

How to Keep Printer Ink From Drying Out Questions (FAQ)

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