Read these 12 Ink Cartridge Recycling Tips tips to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. Each tip is approved by our Editors and created by expert writers so great we call them Gurus. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Printer Ink tips and hundreds of other topics.
If you are looking for a way to make a charitable contribution without digging deep into your wallet, there are ways. For one, you can donate things that you don't need or would otherwise throw away. A good charitable contribution you can make like this is to recycle ink cartridges that are empty and waiting for the trash. Donating a recycled ink cartridge is easy.
For the largest resource in finding charities that will accept them, use the Internet. Many of those that recycle ink cartridges will make it easy by paying your postage and providing you with the packaging. All it takes is one web search, one phone call, and one trip to the post office and you can feel good knowing that you found a way to help others without hurting your pocketbook.
Almost every major manufacturer of printer ink cartridges has their own recycling program in place for their customers. Many may leave you with the wrong impression of their idea of recycling. Most manufacturers do not consider recycling in terms of remanufacturing, but rather in using the materials to ‘generate more energy' – a euphemism for burning them. These printer ink cartridges never make it back on the market.
One manufacturer stands out from the rest in truly recycling their printer ink cartridges – Lexmark. Lexmark is unique in that they work with independent environmental agencies to ensure that each of their printer ink cartridges are remanufactured and re-introduced into the market as a printer ink cartridge. Their recycle process only requires that their customer request the necessary packaging to send it to their facilities. Lexmark pays for postage and gives you the printing labels. They will not incinerate their returns as most do in order to use the plastic for other purposes. You can be sure that when you recycle your printer ink cartridges through Lexmark, they will remain printer ink cartridges when they are ‘recycled'.
Buying recycled ink cartridges is a great way to save your office money as well as help save the environment. Recycled ink cartridges are less expensive to buy, so this alone makes it a good decision. However, when you add in the environmental benefits of buying recycled ink cartridges, well, any other decision simply seems wrong.
The plastics used in making ink cartridges are not biodegradable. These empty cartridges can lie in a dump or landfill forever. Recycled ink cartridges take this problem out of the picture by re-introducing the same plastic into the market. The actual cartridge for your ink does not go bad when the ink runs dry. Many companies can easily clean and refill these cartridges and then offer them back at a discount. Here is where your money savings come in.
Look for a reputable company when buying recycled ink cartridges. Look for recommendations from people you know who may have used them before. The recycled ink cartridges are usually just as good as the original, but some companies simply do it better than others.
Recycling paper has become a standard in many homes and offices. The importance of recycling paper products is immense. In the past, not all paper products could be properly recycled due to the ink that recycling plants could not process. The chemicals from the ink would get into the way of the recycling and gum up the works.
Over the past few decades, ink producers have improved the make-up of their inks to make recycling a reality for any paper product. By changing the chemical mixture in inks and toners, not only can paper products be processed properly, but there are even ink recycling companies and plants. Now, we can recycle the paper that comes out of the printer, as well as the unused ink that never made it to paper.
With a little research, you can find companies that recycle almost any product made today. With very little research, you can easily find companies that recycle ink cartridges as a specialty. Because of the toxins in printer ink and in the plastic casings, you should use a company that specializes in ink cartridge recycling. They will have the proper plant capabilities to safely recycle ink cartridges without harming the environment. Finding companies that recycle ink cartridges is easy with the help of the Internet.
There are many web directories from eco-friendly organizations that will point you in the direction of several companies that can handle your ink cartridges. Use these to locate where to recycle ink cartridges in your area. If there are none in your area, many will accept and even pay for postage to send them your empty ink cartridges by mail. Companies that recycle ink cartridges do us all a huge favor. Take advantage of their services and recycle your empty ink cartridges.
There are many reasons why an office should be as ‘green' or environmentally-friendly as possible. Beyond the environmental effects, an office can also save money by operating in a ‘greener' manner. Buying as many recycled materials for your office is a good way to start, and if you do a lot of printing, buying only recycled ink cartridges is a great way to start.
When you exclusively buy recycled ink cartridges in your office, you will find that the offers from cartridge manufacturers in exchange for recycling and buying recycled are tremendous. If you recycle your own empty ink cartridges, many of these companies will exchange your empty cartridge for newly recycled ink cartridges. These savings can add up; both in saving you money and saving the environment.
Finding where to buy recycled ink cartridges is easy. If you have a local print shop, ask them about their availability of recycled ink cartridges. If your local store cannot provide you with recycled ink cartridges, turn to any of the hundreds of online merchants who seal exclusively in recycled ink cartridges.
Today, office equipment manufacturers are taking stronger steps towards protecting the environment. To that end, many have begun making their products out of more environmentally-friendly materials. The makes of printer ink cartridges are leading the way in this area and are the first place you should look if you are looking to recycle an ink cartridge.
First, see if you can locate the original packaging from your ink cartridge. If the manufacturer that you bought can recycle ink cartridges, they will typically include instructions on their packaging as to their procedure. If so, follow the instructions and send the empty ink cartridge to the supplied address. If not, you can still recycle ink cartridges in many places. This is just the first stop. If you cannot find the original packaging, contact the manufacturer through their support phone or website.
So you want to start a strict recycling program in your office for all of your supplies. Making employees follow recycling protocol can be difficult, but here are some ways to make ink cartridge recycling and other types of recycling a reality for your business.
Ink recycling is important for many reasons. Most importantly, ink recycling keeps residual ink in cartridges from finding their way into our landfills or water streams. Ink can cause major problems if it is improperly disposed of. Getting it into any water supply will contaminate the water for sure. Allowing the ink to get into the ground can lead to any number of poor environmental effects.
To combat the problems caused by unused ink, ink recycling should be a standard for any home or business that has inkjet printers or copiers. Ink recycling is easy with most manufacturers. You can often send the ink cartridge to a recycle plant in standard mail packaging with prepaid postage provided by the manufacturer. Be sure to look for this benefit the next time you purchase ink cartridges. Without it, chances are you won't recycle your ink cartridge which won't help anyone.
If every office and home recycled everything that they could, our environment would benefit greatly. If you want to help as much as you can, recycle everything in your printing process that you can. You can recycle almost everything from the ink cartridge to the paper from extra prints. If you have a non-refillable ink cartridge, do not throw away your ink cartridge when it is empty. Do the responsible thing and recycle your ink cartridge casing. At the very least, you can always place your empty ink cartridge in your everyday plastic recycling bin.
The same container that you place empty soda bottles in serves as a way to recycle ink cartridges when they run dry. At best, you should look for a company that specializes in remanufacturing ink cartridges. If you cannot find one that remanufactures, look for one that will recycle the ink cartridge casing by using the plastics in other products. The ink cartridge casing is made of non-biodegradable plastic and without recycling will be on this earth long after you have printed your last print.
If your school, youth group, or other organization is looking for a unique fundraising idea that almost any person or business could participate in, you should think about ink cartridge recycling. For a great, long-term fundraising program, these little pieces of plastic can be turned into gold. The materials used in ink cartridges can be harmful to the environment. Because of this, ink cartridge recycling is done by many companies, both state-sponsored and independent.
First, locate a company that can provide ink cartridge recycling for your group. Then, network your idea to as many businesses as possible. The more that they print, fax, and copy, the better. Collect each empty ink cartridge and sell it to your ink cartridge recycling company. You can easily keep track of donations and earnings. By the end of a school year, for example, your students could raise thousands of dollars for any cause through ink cartridge recycling.
When your printer, fax machine, or copier leaves you with an empty ink cartridge, it is important to do the right thing by everyone when disposing of it. The best way you can look out for us all is to recycle ink cartridges through your manufacturer or through another company. There are many great places on the Internet that can recycle ink cartridges.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|