Still got some empty toner cartridges in your stock rooms? Particularly Lexmark printer cartridges, they got you covered when it comes to accepting returns of used or worn out ink and toner cartridges. If by any chance you have thought of sending out those boxes of empty cartridges that you can't get rid of, simply because you just don't want to throw it away. Then maybe now's the time you do something beneficial for the environment, and that is by participating on recycling programs and organizations.

Lexmark as one the excellent providers of product and equipments mainly for the print industry, can help you save your precious time and money with just a click. How can this be easy? Simply check out all the available recycling programs on their website. For every type of cartridge, say a laser toner or ink, there's a specific program specialized for each type. You can either request for a single cartridge return or if you have too much at hand, then it's better to choose the bulk cartridges return.

For those printer users who are using Lexmark inkjet printers, there's a special bag only made for genuine Lexmark ink cartridges that will be sent out for return. All you have to do is fill-up the form provided on their site for requesting return bags which you will use for shipping back the cartridges to Lexmark.

As I've mentioned, since the company provides various recycling and return program, sending a laser toner cartridge goes in a different way. Instead of receiving a return bag, toner consumables needs to be prepared and packed by the owner, then they may request a pre-paid shipping label to be included on the packaging. Lexmark also allow accepting of empty and used printer cartridges through several authorized supplies resellers.

All these collection programs, as well as the other available recycling programs on their website are absolutely free to the consumer. Hence, being environmentally responsible shouldn't be costly. Participating on such programs can developed a better printing solution from which many would benefit, even the future generations. But participating alone can't be enough, why don't you try opting for eco-friendly printer consumables such as Lexmark toner cartridges and ink cartridges. These recycled toner cartridges and all other printer supplies is more than just a solution to your printing expenses, it also provide a living for the local employees who are working on recycling plants and facilities.

Along with the holy week season, PrintGreen will be dedicating a post for this special occasion. Although not everyone may be commemorating the week of the Lord's Passion, and it's actually not complaisant, I would still like to commit.

Still related to the print industry, let's start our story. Giving credits to our post's main cast, the great Johan Gutenberg, a German goldsmith who first invented and introduced the printing press to Europe. He started the Printing Revolution around the year of 1439, mostly in European countries. His invention played much essence not only in the modern period, it also brought the emergence of none-hand-written books for the masses.

Here's a great historical fact with regards to his invention. The first ever book that was printed using printing press was none other than, the Holy Bible. It was at the same year, around 1450, when Gutenberg was given credit for his invention, when the first batch of the book of the Holy Bible was completed. According to historians, there were about 230 printed copies from which 30 of those were printed on animal skins, while the rest were printed on paper made from rag cotton pulp.

From then on, printing technology spread from Mainz Germany to all the cities in Europe, and all throughout the world. Although such devices before were totally big and bulky, compared to our modern day laser printers and inkjet printers, it is undoubtedly a remarkable start of the printing technology.

Talking about our today's printers, we got tough, elegant-looking, multifunctional laser and ink type printers, but none of them makes a remarkably peculiar mark in the history. Maybe I have never heard of it, if there's any. But using our high-end printer equipments today, we can make a phenomenal printed version of the Holy Bible, considering the wide selection of cartridges available in the market. We can also use eco friendly toner cartridges and ink cartridges together with recycled paper materials, and covered it with dried animal skins perhaps. That sounds like a new generation of Johan Gutenberg's Holy Bible book.

First, what are these recycled toner cartridges?
I think this question shouldn't be asked again and again, since the name of this product explains everything regarding this top question. But for those who are still asking, they are made from recycled components OEM cartridges returned by most consumers. Inspected, cleaned, refurbished and refilled with new inks or toners.

What are the processes involved in the recycling process?
Actually the processes may vary from one manufacturer to another. But generally speaking, and like I said, it involves testing of the returned components, thorough cleaning or refurbishing, damage part replacement, refilling of new inks or toners, and packaging. On top of all these processes, quality assurance is always the priority.

How would you rate their performance and productivity?
This one will take a long argumentation if we really go through all the details, so I'll try to limit it as necessary. Depending on where you bought the product, it can potentially affect the quality of the cartridges. Faulty cartridges is a problem that you may not only encounter with recycled cartridges, even OEM products can be faulty or damaged. Productivity-wise, there were customer feedback claiming that recycled toner cartridges and ink cartridges when compared to OEMs can be a well matched. So yes, they indeed perform equally with high-priced printer cartridges.

Does it also affect the environment much like the OEMs?
Yes, it affects ecologically but in a very positive sense, and no, because they don't do much harm as OEM consumables can negatively impact the environment. Through recycling, materials and resources are effectively conserved and reused, hence it supports sustainability. An OEM cartridge that thoroughly passed the quality standards of print industry, can be recycled three or more times, conserving million pounds of petroleum resources.

Will it void my printers warranty?
Absolutely no, especially those who are 100% US-made recycled cartridges. If you're worrying about the cartridge sensor installed in your printer, remanufacturers also replace the sensor chip embedded on each of their products, thus your won't get any problem with your printer not detecting the replacement cartridge. Not unless it is really a faulty cartridge, but again such problems may also happen with OEMs.

Does using such products will damage my printer?
Let me ask you this, haven't you experienced print failures, paper jams, and other common printer problems with your printer while using OEM cartridges? If yes, then more likely you'll get the same head-spinning problems when you switch for recycled cartridges, it's inevitable. Besides these recycled products are still made from OEM components, so you can still consider it good as new.
Recycled printer consumables and office supplies, that's what we've been featuring here on PrintGreen at most. While there are still more of these related topics that we talk about regarding eco-friendly toner cartridges and ink cartridges. Let's try to give some credits to the one that uses this products, and that's no less than the printer.

Do you know that these equipments particularly the printers, can also be refurbished? In the market, you'll find all types of printer equipments available, some may probably be inexpensive while others are considerably high-priced. Depending on your preferences, or how much perfectionist you are, certainly you'll get what you want. But what if you know that there's something out there, that can perform and deliver the same functionality, yet very much affordable? Would you still go for the branded, or would you choose the refurbished?

Giving you a clear view about such equipments, refurbished or recycled printers are machines that undergo intensive quality checking which includes : inspection, cleaning, and repairing processes. Hence, rest assured each recycled printers are of the same quality and can potentially match up with most branded equipments. Consider them cost efficient and environment friendly printing solution.

Imagine using less expensive printer cartridges with these refurbished printers, it can significantly minimize both your ownership cost and overall printing cause. Sounds wonderful for offices and workgroups that requires high-volume printing needs. I'm not sure about the matter, but I've heard some recycled printers are capable of using cartridge-free ink technologies which generates less waste than conventional printers.

There are also these options a few printer manufacturing companies offer, wherein their customers can return their old equipment for new ones. Through this great attempt, we can reduce the ecological impacts that e-waste generates yearly, as well as preventing printers from ending up in landfills.

If you're still doubtful of the quality, refurbished printers can provide, and that you still want to stick with your branded printer buddy, then consider using recycled printer cartridges. Save your pockets from spending too much with expensive OEM cartridges, while reducing your ecological impacts in the environment as well.

Turn you company to a better and greener place to work at, by following some of the useful guides below. Whilst there are articles which can be more detailed compared to this, it always depends on each and everyone's point of view as to what must be followed. Think of it as an additional learning, and take advantage of it so you greatly and effectively reduce not only yours alone but also the company's carbon footprint.

Switching to green practices should never cost a lot, although there are times where it can't be helped, consider it as an investment for a bigger result in the long process. Nevertheless, don't spend as much as possible. Developed a unique but not too strict waste disposal program for your company. Make sure that all the collected waste will end up on proper disposal areas, and should not cause any harmful effects on the environment.

Consider using biodegradable products for cleaning and maintenance purposes. Maybe you're not aware that much, but most product nowadays aside from sanitizing your workplace, they can also bring harm to anyone from the office, especially when use without proper knowledge. Plus, non-biodegradable cleaning products are potentially harmful for the environment.

Energy consumption, one of the great carbon footprint contributors. Even at home, do you have any idea which appliances in your household contributes the most CF? Check out the table provided from this post: Household Energy Consumption, so you can have a clearer picture regarding the matter. Now for a working environment, there are these equipments and machines including a printer, that consume energy, thus resulting to carbon footprint emission. Choose an appliance or office equipment that consumes less energy, that's the solution.

Opt for environmental friendly office supplies such as recycled printer papers. Switching to such products will cut down your printing expenses in the office, while promoting green products at the same time. Using recycle paper materials in the office is not a common thing, hence implementing it in their workplace will let them realize the benefits and advantages of using such products. Also, since you're planning to use eco-friendly paper supplies, then why not equipped your office printers with recycled toner cartridges and ink cartridges, double savings for your company.

These are just a small fraction of several ways and means on how you can turn your workplace into greener environment. Regardless of your business or company's size, there's no reason why you should not make a move on reducing your ecological impacts.

Don't waste your old garments, RECYCLE it, and create a new fashion trend from reused apparel. 3D printing technology is something not new to most of us, but its creations and application are the things that can put us in to a jaw drop state. There are so much that it can do and manufacture such as miniatures or life-size figures, fully functional components and parts of a machine, even weapons. But it doesn't just end there, textiles or some sort of similar materials were used, hence entering the fashion industry.

Conceived by the vision of having a machine that can make his own wardrobe collection, Joshua Harris, an Industrial designer, has developed the Clothing Printer. With his colleagues, they were able to develop the printer as an entry in the Electrolux Lab design competition which was held in the year 2010.

The considerably intriguing Clothing Printer is actually a wall-mounted personal appliance that is connected to a particular fashion designer or apparel company. Through electronic data transfer, these designers and clothing company could send their digital designs to the printer from any house. If the customer likes the design, they can instantly print it using the Clothing Printer equipped with material cartridges, and the company makes a sale.

It's incredible, but here's more beyond what you've been thinking while reading this post. Once you're done with the clothe, or you just get bored with its style, just feed it back to the printer, and let the machine tear it down into thread for reuse, so you can have a new fashion trend for the next occasion.

The developer, Joshua Harris, stated "It would reduce or eliminate the need for closets, washers, and dryers, besides allowing instantaneous delivery of new clothing." He then added,  “the technology for a clothing printer exists but is not packaged in a form that would be suitable for consumer use.”

Imagine a wardrobe of trendy and fashionable clothes and apparel, with this printer you can never be outdated with the latest fashion style. It's just that I'm wondering how much would it cost to operate and maintain such printer. Yes, it can recycle your old clothes, but how about the energy consumption and all other factors required in its operation.

Indeed, the 3D printing technology rapidly evolves through time, consumers also demand for new and exciting stuffs, hence developers can't stop working. Though I'm pretty much pleased by this printer not only of its function, but the fact that it promotes recycling. Just like with conventional printer equipments that can be equipped with recycled toner cartridges and ink cartridges. Aside from the info and description aforementioned regarding the said printer, there are no further follow ups if it's already out in the market, nor will it be out soon.

Get rid of your paper waste through these simple ways, just make yourself accustomed to it and sooner or later you'll find a big difference in the amount of accumulated paper waste materials. Reducing or cutting down junks and trashes in your home is necessary, cause nobody wants a filthy or messy home to live. But it is also a certain responsibility to clean up and limit your waste in the office.

To practically minimize your waste problem specifically with paper-made materials, there are solutions which you often neglect, yet useful enough. Read the checklist below :

Paper jams can be a common scenario especially if you're not using the right media for each specific printing needs. If you won't change the loaded paper in the printer, then you surely won't get away of the problem. It'll only cause you a bunch of trash and trouble from your equipment. Determining the right type of printer paper will sometimes solve this issue, is it too thin or thick, try to make your own conclusion.

Draft and print test sheets, most of the time we print an initial page of our document to see if it's just perfect enough, while occasionally we run a series of test prints with the machine to check the quality of printout. Thus we accumulate additional paper waste, and instead of recycling those, most of the time they end up filling the trash bins. Have you ever tried shredding those test sheets to use for packaging and keeping fragile office materials? I can hear somebody saying "yeah why not", or "I haven't thought of that", well at least now you realize it.

Actually I could suggest this one at the top most of my list, but naturally people don't think of this solution as often as it should be. Recycling, or reusing, whatever you call it, is a solution that unfortunately employees and individuals oftentimes neglect. Why not take those paper waste at home and let your kids have a nifty project like a collage or a paper mache craft, come to think of it, that sounds like a cheerful family bonding. Plus, you can get their hands away from PSP, computers, tablets, mobile phones and the likes, which turn kids into a lazy ball.

Lastly, if your printer at the office supports duplex (double-sided) printing, then make use of it as much as possible. Printing on both sides of a page will greatly reduce the operating cost of the machine, hence you save money and reduce waste. Also to double your savings, opt for eco-friendly toner cartridges and ink cartridges with your printer to create greener and environmentally beneficial printouts.

During last month's Signs By Tomorrow annual convention which was held in Savanah, GA, the INX Digital made an announcement about the companies new printer ink cartridges recycling program in the United States. Sustainability, as one of their main goal and purpose on developing such program, and through this move they will truly make a big difference fort he environment.

The said ink cartridges recycling program by INX Digital will soon accept all used and empty wide-format OEM digital ink cartridges. Although it is only limited to OEM digital printer cartridges, there are also these similar recycling programs and organizations dedicated for conventional printer consumables.

One thing you should remember with regards to the program is that, it's a requirement to send out at least 20 ink cartridges to be able to get your returns accepted. The advantage of free shipping can only be availed if you put the cartridges in a box packaging at your own expense, and uses a UPS call tag which can be generated through their partner website. To check out the tag, you may visit : www.wideformatrecycling.com

According to Ken Kisner, INX Digital's Vice President of Business Development and CTO for Digital Division Ink Technologies:
        “In North America, over 350 million inks cartridges are sent to landfills annually. Most people are not aware that                 recycled ink cartridges are extremely beneficial since they use 80 percent fewer resources than a new cartridge.”
        Kisner also added, "We believe this ink cartridge program is another step in the right direction to reduce, reuse and             recycle efficiently.”

The use of recycled toner cartridges and ink cartridges can create a great impact and of course advantageous results for the environment. Also, participating on such programs makes you a better and environmentally responsible being, besides who else can protect the only place we live, there will be nobody but us.

The feast of Saint Patrick already past, but with all the ideas and news around regarding better printing practices and stuffs like that, going green will never end.

There are so many things that we can talk about with regards to green printing, but let's try to take them one at a time. Focusing on recycled printer products, here's a printer paper named as ECOPET which is made from polyester fiber.

In the collaboration of Teijin and Nisshinbo Postal Chemical Co., using recycled polyester fibers that were taken from used PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles, the team successfully created a special kind of printer paper. It's actually similar to typical printer papers that we used, it's just that both have different composition. Other than the said distinction, ECOPET papers are also of the same thickness and texture. What makes it more amazing is that it can't be torn as easy as a typical paper sheet, nor it doesn't fall apart when it gets wet.

If you're wondering how such material can be used for printing, well it's indeed suitable for use in laser printers or you can even draw and write directly on it. It's just like a normal sheet of paper that we've been used to, cutting or pasting its pieces is not a problem either. On top of that, it can also be recycled over and over again just like any typical paper material.

Imagine a printout that can last longer on outdoor purposes, like banners, posters and the likes, well you don't have to worry cause its actually a paper and a sheet of plastic as well. For commercial printing purposes, I think this one is more suitable than literally plastic tarpaulins.

Through this kind of material, it can double the advantage and benefits that any printer user can get when they accompanied it with eco-friendly toner cartridges and ink cartridges. Of course you can still use recycled printer papers if this one is not available in your area, and I don't have any clue on when it will become available.

It's been said that Teijin and Nisshinbo Postal Chemical Co. initially planned to sell the ECOPET paper to printer manufacturing companies and other business users. As soon as a I get an update with regards to this matter, I'll keep you posted here guys.

Monitoring the cost of printing can sometimes become a head-spinning task, not only because it's a bit troublesome to track the expenses, but also the figures you'll see after summing up all the cost. Let alone the personal printers, as the cost it takes to run a personal home printer is way cheaper than running an office printer. Even for small-type businesses that relies heavily on printing, they can accumulate thousands of cost in printing expenses just for a month alone.

What can we do to cut down our cost of printing? If there's a will there's a way right, so better think first that you eagerly want to reduce your expense, and you'll see solutions will pop up from nowhere. Actually, whether you are the boss or just an employee, there are ways from which your office can greatly benefit on reducing printer expenses.

First, in any case let them know that they're actually wasting or not utilizing properly their resources particularly the office supplies. Of-course try to explain the matter on them in a humane manner. Remember that you're trying to let them realize what bad habits should be put into an end, and what are the proper things that should be implemented. Paper materials, energy, as well as the inks/toners that are being consumed in the printing process must be conserve. Now after the preaching part, give emphasis on the benefits of leaning towards green printing practices.

Next, monitor your subordinates. All the explaining and preaching will be worthless if nobody absorbs it. Monitoring your employees behavior and practices is normal, that wouldn't be against any law. See if they really apply what you have told them previously, and that they're gradually improving on practicing green printing. Also, it would help if you try to limit the resources in the office storage rooms, so your employees would think of a way to fit in on what is available.

Another thing to consider is by setting your printer into Eco-mode, I'm not sure if every model of printer in market nowadays supports the said feature, probably there's a great number but not all. Setting your office printer into this mode will let you save toners and inks in the long run, thus cutting down the cost of printing.

Have you tried using alternatives? Compatible or remanufactured, whatever you call it, these are recycled toner cartridges and ink cartridges from third party retailers. There's a common notion that people thought of recycled products are substandard, well they're wrong, over the recent years alternative cartridges have improved in terms of sales and demands. The quality of these eco-friendly printer cartridges are certainly of par with their counterparts, and that isn't surprising.

There are so many ways worth considering to reduce your office and printing expenses. Provided that you already know these solutions and tips, implementing and practicing them would be the essential part. But it's always never too late to change what you've been accustomed especially it will make things better.


    Fiel Mori Promotes Eco Friendly stuffs and creating environment friendly articles for everyone @PrintGreen


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