There seems to be a common misconception about remanufactured and compatible ink cartridges that has been floating around since the dawn of their existence. The usage of third-party printer cartridges has had a bad rap to its name when it really shouldn't. Name-brand ink manufacturers have always tried to dissuade consumers from using non-original printer supplies at every chance they get - whether it be on the box, the website, or even directly from their customer support teams. Remanufactured or compatible ink and toner get a lot of bad press and unwarranted hate when in reality, they work exactly the same as the original brands.
For example, remanufactured HP ink cartridges are an extremely cost-effective way to supply your HP printer with the same high-quality ink as the name-brand. Many office supply stores have started to carry their brand to compete with OEM directly. But does using remanufactured cartridges void your printer's warranty?
To save you from a lengthy read, the short answer is no! Using a compatible cartridge will NOT void your printer's warranty. The purpose of this article is to inform you of your consumer rights so you will be able to choose what type of printer ink is right for you.
What is OEM?
Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) is a fancy way of saying a name-brand manufacturer made the ink cartridge. You’d typically find them on the shelf of big box stores, and they often come with a hefty price tag.
So why are some people willing to dole out their hard-earned cash for the OEM cartridges? Because they come with the benefit of brand recognition. A lot of these larger printer companies like HP, Samsung, Canon, and Dell, have their hand in a slew of other business endeavors. If you enjoy HP computers, the chances are you will probably like their HP printer as well. These companies spend millions on marketing and brand recognition, which leads their customers to continue purchasing their products.
What are Remanufactured Cartridges?
To clear up any confusion before we move along, we first need to know what a remanufactured cartridge is. A remanufactured cartridge is a recycled OEM cartridge that is professionally cleaned out and filled with the same quality ink as the original. These printer cartridges go through extensive quality assurance testing to guarantee they will work with your printer, just as the OEM part would.
The Wild West of Printers Manufacturers
It may seem like a long time ago, but there was a time when printer manufacturers ran their businesses like the wild west. With no regulations set in place, companies were able to set their own rules and regulations. This allowed them to deny warranty service for arbitrary reasons; those who had paid for their warranties would often find themselves on the wrong side of the warranty.
Even though customers shelled out a premium for popular printer brands, the manufacturers would void their warranties if they found out they were using a third-party cartridge. There are horror stories of how customers were sold defective printers that couldn't be returned. When the customers went to get a refund or exchange, they would simply be turned away due to their third-party ink cartridge being installed inside at the time. This ran rampant throughout the 1980s and led to a huge stigma against remanufactured and compatible printer ink cartridges.
This led to numerous misconceptions about aftermarket and discount printer supplies regarding their quality and overall performance. Some would correlate their printer malfunctioning to using a remanufactured cartridge when this could not be further from the truth.
Consumers were utterly powerless when it came to this matter. There were only two choices at this point, either purchase the high-priced OEM or risk voiding your warranty by saving money with remanufactured cartridges.
There is plenty of documentation of these fraudulent occurrences. So much so that federal law had to be implemented in order to alleviate the printer ink market.
What is the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act?
The Magnuson-Moss Act is a legislature enacted by the Supreme Court that governs consumer product warranties. It was expanded upon to protect your right to purchase alternative products.
It states: "No warrantor of a consumer product may condition his written or implied warranty of such product on the consumer's using, in connection with such product, any article or service (other than article or service provided without charge under the terms of the warranty) which is identified by brand, trade or corporate name" (15 USCA 2302)."
This act gives the consumer the freedom to choose the type of ink cartridge without penalty or retaliation from the original manufacturer. In defense of remanufactured cartridges, some of the significant benefits that the act provides include:
#1 Providing consumers with alternatives
Only having one option when it comes to consuming a product leads to a monopoly on the market. There is a big difference between a brand being the top of the choice of the market and a brand being the only choice. Having alternatives for consumers to choose is essential in creating a diverse economy that is fair to all of its consumers.
#2 Beneficial to the environment to reuse cartridges
Printer ink cartridges pollute the environment at a staggering rate, roughly a million cartridges get thrown out and end up in landfills every single day. With over 375 million empty cartridges being wasted every year, it is critical to reuse and recycle these cartridges instead of purchasing new ones. A cartridge can be reused 2 to 3 times before needing to be disposed of, that's where remanufacturing comes into play. By professionally cleaning, repairing (if needed), and refilling cartridges with the same quality ink, we breathe a second life into these empty plastic shells.
#3 Boost small businesses and allow for their share in the market.
Companies that sell remanufactured cartridges are usually not big conglomerates like their OEM counterparts. Most of them are small businesses with local workers that stimulate the economy. Competition plays a significant role in making products better. Businesses thrive from competing as it allows them to improve their product instead of keeping it stagnant. This also helps the consumer because the market is continually fighting over prices, making them lower and lower to undercut the competition.
You always have the right to choose the type of ink cartridges you want to use in your printer without any penalty from the manufacturer. There are pros and cons to all brands, so letting you decide what works best for you is ideal. Some people may enjoy the experience of going to brick-and-mortar stores to purchase original HP ink cartridges. Walmart printer ink may be priced slightly lower than buying directly from HP. Others may like paying significantly less money for their remanufactured cartridges when they order online. It all comes down to personal preference as both compatible and original printer cartridges work the same.
If you are in the market for some high-quality printer supplies at affordable prices, there are always online outlets that sell cheap printer ink. Here at 1ink.com, we have a massive selection of discount ink and toner cartridges for HP, Canon, Dell, Brother, and so many more. Our high-quality products are the top of the line when it comes to affordability and functionality, and they include a 100% satisfaction guarantee.