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This site started out as an advice site to educate people on how to save money amid all the confusion and scams on the net. What the printer companies are doing amounts to legalized piracy and our goal was to help you keep your own money in your pockets. Eventually visitors urged us to stock the items we recommended and offer them on the site. When we discovered the reusable cartridges, we found a fantastic product difficult to obtain in the US so we had to import them. Our advice site evolved into a family business. Our goal is help you save money while getting great results from your printer.
We consider ourselves more than reasonable in dealing with customers and go the extra mile to make sure no one is disappointed. However, sometimes a few individuals make it difficult for everyone else. Wouldn't it be nice if everyone conducted themselves fairly and we wouldn't need lawyers and contracts to keep people honest? So while we would like to say 100% money-back guarantee, no questions asked, a few people have made it impossible to do this without adding some conditions. They can be summed up in two words: be reasonable.
We have a 60-day window in which to give credit car or paypal refunds, so refund requests must be received within this time frame (though we have at time sent refund checks even after that time period). The time limit for replacement is much more generous. If there is a problem with one or two of our cartridges, we will replace them. If three cartridges, we will refund the purchase price for those cartridges and any unopened ones returned within the window. If a printer uses four or six different cartridges (black and 3-5 colors) and you opened one of each, we will take those back. But don't open more than one of each color and expect a refund.
Why this limit? It is always possible that one or two were defective. This can happen (and has) even with genuine Epson products. But if it is two of the same color, this indicates a problem with the printer itself. What happens is the print head gets clogged and the printer stops producing that color. The customer puts in a new cartridge and it still won't print. The customer assumes the cartridge is defective and tries a second. At that point, the customer should realize it is a printer problem. Even if the customer believes it to be a cartridge problem, if two don't work, there is no point in continuing to open the rest. Return them for a refund. But we did have at least one person order a dozen black cartridges, then (without contacting us) return them all opened and empty six months later, claiming they were all defective. We did not refund in that situation. Another customer received 12 black cartridges on a hot day in a southern state. Exposure to heat creates pressure within the cartridge. (So does exposure to extreme cold.) He then emailed to say all 12 cartridges spewed ink when he removed the yellow tape and he wanted a refund. Had he called or emailed after opening the first one or two, we could have told him to put them in a refrigerator and let them cool off before opening. (And had it been a cold day, we would have recommended letting them warm up.) But if the first one spewed and then the second, why continue to open all 12? We have to protect ourselves from geniuses like that. Incidentally, we did send another 6 free and that person is still a loyal customer. But we went beyond our warranty and are not obligated to do so.
It does not take months to decide an entire order is defective. The customer tries one and it doesn't work, tries a second and has the same issue and at that point should contact us. Naturally we don't expect a customer to test an entire order within two months. So if they bought a quantity and a few months later find that one didn't work properly, we will replace it or add extra to their next order. But to request a refund, it must be done within the window. The excuse "I know I bought these 6 months ago but I just got around to using them" doesn't cut it. What's to stop anyone from buying anything - a MP3 player, computer, car, etc and saying they didn't use it until after the warranty expired? The warranty begins from date of purchase, not the date they decide to use it.
We have made exchanges a year after the purchase date when there was good reason. For example, customers bought a quantity of cartridges and then had to buy a new printer which couldn't take the old cartridges. We almost always take back sealed cartridges. But we don't want to be obligated to do so, hence the limitations in the warranty.
If you experience a problem, email or call first. Often we can resolve the problem over the phone. We get very few cartridges back and most of those work just fine in our printers. If we can't solve it, the next step would be to replace or refund. We may require that you send the product back to us. We do not send prepaid potage labels or reimburse your shipping. If this is for replacement, we will add extra to cover your costs. (We also put extra cartridges in most of our Epson, Canon and Brother orders.) This is what you accept when placing your order online. If you buy an item from a store and it doesn't work, it must be returned to the store. You can't call them up and expect to get your money back. If you expect a refund without returning the merchandise, shop elsewhere.
When returning opened ink cartridges, you must be careful to seal them against leaks. If they leak, the Post Office will dispose of them without delivery. Tape the bottom of the cartridge where the printer punctured it and the top where you removed the yellow tape. Place them in a baggie. Do not put closed cartridges in the same baggie. Return them to:
2412 Oceancrest Blvd
Far Rockaway, NY 11691
We supply schools, professional printers and corporations. We do almost no advertising. Most of our customers come to us by referral from other customers. We must be doing something right (and our cartridges must be working properly) to achieve this track record. As long as your expectations are reasonable, we will be more than reasonable.
Our warranty only covers the cartridges bought from us and for up to the amount paid us. We do not cover any other expenses. If someone waited until the day an important job was due and discovered a cartridge didn't work and had to run out and pay a lot more somewhere else, they can't expect us to refund the amount they paid for the other cartridge. We had one customer say since a cartridge didn't work and she couldn't find another one, she bought a whole new printer and expected us to pay for it. Sorry, but that's not the way it works. Another customer complained that his 4-year old printer stopped working a year and a half after putting in our cartridges so it had to be the fault of our cartridges and therefore he expected us to buy him a new printer. I hope anyone reading this understands why this is not a reasonable expectation. If not, please shop elsewhere.
Don't wait until you're down to your last cartridge on the last day you have to complete a critical job. At about $3 a cartridge, there is no reason not to have a backup. Someone's failure to spend an extra $3 does not impose an obligation on us. An entire set of our cartridges cost less than a single Epson cartridge. Instead of spending $60-$100 for one set of Epsons, spend $20 to $40 for two to three sets of ours. With our special bonuses for buying backup sets, there is no excuse not to be prepared.
We do not offer lifetime free replacements. Cartridges do not contain any moving parts. There is no particular reason a reusable or refillable cartridge can't last for years. We have a set going on four years. However, electronic chips can be damaged by stray voltage, liquid, or being touched by sweaty fingers. So don't count on your cartridge lasting forever. We typically replace it free within a few months of purchase or we add an extra in your next order. But we did have a professional print shop with multiple printers buy a single set of refillable cartridges and move it from printer to printer. Naturally doing this caused the ink to be used very quickly. Every time time cartridges are inserted in a printer, they go through a charging process which uses a good deal of ink. This print shop kept calling to complain the ink was being used too quickly. In four months we had sent five replacements for the four cartridges they bought. In all that time, despite our reminders, they didn't take the obvious step of buying a set for each printer. Expecting unlimited lifetime replacements of a $4 item is not reasonable. Epson won't do it and their cartridges cost five times more and give one-third the ink. Incidentally, when we stopped replacing the cartridges, this print shop bought several sets and has had no problems since. They still buy their ink from us and gave us a glowing recommendation. See our customer testimonials on the upper left. We also had customers call every few months to ask for a replacement for a different cartridge - all without placing any new orders. They were basically using our warranty to get free replacements every time they ran out of ink. Over a year they had received a complete new set, cartridge by cartridge. With some people abusing our warranty we can no longer afford to be that generous. So if you make your purchase expecting our basic warranty and you experience some issue, you will receive service which exceeds any reasonable expectations.
In March 2007, the printer companies won the legal right to manufacture printers which refuse to recognize third-party ink cartridges. In the past, the printer would issue a warning that these were not genuine but would continue to work. After March 2007, printers refused to recognize compatible ink cartridges, thanks to this legal decision. I don't know what the judge who made this ruling was thinking. Can you imagine if you could only buy gas from the manufacturer of your car and it came in cartridges at $5,000 a gallon? That's right - printer ink is now over $5,000 a gallon! A typical cartridge holds less than a half ounce of ink for about $20. A gallon is 128 ounces. 128 x 2 x $20 = $5180.
How do the printer companies prevent third-party ink cartridges from being recognized? By putting a chip on their own ink cartridges which the printer reads. If the chip can not identify itself to the printer as a match, the ink cartridge will be rejected. They charge about two dollars more to cover the cost of that chip. So you are paying extra for a chip which prevents you from shopping for the best deal. Talk about adding insult to injury! So why can't you just remove that chip and attach it to a third-party ink cartridge? Because when the printer thinks the ink cartridge is empty, it sends a signal to the chip to self-destruct. The chip can not be reset. So you have to keep paying for new chips which actually work against your interest!
But the situation gets even worse. Some ink cartridges contain sponges, so some of that expensive ink remains behind in the sponge. On top of that, the printer reports that the ink cartridge is empty when there is still 10-15% of the ink left. This is because the printer only estimates the amount of ink left. It is dangerous for the print head to run out of ink while printing so it errs on the side of caution. So over $2 of that ink might never get used. Between the chip and the wasted ink, you could be losing about $4 on every ink cartridge you buy. (We won't even discuss the rip-off price in the first place.) Are you feeling robbed yet?
Fortunately, solutions are at hand. Unfortunately, some of them don't work reliably and even damage your printer. Some companies are selling remanufactured ink cartridges (used ink cartridges which have been refilled with new ink and the chips replaced or reset) and refillable ink cartridges (not reusable), which come with bottles of ink and syringes to inject new ink into the ink cartridge. There are a number of problems with these solutions, including the mess. But the real problem is that large ink bottles begin clotting the moment they're exposed to air. Those clots inevitably wind up being drawn into the syringe and going into the print head, clogging your printer. Every day I see several messages on tech forums from people asking why their printers stopped working after they started using refilled ink cartridges. (I also see messages from people who say they have refilled ink cartridges without a problem. That's like saying they drove through a red light and didn't have an accident so it must be safe to continue doing so.) If you don't plan on replacing your printer, don't refill your single-use ink cartridges or use remanufactured Epson ink cartridges.
Note: many HP printers contain the heads in the ink cartridge. These are safe to remanufacture if done properly. The remanufactured ink cartridges are disassembled, cleaned, refilled and tested. Even if there is a problem, it will only affect the ink cartridge and will not damage the printer. Refilling ink cartridges - where new ink is added to the old, partically clotted ink already in the cartridge, is a risky proposition which often fails, can damage the printer and this damage is specifically excluded from the warranty.)
But it gets better. Our cartridges do not use a sponge, so no wasted ink is left behind. And when the printer reports empty, if there is still enough ink in the cartridge, you can remove it and re-insert it. It will reset to full and you can continue printing as long as ink remains. You can tell how much ink remains by looking at the back of the tank which is transparent.
Compare the savings:
20 replacement inks tanks containing 300 ml of ink = $50. You will be able to use almost all 300 ml
It takes almost 50 Epson ink cartridges to get 300 ml of usable ink - about $900.
You start off by saving more than 90%. But it gets even better.
Notice that we give an 12 pack instead of 10. Repeat customers get a free cartridge and anyone buying refills has to be a repeat customer. So our 5-pack became a 6-pack and therefore our 11-pack became a 12-pack. If you double your order, you will get 25. If you pay with a non credit card method (paypal bank account, money order or check) you will get an extra cartridge. The end result is free Epson ink - and lots of it.
But we promised absolutely free so here's the secret to getting back $40 - not just one time but over and over every month. When you have finished using these cartridges, bring the empties to Office Depot, OfficeMax or Staples. Office Depot will give you $2 store credit per empty for up to 20 a month. That's $40 a month, $480 a year. Officemax will give you $2 credit for up to 10 cartridges a month - that's $20 every month. Staples will give you $2 a month for 10 cartridges, 20 if you're a premier member. Each store has a condition. For Staples you have to spend $30 in ink or toner every 6 months. So spend $30 a year to get back $480 or $240 in FREE ink cartridges every year. $480 buys you as many as 240 double-capacity ink tanks. Note: this is in the US only.
One of these scans is the actual book and the other is a scan of a plain paper printout of a scan of the book done on an Epson Workforce 500 using our reusable Epson ink cartridges. Because it was scanned, then printed (on plain paper with a non-photo-quality printer), then scanned again, some quality was lost. But notice the vibrant colors. Dye-based inks like ours are more vibrant than pigment inks like epson (read Dye vs Pigment Ink). Professional photographers have e-mailed us to say their photos come out better with our ink. (Read Customer Testimonials). For more pictures: more comparisons using other printers.