How To Store Ink Cartridges When Not In Use

Posted by André Martins on

Helpful Tips for Storing your Ink

Getting the most out of your ink cartridges when not in use, will help prolong the life and get you even more value for your money.

Here’s some quick tips which we’ve put together to ensure you get the most out of your inks. With just a few tips on how to store your ink cartridges, you can make sure that your ink lasts until when you actually need to use it.

Store Ink Cartridges Upright

One of the most important things you can do when storing inks is the keep them upright.

This won’t prolong the inks life before drying out, but if you leave inks laying down or even worse, upside down, there is a chance the ink could leak out of the cartridge.

Not only is that a waste of ink , it’s a waste of money and could create a mess!

Some manufacturers recommend keeping cartridges with the print head facing up, especially cartridges that contain more than one colour.

Leaving these cartridges upside down or laying on its side can cause the colours the leak out of their ink chambers, mixing together and rendering the cartridge useless with contaminated ink.

Store Ink Cartridges in Cool, Dark Places

When it comes to increasing the storage life of inks the "physical" storage is important, ideally you want to keep your inks or toner in a cool, dry place .

Keeping the cartridges in a dark room stops the ink quality being degraded by direct sunlight. Ink cartridges that have already been opened can be stored for up to 6 months if kept in the right conditions, whilst new and sealed cartridges can last up to 2 years sometimes longer depending on the brand.

Store your ink cartridges in a cool ventilated place, keeping your inks in a room that stays at an average room temperature and below is perfect!

Keeping your inks somewhere too warm, can cause the inks to dry out prematurely or cause the ink to bubble which can cause problems and leaks when it comes to printing.

We suggest storing inks draw or cabinet somewhere you don’t need to open unless necessary.

Keep the Cartridges Sealed

Another key point is don’t open cartridges until you need to use them! The best packaging for an ink cartridge is the plastic sleeve they come in, this prevents air exposure, which can be the quickest way to drying out inks.

This keeps the ink in its original state and keeps the print head moist. No air escapes or gets caught in the cartridge, helping to ensure no parts are affected.

Moisture is important when storing ink cartridges, so seal the bag with the cartridge inside. If you have removed the ink cartridge from its plastic sleeve and don’t have access to the tools to seal them back up in an air tight package.

The next best thing is to place them in a carrier bag and seal it by wrapping an elastic band around a few times.

How to Use Ink Cartridges That Have Been Stored For a Long Time

If cartridges have been stored for a while and you wish to print, do not just insert the cartridge into the printer and begin printing. Doing this could damage your printer and waste your ink. Just follow these quick steps:

  1. Firstly, unseal the cartridge, check for any ink spills and wipe any dust and spills off.
  2. Check the print head is moist by wiping tissue paper across the print head.
  3. Make sure the cartridge contact terminals appear as they should be.
  4. Insert into printer and print a test page.

Storing ink cartridges correctly can increase how long the inks last, but it is also worth taking care of your printer too. Printers can be affected by dust and ink spills if unused for long periods. A printer that’s not functioning correctly could end up costing unnecessary money.


For anymore information, please message us at and one of our staff members will be happy to help further. 


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