What does Page Life mean when buying Ink or Toners?

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What does 5% page print look like?

To understand the question we need to understand what is 5% page print, and why is it measured in this manner.

On daily basis we get asked in our retail ink shop in Dewsbury, what is 5% page life, and how much does 5% cover in an A4 paper? Most of the time we refer to our excellent website or walk in to the warehouse, locate the item, and tell customer how many pages should it print.

Page Life determines how many pages you can print based on 5% of print coverage. Roughly 5% works out a document printing just text. So if you had an image that takes up quarter of the page than you will be printing at maybe 40% or more. And if you have a background colour on A4 than you are printing nearly 100% and as such that toner or ink is not going to last at all.

So how do you actually calculate the page prints / pagelife?

Lets take two printers as an example. One Mono Laser printer and one colour laser printer.

HP Mono Laserjet P1102 printer takes CE285A Toner

So lets work out the page life and see what the per page print cost is, based on 5% coverage, i.e. you are printing only documents with no pictures and no major backgrounds.

CE285A Original Toner price is £58.92 / Page life of 2500 = 2.4p per page print cost.

CE285A Remanufactured Toner price is £44.99 / page life of 2500 = 1.8/p per page print cost.

So a HP remanufactured CE285A compatible toner provides a good value money at a print cost of only 1.8p per page.

Take a HP colour Laser printer CP1525

It takes HP128A Toners. Lets work out the cost when we use Originals Toners.

  • HP Colour Laserjet CE320A Black (2000 page life),
  • HP Colour Laserjet CE321A Cyan (1300 Page life),
  • HP Colour Laserjet CE322A Yellow (1300 Page life),
  • HP Colour Laserjet CE323A Magenta (1300 Page life).

To work out the total cost on per page print in colour based on 5% coverage.

(63.39/2000) + (£60.31/1300) + (£60.31/1300) + (£60.31/1300) = 7.8p per page print cost.

So now you know how the cost of the per page is worked.

And that's really all there is to it. Try calculating cost per page for your current printer and compare it to other machines and cartridges on the market. This would help you make a better decision in longer runs and will help you save lot of money.

But the question still remains.

What does 5% page print actually looks like.

Copy the following underlined paragraphs, open a new Word Document and paste the text, using default Calibri font of font size 11.

"HP Mono LaserJet P1102 printer takes CE285A Toner.

So lets work out the page life and see what the per page print cost is, based on 5% coverage, i.e. you are printing only documents with no pictures and no major backgrounds.

CE285A Original Toner price is £58.92 / Page life of 2500 = 2.4p per page print cost.

CE285A Remanufactured Toner price is £44.99 / page life of 2500 = 1.8/p per page print cost.

So a HP remanufactured CE285A compatible toner provides a good value money at a print cost of only 1.8p per page.

Take a HP colour Laser printer CP1525

It takes HP128A Toners. Lets work out the cost when we use Originals Toners. HP Colour Laserjet CE320A Black (2000 page life), CE321A Cyan (1300 Page life), CE322A Yellow (1300 Page life), CE323A Magenta (1300 Page life).

To work out the total cost on per page print in colour based on 5% coverage.

(63.39/2000) + (£60.31/1300) + (£60.31/1300) + (£60.31/1300) = 7.8p per page print cost."

This is what your 5% page print looks like.

But who prints only the top half of their assignments or invoices or letters. We usually use whole page to print. So copy the same text and paste it 3 times in your Word document. If you have pasted it 3 times, that means your page print is 15%. If you have pasted it 4 times, than your page print is 20% and so on.

Some of the ways you can save money when printing in colour are.

Make sure you are not printing anything with a background. It is a common sense really. Everything looks good on the computer screen with a background but the reality is that when you print that page it prints background too and as such you will be running out of ink and toners sooner than you think.

Use an online software such as printwhatyoulike.com which removes the adverts, backgrounds etc, if printing website pages.

Don't have any unnecessary borders, bold text or underline text. Again its just common sense but more you bold the text or add any undelines or border more you are going to use the ink.

Don't print in photo quality mode on normal paper. It will run your ink out quicker.

Use your printer properties to set the quality of the print and select the right paper for the right job.

If printing a draft copies to review than again use printer properties and select printing in draft, which will save you more more ink.

When the warning comes up to say you are running low on ink or toner, take the toner out shake it a bit and put in the printer again. You will be able to get quiet a few pages out by doing this. Warning's are set by manufacturers and as such when the warning message pops its just as an advisory and not to say you have to change the cartridge or toner.

If you are using any other techniques that helps you prolong the use of your ink cartridge or laser toners than we would love to hear from you. Please email us.

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