What is an aftermarket cartridge?
An aftermarket cartridge (sometimes called a generic or compatible cartridge) is simply an ink or toner cartridge manufactured by a third party as opposed to your original equipment manufacturer (OEM).
But aftermarket cartridges are just old cartridges that have been refilled with ink, right?
Wrong. Aftermarket cartridges fall into two categories: new and remanufactured. The majority of aftermarkets are new, manufactured from scratch to the same quality standards as the genuine. The rest are classed as remanufactured, which are original cartridges that have gone through one cycle of service. These cartridges are thoroughly cleaned, with worn or damaged parts replaced. The cartridges are then filled with new ink or toner and microchips are replaced to ensure proper function of the cartridges. All cartridges are inspected for leakage and tested by actual print testing. Only those that pass through strict standards will be released to the market.
Will aftermarket ink & toner cartridges work just as well as the genuine?
Yes. There are many third party manufacturers making aftermarket cartridges in the market these days as it has become a big industry. These high quality aftermarket and remanufactured cartridges perform just as well or better than the OEM cartridges.
Don’t aftermarket cartridges have less ink/lower page yields?
No. The page yield/ink volume of each cartridge should be stated in product specification regardless of the type of cartridges. All of our Inkspot brand aftermarkets contain the same amount (and in most cases, more) ink than the genuine cartridges. Most of our aftermarket cartridges are also high yield cartridges, producing much more print output than the standard yield OEM cartridges. No matter whether you are purchasing OEM, compatible or remanufactured cartridges, always compare the page yield and the printing cost per page before the purchase.
Will using aftermarkets damage my printer?
A common myth, we’ve all heard the horror story of “my friend tried aftermarkets and then their printer stopped working”. Printer cartridges are self contained units. On a very rare occasion a defective cartridges may fail to print or may leak requiring some clean up. However, these malfunctions will not damage your printer and they happen to OEM cartridges as well as aftermarket cartridges. Be careful though, it’s not difficult to find sub-standard aftermarkets cartridges for sale, particularly no-name brands and anonymous websites. These are the cartridges that are usually faulty and won’t read in your printer, or leak ink causing a mess. Always make sure to only ever buy from reputable companies with returns policies and guarantees.
Will using aftermarkets void my printer warranty?
Another common myth, the answer is no. Don’t be bullied by the big printer companies! Contrary to claims by original equipment manufacturers, using any of the generic inkjet products will not void any warranty on your printer. In fact, according to Australian Trade Practices Act, it is illegal for a printer manufacturer to require the consumer to use a particular brand of ink supply (Australian Market Information).
So why then are aftermarkets so much cheaper than the genuine?
The question really is why are genuine cartridges so expensive? Printer companies are selling printers at next to cost price, expecting you to buy their cartridges for outrageous prices. A set of genuine cartridges often costs more than a printer. On top of this, the cartridges supplied with a new printer are usually low capacity cartridges just to get you started. Genuine cartridges are a manufacturer’s profit. With research and development costs the manufacturers have to make their money back somehow, leading to high consumable prices once a customer has committed to a printer. Aftermarket products have no such overheads so can charge much lower prices when producing cartridges en mass.