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Brother printers - get around the ink con
cartridge saying empty when it's almost full

 11:16 am on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

I've just discovered a way around the infuriating message my Brother printer gives. It says that the cartridge is empty when it's nearly full. Inserting, reinserting and cleaning of print heads time and time again still gives the same message. After wasting almost six hours (I've got two of the same model printers with exactly the same behaviour) I Googled [google.co.uk] the symptoms and came up with the magic solution that I just had to share:

Put some black tape over the angled portion of the cartridge to prevent the sensor in the printer from reading it. Magically, the cartridges are now full again! Hope this helps somebody else.



 11:54 am on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

What happens when they actually ARE empty? No helpful message!



 11:57 am on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

Given a choice of throwing out a nearly new cartridge or keeping a spare around there's no contest ;)


 12:11 pm on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

Keep your eye on them: When they are empty they will push air through your printhead - this can quite quickly damage the printhead and these are so expensive (between about 70+VAT and 250+VAT, depending on your machine) that you usually might as well replace the machine.

Some brands leave 30% of the ink in the 'empty' cartridge to protect the printhead.

Just something to consider when analysing the costs!


 1:09 pm on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

That's a good point, thanks for that. So, whichever way you cut it the printer manufacturers really do win :(


 6:14 pm on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

whichever way you cut it the printer manufacturers really do win

How do you think they can afford to give away so many printers with new machines? ;)

I recently purchased a real nice HP all in one office jet. I got it home to find that the cartridges for my new printer are at least 33% SMALLER than my last printer and are $15 MORE than the older catridges. How nice.


 6:27 pm on Jul 29, 2005 (gmt 0)

I know what you mean. The thing is I'd be happy to pay 1,000 for a decent home printer if I knew it would always do what it's supposed to do and last me 10 years like my first colour laser did (10K at that time). But, no matter how much you pay for a home printer now you have to live with the fact that they'll try to rip you off on the cartridges/toners. And the quality is likely to be flaky.

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