Five Biggest Sources of Copier and Printer Waste

Reduce. Reuse. Recycle. Everywhere I go I see this popular mantra on bags, boxes, signs and more. It is a good thing to remember, and it even applies to printers and copiers. Unfortunately, I think many companies miss out on the savings they could realize with office equipment if they would only examine and, more importantly, eliminate common sources of waste.

In this blog post, I have  invited Noelle Frank, our managed print services specialist, to give you some tips on identifying where you can conserve.

How to save money with your copier or printer


If you’re like most, you may be calculating only the hard costs associated with your organization’s printer and copier units, such as toner, maintenance kits and paper. But there are many other types of costs to think about when trying to determine total spending.

Have you considered:

  • Your “soft costs”? These would include the value of the time you or another employee spends on fixing a printer, as well as the expense of outsourcing maintenance when necessary.
  • How many people in your office have their own printer and how much are they printing? It turns out that certain types printers are more expensive to operate and service than copiers, and printing high-volume projects may be costing you a bundle.
  • Inkjet printer expenses? At some point, you may have purchased an inkjet, thinking you were getting a good deal, but you will probably pay hundreds or even thousands over the course of its life for ink cartridges.
  • Your fill rate? This term refers to the amount of toner used on a page, which varies, of course. When you buy toner from the store, you will notice that you should get a 10,000-page volume yield based on a 5% fill rate (about a seven-sentence paragraph) out of that toner. If you are printing out more than a paragraph (likely!), then you will get less than 10,000 prints and need to replace the toner sooner than you thought.
  • Your cost per page? Here is an example. The cost of HP 4000 toner cartridge is about $170, and it promises to deliver 10,000 prints (at that 5% fill rate). That amounts to $0.017 per page to print. But if you are putting more toner on a page, you may only get a yield of 7,000, which costs $0.024 per page. Over the course of time, that adds up.

There are several ways to reduce your costs, based on these key five key areas.

  1. Get rid of any inkjet printers you may have. Based on the cost of the ink, they really are not cost efficient.
  2. Outsource big print jobs, especially if you do not have a high-volume printer in house.
  3. Look into buying or leasing a newer, more efficient all-in-one printer that provides money-saving features like page review, so you can check what you’re going to print out before the machine makes 100 copies.
  4. Consider managed print services (MPS). Simply put, this program is intended to help an organization with a large fleet of printers to manage the volume of documents and minimize the costs associated with them. It is all about saving time and money. With MPS, your printer dealer should provide a thorough print audit to reveal areas of inefficiency with a fleet and then map out a plan for improving performance (and your bottom line).

If you manage a business, school or church in Canton, North Canton, Akron, Youngstown and beyond, contact me for more information about eliminating waste with copiers and printers. Together, I know we can save your company money.

Image credit: serezniy / 123RF Stock Photo