Why are inkjet cartridges and laptop batteries sooo expensive? At $130 a pop, I am on my third battery for my Apple computer in three years. And as it turns out, my Canon Pixma All-In-One printer uses ink whether it prints documents, or not. If the printer sits idle for long periods of time, it is still using the ink! The cost for replacing a set of ink cartridges is a cool $75.78 at Staples office supplies. That is nearly the price of the printer, itself. After paying the piper several times, I decided to look elsewhere for a discount. And I'm glad I did.
Though neither Apple, nor Canon would ever recommend the practice, my research lead to compatible, copycat accessories.
For a laptop battery, I ordered from BatteryEdge. Cost: $50, saving a whopping $80. The battery arrived in mint condition and is flawless. I can't tell a difference in how my computer performs.
For inkjet cartridges, I recommend turning to Overstock, or Amazon and entering “compatible inkjet cartridges” in their search boxes. Using Amazon, I found my knockoff Canon ink cartridges -- a 10 pack (2-sets) for a low $8.34, plus $5 shipping. You can find individual cartridges at Overstock also. Once inserted in my printer, the ink works exactly the same as the name brand. However, you should unscrew the caps off of the cartridges very carefully. The plastic casings are slightly flimsier than the ones from Canon. Nonetheless, the hugh savings make this compromise worth it. Just remember to be gentle when breaking the seal. More of a priority, my printer accepts the ink, and documents print as before, looking great.
When shopping online always read the customer reviews to see what others have to say about the product and company. You always want excellent customer care in case you need to exchange, or return a product. You want to order from companies who guarantee their products. If a product is flawed, a reputable merchant will send out a replacement, or refund your money.
Both Overstock and BatteryEdge have live phone help, who will patiently answer all your questions and walk you through a purchase so you don't order mistakes.
If you do your research, you will reap big savings on compatible replacements for your battery-loving-computer and ink-hungry-printer.
1. To prolong the life of your laptop battery: (a) Once a week, unplug it from the wall and use some of the charge. Then, recharge it back to 100%. (b) Once a month let the charge run all the way down to 0%, then recharge it to 100%.
2. If you know you won't be printing for a length of time, remove the ink cartridges from the printer, and store them in separate zip lock bags until you resume printing.
3. Leave your printer on "sleep" rather then turning it off and on. Turning it "off," then back "on" uses more ink.
4. If you buy a manufacturer's ink from Staples, return the empty cartridges for a $2 [each] Staples store coupon.
It all adds up to more money in your pockets.
Update: I ordered a laptop capatiable battery from Amazon for $22, including shipping. It keeps the charge for 1.5 to 2 hours, which is enough for my needs. If more hours are required, I'd buy extra batteries for that low price.
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