Toner refill the environmental benefits

Toner Refill environmental benefits

“Toner Empty or Replace Toner Cartridge” are just some of the warning messages you will have seen when you own a laser printer. The messages relate to the expensive consumable parts that live within your printer and that need to be replaced. So what do you do with the old ink or toner cartridges? Do you put them in the bin? Do you recycle them? Can you reuse them?

Worldwide more than 1.1 billion printer cartridges are sold every year. Independent studies show that more than 500 million printer cartridges are dumped in landfill sites every year around the world.

Closer to home - 24 million homes in the UK have a personal computer and 90% of those UK homes will have an inkjet or laser printer. The average UK household will use 2-3 cartridges a year. Sadly only 15% of the 65 million printer cartridges that are sold in the UK, will actually be sent to be recycled at the end of their short life. This means the rest end up in a landfill site.

Some of the facts linked to this are quite scary.

  • The average cartridge thrown into landfill takes 1000 years to decompose
  • To manufacture a new original toner cartridge will take 3.5 litres of oil
  • The manufacturing process used to make a new toner cartridge will produce 4.8 kg of CO2
  • The average toner cartridge is composed of 60 percent plastic, 35% percent ferrous metal and smaller amounts of rubber, paper, foam and toner all of which will go to waste
  • Transportation – transporting cartridges around the world leaves a heavy carbon footprint

So what can you do?

Our idea is simple. If you use our refill products - not only will you save money but you can also reduce your printing carbon footprint by at least 50%. (We believe it will be alot more than a 50% reduction but we are airing on the side of caution and using independent reports that we reference at the end of this article)

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Reduce – this is fairly straight forward. It involves reducing the amount of resources you use when you print.

  • Only print documents when you need to
  • Print on both sides of the paper
  • Buy recycled paper
  • Turn your printer off when it is not in use
  • Use an eco font for text or print in draft mode


Reuse is the greenest form of environmental responsibility. Common sense suggests that you should first reuse a cartridge before you send it off for recycling. For the average printer cartridge this means that you should refill and reuse your ink/toner cartridge.

The majority of cartridges can easily be refilled up to 2-3 times without any decrease in print quality. Every cartridge that is refilled is one fewer that is going directly to the landfill site, it is also one less new cartridge that needs to be produced from the planet’s limited resources.

  • 80% less materials consumed by refilling
  • 50% less energy consumed (less energy in production and transportation)
  • Reduces the need for landfill or incineration
  • Prevents pollution caused by manufacturing products from virgin materials
  • Helps sustain the environment for future generations

Reuse is far superior to recycling as it won’t use up any non-renewable resources (mainly plastic and metal). It is also very simple to do, will save you money and give you a warm glow knowing that you have done the right thing.

A cartridge and all its components should always first be evaluated to check that refilling and reuse is a viable option. The easiest way for you to check is by looking at the quality of the prints the cartridges was producing before the printer told you it was empty. If the quality is fine, refilling is your best option.  If refilling is not possible then responsible recycling should be pursued.

So to help save our planet and create a cleaner and greener world please share the link to

Or download our handy guide to the environmental benefits of refilling.


We tend to look at "recycling" when we have a product on our hands that is big, broken or empty and we don’t think it should be put in the bin.

If refilling is not an option - you should make use of the free recycling services that many charities or printer manufactures offer and send the cartridge off to be recycled.

Studies cited

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