Face it, printer ink can be incredibly expensive.  Black ink for an inkjet printer can run close to $20 while color ink could cost you closer to $40.


One way to save money is to buy what’s called  third-party cartridges that fit your printer. These are sold at a what is usually a substantial discount.

For example, Meijer offers this ink cartridge at a full $10 less per cartridge than the printer manufacturer’s list price.


HP is hoping to put an end to that practice when buying replacement ink for their machines.  The company says it’s to protect their Ink sales are very important for printer makers. They offer home printers at a low price and make up the cash on the ink. And with  the home and business printer business in decline, they need to make up the money where they can.

After a recent firmware update, owners of many HP printer models are finding that their printers won’t recognize those third-party cartridges. Instead, users get an error saying that the cartridge is damaged.

An ink cartridge is a little more sophisticated than the typewriter ribbons of old. Each cartridge has a special security chip that tells the printer just what kind of cartridge it is.  Your cartridge will need that chip or your HP printer won’t work with it now.

If you’re using refurbished or refilled cartridges that have that chip, they should still work.

After a huge backlash, the company says it will now offer an optional update that will allow you to use third-party ink again. Click here to read more about when that will be available.

~ Cynthia