Frequently Asked Questions & How To’s

You have questions; We have answers

Generic/Compatible ink is essentially ink or toner manufactured by a third party that is designed to work with specific printers. The concept is very similar to that of generic drugs, as name brand compatible ink is much cheaper than what is known as name brand “OEM” ink.

OEM stands for “original equipment manufacturer.” It’s just a fancy way of saying it is genuine brand name ink.

Most tests show little difference between Generic/Compatible and OEM ink.

The Generic/Compatible ink we stock performs to high quality standards, (known as iso 9001 standards). Most OEM products contain additives to extend the life of your photos prints. If you are printing photos and wish them to last for decades, OEM products would be the best choice.

Inkjet printers spray tiny droplets of liquid ink onto paper in order to create rich images and crisp text. From cover letters to coloring sheets, these printers can handle it all, but where they really shine is in photo printing. Inkjets are exceptional at smoothly blending colours together so you get photo print outs that are rich and vibrant.

Some inkjet printer manufacturers even offer special photo inks to help create better shading and contour in your prints. Suited for low volumes of work, these versatile printers are also able to print on a variety of mediums, including textured stationary and specially coated CDs and DVDs.

A laser beam inside the printer beams an image from your computer straight on to a rotating drum. Electrically charged toner (as opposed to ink) is attracted to the image on the drum and after a quick thermal process, the toner gets transferred onto paper as an exact copy of your image.

These printers tend to have higher print speeds than inkjets and can handle higher volumes of work, which makes them the ideal workhorse for a home office or small business.

Today's inks are divided into two classes: printing inks and writing inks.

Printing inks are further broken down into two subclasses: ink for conventional printing, in which a mechanical plate comes in contact with or transfers an image to the paper or object being printed on; and ink for digital nonimpact printing, which includes ink-jet and electrophotographic technologies. Color printing inks are made primarily with linseed oil, soybean oil, or a heavy petroleum distillate as the solvent (called the vehicle) combined with organic pigments. The pigments are made up of salts of multiring nitrogen-containing compounds (dyes), such as yellow lake, peacock blue, phthalocyanine green, and diarylide orange. Inorganic pigments also are used in printing inks to a lesser extent. Some examples are chrome green (Cr2O3), Prussian blue (Fe4[Fe(CN)6]3), cadmium yellow (CdS), and molybdate orange (a mix of lead chromate, molybdate, and sulfate).

Black ink is made using carbon black. And white pigments, such as titanium dioxide, are used either by themselves or to adjust characteristics of color inks. Inks also contain additives such as waxes, lubricants, surfactants, and drying agents to aid printing and to impart any desired special characteristics.

1. Go to START



4. Right click your printer and select PRINTING PREFERENCES

5. Select the MAINTENANCE TAB at the top

6. Select CLEANING (if severe, select DEEP CLEANING)

7. Some models may ask you to choose BLACK, COLOUR, or ALL. Select the appropriate option.

8. The Cleaning Cycle will take approximately 90-180 seconds.

9. Print a TEST PAGE or NOZZLE CHECK PATTERN to test if the black and colours are printing correctly. If there are any missing lines or streaks, repeat cleaning 2-3 times.

Please note terminology will vary depending on brand and model. Should you require more detailed instructions, please see your manual. If you have misplaced your manual you may download it at your brand’s website (example:,,

Cleaning cycles are an important part of every printer’s maintenance routine. A cleaning cycle should be performed on all colours every 4-6 weeks to ensure the life of your cartridges and your printer.