Ink inkjet refill cartridge printer systems come in many different types since printers use different printing technologies. Not all ink cartridges are created the same way. So if you think that it takes only one simple method refill your own printer cartridge, that’s where you’re wrong. A successful printer ink cartridge refill will depend on whether you do it correctly, and you won’t be able to do that if you don’t know what kind of cartridge you have in the first place.
The different types of inkjet cartridges will determine what process you will take to refill the cartridge. The type of the cartridge will also determine how many times you can refill your printer cartridge. Also, knowing the type of cartridge you use will also warn you about the refilling problems that are most commonly associated with your specific cartridge type.
Types of Inkjet Ink Refill Cartridge Printer Systems
- Sponge cartridges
- Single-color individual cartridges
- Multi-color cartridges
- Reservoir cartridges
1. Sponge cartridges
Sponge cartridges are printer ink cartridges that contain a sponge inside them. This is the most common type of cartridge. In this cartridge, the sponge fills up the entire space inside the cartridge. To refill such cartridges, you have to inject the ink into the sponge then wait for it to saturate the sponge. When using this type of ink inkjet refill cartridge printer, you have to wait for a few hours after refilling the cartridge before you can use your printer.
When refilling sponge cartridges, do the refill slowly. Refilling them rapidly means that the ink won’t be able to chase the air out of the sponge. This will result in air bubbles within the sponge, which can stop the cartridge during printing because the air will block the ink from seeping through the sponge.
If this problem occurs, take out the cartridge and tap it on the side to try and push the air bubbles from the bottom of the sponge to the top. The air can also disappear by itself if you don’t use the cartridge overnight or over an entire weekend to be sure.
2. Single-color individual cartridges
Recently, printer brands have started using single-color individual cartridges. These are cartridges that contain only a single ink color. So if you have a color printer, you will have one separate ink cartridge for black, another for cyan, another for magenta, and another for yellow. The advantage of this is when only one ink runs out, you can replace the cartridge only for that ink instead of replacing all the colors.
3. Multi-color cartridges
If there are single-color cartridges, there are multi-color cartridges. These are cartridges that contain all the ink colors the printer uses. The disadvantage is that you will rarely need to refill all of the colors at the same time, so you have to be very careful when refilling only one color. The best way is to put a tape over the openings of the other colors to make sure you only refill one chamber of the cartridge. If you’re not careful, you will contaminate the other colors with another color, and this will cause dirty and inaccurate color print output.
4. Reservoir cartridges
Reservoir cartridges are cartridges that only contain an ink reservoir. This kind of cartridge does not have a sponge inside. You just see a chamber completely filled with liquid ink. This is, obviously, the easiest to refill since you just have to transfer the liquid ink from one container to another. It would be like pouring water from one container to another.
Reservoir cartridges can be repeatedly refilled, so you can keep on using the same ink inkjet refill cartridge-printer combination.
Special HP and Epson Cartridge Types for Ink Inkjet Refill Cartridge Printer Technologies
Some brands offer special types of cartridges that work with their special printing technologies. For example, Epson’s cartridges are designed for Epson’s patented and exclusive piezoelectric ink jet printing technology. As for HP, the brand is one of the few brands that use vacuum-retained cartridges a lot. These are more complicated to refill, because you’d have to re-seal the cartridge back afterwards with the use of a hot glue or wax. These two types of ink inkjet refill cartridge printer systems only apply if you have either an HP or an Epson printer.