How Long Do Printers Last?

So, how long do printers last? Generally, a printer will last for about 3-5 years. But the lifespan of a printer depends on the brand, care, and usage. Plus, other factors will determine your printer lifetime. Good thing they are all under your control.

How Long Should an Inkjet Printer Last?

An inkjet has an average lifetime of two to three years with normal usage. But, it will either last longer if you print often. Or last sometimes lesser if you use it frequently. 

Inkjet printers can also last more than three years with proper care. An inkjet is a good investment for your home and office if you print less frequently.

Advantages of Inkjet Printer

Maybe you would love to own an inkjet printer for several reasons,

  • Low cost of purchase: inkjet printers are cheap to buy compared to other printers. Besides being affordable, you are guaranteed to get quality prints for your documents and images.

For instance, you may get an all-in-one inkjet printer at a lower cost than a laser printer of the same ability. So, if you are working on a budget, why not get an inkjet printer?

  • Quality: an inkjet printer will give you high-quality prints with fine and smooth detailing. The reason behind these stunning prints is their high-quality pigmentation.
  • Fast printing: unlike laser printers that have to heat before printing, inkjet printers will not need that time. So, you can print it as soon as you switch it on.
  • Sizable: inkjet printers are sizable. They can fit in small workspaces, unlike laser printers which require larger working spaces.
  • Portability: inkjet printers are light in weight. Fair enough to take to your conference or field to print away from the office. You will only need a power source.
  • Quiet working: in operation, inkjet printers are quiet; you don’t have to worry about any destruction.

Disadvantages of Inkjet Printers

Similarly, inkjet printers also have their downside.

● Have a slower printing speed compared to laser printers

●  Less durable since they have many moving parts

●  Designed for low volume offices

● Sometimes cartridges can be expensive

How Long Should a Laser Printer Last?

Laser printers have a life expectancy of about five years. But please note, their life will depend on the model you choose, operation, and level of use.

In many cases, your laser printer’s life will depend on how frequently you use it. The more you use the printer, the faster it will wear out. And vice versa.

Advantages of Laser Printers

Besides their long life, laser printers have other advantages over other printers. Including,

  • Large printing volumes: you can comfortably use a laser printer to print large volumes of documents. Also, laser printers will print multiple pages without jamming.
  • High printing speed: laser printers use light beams to print, which moves very quickly. Making laser printers faster than inkjet printers and dot matrix. Surprisingly, even the cheapest laser printer can print 20ppm.
  •   Reliable: laser printers are long-lasting and reliable. They use toners to print, so it can’t dry or evaporate like inkjet printers, where ink is prone to dry if the printer is used for a long time. 

      Laser printers are also built to last long. With proper care, it can last more than five years.

  • Low maintenance: although laser printers are expensive, their overall cost is low. These printers have a meager cost per page than inkjet printers since they use toners.
  • High-quality prints: laser printers are hard to beat on quality and sharp images. These printers will give you sharp and precise texts you can use for your business. Also, since the printer uses toners, you will rarely have streaks on your prints.
  • Noise-free: laser printers are known for noise-free operation, except when working in a tranquil environment.

Disadvantages of Laser Printers

Besides having several advantages, laser printers also have their downside.

  • High cost of purchase: laser printers cost up to three times the price of an inkjet printer. Which is the main reason many homes and small offices prefer inkjet printers.
  • Paper Compatibility: laser printers work with specific papers. They are only compatible with laser papers. Also, please note using low-quality papers may lead to jamming.
  • Large size: laser printers are often heavier and bulkier than inkjet printers. Their large size is attributed to their imaging drums and other delicate components.
  • Power consumption: laser printers are known to consume a lot of power- even when not printing. Luckily, the latest laser printer models have a power saver to curb high power consumption.

Difference Between Laser Printers and Inkjet Printers

Inkjet Laser 
Low purchasing costsHigh purchasing cost
High-quality printsQuality prints
Small in size/portableLarge in size
Less durablereliable/long-lasting
Low volume printingHigh volume printing
Expensive cartridges with high maintenanceLow-cost toner and less maintenance cost

What Can Damage Your Printer?

Here are some of the causes that may make your printer wear out faster

  • Excessive printing
  • Poor printing paper and ink cartridges quality
  • Dust
  • Lack of printer and cleaning and maintenance
  • Incorrect use of the printer
  • Paper jam

How to Make a Printer Long-lasting?

Buying a new printer is expensive, especially when you have no other option, due to failure or defect. Luckily, there are a few tips you need to know to take care of your printer to prolong its life expectancy.

Please consider the tips below to make your printer last longer.

Use Recommended/High-Quality Paper and Ink

Using high-quality ink and paper is the first step to a printer’s long life. Sometimes it might be expensive but cheaper than getting a new printer.

High-quality papers are less prone to jam, hence the smooth running of your printer. Also, the high-quality paper has little to no lint/dust that can make the printer clog or need frequent cleaning.

It’s important to use recommended ink cartridges to avoid damaging your printer print heads. Also, low-quality ink can lead to printer leakage damaging your prints.

Please use recommended ink cartridges for smooth printing and long-lasting printers.

Regular Printer Cleaning

Cleaning your printer often results in a long-lasting printer. You can clean your printer once every week on the exterior and clean the inner parts every 6months for a home printer.

You can clean it inside once every month for your office printer, serving several people. Please take note to do it properly to avoid damage. If you are not sure how to do it, please consult your printer manual. You can also get the information on the manufacturer’s website.

Following a Regular Maintenance Schedule

Besides cleaning your printer regularly, regular maintenance is equally important. With this, you will avoid expensive damage that may occur.

You can call in a provider to come, clean, and inspect your printer if there are issues that may cause damage if not attended to.

Yes. It might be the most expensive tip to maintain your printer but worth it- to extend your printer life. More so if your printer is shared and handles a lot of work.

Use the Printer Correctly.

If you have a printer, it’s good to take time and learn how to use it. Failure can result in faulty printers or end up reprinting your documents several times to get what you want—wasting your money and time.

So, to avoid this ensure everyone who uses the printer is familiar with its operations. You can take your time to show everyone concerned or let them read the printer menu and know how to use it correctly.

How to Know It’s Time to Get Another Printer

Unfortunately, sometimes you might do everything to maintain and keep your printer in good condition. But some things here and there are not going as you would wish. Don’t wait till it’s too late to get another printer. These include,

Your Printer No Longer Serves You.

A printer is a machine that’s supposed to make your work easy. Either printing, scanning, copying, or faxing. So, once you notice your printer is not serving your needs, it’s time to get another printer.

For instance, when starting your business, you will probably get a small printer to print a few business pages. With time, as your business grows, you will need to print more documents that your small printer can’t support.

It’s time to get a new printer.

Poor Quality Printing

Your printer will print poor prints from time to time, which is normal. If you notice this, examine other factors contributing to the low print quality, like clogged print heads and incorrect ink cartridge alignment.

But, if the cause is clogged printer nozzles, you need to learn how to clean printer nozzles to get high-quality prints. Also, before rushing to buy a new printer, consider checking your printer cartridges to ensure they are in the correct position with ink.

If still your printer prints poor prints, you might need to consider replacing your printer. Please note, printer ink cartridges are not always responsible for poor print quality.

Un-usual Slow Speed

Different printer models have different printings speed. Again, printer speed comes at a price- the faster it is, the more expensive. With this, you can understand that laser printers are costlier for their fast printing speed.

Another factor that determines the speed of a printer is the quality and type of document you are printing. A document with more graphics and pictures will take longer to print than a simple word document.

Maybe a slow printer is not a good reason to replace your printer, but it might impact your productivity. Creating the need to upgrade your printer.

Expensive Ink Cartridges

Many printer users find the old printer models expensive in ink and toners compared to newer models. With this, you might find that you are using a lot of money on ink cartridges which is not economical.

In this case, you would consider buying newer printer models. And enjoy ink and toner efficient printers.

Which Printer Lasts Longest?

Laser printers will serve you for a long time if you need a printer to serve you longer. Besides their durability, they will also print large volumes of monochrome and colored documents.

You have a good printer for your office to print quality prints to meet your large production quantities.

In addition, laser printers have a lifetime of a minimum of 5years with regular usage. Depending on your volume before replacing, translate to two more years than inkjets, which will last two to three years, depending on your use.

Conclusion

How long do printers last? Manufacturers rate their printers between two to five years, depending on the printer you buy.

Inkjet printers last between two to three years. But they can last longer with proper care and usage. Inkjet printers have some advantages over other printers: they are cheap to buy, have high-quality prints, are fast, and are portable.

On the lower side, inkjet printers have low print volume, work with expensive cartridges, and are less durable since they have many moving parts.

You may also want to consider laser printers, which have a longer life than inkjet printers. They are rated at three to five years, depending on usage. Also, laser printers are preferred since they have a large print volume, are easy to maintain, last long, are noise-free and are more reliable.

In addition, laser printers also have disadvantages: they are expensive to buy, have high power consumption, and work with only laser printing papers.

Although the printers have rated lasting time, they can last longer with proper care. This includes using high-quality cartridges, regularly printing, using the printer correctly, and maintaining them regularly.

Sometimes you may take proper care of your printer. But still, at some point, you’ll need to buy another one for a few reasons like slow printing speed, expensive printer cartridges, poor printing quality, or you have outgrown the printer capacity. 

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