Storing Used Inkjet Cartridges

[ad]Dear Computer Lady,

I want to know how to preserve my cartridges if I leave for six months from my desert home.

Thanks, Dee

Dear Dee,

There is nothing more frustrating than finding that your expensive inkjet cartridge has dried out and is no longer working.

If you can afford it, I would suggest that you get a laser printer. The toner is not liquid based, and won’t dry out over time like inkjet cartridges.

In the meantime, I did a little research and found lots of information about storing your cartridges. Lots of people suggest things like wrapping the cartridge in damp paper towels and sealing in a ziplock bag, but touching the metal on the cartridge and leaving them wrapped in a damp paper towel seems like it could cause problems.

HP has directions for storing cartridges on their website at:

HP says to store the cartridges with the nozzles up in a plastic tub with an airtight lid. Don’t allow anything to touch the cartridge nozzles.

Put a damp cloth next to, but not touching the cartridges, and seal the container.

I would add that it wouldn’t hurt to put that container in your refrigerator while you are gone.



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Elizabeth Boston is a Web designer, Social Media Consultant and managing editor of, “Ask The Computer Lady”.
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