Don’t Sell Your Toner Cartridges Until You Read This

Make MoneyToner Tips by James Cai

You want to sell your toner cartridges and you’re curious as to what the process entails.

What condition should they be in? Who do you sell them to and for how much? Where can you get the most cash back for your toners?

These are all important questions.

But here’s the bottom line:

Selling your unused toner cartridges is an excellent idea. It reduces waste and it puts money in your pockets.

There is, however, a lot to consider before you decide to sell your surplus ink and toner cartridges. You need to examine your supplies in order to determine how much they’re worth, if anything at all.

Or at the very least, you need to know how to preserve any unused ink cartridges in the event that you’d like to turn them in for a hefty prot.

Either way, this guide will help you to do just that.

Let’s get into the details.



There’s an infinite number of brands and types of toner cartridges on the market.And honestly, they’re not all top tier products.As such, you need to know if your toner cartridges are complicit with the highest acceptable standard.

Here’s how you can make that determination:

  • Are they OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) cartridges? OEM ink cartridges are manufactured by the company that produced your printer. They’re either the ink supplies that accompanies your printer when you purchase it or they’re replacement cartridges that are made by the same company.
  • Are they compatible or generic cartridges from third parties? A compatible ink cartridge refers to one that is not manufactured by the original manufacturer of your printer. They are made by third parties rather than OEMs and are designed to fit a range of printers.
  • Are they remanufactured cartridges? remanufactured cartridge is an old, used cartridge that has been refurbished. It can either be one that was originally sold by an OEM or a third party. Any defunct and irreparable components are replaced and the cartridge is refilled before it is resold.



Securing the right type of ink supplies is just the first step.Before you sell your toner cartridges, you need to ensure that they’re in a condition that merits them to be purchased and resold.Are they in factory sealed boxes or have their boxes been opened?

A sealed box is the only indication that we have of toners that are brand new. If the original packaging has been tampered with, we cannot say with all certainty that the ink has not been used. As such, we only buy back toners that are in their authentic and unscathed boxes.

So are all ink supplies in factory sealed boxes accepted for buyback? Most of the time.

Will the condition of the boxes affect the cash back that you receive? Certainly.

The better the condition of the box, the higher the offer it will command. Contrarily, if the packaging is severely disfigured, the value of the toner will depreciate and you won’t get the best deal.

To ensure that you get the maximum available rating and the highest cash back for your ink cartridges, keep them free of heavy damages like holes, dents, rips and tears.

In addition to the physical condition of the box, the expiration date on the toners will also determine whether your supplies get accepted or not.



It does – and I’ll tell you why.

Every ink and toner cartridge has a shelf life. The expiration date will give an indication of when the ink has surpassed its life cycle, after which, it may no longer be viable.

This is important because ink composition changes with time. The ink undergoes a chemical breakdown and coagulates into less of a liquid and more of a sludge.  This affects not only the print quality but can cause damage to your printer.

Similarly, the fine toner powder in toner cartridges will experience degradation over a prolonged period past its expiration date. Toner cartridges typically have more lasting power than ink cartridges but the deterioration over time is inevitable.

What causes this decline in quality?

Toner powder contains electrically charged particles than can be merged prematurely when exposed to warmth and moisture. This transforms the fine powder into a soggy consistency which in turn affects the photosensitivity of the toner. The resulting effect are clumps of particles that are ill-equipped for laser printing.

For this reason, we don’t buy expired inkjet and toner cartridges.


You’re thinking, how can something so seemingly superficial as the box style give you any useful information, right? The thing is, ink and toner manufacturers redesign their packaging every 3-5 years. This face lift is a good indication that the expiration date of the toner is approaching or is already way passed it.

So, the design life cycle of the box that the cartridge comes in can be used as a gauge for the shelf life of the toner.In effect, cartridges that are about 6-8 years past their expiration dates are likely to be unfit for printing.

Apart from the style of the packaging, there are other external markers that are important for the toner buyback process such as the toner model number.



The model number on the toner is essentially it’s fingerprint. It consists of a series of numbers and letters that will tell you about the configuration of the ink cartridge. You will find this figure stamped somewhere on the exterior of the packaging.

You’re wondering, what sort of information is encoded in a toner model number?Well, it may vary for different brands of ink but generally, it indicates the color composition of the cartridge, it’s ink capacity, as well as its regional origin.

Why is this data important?

When you enlist your cartridges for the toner buyback program, this is what we use to provide accurate price quotes for your supplies. If you neglect to mention the model number, there’s no guarantee that you’ll get a quote that is appropriate for the actual value of the cartridge.

For example, you may have an ink or toner cartridge that is eligible for the 100% awarded payment but without this marker, we have no way of identifying its true worth.


Have you ever wondered who sets the buyback prices for ink and toner cartridges?Is there some governing body who establishes a universally acceptable formula for pricing each toner model?

Not exactly.

The prices are solely up to the individual companies who offer toner buyback programs.The secondary surplus toner market has no regulations which leaves room for businesses to set their own standards and create their own algorithms for pricing.

Typically, the factors they consider includes:

  • Rate of demand and supply
  • Inventory forecasting
  • Cost and sale price

There may be other determinants that are unique to each company and the customers that they cater to.


We’ve seen that the prices will be indicative of the individual company’s formula.However, we believe that the companies who try to be everything to everyone are likely to fall short.

In other words, you want to deal with a company that focuses on a single aspect of the toner industry. This sort of niche marketing gives businesses the power to master the needs of their core customer base.

If a company is laser focused on only buying surplus and unused toner cartridges, they will most likely provide the best prices for your supplies.

Why so?

The more of a niche market that you occupy, the more margin you have to get to know your ideal customers so that you can best gratify their needs.

On the other hand, there are businesses who have their hands in every pot.

With their focus on everything from ink supplies to electronic recyclables, they have less time to carefully craft the best price for every item. In fact, their priority would likely be how fast they can turnover the inventory that is coming in from all directions.

With that said, if you want to sell your ink cartridges for the highest buyback prices, ensure that you use a company with a demonstrated presence in the niche surplus toner market. You want to avoid getting taken advantage of by a toner buyer scam artist.




There’s no doubt that there’s a unique opportunity to benefit from unused toners.An additional revenue stream and less printing overhead are just a few of the many advantages.

But before you decide to sell your ink and toner cartridges, you need to know how much they’re worth and who’s willing to pay the most for them.

The key takeaways here?

  1. OEM cartridges are the superior type of toners and the only type that we accept.
  2. The better the condition of your factory sealed boxes, the better the price that you will command.
  3. If you provide your toner model number, you will receive a more accurate quote for your ink supplies.
  4. The buyback price will depend on the individual company.
  5. You can expect a higher buyback price from companies who have solidified themselves as niche experts.

Once you’ve established that you’re ready to cash in on your surplus ink supplies, the above guidelines give a simple system to help you secure the best possible deal.


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