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How To Bypass the Low Ink Warning On Your Inkjet Printer.

19-06-2017 by

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Nothing is more annoying than the low ink warning. That little flashing light or the dialogue box that keeps on popping up is enough to make you cause serious harm to your printer, especially when you’re in a hurry or you know that the ink cartridge you just installed is brand new and full.

Never fear though, the Inksaver technical team has put together a guide on how to get rid of the low ink warning on your printer and get you back to printing.

But first, a word on ink levels. There are two ways a printer can figure out ink levels in a cartridge, light or a chip. Light only works if the ink cartridge is clear (like the Canon PGI-450XL ink), here the printer shines a laser light through the cartridge and physically reads the level of ink in the tank. For most cartridges, however, this is not possible and this is where the chip comes in. The chip is preloaded with a set amount of pages the cartridge can theoretically print, based on standardised page yield tests. When the cartridge has printed about 75% of those estimated pages, the chip tells the printer to let you know the cartridge is almost out of ink.

With most remanufactured cartridges (like the HP 56 ink and the Canon PG-512 ink), these chips cannot be reset and you’ll occasionally get a low ink warning, even when the ink cartridge is full. Luckily, these warnings can be bypassed pretty easily. In most cases you will only need to replace the ink cartridge when print quality begins to fade.

For HP ink cartridges:

When the low ink warning appears, press or click OK to disable the message. Some printer models do give you the option to not have the message show again. When the dialogue box pops up on your computer screen, you can click on the box next to the message ‘Do not show this warning again’. In some cases you may need to click or press OK every time you want to print.

You can disable all warnings to stop the low ink message showing, but this will disable ALL notifications. This will include messages about paper supply, paper jams, etc. It may also disable the scan function in some All-In-One printers, so we do not recommend it.

WARNING: If you use an ink cartridge that has a separate printhead (like the HP 920XL or HP 940XL), running a cartridge until it is empty or nearly empty may damage the printhead.

For Canon ink cartridges:

When the low ink warning appears, press and hold the STOP/RESET or RESUME button on the printer for 10 seconds. This button will flash with an orange light when the warning pops up, so it will be relatively easy to find.

If you get a warning on your computer or LCD screen, just press or click OK to carry on printing. You may have to do this every time you print.

You can disable all warnings to stop the low ink message showing, but this will disable ALL notifications. This will include messages about paper supply, paper jams, etc. It may also disable the scan function in some MFC models, so we do not recommend it.

For Epson ink cartridges:

When the 'Low Ink Reminder' screen automatically appears, you can choose to not display this screen. On your computer, access the printer driver (for Windows click on ‘Devices and Printers’, for Mac click ‘Page Setup’ then ‘Print’) and then click on the 'Maintenance' tab, 'Speed & Progress', and then 'Monitoring Preferences'. On the Monitoring Preferences screen, clear the 'Enable Low Ink Reminder' check box.

WARNING: Epson printheads are very sensitive, so as soon as the printer gives you a ‘Cartridge Empty’ warning, you have to replace the ink cartridge as running Epson cartridges to empty could damage the printhead.

For Brother ink cartridges:

If the 'Low Ink' warning appears, carefully remove the ink cartridge from the printer and slowly reinstall it. If the low ink level still shows, carefully remove the cartridge and close the cover. Power off the printer, unplug it and leave it off for 2 minutes.

After 2 minutes, turn the printer on and reinstall the cartridge when prompted to do so. You should not experience low ink warnings with Brother ink cartridges as there is a small, clear window near the bottom of the cartridge that allows the printer to accurately read the ink levels.

If you have tried the troubleshooting tips for your printer and you are still experiencing an issue, please contact us.

Nic Venter

About the author

Nic Venter+

 is the founder and director of Inksaver.co.za. He started the business in 2009 with the idea to sell ink and toner cartridges online and to provide you with a quality product, value for money and convenience. He regularly blogs on Inksaver.co.za about printing and technology. Part of his philosophy is having fun and making sure that he and his team think everything ink, so you don't have to.

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