How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another?

If you use an inkjet printer, then you should learn how to transfer ink from one cartridge to another.

New printer cartridges could be pricey. Plus, there could be a situation where your current printer cartridge is not working or damaged. 

Or if the current toner cartridge is out of ink, but you have another cartridge with ink that doesn’t work anymore.

In this type of situation, you can actually transfer the ink from the damaged cartridge to the good one.

This way you can save a few bucks at the same time, you can make the best use of the unused ink from the damaged cartridge.

In this post, we will show you several methods of transferring ink from one cartridge to another.

So, let’s dive right in…

Remark: The ink in the cartridges varies from brand to brand. Make sure, you are transferring the ink between the cartridges of the same brand. Otherwise, it might not work.

Tutorials on How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another

Method #1 Using a Syringe

How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another
Use a syringe to transfer ink from one cartridge to another

In this method, we will show you how to replace printer ink from one cartridge to another using a basic method. Here are the steps…

Required Things:

  • 2 ink cartridges of same brand and color
  • A syringe with a needle to refill
  • A towel or piece of cloth for keeping it tidy
  • Hand Gloves for keeping your hands clean
  • Face Mask to keep you safe from inhaling toner powder

Step #1

First of all, remove the cartridge from the printer as you would always do. Now, take the towel and put the cartridge on it from which you will transfer the ink.

There will be a refill hole in the cartridge, find it. Usually, it would be under the label or sticker of the cartridge.

Most of the time, there will be a symbol or indication of the refill hole in the sticker. You can locate that. Or better yet, you can rip the label off the cartridge. And, you will find the refill hole. It will be a very small hole.

How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another
How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another

Now, if your particular cartridge doesn’t have a refill hole, you can use a thumb drill to create a new hole. Also, if the cartridge to which you will transfer the ink doesn’t have a refill hole.

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You should make one on that as well. So, make the new refill hole carefully. Whatever the case, simply locate the refill hole on the cartridge.

Step #2

Now, take the syringe and stick it to the refill hole of the first cartridge. Simply, pull back the plunger very carefully and slowly to draw the ink from this cartridge. Do this until your syringe is full or there is no ink left in the first cartridge.

Step #3

At the point take the cartridge to which you are going to transfer the ink and put it on the towel. Now, stick the needle of the syringe into the refill hole as usual.

Make sure the contact between the cartridge and the needle is perfect, it is better to stick the needle until it touches the bottom of the cartridge.

Now, start to push the plunger very slowly and carefully to start the ink transfer process. Do this until you have transferred all the ink from the first cartridge to the good one.

Step #4

How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another

As you have transferred all the ink from one cartridge to another, you should put the label back in place. However, if that doesn’t stick or you have ripped the label completely off, this is not a problem.

As it is not compulsory to keep the label there to make the ink cartridge work. You can cover the refill hole with a tiny piece of tape if you want to.

Some Additional Tips on Transferring Ink from One Cartridge to Another

  • Try to draw the ink very slowly. If you do that too fast, then air-gaps might be created inside the syringe. That way the syringe will not work. So, make sure there are no air-gaps or air bubble in the syringe while you are refilling
  • Make sure you are using a paper towel or piece of cloth to keep things tidy. Transferring ink from one cartridge to another could get messy
  •  You should not refill the cartridge to its full capacity. Otherwise, it might leak
  • After you have transferred the ink from the old cartridge to the new one, you have to wait for a few hours until you can use it. It is recommended to wait for up to 8 hours before using the cartridge. However, many users report that a couple of hours is enough. There is a sponge-like thing inside the cartridge that absorbs the ink. So, you will have to give it a bit of time to absorb the ink and settle down before you can use it successfully
How to Transfer Ink from One Cartridge to Another
  • It is better to use face masks and hand gloves to keep you safe from getting irritated by the ink. Many people are allergic to toner powder. So, it is your duty to protect yourself
  • If there is more than one hole in the cartridge, you will need to locate the hole that leads to the ink reservoir. In that case, look for a spongy think inside the cartridge with the syringe. If you find that on any particular hole, then this would be the refill hole for your cartridge
  • In case of some brands, there will be a twist-off cap on the cartridges that you will need to remove first  to find the refill hole

Alternative Method to Refill an Ink Cartridge

If you think that it is very hard to transfer ink from one cartridge to another, then we have a great alternative for you. No, we will not suggest you buy a new ink cartridge instead.

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We know that it is not cost-effective. Rather, in this case, you can buy a printer ink refill kit.

How to refill your cartridge ink

Most of the ink-refill set comes with a bottle of ink of your preferred color and multiple syringes.

So, you can easily use the syringe to draw the ink from the refill bottle. And then transfer the ink using the syringe to your cartridge carefully and slowly.

Some ink-refill kits are universal. That means they are compatible with all types of ink cartridges.

However, there are some model-specific as well. So, make sure you are getting an ink-refill set that is compatible with your printer cartridge.

Wrap Up

There you have it. If you have read the post above carefully, then you should know how to transfer ink from one cartridge to another.

If you have refilled any ink cartridge before, then it will be a piece of cake to you. However, if you don’t have any prior experience with it, don’t worry at all.

If you follow the instructions above step by step, this will not be a big problem to handle.

Additionally, we have also provided an alternative cost-effective method to refill your ink cartridge. So, you can try that as well if you are in need of new ink cartridges for your printer.

Before you go, you can read our post on 25 things about computer viruses. And, don’t hesitate to share your thoughts or suggestion in the comment section below!

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About the Author: Jakaria Tiaz

Jakaria brings years of extensive experience in tech and business writing to the team. After working as the chief editor for several very large online magazines Jakaria agreed to take part in Tech 25 and help turn it into the leading Tech news and facts site online.