Simple Solutions To Reduce Paper & Cartridge Consumption

Img Source - Code Matters

Individuals and businesses are becoming increasingly aware of how fragile the planet is. This has led to a dramatic increase in ways to reduce the impact on the environment. Of course, one of the biggest things that any business, or individual, can do is to reduce their paper and cartridge consumption.

Proper Disposal

Before you even look at reducing paper and cartridge consumption you should be looking at the best way to dispose of paper that has been used and may contain sensitive information.

Any customer information cannot be disposed of in a standard bin. You can pay for a service to eliminate the waste for you. However, you may not know if they choose to shred it or burn it. Burning is definitely not good for the environment!

The better option is to take a look at the available security shredders and invest in one of your own. This will ensure that all paperwork is disposed of properly.

Equally, you need a contract with a local cartridge company to ensure your used cartridges are taken and recycled properly. 

Save to File

One simple thing that everyone can do to help reduce the amount of paper and cartridges being used is to consider before pressing print. In many cases, things are printed without being needed to or simply because they need to be put into a client’s file. 

However, you can create an electronic client file that prevents the need to print the article in the first place, simply save it to the appropriate file. It can always be printed in the future if it is deemed essential.  

You will need to invest in a high-quality storage system. This needs to keep the data safe even if there is a disaster, such as a fire, at your premises. It also needs to be secure enough to avoid being hacked and the information used by dubious characters. 

It’s a good idea to get the experts involved at this stage.

Document Sizing

If you really need to print a document then you need to start considering the size of the document. Just because it is A4 size doesn’t mean it needs to be printed that large. You can crop the document to remove borders and edit it to ensure you only print the part you need. 

The majority of software programs have editing features that will allow you to remove excess items. This is especially useful if the document has images that are needed but will use plenty of ink. 

Adopting this approach will reduce the amount of paper and cartridges you need to use.

It can also be beneficial to reduce the size of the words on your document. This will reduce the amount of space and ink the article takes when being printed. 

Gray Scale

While the best option is not to print something there are times when this simply isn’t an option, you need the printed copy to ensure you have the information to hand or perhaps to get the client to sign and confirm their acceptance of the terms. 

In this case, you should consider whether you need to print it in high quality or whether a gray scale would be good enough. Switching between the two will allow you to minimize the amount of ink you use. That’s good for the environment and the company finances.

Gray scale printing has the added bonus of not using your color cartridge. This means you have more ink available when you really need it and it costs you less money.


If you do, need to print items and there is more than one page then see if your printer can handle double-sided printing. It won’t change the amount of ink being used but it will mean you use half the number of sheets of paper. 

That could be a significant saving on paper and even make your files smaller. 

Look At the Content

You’ve probably printed an email before, wanting to keep it in your in-tray. This is an effective way of reminding yourself and ensuring the matter is dealt with. But, it isn’t necessary. A simple reminder on your phone will also remind you. 

On top of that, you should look at what comes with it. An email is often a reply to a previous one and can lead to pages of older emails being printed when you only need the current one. 

Check how many pages are in the document and use the print-specific pages option to choose just the one or two you need. 

Think About Paper

The world may be designed to be paperless but it is still not possible to survive completely without it. Fortunately, you don’t need to. Instead, you should be looking at what paper you are buying. 

In the majority of cases, you can purchase recyclable paper and it is perfectly acceptable for the task at hand. This can often be the cheaper option and is certainly the better choice for the environment. 

Stay Inspired

If you’re trying but struggling to stay committed to a reduced paper and cartridge policy then take a moment to see what you have saved. You should see a reduction in paper bills and cartridge consumption. You may even be able to assess the amount of time saved by not printing everything. 

Final Thoughts

Before you print anything you should take a moment to decide if it is really necessary. The simple truth is that many people hit print without thinking about it. However, taking a moment to consider whether you really need it printed will invariably lead to the realization that you don’t.

If you’re still not sure then try the print preview. You can save the document to file or note which parts can be eliminated to reduce the amount of paper and cartridges used. 

Reducing paper and cartridge consumption is good for the environment. But, it is also good for your bottom line. That means you’ll have extra money available for other projects or even to improve the equipment in your office.