Counterfeit Cartridges – What You Need To Know

Counterfeit cartridges are bad business

Everyone wants to get the best value for money while still getting great quality. In the world of ink and toner cartridges the higher prices that are usually involved can lead to people searching around trying to get the best deal.

But this can have negative effects for both the consumer and the supplier. The supplier is losing out on money and the consumer is risking the performance of your printer. As such, buying genuine products will always be the best solution, whether they are genuine OEMs from the brand themselves or remanufactured products.

So, what is the big deal around counterfeit cartridges and why should you look out for them?

What Are They?

Counterfeit cartridges are made to look incredibly similar to OEM cartridges, fooling you into thinking you are getting a great value product and getting the same quality as a genuine cartridge. This is wrong though, they are illegally copying the design, parts and even the patents of the original manufacturer.

You may find it hard to tell the difference as some counterfeit cartridges can be made to look incredibly similar to the real deal. The other downside is that these cartridges are illegal to sell and produce, which no one wants to get involved with ideally.

How Can You Tell If It’s Counterfeit?

We’ve just pointed out that it can be incredibly hard to tell the difference between counterfeit cartridges and genuine cartridges. But it can be possible by taking a good hard look at these cartridges in depth.

Different manufacturers have different ways of proving that the items are genuine, for example Samsung has a security label that will change colour from clear to cyan when tilted. The embossed character should also change colour when viewed from different angles.

Be on the lookout for counterfeit products

Be on the lookout for counterfeit products

HP has a handy QR code on their security seals that can be scanned to prove whether the item is valid or not. There are also quick ways to manually inspect the safety label to ensure that you have purchased a genuine product or a counterfeit.

Xerox also has a security label that contains a unique serial number and barcode along with a background that will change depending on how you view it.

A big clue to figuring out if a cartridge is counterfeit is where you are buying it. If it is from a third party website and is at a remarkably lower price than you might expect, then chances are it’s not a genuine cartridge. Of course there is also the chance that it is real and just happens to be severely discounted, but it may be safer to err on the side of caution.

Why Should You Care?

You may be wondering why on earth you should care if your cartridge is genuine or not, after all you got it cheaply right? Well that may be the only positive experience you will have with a counterfeit cartridge. Due to the cartridge not being genuine, it also means that it is not filled with genuine ink.

As such, you are far more likely to have very poor printouts that include streaks, splotches over your work, substandard colours and much more. This is obviously unacceptable for most people as it will result in you inadvertently spending more money just trying to fix the problem.

Even worse for you, using counterfeit products can reduce the life of your printer. The people who make counterfeit cartridges are probably unlikely to care about quality standards, so you can expect substandard quality in the design of the cartridge itself. This can cause the cartridge to not fit properly into your printer, causing leakages and other damage that could result in you having to buy a new printer entirely.

Be On The Lookout!

To conclude from this, it’s always worth it to pay that little extra more to get the best quality. You are guaranteed to get high quality prints when using genuine cartridges, with the added benefit of even being able to return cartridges that are malfunctioning.

We’ve included a list below of printer manufacturers and their counterfeit pages just in case you think you may have a non-genuine cartridge. Just click on the manufacturer to be taken straight to the page!






Konica Minolta


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Sarah Jubb

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