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What Exactly is Toner Cartridge Remanufacturing?

As Hewlett Packard, Canon, Xerox and a slew of other printer consumable manufacturers already know, when done properly, cartridge remanufacturing is GUARANTEED to work! (And, if you are thinking of getting into this industry, believe us when we tell you that this is not brain surgery or rocket science. In addition, it doesn't cost an arm or a leg to perform expertly!)

"We Only Buy Brand-New Cartridges!" Better Think Again...

Take a look at the label or at the literature included with cartridges from Hewlett Packard, Canon, Apple, DEC or a host of others. Read it carefully. Did you realize (up until this very minute) that when you were buying toner cartridges from any of those firms that you were actually paying retail for a remanufactured cartridge? Can't believe it? There it was in the smallest of small print, "Made from new and recycled components of foreign and domestic origin..."

"We Participate in Their 'Clean Earth' Campaign!"

As if paying retail for a remanufactured cartridge wasn't bad enough, if you have been a "good little scout" by participating in their "Clean Earth" campaign by using the very convenient and thoughtfully included pre-addressed label to send your empty cartridges back to their facilities (their remanufacturing facilities, that is...), you've been providing them with free core components out of which they make their 'new' cartridges (and then they charge you full price!).

What's the Difference Between the Way "The Big Guys" Manufacture Cartridges and the way The Laser Group Re-Manufactures Cartridges?

Think about this: What does Canon (the largest manufacturer of new toner cartridges in the world) do when they assemble toner cartridges? They take a clean toner hopper, seal it for shipment, fill it with their world class toner (yes, they seal it BEFORE they fill it - our training video tapes reveal how to do the exact same thing) and then install a perfect mag roller onto the top of the hopper. They take a clean waste hopper, install a brand-new wiper blade onto it and drop in a beautiful OPC drum. At The Laser Group, we do the exact same thing. The only difference? We charge from 30 - 70% less than they do.

If you can replace a lightswitch or install a PC card, you can remanufacture toner cartridges. Toner cartridge remanufacturing is nothing more than "high-tech janitorial work". This is not rocket science, nor is it brain surgery. The vast majority of the time, you are merely disassembling, cleaning, refilling and resealing a cartridge which was working just fine until it ran out of toner. Even if you run into a cartridge that was somehow defective prior to running out of toner, replacement components abound, making it almost a guarantee that you will be able to make the cartridge perform as good as new in a procedure taking approximately 30 minutes.

Your Laser Printer Will Never Know (Only your wallet will know for sure!)

The truth of the matter is, using our 100% guaranteed remanufactured toner cartridges, there is no way in the world your laser printer will have any way of knowing whether it was our hands that assembled that cartridge or the hands of an employee of Canon or Hewlett Packard. In fact, looking at the printed output (the only test that matters), you will be unable to distinguish between our toner cartridges and those of the OEM! (Only your wallet will know for sure!)

The next several paragraphs will give an overview of the principal steps we take in remanufacturing a Canon EP-S/SX (Hewlett Packard Series II/IID/III/IIID) toner cartridge for our customers.

If you are not just interested in purchasing our remanufactured toner cartridges, but are interested in learning how to remanufacture your own cartridges, these steps are the exact same steps you will perform when you are taught how to remanufacture toner cartridges The Laser Group way. Whether you will be remanufacturing these toner cartridges for hire (for your own retail or wholesale customer base), or for the cost-savings benefit to your institution, school, office, company or governmental office, these same steps will apply.

Step 1: Assessing the Cartridge

The first step in the remanufacturing process is simple; run a test print on the cartridge you are about to remanufacture. How do you run a test print? Stick it in the same type printer from whence it came and press the "test print" or "print fonts" button. The printer will spit out one or more prints.

Inspect the prints to see if there are any print defects. This determination is quite easy and requires no special insight or training. If the print looks distinct and is free of randoms splotches, lines, voids, etc., the cartridge should be able to be remanufactured without a hitch. Our training materials cover potential print defects and their likely causes and remedies.

Keep in mind that if the cartridge has been run completely dry, there will not be enough toner in the cartridge to get an accurate impression from the test print. This is not a problem. With rare exceptions, thanks to the wide range of premium components available through The Laser Group, just about any cartridge can be satisfactorily remanufactured. The pre-remanufacturing test print just helps you determine what components may be needed prior to opening up the cartridge.

Step 2a: Removing the Cartridge Cover

Armed with our test prints, we are now ready to take apart the toner cartridge. The SX toner cartridge cover is held in place by four "snap" pins and two "locking" tabs. After those pins have been removed (easiest accomplished with our "SX pin-puller") and the locking tabs disengaged, the cover is lifted off of the cartridge.

With the cover removed, you'll see the SX cartridge only has four primary components (that's all!).

Charging the surface of the drum with a uniform static charge is the "corona assembly". Delivering the toner in the printing process is the "toner hopper". Producing the print image is the "OPC (organic photoconductor) drum". Removing any toner from the drum which was not transfered to the printed page is the "waste hopper". Those are the four main components.

Step 2b: Removing and Cleaning the Corona Assembly

After removing the cover, we remove the corona assembly and clean it in an ultrasonic cleaner. In small volume shops, an ultrasonic cleaner is an unnecessary expense. A corona assembly can be perfectly cleaned with cotton swabs and Isopropyl alcohol.

Step 2c: Removing the Springs and hinge pin

Two separate the waste hopper from the toner hopper, we must remove the two springs and the cartridge "hinge-pin".

As you can tell, we are in the process of completing this overview page, but you already understand that toner cartridge remanufacturing is neither brain surgery or rocket science. In the same way that there is only one "right way" to do a perfect brake job on a car, the same holds true for toner cartridge remanufacturing. When done properly (whether by us, you or the OEM) a remanufactured cartridge will work just as well as a brand-new cartridge (only your bank account will know the difference.)