Resetting Your Cartridge As Easy As 1, 2, 3

When it comes to printers, everyone has something in common. We all dread the day that our computers tell us that we have an empty ink cartridge. Depending on the type of printer used, some has to pay expensive ink cartridges and others pay for just the right amount. But what if your cartridge is not empty? What if you can do something to “refill” your cartridge without buying one? We will learn how to reset your cartridge as easy as 1, 2, 3.


We need to understand how cartridges work first in order for us to understand how to use it much better. First, there are two kinds of ink cartridges. One is the thermal inkjet as used by Canon, HP and Lexmark. These cartridges are made up of an ink reservoir with a tiny metal plate or resistor. Another type of the ink cartridges is called Piezoelectric which is used by Epson. Instead of a heating element in the ink reservoir, piezoelectric inkjet has crystals in each nozzle.

As tempting as refilling sounds, it is better if you go for resetting your ink cartridge. Why? Because your cartridge might have ink left inside it and you wouldn’t know. At times, our computers read the ink levels wrong and inaccurately and if you throw your cartridge away without even trying to reset it, you will have to pay for a new one.

Like any gadget we have, an ink cartridge has a built in “Reset” button which most people don’t know it has. These hidden reset buttons are really hard to look for but we will give you the tips on how to reset it.

As established earlier HP, Brother and Lexmark uses the same type of built for their ink cartridges which is the Thermal ink cartridge and Epson stand alone with their Piezoelectric  ink cartridge and so, we will separate these cartridges in looking at how to reset it.

Let’s go with HP and Brother Ink cartridge first. Examine the refilled cartridge first. On the cartridge you will six copper strips located in its bottom. The multiple small squares in each strip are called contacts. Place a piece of tape over the top contact in the second column and put it back into your print, do a print test. Place another tape over the top contact in sixth row and test print again. Remove the cartridge and peel off the tape, when you print again the ink level will read full.

To reset a Lexmark Ink Cartridge you need to turn off the printer and unplug it first. Wait for one minute and allow the cartridge to reset its own memory. Turn the printer back on and check the ink levels. Some Lexmark printer will allow you to do this in the printer’s LCD Screen and you can find it in the “Start” Menu.

Resetting a Canon Ink Cartridge is a little tricky because you will need an print cartridge chip resetter which you can purchase individually or with a refill kit. You will need to remove the cartridge first and put it in the resetter’s main channel. Gently press down the cartridge for a few seconds and the LED light on the chip resetter will flash a few times. Do this until the LED light goes steady. Install the cartridge back and check the ink levels in your computer.