What is Counterfeit Printer Ink Cartridges?

With the markets today filled with counterfeit goods, printer manufacturers are forced to work harder to stop the menace, especially in the production and sale of counterfeit toner and ink printer cartridges. The major question here is what are counterfeit cartridges? Does a remanufactured cartridge qualify to be termed as counterfeit?  Discussed below are a few questions and answers regarding counterfeit printer cartridges.

HP Original Ink Cartridges
HP Original Ink Cartridges

What makes a printer cartridge counterfeit?

Any cartridge that has been remade, refilled or remanufactured by a third party qualifies to be termed as counterfeit. Most of the fake cartridges have the same design and packaging. They are also branded in the same way as the original. This makes it very hard to distinguish between a counterfeit cartridge and an original one.

Are compatible or remanufactured cartridges fake?

A compatible cartridge is not counterfeit. This is because it is not packaged and sold in the same way as an original cartridge is.  Unlike counterfeit goods that imitate the same design and logos from original ones, a compatible toner or cartridge will come bearing a different name, but indicate what it is compatible with, and how.

Is it risky to use counterfeit cartridges?

Yes, counterfeit toners and ink pose many threats to both you and the printer. To begin with, the ink quality is not the same, and is under most instances of very low quality. In addition to this, counterfeit cartridges can damage your printer especially if it short-circuits the board, or if ink leaks into the system components. Worse still, using a counterfeit cartridge on an originally new HP printer voids its warranty.

The same cannot be said about cartridges that are compatible with your printer model. Compatible cartridges do not void your service guarantee or warranty. Almost all companies that remanufacture cartridges work very hard to ensure the cartridge used functions the same was as its original, and that prints are in the same quality. The remanufactured cartridges are meticulously tested and cleaned before they can be shipped to ink stores and retailers.

Counterfeit cartridge, what next?

If you bought a cartridge only to realize it is an imitation and not genuine, then make a point of reporting the case to the printer manufacturer. All printer manufacturers have an always-available customer support ready to help those with such claims. These companies have even gone a step farther to produce smart QR codes that come embedded on the packaging box for authentication purposes.  Use these to check whether the QR code is genuine and approved by the printer manufacture before making the purchase.

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