What is a Green Printer?

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The desire to “go green” has resulted in the development of ecologically sound technologies that help lighten carbon emissions while also chopping away at the overuse of resources. In the business world, sustainable printing is a solution that’s helping corporations achieve their eco-friendly goals while also saving money on electricity and paper consumption.

To do this, many businesses are replacing out of date workhorse printers with new, eco-friendly green printers. The definition of a green printer is a broad one. Different types of printers affect different kinds of conservation-minded practices, however the vast majority share in a number of built-in capabilities that lessen environmental impact in various ways.

Bundled Electronics Win Out Over Individual Units

Multifunction printers (MFP for short), also known as all-in-one printers, combine printers, copiers, scanners and fax machines into a single unit. Not only do these printers take up a smaller footprint in an office or home environment, but they also improve workflow by enabling you to perform numerous tasks without having to move about, switching from one machine to another.

MFPs are also far more efficient at conserving energy, since you’re only plugging in a single device. Overhead support costs are also far lower with multifunction printers than they are for individual units that perform a single task. With an MFP, you only have to purchase a single machine, and although they are more expensive than single-function printers, they can save you money you would otherwise spend buying individual units for each task.

Energy Star, Blue Angel, and Environmental Choice Certification

Printers that comply with Energy Star, Blue Angel, and Environmental Choice standards greatly minimize operational power. Many of these printers turn off automatically or go into sleep mode if they’re left on for a certain length of time. They can also be programmed to turn off or go into standby mode following the completion of a print job. Standby modes can have a high impact on overall energy consumption and can save users a significant amount of money in electricity bills over time. This is especially the case with large companies that may have a dozen or more printers scattered throughout their facility. HP estimates savings from Energy Star compliant printers to be between 15 and 30 percent.

Automatic Duplexing

Using both sides of a sheet of printer paper is called duplexing. Some printers come with a programmable duplexing mode that can effectively cut paper usage in half — however some printers require the user to physically re-feed each sheet of paper back into the printer to be able to access both sides. Automatic duplexing solves this. Some auto duplexing printers will run a page through the paper feed twice, turning the sheet over and printing on its reverse side. More high-end auto duplexing printers have dual ink cartridges that can print on the front and back of a single sheet of paper at the same time.

Every Color in Its Cartridge

Printers that use separate ink cartridges for individual colors, instead of combining all in a single color cartridge, greatly decrease waste and save users from having to constantly replenish their cartridge supply. Used printer cartridges can also be recycled instead of thrown away. You can also find printers that utilize refillable ink cartridges. Considering that ink cartridges are among the most expensive of printer supplies, this can result in dramatically decreased supply expenses.

There is Such a Thing as a Cheaper Font

Studies have been performed to determine if there are certain fonts that will use less ink. And believe it or not, it has been determined that the font you use can either increase your operational costs, or decrease it. Sans serif fonts have been found to use less ink because there’s significantly less detail to print out, thus saving ink and cost.

Green Printing Services for the Win

In the bulk print industry, there are a number of green printing companies that are greatly lightening the ecological impact that comes with the territory of printing ink onto paper and other mediums. Environmentally sound practices include using recycled paper and creating biodegradable banners and posters that won’t take up space in landfills when their usefulness has expired.

Green printers include numerous features that reduce carbon emissions and limit the number of resources consumed. Additionally, there are practices that individuals and companies alike can put into practice to conserve waste without barring the often necessary task of putting words on paper.


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