Recycling Printer Cartridges

May 30, 2017

A ziplock bag filled with used printer ink cartridges.By properly recycling your empty ink cartridges and toners, you will help reduce waste. You can also re-use the empty ink cartridges and get your ink refilled, which is cheaper than purchasing a new ink cartridge or a do-it-yourself refill kit.


To promote recycling, some stores (like Staples, Office Depot, and Best Buy) will reward you with money back to use at their store if you recycle your ink cartridges or toner. Some restrictions apply, like you have to spend a certain amount of money toward ink to be qualified - be sure to read the fine print. Or, you can simply drop off your empty ink cartridges at Walmart.

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October 12, 2004

I was standing in line at the post office the other day when I noticed a display with little zipper bags for recycling printer cartridges. I almost passed it by, thinking that I didn't want to pay the postage to mail mine in, when I noticed that the plastic bags are already addressed and POSTAGE PAID. What an easy (and frugal) way to help the environment! By Cindy B. in PA


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May 4, 2009

I wanted to share with the ThriftyFun community about the Staples Rewards Program. For every ink cartridge you return to the Staples store (limit 10 Per month) as a Rewards member, you are given a $3.00 PER cartridge credit.


6 Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

April 6, 2013

Where can I sign up to get more postage paid printer cartridge bags? I went on the Franklin, Tennessee Recylcing Center page, but couldn't even find a contact number or e-mail address.

By Bonnie


April 8, 20130 found this helpful
Best Answer

If you buy your inks at Office Depot, take the empty cartridges with you. They will give you $3 off your purchases when you turn in an empty cartridge.

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June 24, 2011

I have accumulated about 6 printer cartridges for my Lexmark printer. Is there a company that will pay for these and recycle them? Thanks.

By packlestax


June 24, 20110 found this helpful

I don't know of anyone that will pay for them. I have a HP printer and they used to have an envelope with each package of new printing ink that you could return the mt cartridge to the factory but they stopped doing that so now I just toss them in the recycle bin at my recycle center.


There are places that refill mt cartridges. There may be one in your area. You should be able to find one in the yellow pages or on line.


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June 24, 20110 found this helpful

Staples will give you store credit if you turn them in.

June 24, 20110 found this helpful

Staples will pay you for used printer cartridges.

June 24, 20110 found this helpful

Lexmark will send you envelopes so you can mail the empty cartridges back to them. Go online to Lexmark/recycle and ask for 3 envelopes. Lexmark pays the postage both ways. It takes about 2 weeks to get your envelopes in the mail.


I just received my envelopes this week and sent back 6 empty cartridges to them. Each envelope will hold three empties.

June 24, 20110 found this helpful

My daughter just started using Cash 4 Cartridges.

June 24, 20110 found this helpful

Office Depot will allow 20 cartridges per visit giving you a store credit of $2.00 per cartridge. Be sure to apply for their rewards card. Your credits are given each quarter. You also receive a percentage of your purchases back as a store credit. I purchased a $50. camera for my grandson for graduation for just $22. using my credits. Don't forget to add the discounts that are received in the newspapers on occassion for a "wheel of a deal"


Staples may have the same program.


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June 25, 20110 found this helpful

I get mine refilled for 1/2 the price at Cartridge World. After you do this 3 or 4 times, I don't think they are effective but it sure saves a bunch of money. Staples charges so much to begin with that you are not really saving any money, in my opinion.

June 25, 20110 found this helpful

Costco will refill them for my HP at about $6. per cartridge and I am able to save. New cartridge costs about $35. minus $6. to refill= saving $19. per cartridge.


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June 25, 20110 found this helpful

Your local elementary schools and public libraries collect these to go towards their fund raising efforts.

April 17, 20130 found this helpful

I like using new ones and I think it is a mess to refill them so I sell my empty ones on ebay.


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April 19, 20130 found this helpful

When I worked as a secretary at the elementary school, Safeway had a program where we collected used printer cartridges and old cell phones to be recycled. I would collect then send in boxes of items and our school would receive funds.


It was a great way to recycle and to gain funds for our computer needs at school.

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March 14, 2008

I am trying to find small rubber stoppers for refilling ink cartridges. Could you help please?



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March 14, 20080 found this helpful

By DHFabian (Guest Post)
March 15, 20080 found this helpful

I don't know if those stoppers are available, but I just use a piece of tape (ordinary Scotch tape or a tiny bit of duct tape) to cover the hole. I've done this for years without problem.

March 15, 20080 found this helpful

I never use the rubber stoppers. I've been refilling for years now. I also use tape to cover the holes. Never had any problems. No leaks and tape is easier to remove. Good luck.

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