Reviving Dried Up Markers

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Reviving Dried Up Markers - marker in a cupMy son loves to color, he is constantly asking to get the markers out. He just turned two and this is the first set of markers he has had. I noticed that some of his favorite colors were starting to run dry. I was thinking I ought to buy a new set, until I remembered there was a way to get them working again!




  1. First, go through and find all the markers that seem to be running out of ink.
  2. Reviving Dried Up Markers - drawing lines with revived markers
  3. Then, get a glass and add enough warm water to completely cover the tip of the marker. Some of the ink will leak out of the pen into the water.
  4. I would only add colors of a similar hue to the glass, to avoid the pen from sucking up another color.
  5. Reviving Dried Up Markers - close up of marker in a cup
  6. After about 1 minute of letting the marker soak, take it out and dab it dry on to a paper towel. Test it out, then, place the cap back on.
  7. Reviving Dried Up Markers - drawing lines with revived markers
    Reviving Dried Up Markers - testing markers
    Reviving Dried Up Markers - drying off wet marker tips

  8. This way I was able to get a little bit more life out of the pens. But as you can see with the red marker, it will not have much longer to live.
  9. Reviving Dried Up Markers - close up of marker tip

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August 6, 20141 found this helpful

I'm an artist, and have been since a very young age. When I was a kid and teenager, I couldn't always get markers when I needed them, or sometimes I had favorite ones, and didn't always receive the same kind each time.


I did something similar to what you did, but just a little more involved. I would take off the back end of the marker (sometimes you might have to pry it up-be careful, and don't do this around your child until he is old enough to be able to revive his own markers), and use something to add water drop by drop to the little "felt straw" inside, until the marker worked again. I think I used an old, cleaned nasal spray bottle-if I were doing it as an adult I would just buy a dropper.

This doubles the life of most colors, since you are wetting the entire tube and not just what can be absorbed through the tip. Some colors don't revive well or at all. You want to drop water slowly so you don't end up with a gush of color coming out of the felt end when you open the cap. For each revival the color will be lighter, but the markers will usually still be usable. $tretch those dollars!

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