One of the biggest interruptions of my work life is when my printer (a Brother MFC-7840) decides that it’s out of toner. Note that it really isn’t out of toner, it’s just that the printer itself decides when I’m no longer allowed to use the toner cartridge and stops printing.

I’ve finally decided to start tracking this puppy to find out when I really need to replace the cartridge. Pressing MENU-6-2 will show me the print page count. It claims I’ve printed 700 pages so far (interesting, since I haven’t even gone through a 500-sheet ream of paper since buying the printer).

The starter cartridge is supposed to print 1000 pages. The regular replacement toner (TN-330) supposedly prints 1,500 pages, and the high-capacity TN-360 supposedly prints 2,600 pages.

Well, I’m going to find out. I just taped a little piece of paper to the printer where I’m recording the current page count every time it gives me a warning or an “out of toner” message. I have a suspicion they are inflating the numbers for marketing purposes. Not only do I want to get my money’s worth, but given what a horrible environmental impact toner has, I really want to use every bit of it. I’ll keep you posted.

Track your toner

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