6 ways to be more efficient with your printer

You can cut down on your printing costs by following a few simple strategies that we’ve uncovered while testing hundreds of printers in our labs. Check our advice here, and learn about the high cost of wasted printer ink.

Be an Energy Star

Look for the Energy Star label, which indicates that printers consume very little power when not printing. Go to for details.

Leave it on

Certain printers use more ink when getting ready to print after you switch them on than they do when kept in standby mode.

For more information on all-in-ones and other types of printers, check our printers buying guide and Ratings.

Print fewer pages

You can get more use from your real estate by decreasing a page’s margins or avoiding double line spacing. Some printers also have a built-in duplexer to print on both sides of a page.

Don’t print blanks

Use print preview to spot pages with little or no information.

Use frugal fonts

Avoid using the Arial font, which uses more ink than Times Roman. Print text in black or grayscale to save on color ink.

Use plain paper

Use plain paper for works in progress. Save the good stuff, such as photo paper, for the final results.

This article also appeared in the August 2014 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.

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