What does it mean when a toner cartridge is not being recognized by the printer?
Some toner cartridges have chips, which send a signal to the printer to let the printer know how much toner is left in the cartridge. When a cartridge is refilled (or re-manufactured), the cartridge may not always have the ability to “know” that it has been refilled, and so in some cases, the printer will “read” the cartridge as empty (it is in effect reading the last known ink level status that the cartridge used to have).
Why is this happening?
Printer manufacturers would like nothing more than for you to buy new cartridges from them. This is why they sell their printers at the (cheap) prices that they sometimes do. The refill and re-manufacturing industry is good for the environment and the consumer, but the printer manufacturers don’t like it, and they try to do what they can to hinder toner cartridge refills.
What can be done about this?
Sometimes, it is possible to replace the chip on the cartridge. Whenever this is a possibility, we offer cartridges that have a new chip installed. For customers who refill their own cartridges and for whom we provide refill kits, we make chips available (when possible), and these are sometimes bundled with the refill kits or sold separately (check the product name and product description for details).
You could also try removing and re-installing the cartridge, sometimes the connection is just bad.
If the cartridge is not being recognized by the printer, but the printer is still able to print, then this may be the best option available with the current technology on the market, and you can choose to ignore the “out of toner” message and continue with your print jobs. Many printers will continue to print if you close or exit out of any warning signals from your printer. Check your cartridge packaging for further instructions, or send us an email if you are not able to get your cartridge to physically print.
What is a “starter” cartridge and how are these different from regular cartridges?
Starter cartridges are the cartridges that first come with the printer when you buy them. Some starter cartridges (for Brother printers mainly) need a “reset gear” to be installed in order for them to be successfully reset and recognized by the printer. If you have a Brother starter cartridge, and are doing refills on your cartridge, check to see whether we offer a reset gear (if we do, its required for your cartridge). Reset gears are not required for non-starter cartridges.