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5 Ways to Save Money on Your Office Gadgets

28. May 2013 12:39 by Danielle in clickinks, office supplies, savings  //  Tags: , ,   //   Comments (0)

5 Ways to Save Money on Your Office Gadgets {Guest Post}

David Bakke is a small business owner, Internet reseller, and contributor for the popular personal finance blog, Money Crashers.

Whether you're a small business owner with a passion for digital technology or you're simply obsessed with grabbing the latest gadgets for yourself, there is tech temptation at every turn. The iPhone 5 was just released, as was the iPad 4. Just because the next latest and greatest gadget enters the market, however, doesn't mean you need to spend a fortune. In fact, there are ways that you can keep up with cutting edge technology without breaking the bank. Read on for some go-to money-saving tips for gadgets:

1. Purchase Online It's true that one of your best strategies to save on office gadgets is to look online. Use eBay or Amazon to begin with, but if you truly want to save, sign up for email updates from a website such as FatWallet or Slickdeals. That way, you can get an aggregate of all the deals both online and in-store where you can save the most money. Just be sure to factor in the shipping costs so you don't end up spending more money on online purchases than you would in-store.

2. Buy Used Shopping online is great, but take the idea to the next level by checking out used listings when you're shopping Amazon or eBay. You can sometimes uncover a deal where the product may be opened but it is virtually unused. Just because it's listed in the "used" category doesn't mean its tainted goods. It might be an item that was simply unwanted or one with a UPC code removed for a rebate promotion.

3. Track Clearance Sections This can involve a bit of leg work, but if you check out Staples, Office Depot, Office Max and Clickinks on a regular basis, you can find some nice items in their clearance section. These items aren't limited to traditional office supplies – you can even get display model laptops and other devices at significant discounts.

4. Go Without Although abstinence is never fun, sometimes it's best just to wait a while before making your purchase. You're never going to be able to keep up with all of the latest electronic releases, so your best bet may be not to buy new office gadgets at all. At the very least, wait unit the next model is released and you're going to save money by purchasing the previous model.

5. Sell Your Old Gadgets When you do upgrade your smartphone or other office gadget, be sure to sell your unwanted items. Amazon, eBay, and Craigslist are typically the best places to make a sale. Be sure you package your items safely and securely and ship them fast as well - you want to avoid getting returns.

Final Thoughts If you find yourself in the position of saving a few hundred dollars on a laptop computer, consider investing that money where it can do your finances the most good. If you don't have an emergency fund in place, start one. Got credit card debt? Get those balances knocked down. It's great to save on office gadgets, but using your savings in a meaningful way is even more important.

What ways can you think of to save on office gadgets?

How to save money when printing

11. April 2013 21:00 by Danielle in clickinks, how to save ink, paper saving  //  Tags: , ,   //   Comments (0)

With the evolution of home printing over the last decade, printing has now become more easily accessible than ever before. All but gone are the days of paying a print shop to print a simple document. Printing at home can save you time and money. With that being said, ink is still a pricey liquid that can really cut into the college student, or coupon clippers, budget. 

There are some smart ways to get the most bang for your buck when printing. 

Is your font eating up your ink? If you regularly use Arial, you could potentially use less printer ink by selecting Calibri, Century Gothic or Times New Roman as your default font. The amounts of ink used are generally determined by the thickness of the lines, so go light instead of bold for your prints.

Now that you have looked at your font, you may want to look at your default printer preferences. Select economy or draft mode if you are printing a casual note, or restaurant coupon, that does not require top quality, and you can save yourself money on those color inks.  If you have a commercial printer, you may also have the option to select duplex printing.  Selecting this option allows you to easily print on the front and back of each page, cutting your paper cost in half. Once you have changed your printer preferences, then go to print preview to make sure you are printing only what you need instead of printing headers, footers and anything else unnecessary.

Once you are using the least amount of ink and paper per print, you will want to find the lowest price on replacement ink cartridges.  You don’t need to purchase name brand ink cartridges, there are many stores, like Clickinks.com, that sell reliable remanufactured ink cartridges, at half the price. 

Most of us aren’t printing our own money, so apply these tips and you too can save more money when printing.

MICR toner, What is it and Do you need it

Have you seen or wondered what MICR toner means? What are the benefits of a MICR laser system? Should you be using MICR toner for your business or accounting needs? And what MICR toner cartridges are available?

  

 MICR is a Magnetic Ink Character Recognition technology used primarily by the banking industry to facilitate the processing of checks.  MICR characters are printed in special fonts with a magnetic toner containing iron oxide. As a machine decodes the MICR text, it first magnetizes the characters, and then the characters are passed over a MICR head, a device similar to the playback head of a tape recorder.  As each character passes over the head it produces a unique form that can be easily identified by the system.  Banks and Institutions rely on this MICR technology to read the account numbers and other codes in the bank line on checks and other negotiable documents with electronic bank processing equipment.

  

Most users cite the following benefits as a reason for converting to MICR printing:

  • MICR Laser check processing provides a much higher level of security.
  • Cost reductions by eliminating pre-printed checks
  • Creating a MICR Laser check is a single step process that adds payee data, signatures, logos, bank identification, and the MICR line to the check.
  • Increased flexibility to add, change or delete new bank accounts on demand, without ordering new checks.
  • Decreased exposure to check fraud.

So if you are in banking, accounting, payroll or accounts payable or are printing checks, you should use nothing less than MICR toner.  Clickinks MICR remanufactured laser toner cartridges guarantee that all checks are printed properly and will clear the financial institutions check clearing systems, adhering to ANSI readability standards.

 

Clickinks.com offers the best value, quality and price on MICR toner cartridges for all your check printing needs. We offer MICR toner for Canon, Dell, HP, Lexmark, IBM, Samsung, Toshiba, Xerox and even Source Tech printers, with more brands to come.  

How Does a Printer Work

14. July 2011 10:36 by Danielle in   //  Tags: , , , ,   //   Comments (0)

We use our desktop printers every day, but do you really know what happens to deliver an image from your computer to that piece of paper? No matter what type of document you are printing, whether it is a letter, spreadsheet, PDF or a photo, and no matter what type of printer you are using, whether it’s a Xerox Work Center or HP Photo Smart printer, there are some similarities in how your printer works. There is software responsible for sending the data to the printer; this software is known as the printer driver. The driver translates the data from the application into a format that the printer understands, the driver also checks to see if the printer is connected, turned on, and functioning properly.  There are two main types of printers, the laser printer and the inkjet printer.

How a Laser Printer works:

The laser printers functions are based on static electricity. A revolving drum unit receives an electrical charge from a wire that is called a charge corona, while it spins a tiny laser beam shining across its surface to discharge at various points to create the image on the drum.

Once the image is set, the printer puts positively charged toner powder on the drum. The toner then will only stick to the negatively charged areas.

After the toner is adhered to the image on the drum, the paper is moved into position. The paper encounters the transfer of the corona wire and receives a negative charge. The negatively charged paper has a stronger pull than the static electric charged toner that is holding to the drum, the paper pulls the toner powder from the drum transferring the image to the paper once the image is transferred from the drum; a detac corona wire zaps the paper to remove it from the drum.

Finally the paper is ready for the fuser. The fuser permanently bonds the image into the paper. The paper passes through the fusers, which are just heated rollers.  As the paper passes through, the fuser heats up the toner powder and bonds it with the paper, then the fusers sends the paper out of the printer.

How an Inkjet Printer works:

For the inkjet printer, it uses minuscule droplets of ink to create the image. The ink comes from an ink cartridge that is placed in the print head assembly, inside the print head assembly there is an actual print head which has several nozzles that spray drops of ink.

There are two types of inkjet printers:

Bubble Jet Printer:  The resistors create heat, which vaporizes the ink into tiny little bubbles and the bubble is pushed out onto the paper. The bubble jet print head can contain 600 nozzles and they all can fire a drop of ink simultaneously.

Piezoelectric printer: Piezo crystals are found at the back of the ink reservoir which vibrates when it receives an electric charge. The vibration from the crystal will force the ink out of the nozzle.

This is a quick and simplistic view on how the most common printers work.  Do you have questions about your printer?  Just let us know!

How to save on printing

We are all trying to save money these days, so here are some of our best tips on how to cut your printing costs in half by taking simple steps like shopping around for the best price, emailing your documents instead of printing them out and using duplex printing.

Don’t spend too much on ink

You can shop around and compare prices on printer ink. You will usually find the best prices, discounts and widest selection on-line. Remanufactured ink and toner cartridges are the best price at the highest quality, you will find remanufactured cartridges less than half the price of OEM while performing better than refilled or compatible cartridges.  Clickinks.com is known for low priced remanufactured ink and toner cartridges.

Print in economy mode

Next thing is changing your printing preference; how is this going help me save on my printing cost? By changing your printing preferences to print fit to page, change your current resolution to 300 DPI, change you toner saver on, set to economy mode and change your printing settings to text or even draft instead of photo. Once you have changed your printer preferences then go to print preview to make sure you are printing only what you need instead of printing headers, footers and anything else unnecessary.

Duplex Printing

If your printer has a duplex option, you can print on both the front and back of paper.  Many office printers even have the option of automatic duplexing.  This will cut your paper costs in half. 

Consider your Font

Switching to Calibri, Times New Roman or another narrow font and not using bold effects also means that you use less ink with each letter you print.  For more information on Ink Saving Fonts, see our earlier blog.

Email your documents

Are you sharing documents with other co workers? Everything doesn’t need to be printed, many times you can send them by email instead of printing them out, saving time, money, ink and the trees. Only print out what you need, for example let’s say that you have a memo or announcement you can just print the document once and then post it up somewhere everyone can see.

When you aim to save money, you end up spending less on ink or toner, putting less strain on your printer so it lasts longer, saving trees and keeping empty ink cartridges out of the environment.

How to clean a toner cartridge

7. July 2011 13:29 by Danielle in   //  Tags: , , , ,   //   Comments (0)

A toner cartridge, also called a laser toner cartridge, is the consumable component used in a laser printer.  Cleaning your cartridge as needed is very important for the quality of the printing and maximizes the printer performance.  To reduce the chance of your printer toner cartridge clogging, printer manufacturers recommend that you print at least one page a week in both black and color.  If uneven printing results occur, try shaking the laser toner cartridge or cleaning your printer.

Cleaning process:

  • Run the printer toner cleaning program that came with your printer. It was designed specifically for clearing clogged toner cartridges, and it only takes a few minutes to complete. To effectively clear clogs, you may need to run the program more than once.
  • The fuser-roller gets extremely hot while printing, so it is essential that you allow it to cool off completely to avoid burns. It is recommended that you allow the printer to sit unplugged for at least one hour before opening to clean.
  • Turn off any fans and close any vents nearby to prevent air disturbances that could make the toner particles airborne. Laser toner is made up of fine particles and harmful materials, so it is important to avoid inhaling them. You may want to wear a mask to cover your nose and mouth and even disposable latex gloves to protect your hands when cleaning toner cartridges.
  • Remove the printer toner cartridge from the printer, and wipe it with a damp cloth to remove excess toner. Then, place it on some old newspaper.
  • There are thin wires called corona wires that will often be exposed during cleaning. These fine wires can be easily damaged and are costly to repair. Take extra precaution not to brush these fine wires. Instead, use a cotton swab moistened with isopropyl alcohol to gently run along the length of the wire. No pressure is required to remove the fine particles.
  • Reinsert the laser toner cartridge into your printer. Now, you can safely turn the power on and print another test page to ensure the problem has cleared.

For a printer with normal use levels, it is typically sufficient to clean it every three months and have it professionally deep-cleaned once a year. If in the cleaning process you get some toner on you, keep in mind that toner can be washed off skin and garments with cold water.  Toner fused to skin can be partially removed using an abrasive hand cleaner and will eventually wear off. For more on how to clean up any spills, see How to Remove Toner.

What is Toner

What is Toner?

Toner is an electrically-charged powder used in laser printers and photocopiers.  It is used to form text or images.  In its early form it was simply carbon powder.  Later the manufactures added polymers to improve the quality of printing.  The two main ingredients of toner powder are now pigment and polymer. The role of the pigment is fairly obvious, it provides the coloring (black, in a monochrome printer) that fills in the text and images. The use of polymer varies by manufacturers and even by printer model.  Some of the most common polymers are styrene acrylate copolymer, polyester resin and styrene butadiene copolymer. 

The formulation of toners can also vary in granule size and melting point. The particle size of toners has reduced from a 14–16 micrometers to 8–10 micrometers (600 dots per inch resolution) to improve resolution.  The smaller the particle, the more accurate the color reproduction and efficiency. Uniform shapes are also a great factor when talking about improving the quality of the printout.  Further reductions in particle size producing further improvements in resolution are being developed through the application of new technologies.

In earlier machines, this low-cost carbon toner was poured by the user from a bottle into a reservoir in the machine. Current machines feed directly from a sealed cartridge. To save money and keep cartridges from piling up in landfills, empty cartridges can be refilled or even better, remanufactured.  Remanufactured cartridges refill the empty toner cartridges and the quality remanufactured cartridges like found at Clickinks.com also replace all used or worn parts. 

What is ink

28. June 2011 08:00 by Danielle in   //  Tags: , , , , , ,   //   Comments (0)

What is ink?

Ink according to the Oxford Dictionary is: “a colored fluid used for writing, drawing, printing, or duplicating.”  According to Wikipedia: “Ink is a liquid or paste that contains pigments and/or dyes and is used to color a surface to produce an image, text, or design.”  Britannica Concise Encyclopedia defines it as a “Fluid or paste of various colors (usually black or dark blue) used for writing and printing, composed of a pigment or dye in a liquid vehicle (solvent).”  No matter where you look for a definition, all of them have something in common; the purpose of ink is to deliver a visual image.  Inks are found in almost every aspect of human activity.

The first inks used were made of fruit or vegetables juices; blood from some types of animals and bark from trees.  The first man made inks were made from animal or vegetable charcoal mixed with glue and it appeared in Egypt about 4,500 years ago.  Older style writing inks, such as in fountain pens, use a fluid water-based dye system. But in the 1950s, when ballpoint pens became fashionable, the writing ink industry shifted to paste like oil-based dye systems. The thick consistency allows capillary action to keep the ink flowing well, and the inks generally are no smearing and quicker drying than water-based systems.  Dyes tend to be preferred over pigments for writing inks because pigments can't be dispersed minutely enough and tend to clog the pen tip. Water-based dye or pigment systems are still used for markers, highlighters and rollerball pens. A few pen manufacturers, such as Bic (which sells about 3 million pens per day) make their own ink, but most pen manufacturers buy their ink.

There are various types of inks available today, all used for different purposes in the printing market.  Newspapers, magazines, photo and book publishers are just a few examples of the paper base industries that use inks in a daily basis.  Even the governments use ink to print money.  But there are a lot more industries that depend on inks to deliver a message; apparel, beverage and paint industries are some good examples.  In today’s developed nations, most residences and businesses have a printing capability and having an inkjet printer is very common in most countries.  At home ink is used to print homework, reports, bills or just to print some drawings to keep the kids busy doing some coloring (I’m guilty as charged). 

Today's inks are divided into two classes: printing inks and writing inks. Printing inks are further broken down into two subclasses: ink for conventional printing, and ink for digital nonimpact printing, which includes ink-jet and electrophotographic technologies.  Inks also contain additives such as waxes, lubricants, surfactants, and drying agents to aid printing and to impart any desired special characteristics.  An average size magazine issue of 80 pages requires a total of only about 68 gal of ink to print just more than 150,000 copies.  The advent of personal computers, personal electronics, and the Internet may one day replace libraries full of printed books and periodicals with electronic products.  Look how many e-books are already in use. But the great paperless society hasn't fully shown itself yet, many industries still rely on paper. And as long as there's paper, then there must be ink.

Sealing your envelopes without inducing a tongue full of paper cuts

27. June 2011 09:15 by Danielle in   //  Tags: , ,   //   Comments (0)

Use an envelope moistener for only 95¢ and save your tongue

 

Christmas cards, birthday greetings and stacks of bills can really get to you after awhile.

 

But there is an easier way, don’t lick all those envelopes when you can use a neat bottle moistener.  This is no tongue in cheek joke, these bottle moisteners are so inexpensive and make it really, really, easy to seal a stack of envelopes without worrying about where that envelope has been, drying your mouth or cutting yourself.  

Get one for home and another for office, you will never be left in a sticky situation again.

 

·         Envelope moistener with polyurethane sponge.  

·         Eliminates the need to lick envelopes.

·         Distributes moisture evenly without over-wetting.

·         Long-lasting polyurethane sponge.

 

Order this handy envelope moistener today for only 95¢ at Clickinks.com!

 

Ink Poisoning: Is your beloved family member at risk

Ink Poisoning: Is your beloved family member at risk?

How many of you have a treasured K-9 companion? Here is some information that you need to know about ink poisoning. Dogs are curious creatures by nature, and they love to explore their environments. Unfortunately these explorations consist of sniffing and licking everything, even if it may prove to be harmful to them.  As a responsible dog owner we need to dog proof our homes like we would do for a baby.  Beware of some of the signs that could indicate ingestion of poisonous substance and what to do in case of emergency.

Ink ingredients

The ingredients in ink are a mixture of dyes and pigments, water and solvents. These ingredients are nonpoisonous if ingested in small amounts. If your dog chews on a pen, marker or empty cartridge, you will be relieved to know that there is no immediate cause to be alarmed.

Signs and Symptoms

Accidental ingestion of ink may not have any signs or symptoms besides the ink stains that are on the dog’s coat. You should still watch for other signs of ink poisoning such as vomiting, diarrhea, irritation around mouth and eyes, agitation, drooling, staggering, seizures or difficult breathing.

What to do

If you suspect your dog has ingested ink but isn’t showing any of the signs, just keep the dog under observation and contact your vet as soon as possible. If there isn’t any sign of illness then a trip to the vet may not even be necessary, but you should contact your vet for some professional advice or you may get in touch with your animal poison control at 888-426-4435 or
http://www.aspca.org/pet-care/poison-control/ .  If your dog is losing consciousness or is unconscious, having seizures or difficulties breathing please take your dog to the vet or emergency clinic immediately.

First-Aid

If your dog has gotten ink on him or her fur, clean the dogs coat with mild dishwasher fluid this will prevent him or her licking him or herself. Your vet may give your dog activated charcoal hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting if needed.

Prevention

To prevent your dog from getting ink poisoning in the first place, please keep your dog’s environment neat, clean and safe. Teaching your dog the common command of “leave it” can also help prevent an accident.