How to Trick Epson Ink Cartridges

Updated February 21, 2017

Epson inkjet printers are equipped with a metering system that alerts the user when the printer cartridges are running low. Eventually, the microchip will shut off the printer until the cartridge is replaced. The problem is, many Epson owners may discover their cartridges still have plenty of ink, perhaps as much as 25 per cent, which could be used for printing before buying expensive replacements. The solution is to "trick" the printer into thinking a new cartridge has been installed so the remaining ink can be used.

Raise the Epson printer cover while the power is turned on, then wait for the carriage to stop sliding back and forth.

Remove all printing cartridges by squeezing the tabs on the short ends of each cartridge and lifting straight out.

Turn off the printer and wait for it to shut down completely.

Unplug the printer from the power source and wait at least five minutes for the printer memory to reset.

Shake each cartridge a few seconds to redistribute the ink inside.

Reinstall the cartridges in the same order as each was removed.

Restore power to the Epson and print a test page.


The nozzles in the printer housing underneath the print cartridges can be cleaned with a cotton swab dipped in rubbing alcohol. Let the alcohol evaporate completely before reinstalling the cartridges.

Things You'll Need

  • Epson printer
  • Cotton swabs
  • Rubbing alcohol
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About the Author

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.