Contrary to what many believe, printing services need not be degrading to the atmosphere. In this article we would present some smart and easy green printing tips:
- Choose sections of the document to be printed – Often, you do not need a printed copy of the entire document/file. Select the portion that you need a hard copy of, before hitting the ‘Print’ button.
- Use recycled, chlorine-free paper – Recycled papers do not have any ill-effects on the environment. Also, look for the chlorine-bleach free mark on the corner of the printing papers, before you buy a bundle.
- Monitor the condition of the graphic printers – Before selecting any printing services providers find out how much electrical energy the printers consume. If you find that the energy consumption level of a printer is higher than the prescribed level, get it inspected and repaired by a qualified professional.
- Print on both sides – Choose good-quality recycled papers which are printable on both sides. That way, you will be able to cut down on your total paper usage levels by a significant amount.
- Use recyclable ink cartridges – Start using recyclable cartridges. Such cartridges can generally be refilled, so that you would not have to worry about getting rid of them.
- Choose paper of the right size – If you have a printing services business then it’s an important point that you need to keep in mind. Do not use A4 papers, when a smaller (say, A5-sized) paper would do. If you are taking printouts of PowerPoint slides, consider including multiple slides within a single page. The print quality would remain the same, while landfill levels would go down.
- Use the ‘print preview’ button – Do not send any document to the printer, before making sure that it is formatted in just the way you require. Use the print preview option, to get a clear idea of how the hard copy of the document would look like. This will help you in taking lesser, and better, printouts.
- Check the VOC content in the ink – Volatile organic compounds (VOC), which are present in many printing ink varieties, have indirect harmful effects on the atmosphere. While purchasing ink, make sure that the VOC-content is low (ideally, zero). Avoid using printer inks that have other toxic materials in high levels.
- Switch off the printers when you are not using them – Do not keep the printers unnecessarily switched on. It’s not only wastage of electricity but it also raises your electricity bills. Constantly running printers are also more likely to get worn out within a relatively short span of time.
If your printers are quite old, you should get them replaced with newer, more energy-efficient models. Stop taking printouts indiscriminately, and follow the ‘green’ printing tips mentioned above. Your printing tasks will become a lot more efficient and environmental benefits.