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Author Topic: Life span of Epson 3880 Inks after Installation in Printer?  (Read 810 times)
JayWPage
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« on: August 24, 2014, 08:39:42 PM »
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How long should the Epson inks be good for before they should be replaced? I know that Epson suggests a life span of 6 months after opening/installation in the printer but I have read here and else where that some people have kept partial cartridges in their printers for well over a year. How long is reasonable to keep an ink cartridge in the printer before replacing it even if it has lots of ink left?

What happens if you leave a partially empty cartridge in the printer too long? Does it begin to settle out or begin to clog with that colour? What about with the black inks, if you never use one of the blacks, say the matte black, could you leave the original MK cartridge in the printer for the whole life of the printer which may be ~5 years?

Can you prolong the life of a cartridge that you may otherwise never use up by taking it out and agitating it?
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jeffreybehr
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« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2014, 11:30:47 PM »
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A friend has a 3880 that he left turned off, completely inactive, for either 13 or 15 months.  After 2 normal nozzle cleans, it printed perfectly and eventually consumed all those inktanks.
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DF1
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« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2014, 10:36:05 AM »
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i've never had a problem with ink in my 3880 after being off for several months. If it's been dormant, I usually do just one routine cleaning after firing it up and it's always printed perfectly.

I've also never agitated the cartridges, but I suppose it wouldn't hurt.
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hugowolf
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« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2014, 06:17:38 PM »
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How long should the Epson inks be good for before they should be replaced? I know that Epson suggests a life span of 6 months after opening/installation in the printer but I have read here and else where that some people have kept partial cartridges in their printers for well over a year. How long is reasonable to keep an ink cartridge in the printer before replacing it even if it has lots of ink left?

SInce I bought a larger format printer, my 3880 doesn't see much use. I probably have cartridges in that have been there for more than two years. I have heard of users with cartridges that have been installed for over three years.

What happens if you leave a partially empty cartridge in the printer too long? Does it begin to settle out or begin to clog with that colour? What about with the black inks, if you never use one of the blacks, say the matte black, could you leave the original MK cartridge in the printer for the whole life of the printer which may be ~5 years?

The PK/MK is more of a problem. There is no way of preventing an accidental PK/MK swap. On Epson’s larger format printers, if you select a media type that requires a different black ink, you get a dialog asking if you really want to do that or if you want to abort the print. On the 3800/3880 the printer will start the ink swap without asking. You can turn it off, but when you turn it back on it will resume the ink change.

You are far better doing a PK/MK switch a few times a year, just to keep things flowing through both.

Can you prolong the life of a cartridge that you may otherwise never use up by taking it out and agitating it?

I don't know if it prolongs the life of the ink, it will probably help prevent pigment particles settling. I do it once in a while. I also have the printer on a stand with castors. It rocks a little each time it prints.

I have heard that the 3880 users some sort of pressure system for moving the ink about in the cartridge, but I can't see how a gentle agitation would hurt once in a while.

On the other hand, you should really be doing some printing once in a while. It costs next to nothing to do a nozzle check print once a week on A4/US letter sized office paper.

Brian A
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JayWPage
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« Reply #4 on: August 25, 2014, 08:40:02 PM »
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Thanks for the information Brian. I do print at least once every week, even if it is just an 8 1/2 x 11 test print. But since most of my printing is B&W I can see that a year or two down the road I'm going to still have a lot of vivid magenta and maybe others left. I mostly use the PK black, but I will use the MK black occasionally, probably just to experiment around with seeing what some prints look like on matte paper.
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Muizen
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« Reply #5 on: August 27, 2014, 12:46:45 PM »
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In 2009 I purchased a Epson Pro 3800. In 5 years since then, I printed a total of 150 prints and the 3800 has been left "on his/her own" for more than the last 2 years.
Recently I started the printer up and produced a very nice color print without a problem.
Thereafter I tested the 3800 by printing a nozzle check which turned out to be perfect!
The info Epson supplies (after 6 months replace the ink - it will cost you only €450!) is pure nonsense. Just for the stupid who have money enough to throw at Epson!


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Martin Archer-Shee
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« Reply #6 on: August 27, 2014, 07:26:51 PM »
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Seems to me they are good until empty. Since they are pigment inks it would be wise to combat any settling by taking the cartridges out ever now and then and give them a gentle shake. Pigments are in suspension and over time will settle. Wink
Print and enjoy.

Martin
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