HP Accused Of Expiring Ink Cartridges

from the must-use-by... dept

What is it with printer manufacturers and their increasingly sophisticated means of screwing over the customers who buy ink from them? Even going beyond various attempts at using technology to block out competition, printer makers have long been accused of having their printers claim a cartridge is empty when it's still 25% full. However, some consumers are claiming that HP goes a step further, and includes a "must use by" date encoded in the chip in their ink cartridges, meaning that if you don't use the ink by a certain date, no HP printer will let you use it any more. It's not clear if the complaint focuses on the fact that this exists at all, or (more reasonably) that the expiration date isn't given to consumers. HP's defense, of course, will most likely be to point out that older cartridges may clog up, causing damage to the printers. Which may, in fact, be true. However, without telling the buyer that the cartridge expires, they may have opened themselves up to trouble, as many people will assume the cartridges will remain good.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    robin, 25 Jun 2008 @ 5:29pm

    Costco ink

    Arinda, I just got back from Costco looking for HP ink. I had already been clued into the expiration date thing, having had an expired cartridge quit working in my printer (a fresh non-expired cartridge got the printer working again). So now I ALWAYS check the expiration date before I buy. I didn't check all the cartridges at Costco of course, but all of the ones I did look at were expired. Some as old as December 2007. Your beef should be with Costco, not HP. I intend to write to the store manager to point this out. They may just be clueless about this expiration date thing, not intending to fleece their customers (at least I'd like to give them the benefit of the doubt). There is this wording on the box: "Ink cartridge limited warranty ends 6 months after install by date." Those December 2007 cartridges are already out of warranty. And equally-clueless customers won't, well, have a clue.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Show Now: Takedown
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads


Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.