Many times we look to buy a printer thinking “Will these machines actually last very long?”. We also tend to think about the monetary value that we are getting out of these machines, and if they will be worth the investment. “How long should a printer last?”, is a good question to ask, especially when rumor has it that some printers, or electronics in general, are not made to last long at all!
Although the above may be true to some extent, printers like everything else in the world, if used and kept properly, should last a good while (maybe a few years or more).
There are many different types of printers available in the market today. Some are designed to be used at home and some are meant for commercial use. In this article, we will talk about the average lifespan of a printer, and ways to extend the useful life of a printer.
What is the average lifespan of a printer? – 3 to 5 years
The average lifespan of a printer is 3 to 5 years. If taken care of properly, they could last up to 10.
Everybody’s experience varies, and it depends also, on how the printer is used.
Some printers may last even longer, from 10 to 15 years, but there are reasons why after a certain period of time you would want to get a new one.
Printers are no longer supported after a certain period of time.
After a period of 8 to 10 years, support for most models of printer are stopped.
This means that after this period, for any software or parts issues that may arise, you are on your own. Possibly time to replace that trusty old printer!
Although parts may still be available, it is the software part of the printer that will be a headache, as compatibility for newer operating systems such as Windows 11 or newer versions of MacOS could cease.
Industrial printers last longer
Industrial printers may last slightly longer than normal household or office printers. With that said, they are also pricier.
Industrial inkjet printers will last up-to 10 years
How to make your printer last longer
Avoid high humid area
Temperature and humidity, plays a huge role in ensuring that the printer lasts long. A printer that sits in a high humidity environment, will likely have wavy paper, which results from high heat and moisture content in the air.
A wavy, curly paper will jam the printer. This is why humidity and printers don’t go together!
Keep clear of dust and debris
Keep the printer away from dusty areas. Laser printers, since they output a lot of heat from operations, require a running fan to keep it cool. Dust and debris will block air from getting sucked in, leading to overheating issues.
Avoid low humidity
While high humidity damages paper and the electronics inside the printer, low humidity also has the same effect of the printer. It confuses the electronic components of the printer.
Use high quality paper
The reason why low quality papers are not recommended, is because they tend to collect dust, causing the rubber rollers to fail, which in turn, causes paper jamming.
Most laser printers tend to be prone to the above, hence the need for quality paper.
So, how long should a printer last? – It depends!
Expect 3-5 years, but it depends on certain factors, including the following;
- type of printer
- usage, and frequency of use
- working environment
- care and maintenance schedule
- ongoing compatibility
- availability of spare parts
It pays to consider these points, and will have an influence upon how often you need to replace your printer?