The new HP Deskjet 3270, 3370, 3720, 3730 printers using the new HP304 series ink cartridges. Maybe the reason you are reading this article is because replacement cartridges are expensive. This is because the HP 304 cartridges have built-in print heads which contribute greatly to the price of replacement cartridges. On the upside, you get a new print head each time, but we feel this is unnecessary as they have multiple life cycles. So refilling them makes both financial and environmental sense.
Sadly refilling is not for everyone. Modern day life can be busy and stressful; spare time limited. So if you are thinking of buying one of the above printers, then stop and think! Do you have the time and patience to perform regular cartridge refilling procedures? If you already own one of these printers then refilling is the only sane option, so read on for more details...
Equipment required... Bottles of Black, Cyan, Magenta, and Yellow ink. 4 syringes (if needles not already fitted to bottles), a screw tool, paper towel, and gloves. Buy a refill kit containing all of the tools and ink from Premium Inks!
There is a label on the top of each cartridge which covers up where you need to make the refilling holes. You will need to make one hole to refill the black cartridges (see diagram) and three holes in the top of the colour cartridge.
The colour cartridge has three separate ink compartments for the cyan, magenta and yellow colours. See diagram. Use a screw tool to make the holes in the appropriate places. Then push the filling needle into the hole and into the inner sponge. Then VERY VERY SLOWLY inject a very small amount of ink into the cartridge. I say 'a very small amount of ink' because these HP304 cartridges have a very low capacity, however, the HP304xl versions are more generous. If you see bubbles start to appear at the top of the needle, then stop. Bear in mind that the sponge has to absorb the ink and this is not always instant, so take your time. Give the sponge a fighting chance to absorb the ink, otherwise due to pressure, it might flow straight out of the bottom of the cartridge print head. Repeat this exercise for all the colours that need refilling. Dab the print head on a paper towel and gently wipe off excessive ink. Then dab the print head on the paper towel again to check for lines of black and colour. The black cartridge should produce a solid black strip, and the colour cartridge three strips, a cyan, a magenta and a yellow. If one of the colours is not coming through, then leave the cartridge overnight which will give time for the ink to soak into the sponge. Do not leave on a kitchen towel as this will draw ink out of the cartridge! Finally, put the cartridge into the printer and perform a test print. You may get an error message saying that the cartridge is low or empty. You can bypass these error codes by pressing various buttons on the printer or connected computer.
When refilling be careful not to contaminate the different colours by getting excessive ink on the top or bottom of the cartridges. You do not want the wrong ink to flow into the wrong holes or through the wrong nozzle.
The best piece of advice I can give you is to take your time. Rushing is a really bad idea and usually, results in spilt ink and messy hands. Make sure you cover all work surfaces before you begin!
One or more of the colours are not printing?
Leave the cartridge overnight giving ample time for the ink to soak into the sponge. (Do not leave on a kitchen towel as this will draw ink out of the cartridge!)
I have left the cartridge overnight but it is still not printing correctly?
Use a suction tool to draw ink through and out of the print head nozzle. The Eco-Fill Professional Refill Kit comes complete with a suction tool.
The yellow ink coming out of the cartridge looks green?
The yellow colour compartment has been contaminated with cyan ink. Hopefully, with future printing and refilling, the problem will correct itself.