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Buying Printer Toner

What Is Printer Toner?

So, besides "what the printer uses," what exactly is printer toner? While toner-based laser printers work with many of the same types of paper — including multipurpose paper, labels and stickers, and photo paper — toner is not the same as the printer ink used in inkjet-style printers. Instead, toner is a very fine powder mix, contained in cartridges used in laser printers and laser-type photocopiers. The toner is attracted to the page by a static charge, then bonded with a heated fuser as it prints text and photos. The easiest way to tell if your printer is running low on printer toner is by a warning showing up on the display panel. Other telltale signs include low toner coverage on the page, uneven printing, images that aren't as sharp as usual, or toner clumps, streaks and spots.

Figuring out which toner refill to get doesn't need to be a daunting task. Of course, it is important to know which printer toner cartridges are compatible with your printer — and for color laser printers, that means the four separate cartridges for black, magenta, cyan and yellow. Two ways to determine which toner you need are first, to find the information in the printer's user manual, and second, to get the model numbers off the toner cartridges you're replacing so you can swap them out with the same toner cartridge. Here at Best Buy, you can also enter your printer model number into our Ink & Toner Finder.

Printer Toner for Your Office

Whether you're making copies of the agenda for an upcoming meeting or printing the results of the latest company project using your go-to business software, laser printers using toner are often the choice for business use because they're known to produce sharp black text documents better than other printer styles. They also tend to be faster, especially with high volume print jobs. Additionally, toner lasts longer than ink and so is more affordable in the long run — which can be significant because in many office situations, the printer is among the most used equipment, alongside the telephone, computer, shredder and coffee maker.