Print In Gray Scale To Save Your Color Ink

Printer ink is expensive, especially color ink. On most printer models you do not buy a single ink cartridge for color, rather three (cyan, magenta and yellow). More so, these color cartridges typically do not hold as much ink as their black counterparts.

So when it comes to printing, print what you can using only black ink (i.e. in gray scale). You can usually find this setting in the print dialog by clicking the properties button. Depending on your printer model, there is typically a check box on the resulting dialog to indicate you want to print in gray scale. You can also make this the default setting by going to your printer setup in Windows, viewing the properties and checking the box there. This saves the setting for future use so you don’t have to change it every time.

This is perfect to use when printing web pages, text documents, maps, etc. Save your color ink for when you want to print your pictures.


  1. Good idea! But it won’t fix the problem if you are using an Epson printer. They eat color ink even when only printing Black/Grey scale. My Epson Stylus Photo R300 has completely gone through a set (5 separate color ink cartridges) of color inks without ever printing a single color item. Must be ‘cleaning heads’ an awful lot even if color is not used.

  2. Even if the document to be printed “looks” like it does not have color this setting is useful as some printers actually use all three colors for printing grayscale.

  3. My Epson DX4050 is in the habit of printing greys, such as a 50% grey, as a medium green. I wish I could make it stop doing that.

  4. I have the same problem with my Canon – I always print in grayscale and I keep running out of colour inks!

  5. Any remedies to this printing greyscale eating up color inks issue. I have a cannon iP4700 & that is my issue – besides the new & improved smaller ink cartridges.

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