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How to Check Printer Ink and Toner Levels

Everyone loves their printer…until it runs out of ink or toner mid-job! ah!

Prevent this frustrating situation by learning to check the printer ink and toner levels on your printer!

So, how do you check how much ink is left in your printer?

Let’s take a look below!


How to Check Ink and Toner Levels by Platform

The procedure for checking printer ink and toner levels depends on the following factors:

  • The type of computer and operating system you use
  • The brand of your printer

Let’s see how to check ink levels through the platform. (“Platform” is the type of operating system your computer uses.)

How to Check Ink Levels – Windows 11

window 11 image

If your printer is producing fuzzy or faded prints, your printer might be low on ink or toner.

To check printer ink and toner levels on Windows 11, you can follow these steps:

  • Open the Settings app on your Windows 11 computer. You can do this by clicking the Start button and then selecting the gear icon for Settings.
  • In the Settings app, click the Printers & Scanners option. This will open Printers and Scanners Settings.
  • Scroll down to the “Printers and Scanners” section and find your printer from the list of installed printers. Click on your printer to select it.
  • After selecting your printer, you should see a “Manage” button. Click it to open the printer management options.
  • In Printer Management Options, look for options related to ink or toner levels. The exact wording may vary by printer model and driver software. Common phrases to look for include “supply levels,” “ink levels,” or “toner levels.”
  • Click on the Ink or Toner Level option and a window or dialog box should appear showing the current ink or toner levels in the printer cartridges.

Note: The availability of ink or toner level information depends on the printer model and its compatibility with Windows 11.

Some printers may not provide this information directly through the operating system, in which case you may need to check the ink or toner levels by consulting the printer manual or using the printer software provided by the manufacturer.

How to Check Ink Levels – Windows 10

window 10 image

Many printers provide ink or toner level status directly on the device, however, if you want to check your ink and toner levels from your computer using Windows 10, you will need to follow these steps.

Windows 10 uses the HP Smart app to help printer owners set up, scan, print and manage their HP printers while monitoring ink and toner levels.

For example, if your printer is an HP Officejet Pro 276dw MFP:

  1. Turn on the HP Officejet Pro 276dw MFP.
  2. On your Windows 10 computer, find and download the HP Smart app in the Windows Store.
  3. Click Start, then Start, then Continue.
  4. Accept the terms and conditions.
  5. If a warning yellow triangle is displayed, click the icon to get more details about the problem. If your HP OfficeJet Pro 276dw MFP does not appear, click Set up a new printer to search. Then follow the on-screen instructions until the message We found your printer appears! Appear.
  6. If the HP Smart app still cannot find your HP Officejet Pro 276dw MFP, go to Printer Not Found During Network Driver Setup for more details on how to connect it to your wireless network.
  7. Click the Resources icon, and then click Get HP Full Feature Software.
  8. Follow the onscreen instructions to set up the HP Officejet Pro 276dw MFP. After installation, the printer’s ink and toner levels are displayed on the home screen of the HP Smart app.

HP Officejet Pro 276dw MFP

How to Check Printer Ink Levels – Windows 8

If you want to check ink and toner levels from a computer using Windows 8, follow the steps below.

For example, if your printer is an HP Color LaserJet Pro M452nw:

  1. Press the Windows key + S, type devices and printers.
  2. Select Devices and Printers from the search list.
  3. Click on HP Color LaserJet Pro M452nw.
  4. If the printer is designed to display ink or toner levels, the toner levels for the HP Color LaserJet Pro M452nw should be displayed on the device and in the status area on the bottom of the printer.

How to Check Ink Levels on Mac

1. Open your System Preferences

How to Check Ink Levels on Mac

2. Click Printers and Scanners

Check ink levels on Mac printers and scanners

3. Select your printer from the list of connected printers

Check ink levels on Mac, select your printer from list screenshot

4. Click the Options and Supplies tab at the top of the window

Check printer ink levels on Mac, click Options and Supplies tab screenshot

5. Click the Supply Levels tab, the ink levels for the selected printer will be displayed:

check ink and toner levels on mac click supplies level screenshot

Checking Ink and Toner Levels – Linux

Linux users know they rule. But they know that checking ink and toner levels on a printer connected to a Linux computer can be difficult.

However, with the help of Synaptic Package Manager, Linux users can also check the ink and toner levels on their printers.

Methods as below:

  • Open your application menu.
  • Search synapses.
  • Select Synaptic Package Manager.
  • Enter your password to open Synaptic Package Manager.
  • Search for ink/toner.
  • Click to search for “ink”.
  • Select Ink and Libinklevel.
  • Click Apply.
  • Open the Linux Mint application menu.
  • Search terminal.
  • Start Terminal.
  • Type “cd /usr/bin/” and press Enter.
  • Type “ink -p usb”.
  • Hit the Enter key.

Check Ink and Toner Levels – Google/Chromebook

Checking the ink or toner levels in a printer connected to a Chromebook can be tricky.

If your Chromebook is connected to a network printer, you can check ink and toner levels on-screen through Chrome’s print dialog.

However, checking ink and toner levels is usually not possible on Chromebooks.

How to Check Printer Ink Levels Using Your Chromebook Screen

The good news is that you can always check the supply levels on the printer

The good news is that you can always check the supply levels on the printer.

How to Check Toner/Ink Levels by Brand

Almost every brand of printer has a feature that allows you to check ink or toner levels, but not all printers allow you to check these levels through an on-screen interface. You may need to check the ink or toner levels on the printer itself.

Below we’ll take a look at how to check the ink and toner levels of different printer brands.

Let’s start with HP.

How to check the ink levels on your HP printer:

To check the ink levels of an HP printer, Windows users should download a free tool called HP Print and Scan Doctor. This application performs troubleshooting diagnostics and checks the printer’s consumable levels.

To check HP ink levels on Windows:

  1. Open HP Print and Scan Doctor
  2. Click “Printer/Supply Volume”

This will tell you how much ink or toner is left in an HP printer connected to a Windows operating system.

To check your HP printer ink levels on Windows 10, Android, and iOS, download the HP Smart app, which displays your ink and toner levels on the app’s home screen.

How to Check the Ink Levels on an Epson Printer

Checking the ink and toner levels on your Epson printer is easy.

Windows users can click the printer icon on the taskbar. This will bring up the Epson Status Monitor, which will display your available ink and toner levels.

How to Check the Ink Levels of Your Epson Printer

Mac users can open the Printers & Scanners tab in System Preferences. Select your Epson printer from the list of available printers to open Epson Status Monitor.

Epson notes that the ink levels recorded by the Epson Status Monitor are approximate and recommends visually inspecting its ink cartridges to see exactly how much ink is remaining. If the ink level is below the minimum supply line, replace the ink cartridge.

Check the ink and toner levels on the Xerox

As long as your Xerox printer drivers are up to date – check the Xerox support site – you should be able to check your Xerox printer’s ink and toner levels on your computer screen.

Windows users:

  1. Go to Control Panel.
  2. Access devices and printers.
  3. Locate the icon for your Xerox printer.
  4. Right click on it to pull down the printer properties menu
  5. Select Preferences to display current ink and toner levels for Xerox printers

Mac users:

  1. Open your System Preferences.
  2. Select “Printers and Scanners”.
  3. Select your Xerox printer from the list of printers
  4. Click on the Supply Levels option to display your ink and toner levels

You can also check the ink and toner levels on your Xerox printer through Xerox’s embedded web server.

checking-ink-and-toner-levels-on-xerox

How to Check the Ink Levels on a Canon Printer

To check the ink or toner levels on your Canon printer, you can launch the Canon Status Monitor.

Windows users will see this monitor appear when they double-click the printer icon on the bottom tray of the desktop.

Mac users can find it in the library under the printers folder.

After launching Canon Status Monitor, click the Maintenance tab to open the Printer Status screen. A pop-up screen will display the ink and toner levels.

how-to-check-ink-levels-on-canon-printer

How to check the toner level on my Brother printer

There are several ways you can check the toner (or ink) level on your Brother printer.

On Windows:

  1. Double-click the printer icon (located below the taskbar) to open the Brother Status Monitor Utility.
  2. Your ink and toner levels will be displayed

how-to-check-toner-level-on-brother-laser-printer

On a Mac:

  1. Click on your HD icon.
  2. Click Library.
  3. Click Printers.
  4. Click Brother.
  5. Double-click Brother Status Monitor Utility.
  6. Check the ink and toner levels.

On your Brother printer:

  1. Click the Ink/Ink Management key on the front LCD panel of the Brother printer
  2. scroll to ink level options

You can check the ink levels of older Brother printers by pressing the OK button three times.

This will print a printer settings page. The percent toner remaining should be listed on the second page.

When the toner cartridge is low on toner, the printer displays a “Replace Toner” message. If the “Replace Toner” message appears, you will not be able to print the Printer Settings Page. In this case, you can check the remaining toner level using the control panel.

To check remaining toner using the control panel:

  1. Press the OK button first. You will see machine information on the display. Press OK.
  2. Select “Part Life”.
  3. Select “Toner Life”.
  4. Select the color toner to check. Press OK.

After this, you will see 10 boxes on the control panel. 10 black boxes indicate that the toner cartridge is full. The number of black frames will decrease as the toner usage correlates with the remaining toner in the cartridge. For example, if the remaining life of the black toner cartridge is 30%, the LCD will display 3 black frames.

Checking the Ink and Toner Levels on the OKI Printer

How Windows users can check ink and toner levels on OKI printers:

  1. Open the control panel.
  2. Select Printers.
  3. Select the icon for the OKI printer.
  4. Right-click the printer of your choice to display the Printer Properties drop-down menu.

On Mac, you can check the ink and toner levels of your OKI printer by following the steps below.

  1. Open System Preferences.
  2. Select “Printers and Scanners”.
  3. Select your OKI printer.
  4. Click Supply Levels.

printer-ink-levels-on-oki-printer

Checking the Ink and Toner Levels on Lexmark Printers

Using the Lexmark P910 Series Utility, you can check the ink and toner levels on your Lexmark printer from your computer screen.

While most Lexmark printer drivers are compatible with Windows and Mac operating systems, the Lexmark P910 Series Utility is also a useful tool in checking the ink and toner levels on your Lexmark printer.

ink-and-toner-levels-on-lexmark-printers

How to Check the Ink and Toner Levels of a Panasonic Printer

You can check the ink and toner levels of most Panasonic printers through the Windows Print dialog (or “Printers & Scanners” in the Mac System Preferences folder).

Panasonic printers continuously monitor supply levels and display messages such as “Toner Low” or “Replace Toner Cartridge”. (Or ink cartridges, if you’re still using an old Panasonic inkjet printer.)

ink-and-toner-levels-on-panasonic-printers

Checking Ink and Toner Levels – Ricoh

If your Ricoh printer is connected to Windows, you can use the usual print properties methods to display the status of your toner or ink levels.

You can also check the toner level status on the main front screen of the Ricoh printer itself.

To do this, you need to click on Home to bring up System Information, which will show you your toner levels.

Note: If you are not using original Ricoh toner, your toner level cannot be displayed.

ink-and-toner-levels-on-ricoh-printer

Checking Ink and Toner Levels – Samsung

To check the ink levels on a Samsung printer connected to Windows:

Open Control Panel and find the Printers section.

Right-click on the Samsung printer icon and select the Printer Properties option.

Your current ink or toner levels will be displayed.

Mac users can check printer ink levels in System Preferences under Printers & Scanners:

  1. Click your Samsung printer in the list of printers.
  2. Go to the Supplies Levels tab and your toner or ink levels will be displayed.

ink-and-toner-levels-on-samsung-printers

Ink and Toner Levels on Sharp Printers

Modern Sharp printers display ink levels on the main front screen. To check the level of older Sharp printers, use one of the following methods.

1. Press and hold the blue house button on the main menu until the toner level and gauge readouts are displayed. Click the Toner Remaining tab and the device will display your current toner level.

how-to-check-toner-level-on-a-sharp-printer

2. Press and hold the Copy tab in the upper left corner of the Home screen until the Toner Levels and gauge readout shows the MFP Status tab, then tap the Toner Remaining tab to display the current toner level.

checking-ink-levels-sharp-printer

 

Checking Ink and Toner Levels – Dell

On a Windows-based PC, you can check the ink and toner levels of your Dell printer by accessing the Control Panel under the Hardware and Sound tab.

Select View devices and printers and select your printer. Click the Service tab and select Dell Ink Levels. This page allows you to check the ink and toner levels on your Dell printer and print a test page.

check-printer-ink-levels-dell

Printer Ink and Toner Levels FAQ

Above we described how to check the amount of ink remaining in your printer on different platforms and devices. But other questions frequently arise among printer owners, and we’ll try to answer them below.

Epson printer says ink is empty but it’s not

Epson recommends making sure the ink cartridges are installed correctly. If the “Ink tank empty” message persists, select the option to replace the ink cartridges.

You can also try removing and reinstalling the ink cartridges. In some cases, this may solve the problem.

HP printer says it is out of ink, but it isn’t

HP printer owners report this to be a common problem when using non-HP branded ink cartridges. One way to resolve this issue is to reset the printer.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Remove the ink cartridge
  2. Turn off the printer
  3. Unplug the printer
  4. Wait 15 seconds
  5. Reinsert the printer
  6. Turn the printer back on
  7. Reinstall ink cartridges

How to Print When One Ink Cartridge is Empty (HP Printers)

Welcome to the wonderful world of HP where you need all four colors of ink to print black and white documents!

HP uses a small amount of color ink each time a page is printed to prevent print head clogging. Therefore, in many HP printers, you will not be able to print unless ink is in all four cartridges. According to HP, this feature cannot be overridden.

However, some HP printers will tell you when ink levels are low and allow you to switch to grayscale printing before those cartridges are completely depleted. This is a great way to extend the life of your HP ink cartridges.

How to Tell Which Ink Cartridge is Empty (HP Printers)

When HP Status Monitor is opened (by clicking the printer icon on the Windows taskbar, or by opening Printers and Scanners in Mac System Preferences), a colored bar graph showing the remaining ink levels, a colored ferris building. If you have a squat, almost flat yellow building nestled between blue and red towers, it’s time to replace your yellow cartridge.

Canon printer says low on ink (new cartridge installed)

If your Canon printer continues to say “Ink Low” after installing a new ink cartridge, press and hold the <STOP/RESET> button for ten seconds. This should reset the printer’s ink detection system.

How to read the ink level symbols

HP printers have an oval and a bow tie symbol to indicate the remaining ink levels in the cartridges. The oval symbol represents the color cartridge, and the bow tie represents the black cartridge.

HP printer ink symbols:

hp-printer-ink-symbols

The HP ink level icons appear as “test tubes” (see image below).

hp-ink-level-icons

Canon printers flash an error message when the ink and toner cartridges are empty.

In the example below, light #2 represents the color cartridge and light #3 represents the black cartridge.

Canon ink level symbols

ink-level-symbols-canon


 

 

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