USA Empty Printer Cartridge Recycling Guide

There are plenty of local and nationwide services that recycle empty cartridges, and we've put together this guide to help find the best solution for you.

Do you have any full / unused cartridges?

If you have full & unused cartridges still sealed in their packaging, do not recycle them — send them to CartridgeForest who plant 20 trees with partner Trees for the Future for every unused cartridge they can reuse:

Recycle Full Cartridges

1. Free Pickup Programs

If you have a large number of empty toners, these will give you a UPS ground shipping label to use.

Ship to CostCo

If you have at least 20 cartridges, or 20lbs of cartridges to send, CostCo will give you a free UPS ground shipping label you can use to send them for recycling.

Just fill in this short form:

Get CostCo Label

You can drop your package at any UPS shop or access point, or you can wait and hand it to any UPS driver making another pickup or delivery.

Ship to Staples

If you have at least 5 cartridges you can use Staples Rewards' collection program. First sign in or register for a Staples Rewards account:

Sign In / Register

Then visit this page, add your shipping address to your account, and request a label:

Recycle at Staples

You can drop your package at any UPS shop or access point, or you can wait and hand it to any UPS driver making another pickup or delivery.

2. Find a Local Recycling Drop-Off

Find an electronics recycling point near you that takes empty cartridges on the Earth911 web site. Just enter your ZIP code in the 'ZIP CODE' field and press 'SEARCH'.

Search at Earth911

Remember to call ahead to check opening times and any restrictions — there may be changes due to COVID.

3. In-Store Recycling Programs

Staples, Best Buy, Office Depot, OfficeMax and other office supplies stores all take empty cartridges in-store for recycling.

Some will offer you a discount on the purchase of toners when you bring in your empties, but beware that their prices may be overinflated on these products before the discount anyway.

4. Return to Manufacturer

Most cartridge manufacturers have free US-based take-back schemes — shipping and disposal costs are paid for by them — that will accept cartridges that they manufactured in order to reuse them, or break down the materials for recycling.

Epson

Epson can recycle your empty inkjet cartridges, but requires you to cover the cost of postage. They also offer a free collection programme for their AcuLaser CX11N Series cartridges.

Hewlett Packard (HP)

HP have free services for their entire range of cartridges. You can drop off your empties at a retail store, print off a postage-paid label, request free collection boxes or arrange a pickup.

Lexmark

Lexmark offer free postage-paid labels for toner/laser cartridges, and will send you postage-paid bags to return your ink cartridges.

Recycle Lexmark toner/laser cartridges

Recycle Lexmark ink cartridges

Canon

Canon allow return of empty toner/laser cartridges by printing off a postage-paid UPS label.

Recycle Canon toner/laser cartridges

Canon inkjet cartridges can be returned by dropping them off at one of over 1,600 FedEx Office Print & Ship Centers.

Recycle Canon ink cartridges

For customers wishing to make a return from Hawaii, Alaska or a U.S. Territory, please contact 1-800-OK-CANON.

Brother

Brother runs a free service to return your toner and ink cartridges through USPS using printable postage-paid labels.

N.B. You are not required to tick the box saying that Brother may contact you in the future.

Dell

Dell offers a free postal return service for their ink and toner cartridges, and pallet pickups if you have large quantities.

Samsung

HP now handle the recycling of Samsung cartridges. They take back their ink and toner cartridges with pre-paid USPS labels that you can print. If you use large quantities of cartridges they can also offer free collection boxes to store your empties in.

Xerox

Xerox offer free postal return for most of their cartridges, or pallet collections for larger numbers.

Konica Minolta

Konica Minolta accept returns of cartridges for some of their printers and office systems through pre-paid UPS labels that you can print online, as well as pallet collections for larger quantities. They can offer you free collection boxes to store your empty cartridges in if you have many.

Oki

Oki used to offer a free service to return cartridges by dropping them off at a return location. You will need to contact them directly to see if they can offer you this service on your contract.

Kyocera Mita

Customers can request — free of charge — recycling boxes from their authorized Kyocera dealer. Fill the boxes with depleted and waste Kyocera toner containers, seal and send to our recycling facility partner, Close the Loop. See the section on the linked page entitled "ECO FOOTPRINT TONER CONTAINER RECYCLING PROGRAM".

Ricoh

Many Ricoh cartridges come with a pre-paid shipping label for returns included in the box, which you can use to return your empty cartridge. If this isn't the case, you can download a prepaid shipping label on the web site from the instructions half-way down the page.

Neopost

Neopost used to offer a free recycling service, where you paid the shipping to their recycling facility in Tennessee. The page has been taken down, but you can contact Neopost (now "Quadient") on the above page to enquire.

Panasonic

Panasonic will take your cartridges for free - providing pre-paid return labels.

Pitney Bowes

Get your label to return a used Pitney Bowes cartridge to the manufacturer for free.

Sharp

Sharp cartridges can be recycled at any Staples store, or Sharp can send you a recycling kit with collection boxes including pre-paid shipping labels to return them free of charge.

Kodak

Kodak cartridges can be returned to any Staples or Walmart store.

Toshiba

Toshiba no longer offer a manufacturer-sponsored recycling program. Please look for alternatives below.

Why Recycle Empty Cartridges?

75% of empty cartridges are not recycled even though there are plenty of reuse and recycling options, and many of them are free and easy to use.

A typical cartridge, with its plastics and electronics, will take up to 1,000 years to degrade in a landfill site, but having an empty cartridge reused saves up to 5 lbs of CO2 compared to making a new cartridge from scratch.

EveryCartridge.com is here to help you to find and use the many services that exist locally and nationally, and cut through the misinformation to ensure that your cartridges do not go to landfill.