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Can my Canon ink cartridge or ink tank be refilled...?

 Is my Canon cartridge difficult to refill ? Are there any tricks ? Do I have to buy refillable cartridges?
...if your cartridge isn't listed here, please contact us for more information.

Most Canon ink cartridges and ink tanks are easy to refill...if you know how and follow these simple rules...

Refill all Canon cartridges and ink tanks as soon as - or preferably before empty. If you run out of ink, the cartridges / tanks should still refill and work ok, if filled straight away. Leaving cartridges or tanks empty for length of time is asking for trouble. If you CAN'T refill straight away, leave cartridges / tanks fitted in the printer. DON'T try to seal the print-head with sticky tape or place cartridge inside plastic bag. Doing this can create more problems and will not achieve anything anyway.


 Canon ink cartridges

 1) Will leak if overfull
 2) DON'T seal fill hole (if using existing breather hole)
 3) Refill before empty
 4) Inspect/clean electrical contacts using tissue
 

  Canon ink tanks

1) Will leak if sponge part is overfull
2) Seal the fill hole after refilling. Will leak if not air-tight.
3) Refill before empty
4) Inspect/clean chip contacts using tissue

BCI-3 series cartridges (BCI-3eBk/C/M/Y/pM/pM) can all be refilled, but it's important not to let the sponge part of  cartridge run out of ink. Once it's empty, the sponge dries out very quickly and it can be almost impossible to get printing again after refilling. Ideally, refill when the ink side is almost empty, but the sponge is still saturated with ink. Fill hole is under label on top of the cartridge. Ensure the fill hole is sealed air-tight after refilling, or the tank will leak. Black (BCI-3eBk) ink is pigment (C3), all the colour ink tanks use dye (C6) ink. Ink monitoring is not affected by refilling these ink tanks as they don't use any chips.

BCI-6 series cartridges (BCI-6Bk/C/M/Y/pC/pM/R/G also BCI-5) are essentially the same as BCI-3 and the same tips apply. All BCI-6 ink tanks use dye (C6) ink.

BCI-24 ink cartridges (BCI-24Bk & 24C) are simple to refill, but original Canon BCI24 cartridges use felt type material which tends to harden, as the cartridge empties.  This makes re-filling tricky, because once the felt turns hard, it can stop absorbing ink. Refilled cartridge might seem overfull and leak, even if very little ink is added. Quality compatible (not Canon) cartridges (eg Print-rite) don't suffer this problem, and are a better choice, if you want to refill. Black BCI-24's use pigment ink (C3), colour (C6) dye ink.

BCI-21 cartridges are the same as BCI-24 and refill the same. Both black and colour cartridges use dye ink (C4).

CL-38 is a low yield versions of CL-41 ink cartridge. Easy to refill, but if your printer can use the CL 41 or CL 51 higher capacity cartridges - get some. The 38 holds very little ink and is easy to over fill. Use dye (C8) ink.

CL-41 is similar to CL-38 (above). Holds more ink and over filling is less of a problem.

CL-51 is a higher capacity version of CL-41 (above). Not all CL-38 and CL-41 printers can use them

CL-511 colour ink cartridges are easy to refill, but only take about 2-3ml per colour (C8) ink, less with subsequent refills. Fill holes under top label. If your printer will accept high capacity (CL-513) cartridges, they hold more ink and might be worth getting. 

CL-513 is a high yield version of CL-511 colour cartridge. Easy to refill with dye (C8) ink. Fill holes under top label. 

CL-641 (NEW) are the latest colour ink cartridges from Canon. Sold in two variations of same cartridge...standard yield (CL-641) and high yield (CL-641XL). Fill holes under the top label and dye (C8) inks are used for refilling. 

CLI-8 series cartridges are similar to "BCI-3s" and the same tips apply (read above). The only significant difference is the ink level chip on the CLI-8's. It is of no real concern to re-fillers, as it doesn't prevent refilling. You can to either disable the ink monitoring or invest in a chip re-setter. All CLI-8 cartridges use dye (C8) ink. Read more about disabling the ink monitor here.

CLI-521 ink tanks are easy to refill, using C8 dye inks. Refill method & tips are same as for "CLI-8" ink tanks (read above), the only difference is the plugs used and the ink volume. CLI-521 are smaller than CLI-8 tanks. Chip re-setters are available. Refill friendly ink cartridges with ARC (auto-reset chips) are another way of dealing with the Canon ink monitor. 

CLI-526 ink tanks are similar to CLI-521 (above), except there is no ink level inspection window on side of the tank and the chip is different. CLI-526 refill exactly the same as CLI-521, using C8 dye inks. Unless you buy a chip re-setter or refill friendly CLI526 ink tanks (with auto-reset chips) the ink monitor must be disabled.

CLI-651 (NEW) are the latest ink tanks from Canon. Same information (as CLI-521/526) and tips apply (read above). As there are no chip resetters or auto-reset tanks available yet, you have to disable the ink monitoring.  All CLI-651 tanks use dye (C8) ink. Read more about disabling the ink monitor here.

PGI-5 are very similar to BCI-3Bk and the same tips apply (read above). Like CLI-8's, the PGI-5's have ink level chips and you have to either disable the ink monitoring or invest in a chip resetter Pigment ink (C5) is used in PGI-5 tanks.

PGI-7 ink tanks (genuine) can not be refilled due to the design. No chip resetters available. Compatible PGI-7 (non-genuine) ink tanks are refillable, if you disable the ink monitoring.

PGI-9 ink tanks (genuine) can not be refilled due to the design. No chip resetters available. Compatible PGI-9 (non-genuine) ink tanks are refillable, but you have to disable the ink monitoring. PGI-9 gloss ink tanks are easy to refill, don't have a chip, but the genuine Canon tanks are relatively cheap...so not much point.

PGI-520 ink tanks are  the black version of CLI-521 colour tanks (read above). Refill tips and method are same. Pigment (C5) is used to refill them. Ink monitoring has to be disabled unless you have a chip resetter or refill friendly cartridges

PGI-525 are the black version of CLI-526 tanks. They are same as PGI-520, except there is no ink level inspection window and the chip is different. PGI-525 refill exactly the same as PGI-520, using C5 pigment inks. Unless you buy a chip resetter or refill friendly PGI-525 ink tanks (with auto-reset chip), the ink monitor must be disabled.

PGI-650 (NEW) ink tanks are similar to PGI-520/525 and the same tips apply (read above). The main difference is that there is no chip resetter available yet, so you have to disable the ink monitoring. Use C5 pigment ink top refill.

PG-37 is a low yield versions of PG-40 ink cartridge. Easy to refill, but if your printer will accept PG-40 or PG-50 (higher capacity) cartridges, get some. PG-37 holds very little ink and is easy to over fill. Use pigment (C5) ink. 

PG-40 is similar to PG-37 (above). Holds more ink and over filling is less of a problem.

PG-50 is even higher capacity version of PG-40 (above). Not all PG-37 & PG-40 printers accept them.

PG-510 black ink cartridges are easy to refill, but only take about 6--7ml of pigment (C5) ink...less with subsequent refills. Fill hole under top label. If your printer will accept high yield PG-512 cartridges, worth getting

PG-512 high yield black ink cartridges are easy to refill with pigment (C5) ink. Fill hole under top label.

PG-640 (NEW) are the latest black ink cartridges from Canon. Sold in three variations of same cartridge...standard yield (PG-640), high yield (PG-640XL) and extra high yield (PG-640XXL). Although all three look identical, the internal sponges are different. In other words...PG-640 can never be filled to same capacity as 640XL. Fill hole is under the top label and pigment (C5) ink is used for refilling.

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