Canon 680/681 XL & XXL genuine tanks - How to refill

Genuine Canon PGI-680XL, 680XXL, CLI-681XL & 681XXL ink tanks are easy and economical to refill - if you know what to do and have the right inks, tools & plugs.

Note: This refill method is only intended for XL and XXL ink tanks. Standard or SETUP 680/681 tanks will leak - if filled this way.

Find 680/681 SETUP and standard ink tank instructions here.

Canon CLI-681XL/XXL refilling:

1) Remove empty ink tank from printer and seal the ink outlet. If you've kept the original Canon outlet clips (well done) - click one on.

CLI681 genuine outlet clip fitted

If you haven't saved the genuine clips, get some generic ones.  You get a set (2), if you buy a refill kit here, or you can order the clips separately. 

CLI651 ink outlet clip

It is important to seal the outlet - to prevent the ink leaking out while you're putting it in. Don't try refilling - without sealing the ink outlet first!

2) Find the QR code on the top label and use something sharp (eg Stanley knife) to scrape that part of the label off and expose the original fill plug (small plastic ball) under it.

IMPORTANT: If there is an open hole under the label with no plug in it - STOP! Your cartridge can not be filled this way. Find the correct instructions here.

3) Remove the ball plug - using a screw tool like this. It works like a cork screw. Screw the tip into centre of the plug until it feels tight. Take care to not damage the hole! If it does get damaged, the new plug may not seal and the tank is likely to leak.

 

CLI681 plug screw tool detail
 

When tight, pull on the tool and the plug should come out with it. 


CLI681 oem plug removed

IMPORTANT: Don't get creative making/ drilling holes anywhere else - unless refilling 680/681 XXL ink tank.

The last 20mm at the back of 680/681XL ink tanks (see pic) is a trap for refillers. Any ink injected inside the indicated section will leak out. This will not only make a mess, but flood the chip at the same time. And if the tank is installed in the printer, the ink can also flood the printhead electronics. So...be careful where you drill - if you must drill. Or better still - don't.

CLI681XL Don't refill here pic

4) Slowly fill the ink reservoir through the hole - using a syringe/needle combo. Don't rush this step or you'll make a mess. The ink compartment you're injecting into only holds about 2ml of ink and will fill up pretty quickly.

CLI681YXL ink filling

Tip: A corner of folded up tissue paper or paper towel held against the needle is a good way to catch any escaping ink - before it overflows and makes a mess.

5) Wait about 20 seconds for the ink level to drop, then inject few more ml and repeat this couple of times or until the tank is full (ink level not dropping).

6) Plug the ink hole and clean the area around the plug using damp tissue (if inky)

cli526 genuine plug detail

...then apply a strip of tape over the plug and part way down both sides of the tank to protect the plug from getting knocked out in the printer. Make sure the tank is clean and dry and test the tape sticks to it ok. Quality masking tape works well.

Cli681YXL genuine plug & tape detail

Please note: Sticky or masking tape does not make a reliable seal on it's own (without a plug). Most tape glues will dissolve in contact with ink and the tape will come off before long. Don't even try!

7) Check the tank for leaks. Remove the outlet clip and place ink tank in upright position over something it can drip into. Few drops is fine, but if ink keeps dripping out, there is a problem - more than likely the plug seal. Don't install a leaking tank!

8) Install tank in printer and test.

Note: If this is the first refill and the tank was already indicating empty, you will have to disable the ink monitoring - to make the printer work. Learn how here.

9) Rinse syringe, outlet clip etc in clean tap water.

That's it...

Tip: If after reading this page you don't feel confident enough to refill your genuine Canon 680/681 XL or XXL cartridges (fair enough)...there's  even easier way. Find it here.

Need more info? Contact us.