Set Up Your Printer to Save Ink and Paper

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Step 5. Text and images can be extracted from a PDF for editing in a different application. To do so, choose either the Extract Text or Extract Images button from the Tasks menu at the top of the window. In the following step you're able to specify where the extracted files are saved.

Step 6. While the original document is protected from changes, it is possible to annotate the PDF. Choose Add Note from the Tasks tab and click to place the crosshairs where you wish to comment. Write a note, then click the cross in the top-right corner. A small icon will appear to indicate that a comment has been made.

Step 7. Instead of adding your comments to a document, you can underline, cross out or highlight text, or even type directly on to a PDF. Nitro PDF Reader offers tools for all these functions on the Tasks tab. You can also vary the font, colour and size of any text you add to a PDF.

Step 8. If you've already scanned in your signature then you can easily add it to a PDF. This is useful for documents such as letters, which you'd otherwise have to print out, sign, scan in and then email. It's possible to password-protect your signature from misuse on computers that have multiple users.

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Refill your old ink cartridges

Model-specific kits are available for refilling empty printer cartridges and provide everything you need to get the job done, including needles, syringes, gloves and instructions.

The process typically involves using a syringe to draw ink from a refill tank, then injecting that ink into your old cartridge using a needle. You then check there's no air in the cartridge, clean off its casing, reinsert it in your printer and run the cleanup cycle.

If you're nervous about completing this process for the first time, you might find one of the video tutorials available at helpful. Videos are available for refilling various brands of ink cartridges.

Once you've gained some confidence in refilling your own ink, you stand to make some considerable savings by buying your refill ink in bulk. You can continue using the same syringe and needle that was provided in your original refill kit.

If you can't get the hang of it, you can still save cash by buying refilled cartridges online at

Donate waste cartridges to charity

Some printer manufacturers incentivise the responsible disposal of their cartridges. They will take back used cartridges and may offer business customers a discount on new ones. Home users can recycle cartridges, too. Rather than saving you money, profits from the refurbishment, refilling and resale of the cartridges will go to charity.

Many cartridge-recycling schemes provide Freepost envelopes that are suitable for households or small companies. If you work in a larger company and are prepared to pool your cartridges, or you're an individual who's prepared to stockpile spent cartridges, you could arrange for regular collections to be made - again, for free.

If you have a favourite charity, your first port of call should be its website to find out how you can donate your old ink cartridges. The other side of the coin is buying recycled or reconditioned cartridges. By doing that you will be helping your chosen charities at the other end of the ink-cartridge food chain.

This story, "Set Up Your Printer to Save Ink and Paper" was originally published by PC Advisor (UK).

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