Most people don’t think of their large office color copy machines as being environmentally friendly copiers.

At first blush, when we contemplate these noble machines many of us see copy machines as a major threat to our forests as they churn through package after package of paper but read on. Perhaps your view of these misunderstood office mainstays will change.

Consider that copiers don’t “make copies and prints”, people make copies and prints. And when people choose to make copies and prints, they generally facilitate this printing in one of two ways; either by using a large, business color copying system or by using a small, desktop printer

The question then becomes, which is more environmentally friendly, a desktop copier or a large, freestanding copy machine?

In examining the answer to this question let’s examine come critical factors that may lead many to view business copiers in a whole new, environmentally friendly light.


Factor #1 – Business Copy Machines have a much longer life cycle than desktop printers

A  single office copier has a life cycle of 500,000 to 1,000,000 print pages while serving a large group or department full of people. This is compared to a smaller laser printer that has an average life cycle of between 20,000 – 50,000 prints and generally serves the needs of one person.

Environmentally Friendly Copiers, Yes Copier - Unfinished

That means there are 25 – 50 small printers packaged, wrapped up in plastic and Styrofoam, and shipped across the country just to match the print lifecycle of a single office copier. How’s that for a carbon footprint.


Factor #2 – Business Copy Machines serve large groups of people vs. desktop printers serving 1

Therefore, whereas a business color copier can easily fulfill the printing, copying, and scanning needs of 10-25 people, companies that choose to go with desktop printers in most cases will have a separate printer on each individual desk.

In many cases have separate scanners and faxes to boot. Numbers show that there are more than 100 desktop printers sold for every 1 commercial copy machine.

However, commercial copiers do approximately half of the overall print volume. That means there are a lot of small printers at the bottom of our landfills. But wait, it gets better. 


Factor #3 – Business Copy Machines have high yield supplies that produce much less environmental waste

The average large office color copy system uses high yield toner cartridges that produce 15 times the amount of prints per cartridge as the average retail desktop printer cartridge.

Once again, you’re looking at an endless stream of delivery trucks driving low yield cartridges to hundreds of thousands of doorsteps all over the country every 3 or 4 weeks to support millions of under-utilized desktop printers.

Compare that to the large business color copier whose cartridges produce 15 times the yield. It also comes with service plans where the local service provider keeps a full set on the user’s shelf making just one or two local replenishment deliveries a year.


Factor #4 – Information on the environmental superiority of business copy machines compared to desktop printers

Consider that not only do small printers use 15 times as many cartridges as those used to make the same amount of prints on a business copier but those desktop printer cartridges generally come with significant non-recyclable packaging.

Their boxes are larger than those of copier cartridges and the cartridges themselves aren’t recyclable. They also don’t break down in our landfills.

Compare that to the cartridges used in a large color copy machine which are thin, recyclable tubes that are almost always curbside recyclable. Additionally, they come in streamlined boxes with absolutely no packaging in the box.

Wow! Are you starting to see why it’s more environmentally friendly to have many people sharing a single office copier than it is to have many individuals each using their own cartridge eating, disposable desktop printers?


Factor #5 – One large office copy machine uses far less electricity than an army of desktop printers

When companies have the choice of using one energy-efficient office copy machine vs. 10-50 desktop printers it’s important to note that most copiers don’t use much more electricity than a single desktop printer when in standby mode so using a single copy machine vs. many desktop printers will absolutely use less electricity which is good for the environment and easy on the pocketbook. 

In summary, one well-made business color copy machine can handle the workload of up to 50 desktop printers.

Environmentally Friendly Copiers, Yes Copier - Unfinished

The toner cartridges for business color copy machines produce up to 15 times more prints than those cartridges used in desktop printers resulting in far fewer deliveries.

Equally important are the toner cartridges for business color copy machines.

They are curbside recyclable plastic tubes that come with 100% recyclable packaging compared to the large, bulky boxes full of non-recyclable packaging used on each of the 15 desktop printer cartridges it takes to equal the printing capacity of a single copier cartridge.

Last but not least, the amount of power used by a single office copy machine when compared to the electricity used by a small army of desktop printers is minimal.

If you own a company with multiple employees, and you’re looking to be environmentally responsible, you may want to consider eschewing the desktop printers. Instead, consider choosing productive, cost-effective, highly efficient, and environmentally friendly copiers. Contact us at Common Sense Business for more information.

Purchase and Lease a Color Copy Machine with - Common Sense Business Solutions