In case you did not know, laser printers have two parts that need replacing when they wear out or are empty. The toner cartridge and the drum unit. The toner cartridge holds the toner and the drum is the component that moves the toner onto the page to create the print or image. When the cartridge is empty, your images or prints will be low quality. Lines or smudges across the paper occur when the drum is worn.
Many printer companies have printers with the toner and drum unit as one piece. Other companies sell the two separately. Brother, Panasonic, Oki and Epson all offer the two as separate components. So, are there any advantages of a printer using toner cartridges with a separate drum?
The biggest advantage is you only have to replace one component at a time, as they stop working or need replacing. Depending on how they are made, drum units actually have a longer life than individual toner cartridges. Not to mention the obvious, no two components rarely require replacement at the same time. It appears that replacing components as necessary would be more cost-effective.
Sometimes your cartridges do not last as long as expected, especially if the drum unit gets scratched. This premature “death” of the product would require you to replace a cartridge with toner remaining because the drum is scratched. Wouldn’t it be better to only have to buy a new drum and finish the toner in the cartridge?
If you are a DIYer and refill your cartridges yourself to save money, then it is easier to do so if the drum and toner are separate.
Printers that have a separate drum unit and toner cartridges are more environmentally friendly and helps reduce electronic waste. It is shameful to discard a full cartridge because the drum is worn out or vice versa.
It will be important to note that it is expensive to replace the drum when it does wear out. However, if you shop sales and budget for it, it will eliminate any surprise expense. Therefore, it is necessary to consider the cost of replacing these two components before you buy a printer. In the end, the printer with separate components ends up being less expensive and the life of the two separate components are slightly extended compared to the two in one unit.