How to Check How Much Ink Is in the Printer

By Bennett Gavrish

As your inkjet printer gets more use, its ink cartridges will slowly drain. Whether you have a PC or a Mac, you can check your current ink levels directly on your computer screen. Typically, printers will issue a warning when they are running low on ink, but it is a smart idea to periodically check to see how much ink is left in your printer. If you notice you are running low, you may want to consider purchasing replacement cartridges.

PC Instructions

Step 1

Make sure your USB printer is connected to your computer and powered on.

Step 2

Open the "Start" menu and click on the "Printers and Faxes" button.

Step 3

Right-click on the icon of the printer you want to check and choose "Properties" or "Printing Preferences." The name of the option may differ based on the type of printer you have.

Step 4

Go to the "Maintenance" tab at the top of the pop-up window; your current ink levels will be displayed below.

Mac Instructions

Step 1

Make sure your USB printer is connected to your computer and powered on.

Step 2

Open "System Preferences" by clicking on the icon in the Dock.

Step 3

Go to the "Print & Fax" control panel underneath the "Hardware" heading.

Step 4

Select the printer you want to check from the list on the left and then click on the "Options & Supplies" button.

Step 5

Go to the "Supply Levels" tab at the top of the pop-up window to see the printer's current ink levels.