Both the toner cartridge and toner drum are parts of a copy machine, a laser printer and a fax machine. Many people are not aware of the difference between a toner drum and a toner cartridge. Also, some people make the mistake of ordering one part for the other when ordering replacement toner. In this article, we will explain the main differences between these two.
Let us first describe the drum cartridge. It is a revolving drum that is responsible for actual transfer of the toner powder, coming out of the cartridge, to the printing paper. This drum cartridge is also known as photoreceptor drum. The laser in a laser printer helps in making a mould of the image on the drum which then transfers the powder on to the printing paper.
Drum cartridge is photosensitive as that is how it transfers toner powder to the printing paper whereas a toner cartridge is not photosensitive. It also receives electrical current and charges. The electrical charge is used to put the image on the paper. On the other hand, a powder cartridge does not have any use for an electric charge.
In a laser printer, the role of the laser is to trigger the electrical charge in the drum cartridge. On the other hand, it cartridge holding powder does not have any kind of contact with the laser or electricity or any other thing. The powder cartridges are available in both black and color types. As far as the drum cartridges are concerned, they only take out the amount of toner powder needed from the toner, based on the printing instruction from the printer, and impress that powder onto the paper.
As far as cost is concerned, a drum cartridge costs 3 to 4 times as much as a toner cartridge. However, it does not need to be replaced as frequently. You may need to replace the drum cartridge only after you have replaced your toner cartrdiges 4 or 5 times. Your printer should give an indication whenever you need to replace the drum cartridge.
Experts recommend that one should perform regular maintenance on the drum cartridge to ensure its long life. To clean the drum cartridge, one would need to take out this cartridge out of the printing machine and send it to a technician who is an expert in cleaning these cartridges. You may also clean the drum cartridge using the instruction manual provided by the printer.
However, it is recommended to send it to a technician to ensure that no damage is done to the drum cartridge. It is a sensitive component and may get damaged if handled in an incorrect manner. On the other hand, one does not need to clean a powder cartridge as it just needs to be refilled whenever it runs out of powder.
These are some of the big differences between a drum and a cartridge. Both of them are consumables and both are essential for the printer to work. Most of the times, if your printer stops functioning, it is usually the problem with these two components that is the cause of the problem.