*NEWS*AFRICA:RECYCLING CTGS TO PAY BILLS
*NEWS*AFRICA:RECYCLING CTGS TO PAY BILLS
2006-10-11 at 11:17:00 am #16662
Recycling Cartridges to Pay Bills
batswana africa :October 2006
Georginah Mothusi’s job entails remanufacturing cartridges and ensuring they are ready for operation. Remanufacturing is a challenging profession when you are a beginner but it is one of the most fulfilling careers, says Mothusi, a cartridge recycler at Eridene Professionally Recycled Cartridges in Francistown.”It is an enjoyable job especially when you are doing it right, you just feel like doing another,” she says. She explains that she can inspect and remanufacture up to 30 cartridges in a day. An abstract from a journal by a Professor at Toronto University, Shun Lee, cites that an environmental concern of laser-printer toner cartridges are being addressed partly by remanufacturers of toner cartridges. Lee goes on to explain that remanufacturing involves three steps. “Remanufacturing or recycling cartridges at a part level involves the disassembly, restoration to like new condition and reassembly of a used product,” it reads.The journal, which focuses on remanufacturing waste stream goes on to say that remanufacturing offers significant environmental benefits by reusing the energy and resources expended during original manufacture and by diverting solid waste from landfills and incineration. “Since the primary purpose of remanufacture is to re-use parts, the parts, which are not reused enter the manufacturer’s waste stream and may be studied to identify difficulties in remanufacturing”.Thirty-one year-old Mothusi, who has been working for Eridene for four years says that it would be an ideal profession for anyone who is interested in printers and how they perform. To her, a cartridge is like the brain of any printer, so without a cartridge, a printer is simply non-functional. Mothusi attended training for the job in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. Taking Monitor through the process of recycling a cartridge, she says that when the cartridge arrives from the client, she firstly inspects it.”We then clean it with compressed air and then we inspect it again to see if there are any defective parts that require replacing,” she discloses. She also checks to see if it is good enough for another use. “Most of the time it will be in good condition because a cartridge has a lifetime warranty,” she reveals.Mothusi explains that after this is done, she adds the correct toner depending on what kind of printer the cartridge belongs to. “We then test it to find out if it is functioning well. It has got to be 100 percent okay before returning it to the client. She says that it takes about 10 to 20 minutes to remanufacture a cartridge. Most people would think it is impossible to recycle cartridges unless you have studied the technology for several years, especially in our society where Information Technology is still not popular but Mothusi says that besides the training which is not all that extensive, one has to have passion for the job. The most critical thing is that one has to know different printers and the kind of cartridge that goes hand in hand with it. “You also have to know the different types of cartridges. There are black ink and colour ink cartridges.”Mothusi says that sometimes clients bring in cartridges that have not been remanufactured by Eridene and she has to inspect it more thoroughly for defects and faulty parts. She advises that it is advisable for cartridges to be recycled because the plastic cartridges can take up to 400 years to disintegrate in rubbish tips. Cartridges should be used carefully and according to instructions for best results. She says that users should be aware of all the necessary precautions when dealing with cartridges to avoid the expense of continuously buying more. Cartridges are the heart of a printer and that is why following the dos and don’ts by users is critical. Mothusi says that at her office, they advise people on what they should and should not do to ensure they get the best out of their cartridges. “To name just a few, covering print heads is not advisable and only warm water should be used to clean instead of solvents. Solvents are not good for the cartridge,” she says.
Also she adds that, the printer should be used on a regular basis to make sure the cartridges do not dry up. Mothusi says it is advisable to visit cartridge recyclers regularly and build a relationship with them so they can advise users on all matters involving their printers and cartridges. She advised the youth not to overlook this career when they leave school because it can be fulfilling. Mothusi said that in the next five years, she would like to see herself at the top of this profession. “I enjoy it and I can’t see myself doing anything else,” she states.