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How do I Clean my ID Card Printer?

We want your ID printer to run smoothly and effectively for as many years as possible. Buying a new ID card printer is expensive, repairing one can drain your pocket just as much. While most ID card printers come with a warranty, there are certain conditions to that warranty that you have to keep in mind. An ID card printer is just like any other mechanical device; it must be treated with care and regularly maintained. You wouldn’t drive your car for 10 years without taking it to a mechanic, would you? Routine maintenance is just as important with your ID card printer as it is with your car! Both machines have frequently mobile parts that can collect dust, dirt and grime. When an ID card printer is neglected, these foreign agents can cause your ribbons to break and render your ID cards useless. To get the maximum amount of usage from your ID card printer, you have to upkeep it with the same regularity and care that you would with a car or any other mechanical device with constantly moving parts. Here are some tips to help your ID card printer run smoothly and efficiently for many years.

Remove Your Jewelry Before Changing Your ID Card Printer Ribbon

This is very important as jewelry can scratch the printhead or any other inner components of your printer. This type of damage is not covered under the warranty and replacing the components will be solely your responsibility. Make sure to remove all jewelry that might come into contact with the machine (rings, watches, bracelets, etc.) prior to performing any maintenance.

Clean Your ID Card Printer Regularly

All ID card printer models now have card counters that are used to trigger several actions by the operator. If you do not perform the required cleanings, you run the risk of voiding your warranty. We suggest cleaning your ID card printer after every ribbon change

Buy a Cleaning Kit

Cleaning kits are an inexpensive way to maintain your ID card printer. These ID card printer cleaning kits include everything you need for routine upkeep of your machine, reducing the risk of a part breaking. ID Security Online offers a vast array of cleaning kits for most ID card printer models that cost no more than a couple of dollars per cleaning (certainly less expensive than replacing a machine).

Contact us at IDSecurityOnline today at (800) 897 7024 to discuss your card printing needs.

Direct-to-Card and Retransfer Card Printers – the Difference

Human beings don’t live forever, and neither do card printers. And the reality is that regardless of the quality (and the price), every card printer has its day. Although a typical card printer comes with a standard warranty of 2 years on parts and labor, there is some variation, as some come with a warranty of 3 years. However, retransfer printers come with a lifetime warranty on parts and labor, including the print head. The reason for this is that retransfer printers utilize a unique printing method that functionally eliminates the need to factor in the cost of a replacement print head.

What’s the difference, you ask, between a direct-to-card printer (DTC) and a retransfer printer? During the DTC printing process the print head comes into repeated contact with rigid cards. Typically-speaking, a company printer can print on the order of thousands of cards per month, gradually wearing down the print head. The retransfer method avoids this deterioration by retransferring the image onto the retransfer film, hence its name, thereby significantly extending its lifespan. What’s more is that print heads cost between approximately $500-$900 and is considered to be a commonly-replaced part in DTC printing. Using a retransfer card printer also often translates into higher return on investment, which means that you can save your company a good deal of heartache and money.

There’s also the question of to replace or not to replace. Many factors can affect this decision, such as the decreased cost of ID card printers and technological improvements that necessitate system upgrades. It’s also noteworthy that a printer evaluation fee, minus the cost for the actual repair, figures in the ballpark of $120 or more. Not exactly a walk in the park itself, though tolerable.

Frequently Asked Questions

Choosing a Printer

Finding the optimal card printer for your company can be an easy, and even enjoyable, process. ID Security Online’s experts will listen to your needs and help you find the best printer for your organization or business.

Choosing an ID Software

ID Security Online’s consultation team also helps you determine the best software system for your application, walking you through the installation process and teaching you how to operate it on your own.


Our technical support group will help you deal with any printing system issues so you can experience the best possible usage from your card printer.

Contact us at IDSecurityOnline today at (800) 897 7024 to discuss your card printing needs.

Planning to buy an ID card printer?

If you are planning to buy an ID card printer for your company, you will be surprised at the vast array of choices available in the market today. If you are not an ID card printing expert, your head will spin with the number of brands and types that you have to browse through before you can find the perfect choice. But if you equip yourself with sufficient knowledge about buying an ID card printer before you go out to shop for one in the market, it would be easier for you to narrow down your options and make an informed decision. Here are some of the things that you need to think about.

Color or Monochrome

In terms of color, there are two kind of ID card printer. One can print full color while the other can only print in monochrome. The advantage of the former is that it produces vibrant images and attractive designs. However, monochrome is quicker and more cost effective. It only takes about 5 seconds per each card and since you’ll only be using a single panel print, the cost is much lower than full color printing. Your choice between the two primarily depends on the nature of your company, budget, and preference. For example, if your company is a web/graphic design or animation company, it makes sense to invest on a full color card printer since the ID should be a reflection of what a company does.

Single or Dual Side Printing

Another consideration you have to make is whether you are going to print on the front side or on both sides. As the name implies, the single type printer will print only on the front side of the card. If you are definite that the IDs to be printed for your company will only require print on the front side, this can be the ideal option for you. The dual sided printer, meanwhile, has the advantage of printing on both sides of the ID. Obviously, this one is more expensive than the single side printer. Aside from the more expensive upfront cost, the dual sided ribbon used for this kind of printer is also pricier.

Quantity of Cards

You should also ask yourself how many ID cards you plan to be printed each year. If you are a small business, you would only need a few cards a month. But for a larger company, you need to invest on specialized printers that feature high capacity printing of cards. Printer that can accommodate a bigger quantity is more expensive but the investment is worth it.

Printer Brand

When it comes to brand, there is a wide variety of names on card printer manufacturers that you will get to know about when you go out into the market. Some of the well-known brands include Fargo, Zebra, Evolis, DataCard, and Magicard

ID Software

Aside from the printer itself, you should also consider planning your purchase if you intend to buy ID card software. This way, you can be sure that you will be able to make the right buying decision. Entry level ID card software is inexpensive but limited in its capabilities, for instance some software limits the number of data fields per card design. Other software will only allow a limited amount of data records, be aware you may have to up-grade to the next level at additional cost soon after your purchase.

If you plan to “network” the software and place it on multiple computers you will have to purchase a higher level of the software plus additional “site licenses” for each additional user.

The bottom line is to do your homework but do not hesitate to reach out to an expert in the field, most manufacturers will recommend a “partner” in your area that should ask the appropriate questions I listed above and guide you to the correct choices.

Fargo ID Card Printers

Fargo ID Card Printers

A pioneer in the ID card industry, Fargo ID Card Printers work with smart cards, photo ID cards, magnetic stripe cards and proximity cards to establish new standards in dye-sub, inkjet and film-transfer ID card printing.

Card printer/encoders, ID systems and ID software and materials, such as ribbons and films and ID accessories, are some of the products Fargo delivers. ID cards have capabilities companies are looking for, such as financial transactions and network access control card-based applications, to help them improve efficiency and enhance security. Fargo Electronics sells its products through distributors and integrators.

Fargo ID Card Printers can increase security, set up professional identification and allow you to upgrade from a simple printer to one with more advanced, secure printing features. The products, which are known for their power and modular designs, run from the DTC400 to the advanced HDP5000.

For example, the DTC550 Card Printer/Encoder is equipped to encode up to three different smart card technologies in the same pass as card printing and lamination. It also permits centralized or distributed ID card issuance and features an alternative lamination module that makes an extra layer of security available.

The Fargo Persona C30e Card Printer/Encoders, which are well-suited for small to midsized companies, offer new improvements available as a free download. Problems such as loading ribbons and cleaning rollers are eliminated with the products easy to load integrated ribbon cartridge.

Fargo ID Card Printers customers include universities and colleges, local, state and federal governments, businesses and the health care industry. Columbus State University, Maryland Locksmith Association and Sun Country Airlines improved security and high responsiveness using Fargo printers.

Columbus State University selected Fargo ID Card Printers for their ease of use for multiple users and their ability to print debit cards. A few years ago Columbus State University initiated a debit card program for students to help the university reduce administrative costs and simplify business processes.

Columbus State University selected the Fargo DTC400, (which it found easy to use), and allows them to add card access to dorms, vending machines and copy machines on campus. The university improved security and productivity and improved student satisfaction with the new Fargo printer.

Fargo Electronics, which was acquired by HID Corporation in 2006, develops, manufactures and supplies secure technologies for identity card issuance systems. Founded in 1974, Fargo Electronics is headquartered in Eden Prairie, Minnesota.

Click here to browse fargo card printers

Photo ID printers

Do you own a small business? Work in a hospital? Do you need to print photo identifications for your educational institution? Whatever your needs, photo ID printers offer an affordable alternative to ordinary printing companies. Photo ID printers make the act of printing photo identification very easy and efficient.

Purchasing a photo ID printer for your small business will be an investment you will never regret. Whether you are an individual contractor or printing photo IDs for your own employees, you will be glad you purchased a photo ID printer. Photo identification is crucial for employees in small or large businesses. For small businesses, photo identification offers employees the opportunity to receive individual attention they thrive upon. For larger businesses, photo identification will allow employees to receive the personal recognition of one's self that can be lost in crowds of employees. After purchasing a photo ID printer, businesses will see improvements in the efficiency of their own systems. Photo ID printers are simply a must in any business or professional setting.

Buying a photo ID printer for your company will allow your company to fully transition into the 21st century of technology. Businesses are constantly finding that self-service technology such as photo ID printers lowers costs and creates a greater independence. The benefits companies can reap from self-service technology such as photo ID printers are truly endless.

For businesses such as large law firms, photo ID printers are a necessity. The legal world is no different than the business world, in its growing need for self-service technology like photo ID printers. In law firms where there may be over 500 attorneys working and over 1,000 legal assistants also working, ensuring that every employee has an up to date photo ID is absolutely a must. Photo ID printers allow businesses to easily create on demand photo identification for newly married employees or for new employees in general. Rather than having to wait for days, weeks, or even months for new photo IDs, law firms can cut to the chase by purchasing a photo ID printer. With this photo ID printer, law firms will be able to adapt to the rapid atmosphere in which the legal world thrives. Photo ID printers will make chaotic, rapid work atmospheres much more organized and efficient.

Purchasing a photo ID printer is a worthy investment for any hospital, law firm, or business. It is a must.

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