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A decrepit copy machine can really stifle productivity within a business, not to mention frustrate employees. A fast and effective machine can breathe life into a stale business and for many companies, it has. But a copy machine is not always cheap. Breaking the bank is hard to justify in any scenario, even when your copy machine is only “sort of” working. So when do the benefits of owning a fast copier outweigh the monetary costs? Read more to find out how often you should replace your copy machine.

Diagnose your Business

The first thing to look at when trying to decide if a new copy machine is right for your business is, well, your business. You need to take a look at how your company runs and how important your copier is within your structure. Obviously the less important role it plays in your day to day operations, the longer you can go between replacing your copy machines or color copiers. For most businesses though, when the copier is not running at optimum speed, the whole company comes to a crawl. For some companies, having a copier running at tip top shape is the lowest performance that they can allow their machine to run at. So where are you in this spectrum? Make the best and most objective assessment of your business that you can – it will provide best starting point for how often you should replace your copy machine.

Diagnose the Problem

The next step to figuring out how often to replace your copier is to figure out how bad your copier woes are and when they started happening. If the amount of use that your copier gets is limited, then you may not see one problem until a year into owning it. With other companies, they need to get it serviced within a week. If after a year you only losing a little clarity and crispness on your prints, consider yourself lucky. Usually this can be fixed with a simple maintenance visit where they will do a cleaning of the rollers and heads. If you are experiencing bad and frequent paper jams then you know that your copy machine is on its way out and that it’s time to replace that copy machine.

So…How Often?

Before you calculate how often you should replace your copier and color copiers there are just a few more things to take into consideration. First, at what level would you like your printing capabilities to be? This will dictate the kind of copy machine that you choose to replace the old one with which will dictate how often you need to replace that type of machine. Also, you will need to decide with what brand you will replace your copier with. Will you go with the same or a new one? A little research will answer this question but, depending on use, Ricoh copiers will differ from Canon copiers which will dictate how long it will last, so be sure to get the copy machine that is right for your company.

Taking all these factors into consideration, if your company is on the high end of use, you will need to replace your copy machine at least every 2-3 years. This will ensure any major meltdowns from occurring and will keep your company running at an optimal pace. If you don’t print as much and you can handle some hiccups and breakdowns along the way, you can stretch the life of your machine out to 5 years. If you get regular check-ups and cleanings from day one and you don’t print too much, you could potentially limp your copy machine past the 7 year mark. However, having a machine this long will be met with inevitable breakdowns and days where you cannot print. To ensure your company doesn’t run into these sorts of problems, every 2-3 years is a good rule of thumb.

Go and take an honest assessment of the printing needs of your company. If you take all these things into consideration, you will be able to make an honest appraisal of the demands on your printer and can replace it accordingly. If you have a machine that is older than 3 years, don’t wait, assess and replace today!

How Often Should I Replace My Copy Machine?