Brother Printer Warranty and non genuine toners

I have a Brother MFC for working at home and university studies. I print quite a lot and find the Brother toners to be prohibitive in cost. For a number of years, I have used compatible toners without an issue. Recently my MFC started making a noise and I contacted Brother, who agreed to look at the machine as it was still within the 12-month warranty period. I dropped the machine off, with the toners in place, and was then advised any cost to look at the machine or fix it, would be at my expense as I voided the warranty as soon as I used non-Brother toners.
How can they force this?
If you consider when you now purchase a new motor vehicle, they can no longer force you to have your vehicle serviced at the maker’s dealerships, in order to keep the warranty.
Why should the printer manufacturers be allowed to force us to use their overpriced toners just in order to keep the warranty?
I get it is a great business model - sell the printers cheaper (mind you I paid $900 for the unit - so not that cheap) and then make a heap of money by enforcing overpriced toner onto the purchaser.

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Hi @Hethwold, welcome to the community.

Unfortunately they can. There is potential the problem wasn’t caused by Brother but the non-OEM toner. A fault caused by non-OEM toner would be a claim against the non-OEM retailer/manufacturer to resolve the fault.

They can to keep the manufacturer’s warranty, but it doesn’t remove your ‘consumer guarantee’ rights under the Australian Consumer Law.

But, the challenge you face using non-OEM toner is whether the fault is Brother’s or the non-OEM toner retailer/manufacturer’s responsibility. Brother can point the finger, while the toner retailer/manufacturer will point the finger back. This means it may be extremely challenging to know who is responsible for the fault and who to make a claim against.


I have had 2 Brother MFC’s to date. The most recent quickly developed a whining noise (original packed carts) prior to starting a print, but then the whining noise stopped prior to printing. The local Brother agent had a look but could find nothing wrong or why it started to whine. Year 7 and it is still printing as it did in year 1 - always used compatibles after the first set. FWIW the Brother agent, an office supply, sells compatibles as well as OEM and reinforced quality compatibles are rarely a worry but stay away from the most cheap. I have found some ebay sourced products to be worry free and over the years some have had ‘interesting’ problems like claiming to be empty when still half full - a set of 4 went empty together but were clearly not close to empty, suggesting their chip did page counts or time, not amount of ink.

Back to noise, if it prints fine it is probably fine and if that is the case I would move on. disclaimer: I am a rusted on Brother fan because they have not yet played any games with their ink jets refusing to operate with compatibles. Others have, and regularly so.


Mine complains all the time that something is wrong but still prints fine once you dismiss the warning.


My Brother MF Laser worked fine on the starter cartridges, then I purchased Cartridge World and installed as needed. A while ago it did a software update and reported I was using non-genuine. After that, pictures came out faded, but solid colours were OK. This is on a newsletter I do for the Rare Fruit, so most read it as a PDF on line. Wondering if this is an engineered degradation of quality or poor 3rd party product.


Over the years I noticed a difference in colour quality from different compatible suppliers. If the colours changed at the same time as the cart it is likely to be the cart but the only way to tell for certain is to install an OEM cart.

It is also worth checking the printer settings as a work-around. Setting to vivd photo for regular paper might help.


When changing the toner cartridges, it is usually a good step to do a clean of the led heads that are in the cabinet, they can get toner on them and this affects the colour reproduction (it will produce dull colours if the heads have toner on them). When doing the clean ensure your fingers/skin do not touch the LED heads. I would also run a calibration and instructions can be found using the link below the screenshot.

More detailed instructions (that also includes the led head cleaning process) to possibly help fix faded colours can be read at Light, faded, faint, dull, or blurry printed pages


If your printer started to make a noise that was caused by using compatible toners, then they can decline to repair the fault. However if the noise has nothing to do with using compatible toners, then they must repair the fault either under their own warranty or under consumer law.

If they are giving you the run around, ask for a written report which states why and how the compatible toner is at fault. Then send that report to whoever you bought the compatible toner from. A reputable toner cartridge retailer will fix the problem for you. If Brother won’t give you a written report, demand they fix your MFC.