Today, we’ll go over the best methods for pre-printing transfers and also why it’s such a fantastic notion! For starters, it permits you to answer the burning question.

What is the lifespan of sublimation ink?

To be honest, we don’t see why they shouldn’t last much longer if you print them on high-quality sublimation paper and store them properly.

We’ve heard stories about people finding ancient prints at estate sales that were well pressed.

We’ll divide the solution into several pieces based on the different stages of the ink’s lifespan.

What is the shelf life of unopened sublimation ink?

What is the shelf life of unopened sublimation ink

Sublimation ink has a two-year shelf life if it is in an unopened bottle or sealed cartridge. We asked Sawgrass and Epson for confirmation on how long sealed ink lasts, and both were delighted to oblige.


“The shelf life of our inks is two years.”


Epson’s T49M sublimation ink has a two-year shelf life, according to Epson support.

The ink’s shelf life is determined by the temperature at which it is kept. It’s been around two years, unopened, at roughly 70 degrees.

Epson Support: What about sublimation inks from third parties? Because of the low initial cost and inexpensive cost of third party ink, sublimating using converted inkjet printers (such as Epson EcoTanks or Workforce printers) has been popular with craftsmen and small companies for many years.

What is the lifespan of third-party sublimation inks?

What is the lifespan of third-party sublimation inks


Cosmos Ink supplies sublimation ink designed exclusively for Epson printers that have been converted. The ink is packaged in sealed bottles rather than cartridges. “[The] recommended shelf life is 9–12 months if it is kept in a cold, dark, dry place,” according to Cosmos Ink support.

It’s also worth noting that the shelf life of Cosmos ink is the same whether the bottle is sealed or open.


Hiipoo ink is a well-known third-party sublimation ink that can be found on Amazon. According to their customer service team, sealed bottles can be kept for up to two years and open bottles for one year.


We also asked Cobra Ink how long its sublimation ink for Epson Eco Tank conversions would last. A sealed bottle will last around 18 months, but an unsealed bottle will last one year.

When Sawgrass ink is opened, how long does it last?

When Sawgrass ink is opened, how long does it last

When contemplating your sublimation setup, this is a vital thing to consider. While different sublimation inks have varied shelf lives when sealed, how long do you have after it’s opened?

When using Sawgrass inks, the clock starts ticking once the cartridge is inserted into the sublimation printer. Each cartridge has an expiration date printed on it, and if you don’t use the ink up before that date, you may have issues.

Most experienced users agree that a Sawgrass cartridge can be used for a few weeks or months past its expiration date without affecting printing quality. However, printing using expired ink carries the following risks:

  • The dye particles in sublimation can begin to detach from the viscous carrier liquid and clump together.
  • Ink in the printer can be dried out.

Clogged print heads and ink lines can result if either or both of these things happen with your expired sublimation ink. Your printer is at risk if these issues aren’t addressed and the ink isn’t replaced.

When Epson ink is opened, how long does it last?

We also inquired about the expiration date of opened T49M sublimation ink with Epson support. “As long as you maintain your tanks sealed, [inks placed into the tank] should survive until their expiration date,” they said, adding that unsealed ink bottles should last around a month.

What can you do to get the best results from your sublimation printer and ink?

The easiest way to keep your sublimation printer in good shape is to utilize it! The best approach to keeping the nozzle heads and ink lines clear and the ink flowing freely is to print regularly.

If your printer is a Sawgrass, it will conduct its own maintenance cycle every day or so. Although these cycles are minor, they do demand a small amount of ink since the printer must be turned on at all times.

If you have an Epson printer, whether it’s a dedicated sublimation printer or a converted Eco tank or Workforce printer, you should inspect the nozzles and clean the print heads at least once a week.

Printers that are not cleaned on a regular basis may begin to produce substandard output. If you see banding, white lines, or black lines on your prints or projects after they’ve been in the heat press, you need to do some regular maintenance.

What is the lifespan of sublimation ink on fabrics?

What is the lifespan of sublimation ink on fabrics

Colors that are sublimated endure longer. That’s fantastic news! If you’re just getting started and just use your printer once or twice a week, save your money and hire someone to perform the transfers for you. Professional sublimation transfers are tough to achieve.

If you give the printing job to someone with more experience, you can focus on selling and marketing your products.

It is not possible to print dark colors on t-shirts. The ink on the shirt has to be darker than the shirt.

How long does sublimation ink last on mugs?

The print’s durability is one of the biggest advantages of sublimation printing on ceramic mugs. You can sublimate ceramic mugs and make fantastic, high-quality mugs that will last a lifetime using sublimation printing!


Of course, there are some limitations in the field of sublimation printing.

  • It can only be used with polyester materials.
  • It is not as cost-effective as other printing processes for large orders.
  • Bright colors will be ruined if the foundation material is not bright.
  • Fade faster in direct sunlight

Polyester parties

We’ve already discussed why this printing procedure helps solely polyester, but let’s go over it again. Polyester is a manufactured fabric.

Greatness comes at a cost.

The most expensive printing method is sublimation printing. If this method’s benefits don’t meet your branding goals, you might want to think about digital printing or screen printing for large orders.

Fabrics in light colors are needed.

Because the ink is transferred, the fabric must be bright in color in order for it to transfer. You won’t be able to see the text properly if you write with a pink felt-tip pen on black paper.

Sublimation requires ultraviolet light.

Although sublimation technology has various applications, it cannot resist direct sunlight. Instead, even after repeated UV exposure, the print takes a long time to become clearly clearer. This is a theoretical issue rather than a practical one.


Is sublimation ink fade resistant?

If the sublimation print is exposed to direct sunlight, it may fade faster due to ultraviolet radiation.

How long can you keep sublimation ink?

Printers’ sublimation inks can last for a particular amount of time. The most effective rule is to use these cartridges within 6 months of their installation. Many people have no problems printing past the use-by date.

How many times can a sublimation print be used?

This is correct. Expensive sublimation ink has an expiration date printed on the cartridge. It is true that the quality of the ink will deteriorate over time, and the sublimated dye will separate.


For a multitude of reasons, sublimation has become the preferred alternative for print company owners. Sublimation inks are long-lasting and durable. If you leave these in the printer for too long, you can get shading movement and head blockages. Banding is also present. However, if you follow the recommendations in the post above, you should be fine. Anyway it is advisable to do a little research before you go for it.

Watch: Top 5 Best Sublimation Ink

Read more:

The best Water Based Ink for Screen Printing


Can You Use Sublimation Ink On Heat Transfer Paper?

Sublimation On 60 Cotton 40 Polyester: Tips And Tricks For Perfect Results

Can You Use A Regular Printer For Transfer Paper?

Can You Sublimate Over Sublimation?