How to Keep Ink Pens From Drying Out

by Bailey Granger; Updated September 26, 2017

There are many different types of ink pens, such as fountain pens, ballpoint pens and gel pens. Ensuring that the pen staying in good working condition and the ink remains fresh requires only a few simple steps. Since most inks are water-based, keeping the ink away from air and moisture is the most important thing to do to keep the ink from drying out.

Items you will need

  • Ink pen
  • Pen caps
  • Ink bottles
  • Storage area
  • Ziplock bags
Step 1

Keep pen caps on your pens when they are not in use. This will seal the point of the pen where the ink is exposed to the air. Keeping the pen sealed with the cap will keep the ink from drying out through the tip of the pen. Seal the caps as firmly as possible. If you have a fountain pen, also be sure to keep it clean to keep the ink moist. In addition, keep ink bottles sealed tightly.

Step 2

Store pens in a drawer, box or other storage area, away from air. It is better to store the pens at room temperature. Cold air can dry out ink faster than warm air.

Step 3

Keep all refills in their original packaging until they are ready to be used. Packages are air-sealed and will not let air dry out the refills. As soon as the package is opened, the vacuum seal is broken and air can dry out the refills. Some packages will place individual caps on the refills. This is popular when ink refills can be purchased in multi-packs.

Tips

  • If you have lost the cap for your pen, keep the pen in a Ziplock bag, tightly sealed with no air in the bag.

    If your pen has dried out, you might be able to restart the flow of ink by running the tip under hot water or leaving it out in hot air. In addition, you can try writing on an eraser or other rubber surface to help clear the point of the pen and allow the ink to flow smoothly.

About the Author

Bailey Granger has been a military journalist since 2006. She also has an extensive professional background in computer repair, performing arts and social sciences. Granger holds a Master of Science in strategic intelligence from American Military University and a Bachelor of Arts in international relations from Bridgewater State College.