Skip to the main content.

2 min read

Eco-Solvent Digital Ink: What is it and Where is it Used?

Eco-Solvent Digital Ink: What is it and Where is it Used?

Eco-solvent inks are capable of producing vibrant colours, while maintaining a waterproof and scratch proof finish. Their versatility makes them an ideal solution for printing onto trade show graphics, vinyl, banners and outdoor signs.

In this blog we take a look at how Eco-Solvent inks work, and the benefits they bring to a growing number of customers. 


What is Eco-Solvent Ink? 

Eco-solvent inks have colours which are suspended in a mild biodegradable solvent, which means that the ink has virtually no odour as they don’t contain as many volatile organic compounds. They’ve been around since the early 2000s and originally were designed for general signage work. They were developed in response to an industry demand for more operator and customer-friendly inks than the original “strong” or “aggressive” solvent inks.

Strong solvents have a high content of VOCs (volatile organic compounds) which often require forced ventilation and extraction to protect the printer operators, and many of them retain a distinctive lingering smell which makes them unsuited to indoor use where it’s noticeable.

They are widely used in entry level through to mid-priced wide format inkjets, though the upper, “industrial” end of the market still has a tendency to use strong solvents for the same sort of applications.

outdoor sign with needham ink tech logo printed


Eco-Solvent Ink Applications

Eco-Solvent inks are particularly useful for printing onto outdoor surfaces which will be tested by weather, light and other harsher conditions. They are also suited to small spaces which lack ventilation:

  • Outdoor Signage: The water and scratch resistance of eco-solvent inks once dry makes them the go-to choice for those who are looking to print long-term, large format outdoor signage. 
  • Vehicle Wraps: Eco-solvent inks are a popular choice for printing vehicle wraps due to their resilience and lack of corrosive volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
  • Banners: In addition to their outdoor resistance, eco-solvent inks also produce vibrant colours which make them an ideal solution for printing large format banners for events or promotions.
  • Textiles: Eco-solvent inks can even be used for fabric prints via the use of transfer printing, meaning they can be used to print onto items such as t-shirts.


aston martin needham ink tech vehicle wrap eco-solvent CMYK digital ink



The Benefits of Eco-Solvent Ink


Eco-solvent ink technology bring a range of benefits over other alternatives. Here are a few:

  • Kinder to your Printer: The lower volatility of eco-solvent inks also means that their printing cartridges are not so damaging to the components of your printer, which means less repairs and less frequent full system cleans.

  • Low Odour: Due to the fact that eco-solvents don't have the same strong smell as solvent-based inks, you are not limited on where you must place your printer, or having to print in a smaller space.

  • Resilient: Eco-solvent inks, once dry, are waterproof, lightfast, scratch-resistant and will withstand even harsh outdoor conditions. A perfect solution for signage and banners with high outdoor performance.

Get A Quote


How can needham ink tech help?


In a competitive industry where your reputation depends on the quality of your work and the speed of turnarounds, these benefits of eco-solvent inks can make you stand out from the crowd. 

We are able to develop and manufacture a wide range of OEM compatible inks, with 60 years of experience in the research, design and manufacture of high quality, British-made ink products. We can guarantee that our OEM compatible solutions will save you money without any cost to quality.

In need of something a bit more bespoke? Not a problem! Our in-house team of chemists are able to research and develop wide format inkjet inks specific to your requirements.

Email Us


NIT new design CMYK Sized for email sig

Call: +44(0)1948 662629




What is Eco-Solvent Ink?

What is Eco-Solvent Ink?

What exactly is eco solvent ink? Eco-solvent inks have colours which are suspended in a mild biodegradable solvent, which means that the ink has...

Read More
What is Water-Based Ink?

What is Water-Based Ink?

In this article we take a look at why water-based digital inkjet inks are an increasingly popular option due to their environmental friendliness and...

Read More
Speciality Inks: What is Food Grade Ink and Where is it Used?

Speciality Inks: What is Food Grade Ink and Where is it Used?

In this blog, we take a look at one of the many speciality inks available at Needham Ink Technologies; Food Grade Ink. While you might not realise...

Read More