Owning a paper shredder may, on the face of it, seem like a bit of a luxury. But whether you’re a stay-at-home mom (or dad), buyer of office supplies or a factory manager, owning a top paper shredder is becoming more and more of a necessity with each day that passes.
Identity theft, an increased risk of confidential material being unearthed by ‘dumpster diving’, and the growing pressure on us all to protect the environment by opting to recycle our waste are threats that we all are having to face up to. Now, more than ever before, we have to make sure that our personal and business documents are handled safely and responsibly.
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Dangers Of Identity Theft
Over the last few years there has been a sharp upturn in the popularity of ‘dumpster diving’. Sifting through someone else’s garbage, no matter how foul it may seem, can be very profitable for some of the unscrupulous individuals who do this. What’s more, garbage in your trash can is construed as being ‘in the public domain’.
Once it’s off your property, you have no legal jurisdiction over it. Anyone can come along and legally search through your garbage, perhaps finding those discarded bills and statements you’ve just dumped. And once found, those same bills and statements provide valuable information that can be used to illegally steal your identity.
For instance, if someone found your credit card number on a document, along with your name and address, then they could quite easily use your details to order goods & services over the Internet without ever being caught!You can of course prevent this from happening by shredding all documents that you discard. There are shredders available to suit every need, right through from personal and home office, to large industrial units that process huge quantities of material every hour.
No matter which paper shredder you choose though, you can rest safe that your personal and business identity will not be compromised by the simple act of throwing your documents in the waste paper basket.
Saving our Planet
Americans generate more than 210 million tons of trash every year – and the problem is only getting worse. If we all started shredding our paper-based documents instead of putting them directly into the trash, we could reduce the burial of waste by several million tons a year by simply compressing the volume of paper sent to the dump!
Aurora AU1215XB Review
The Aurora AU1215XB 31215 is a medium-duty shredder and versatile for home or for a smaller office. This particular unit is reasonably priced and offers several shredding options to meet every need. To ensure every user has access, casters allow the mobility of the shredder.
Having one available sure makes doing business a much simpler process. It should have a strong motor and sharp steel teeth to ensure quality shredding each and every time. Of course, there is maintenance required of which the teeth do need to be oiled every so often to ensure they are functioning properly and stay sharp.
Shreds 12 sheets maximum per minute (7.2 feet per minute)
Ability to shred paper, credit cards and also CDs; metals such as staples and paper clips can also be placed through the shredder without causing damage
- 8.7 inch paper feed slot can be closed for extra precautionary measures
- Separate feed slot for CDs (one per feed)
- Safety features of overload and thermal protection
- Internal powerlock control
- Status LED indicator lights
- 4.8 gallon capacity wastebasket
The Aurora AU1215XB measures approximately 8.9 x 12.5 x 17.5 inches and weighs under 18 pounds. The blades are designed to shred paper material into 7/32 x 2 5/32 inch strips. The AU1215XB will shred approximately 600 maximum number of sheets per day or shredding 25 up to 50 times per day. In regards to shredding CDs, these are cut into 4 sections so if you need the pieces smaller, you would need to reinsert them into the CD slot.
In addition, Aurora’s ShredSafe Active Safety patented feature will automatically stop the shredder when a foreign object enters into the feed slot or if there is a paper jam. There is also an overheating feature that warns the user when the unit is reaching its maximum internal working temperature. This feature is important especially during large shredding tasks.
All of the controls as well as the LED indicator lights are located on the top of the shredder which is where the motor is located. To empty the wastebasket, there is an area behind the feed slot in which you can insert your fingers and lift the motor off. To move it, there are finger slots on both sides at the top of the wastebasket but just under the motor assembly. On the front of the wastebasket is an oval shaped window in which you can determine if the wastebasket is in need of disposal into the recycling bin.
The looks of the AU1215XB are clean as the top portion in which the motor/shredding apparatus is located is silver while the wastebasket and casters are black. The controls are easy to read and use. The upper left corner contains the indicator lights for “OVERHEAT”, “OVERLOAD”, “MISALIGNED” and “AUTO”. The Auto feature allows you to keep the main power switch on and when the it is not in use, the document shredder will go into a “sleep” mode as an energy saving feature.
The AU1215XB is perfect for home use, for businesses with a few employees or for offices. The price is reasonable for this good shredder and there is a limited 5-year warranty on the steel cutters while a 1-year warranty covers the rest of the parts. The Aurora AU1215XB 31215 Cross-Cut offers all of the necessary features and the quality that are needed for typical shredding needs.
Royal Machines HT88 Review
You may recognize the name Royal from typing on their typewriters but are you aware they also make other types of products like the Royal Machines HT88 Cross Cut Shredder? For over a century, quality office equipment and supplies have been offered by Royal which makes them a leading company within the office industry. Royal is known for their innovative and quality products and their line of paper shredders is no different.
With the need for added security, a need for shredders has rapidly grown. When searching for the best for your needs, you will find a number of models with a variety of features. The HT88 has a low price point (about $50.00) which makes it available to anyone who has a need for a shredder. Several features for the HT88 are:
- shreds a maximum of 8 sheets of paper at one time
- shreds paper, staples and credit cards
- shredded paper is cross cut measuring 5/32 x 1 1/2 inches
- feed opening is 8.75 inches which accepts letter and legal sized items
- automatic start and stop
- reverse option
- 4 gallon wire (mesh) wastebasket
This particular Royal shredder measures 6 x 13 x 13 inches which makes it perfect to sit on a table top when shredding tasks are at hand. It weighs a mere 6 pounds so it is extremely portable and can even sit on a bookshelf. The HT88 is perfect for those who don’t need to shred documents on a day to day basis. In addition, it has a sleek and modern design.
The automatic start and stop feature is beneficial when you are multi-tasking or simply taking extra time examining each item that requires shredding. The unit can stay plugged in with the main on/off switch in the “on” position and when the unit sensors determine that an item is being inserted, the motor will turn on automatically. Once the item has been completely shredded and the sensors don’t “see” any other items being inserted then it will turn off automatically.
Do you need to shred 250 sheets of paper? That’s how much the wastebasket of the HT88 holds. And with the basket being mesh, it’s super easy to determine when it needs to be emptied. If fact, if you want to make “taking out the trash” a little easier, a plastic grocery bag will fit nicely into the mesh wastebasket and collect the shredded material.
The current ratings on Amazon.com state that the Royal HT88 has received 4 stars and is ranked at number 18 in their “shredders” category. This is remarkable for a small shredder since Amazon currently has over 16,000 results available to view (over 900 for 8 page shredders). With these types of numbers, obviously Royal is providing a top quality product.
There are a number of them on the market today and it can be overwhelming as to which is best for your needs. With the name of Royal, you know you are buying a quality product regardless if it is a time clock or a paper shredder. The Royal Machines HT88 has a small foot print, is reasonably priced and provides quality shredding needs on demand.
Fellowes Powershred MS-460Cs Review
If your shredding needs are bigger than most, then the Powershred MS-460Cs Safe Sense is for you. This is not your everyb, but one that will support the shredding needs of three individuals in the workplace. In fact, it weighs over 55 pounds so it comes equipped with castors but will perfect in-between desks or in a corner.
The MS-46Cs is offered by Fellowes who has been providing quality office equipment for over nine decades. Fellowes is a leading manufacturer of paper shredders and should be with the high standards they demand from each product. In addition, the Powershred line offers several innovative features that make theirs some of the best in the industry.
The MS-460Cs is part of Fellowes Professional line which hold more than 80% of shredded paper than the traditional standard cross-cut models. The shredded material packs snuggly in the waste bin which reduces the number of times it must be emptied. Compared to end result standard cross-cut shredders create, the material from the MS-460Cs is approximately 10 times smaller.
The Confetti Cut that the MS-460Cs offers is considered a security level 4 (6 being the highest; top secret/government). This unique cut will occur with paper only; if you need to shred other materials such as credit cards or CDs then those are the standard rectangular cut. Other features are:
- 10 sheet capacity
- High security cross-cut (5/64 x 5/16 inch)
- Shreds paper, staples, CDs and credit cards
- 6.4 gallon pull-out waste bin
- Supports 1 to 3 users
- SafeSense/automatic shut off
- Silent Shred
The maximum run time is about 10 minutes with 20 minutes down time in order for the motor to cool. An automatic start and stop for possible jams is included. With the SafeSense feature, which is patented, ensures that nothing goes into the shredded except for what the shredder is intended for.
Because many offices are typically quiet, the MS-460Cs comes standard with Fellowes Silent Shred which is super quite and is perfect for shared workspaces. This unit measures 27 x 12.75 x 15.3 inches and weighs about 55 pounds so it can be moved, with the help of the casters, to different areas if necessary.
The MS-460Cs waste bin has a window near the top of the container so you know when it’s about time to empty the bin. To make life simpler, the MS-460Cs comes with replacement bags. These set into the main bin and then the bin for the CDs and other items sits on top of which can be easily emptied into the main compartment and the bag removed.
The price for this particular Powershred model is a little bit high, however, you are purchasing a top quality product that includes a number of beneficial features to get the most of every shredding task. This unit can shred up to 10 feet per minute which drastically reduces overall shredding times.
Although the MS-460Cs doesn’t cross-cut items other than paper, this is still a worthy machine to have in the office. The Confetti Cut allows the paper to be compact in the waste bin meaning less trips to the recycle container. The price is a little step but I believe the benefits outweigh this negative factor. The Powershred MS-460Cs is a top shredder you should consider for your office.
Fellowes Powershred 79Ci Review
If you are ready to step up to a more powerful paper shredder or need to replace a current one, then check out the Fellows Powershred 100% Jam Proof. It is more expensive than the everyday shredder but you will get your money’s worth with this machine. If you need to shred large amounts of paper or even CD’s, consider the Fellowes Powershred line.
The need for one may only occur annually for personal reasons or on a daily basis in the work place so certain features should be considered. The most important factor is that the shredder gets the job done without any hassles. Paper jams, overheating and having to constantly empty out a too small wastebasket wastes time that could be used for other tasks. With the 79Ci, you won’t have any of these issues.
Some paper shredders are very basic and some have a number of features that you may or may not ever use. Consider your past shredding needs and what you needed during those times and what you expect in the future.
Do you need extra security with your shredding? You’ll prefer a cross-cut design. Do you need a larger wastebasket? Is 6 gallons sufficient? Do you have a lot of paper to shred and get frustrated when you put too much paper in and the unit jams? You need a jam-free model. If so, Fellowes offers the following in their Jam Proof 79Ci.
- 100% jam proof
- cross-cut shredding for added security
- SafeSense(r) electronic technology
- 6 gallon pull-out waste bin with window
- durable casters
Fellowes has created a unique system that is designed to never jam when shredding paper, CDs or even credit cards. On the top of the 79Ci, you will find an indicator light that will advise how much more paper you can shred at one time. If the indicator light is green, it’s safe to add more. If the indicator light is red, then you’ve reached your limit or you need to remove some. The 79Ci has a sensor that will let you know, through the indicator light, if you can add or need to remove excess paper.
For safety precautions, the 79Ci also offers Fellowes SafeSense(r) technology. A sensor located near the paper opening will automatically shut off the shredder if something other than the allowed items begins to enter into the slot. In regards to noise levels, the 79Ci is super quiet as it comes with Fellowes SilentShred performance technology.
To make the Fellowes 79Ci even better, it comes with replacement bags for the waste bin and a small bottle of oil for the shredding “teeth” of which it’s recommended to oil at every bag change. The 79Ci is 21.5 x 15.3 x 12.19 inches and weighs about 33 pounds which is why casters were added.
When deciding which shredder is best for you, the security level and down time are probably the two most important features to look for. The 79Ci offers a security level of 3 which is quite high and this is achieved by the cross-cut action the paper receives. Down time from unnecessary jams is eliminated by Fellowes sophisticated technology. Although the price is a little steep, the durability and the features that the Fellowes Powershred 100% Jam Proof 79Ci 14 Sheet Cross-Cut Paper Shredder offers make up for it.
Fellowes Powershred W-11C Cross-Cut Shredder Review
The Fellowes Powershred W-11C Cross-Cut Shredder is a deskside for home or office use and for individual users handling sensitive information. The cross-cut type of cutting that the W-11C employs is ideal for use on junk mail, insurance papers, and college and credit applications, shredding an 8.5×11-inch page into 399 particles.
If you are handling sensitive information, it is best that you choose a top shredder at least like the Fellowes Powershred W-11C because of its cross-cut shredding feature which offers a security level of three out of six.
Features and Specifications
- Auto start/stop for easy operation
- 11-sheet capacity reduces documents to confetti particles in one go
- Sturdy solid-steel cutters strong enough to shred staples, paper clips, and credit cards
- Can shred 880 8.5×11-inch sheets of paper in five minutes
- Reverse function allows easy removal of overfed paper
- Goes through 16 feet of paper per minute
- Nine-inch wide entry allows easy paper feeding
- Safety feature that switches off when bin is lifted and a safety lock that prevents accidental shredding when the unit is not supposed to be in use
- Waste bin with 5.5-gallon capacity stores a lot of shredded paper so you don’t have empty it so often
The reviews about the Fellowes Powershred W-11C Cross-Cut are essentially good, with most rating the product with no less than four stars out of five. What a lot of them are saying though is that this shredder from Fellowes gives you great bang for your buck because it is so affordable yet it performs close to what you would get from a paper shredder three times its price.
You’ll run into a little bit of a problem if you try shredding CDs (actually, don’t try shredding CDs with this one) or corrugated boards. It will do good work of credit cards, invoices, unopened junk mail, and even adhesives though. Just make sure that the adhesive you are trying to shred is stuck first on a piece of paper. Because of the cross-cut type of cutting used by the Fellowes Powershred W-11C, shredded paper packs down very well and stays down when used for other purposes in the yard or garden.
While paper disposal is simple enough since you just have to lift the bin out, some people still have a bit of trouble because you have to lift it up before you get to the bin and it is heavy with a shipping weight of 15 pounds. Shredders are generally not quiet machines but some reviews have commented that the W-11C operated more quietly than others.
The cutters come with a three-year warranty from Fellowes and so far reviews are saying that they’ve reached nearly two years of use and yet the Fellowes W-11C still works like it’s new. This is pretty cheap so it’s great for anyone who needs to work with a budget. But whatever you spent on this Fellowes shredder, it’s worth every penny you had to shell out.