Which Paper Shredder Is Right For You?

Paper shredders have become an important and necessary piece of office equipment. There are hundreds of models and styles available. The following is a clear cut description of the specifications you need to know so you can make an informed decision when getting the best paper shredder for your needs.

  • Brand – the first thing you’ll notice in the product is the manufacturer. There are models that may cost more than others because of the quality, research and reputation behind the product. The cheaper, more generic paper shredders may easily break and does not come with a warranty.
  • Warranty – a warranty may not seem important to you, but it is a big help when the machine breaks down. A product backed with a warranty can allow you to avoid costly repairs, labor and parts replacement. Warranties usually cover parts and labor or a blade / cutter guarantee. Some brands are reputed to have outstanding warranty and after sales service.
  • Strip Cut Versus Cross Cut – strip cut is less secure than cross cut. Strip cut shredders cuts paper and other materials into narrow ribbons. Cross cut shredders shred paper into short and thin strips, diamond or parallelogram shaped, or tiny squares. They can range is cut sizes, and the smaller the cut, the higher the security level. It is the same with strip cut shredders, the thinner the cut, the higher the security level. Strip cut motors can generally handle more sheets of paper in one pass and can cut faster.
  • Security Level – there are 6 different security levels, rated 1 through 6, with 1 as the lowest. Security level 1 provides only basic security while security level 6 is ideal for use in confidential government agencies, research laboratories and anyone who handles highly confidential and sensitive documents. Security level 2 is recommended for generic office shredding of old memos and work orders. Most other people’s needs can be met with levels 3 and 4.
  • Speed – speed is shown by how many feet of paper in one minute it can shred. The indicated speed it the maximum shredding rate under ideal conditions. The more pages in one go you insert, the slower the motor will be. Differing paper weight and materials, like business cards, credit cards, or CDs can change the rate of shredding. Some shredders can also handle paper clips and staples.

 

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