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Tips for Buying a Paper Shredder
So you’ve seen all those commercials about identity theft, and you’ve decided that you need a paper shredder to destroy your old personal papers and prevent anyone from stealing your identity. Sounds simple enough. But when you get to the store, you find a wide variety of shredders, from a small desk-top model at to a high-end model that weighs almost 300 pounds and costs ,000 or more. How do you determine which one is right for you?
Of course, your budget will be a factor, but there are other considerations that are equally important.
The first consideration is the volume of materials that you need to shred daily. If you’re only shredding a few bills or checks, there’s no need to buy a huge model with all the bells and whistles. But if you might be generating quite a bit of material from, say, your home office, you’ll need a more powerful model. You’ll also want to consider whether or not you need a built-in wastebasket. The opening or “throat” of the shredder is also important. Make sure it’s big enough so you don’t have to fold your materials before feeding them into the shredder.
The next consideration is the confidentiality of your data. If you’ll be destroying confidential material like bank statements, credit cards, financial documents, etc., you’ll want a Cross Cut Paper Shredder. These machines, also known as confetti shredders, have blades that cut in two directions, producing small particles for enhanced security. If you’re only shredding non-confidential papers and other materials, you can probably get by with a “strip cut” shredder, which cuts narrow strips down the length of the document. A strip cut shredder is generally less expensive than a cross cut shredder and requires little maintenance.
Another consideration is the type of materials that you need to destroy. Will you be shredding only paper, or do you also want to destroy things like credit cards, cardboard, floppy disks and CDs? Not all models can handle all types of materials. If you need to shred a lot of crumpled paper, you might consider a hopper shredder. Do your documents have a lot of staples and clips? These can seriously damage the blades on your paper shredder. You should always try to remove all clips and staples from any paper being shredded. Crosscut shredders are more susceptible to damage from staples and pins than the strip-cut type.
You’ll also want to take into consideration how many people will be using the shredder. If the shredder for an office where several people will be using it, you’ll probably want something more durable and powerful than a small home model.
A final consideration is the shredder’s warranty, as well as the availability of parts and service for it. You want to be sure that you purchase your shredder from a place that knows something about them and that carries parts and accessories which you might need in the future.
About the Author: Independent Author in Thailand