The responsible disposal of different documents is one thing that we should all be concerned about. Whether it is for personal or business purposes, there is a need to make sure that these documents will not reach the hands of unintended users. With such, one of the most important equipment to have is a micro-cut shredder.
Once you decide to have a micro-cut shredder at home or the office, you will most probably be overwhelmed with the choices that you will be confronted with. This, however, should not give you the reason to decide in haste. With such, keep on reading and we will help you to evaluate the choices that are available and we will provide you with a list of recommendations on some of the best brands and models you can consider.
No – a micro-cut shredder is not the same as other shredders While they are basically the same in the fact that their purpose is to shred, they are different in terms of the shredded outputs that they create. Generally speaking, the following are the three types of shredders that you will find in the market:
Strip-cut Shredder: This is the cheapest option that is available. It is also the one that produces the biggest cut into strips, which is why it offers the least security. This is recommended for use only on non-confidential documents.
Cross-cut Shredder: Also called confetti-cut shredder, this is at the middle of the three in terms of the cut sizes. It may provide an acceptable level of protection but documents that are shredded with the use of such can still be recovered.
Micro-cut Shredder: If you are looking for a shredder that can provide the highest level of protection for confidential documents, this is the one that you should have. It shreds papers into thousands of tiny particles.
Given the fact that you will have an abundance of choices for micro-cut shredder, do not make the mistake of deciding in the absence of taking into consideration the essential factors that will be mentioned below.
One of the biggest mistakes committed by many people is to decide on the sole basis of price. Some are easily tempted to buy the cheapest option that is available because they believe that it is going to incur significant savings. In reality, however, this will be nothing but waste of money. Most of the cheap models deliver inferior performance, and more importantly, they will ask for a replacement just after a short period of use.
When getting rid of documents that will no longer be used, some would resort into just having it dumped on the trash can. Only a few people would bother using a micro-cut shredder because it will often require effort. With this, it is important to choose one that is easy to operate, especially if it is intended to be used in offices.
One of the most common misconceptions about micro-cut shredder is that they are used only for papers. While most of the models available in the market can indeed handle only paper, there are also models that are high-capacity, and hence, they can handle other materials, including CDs and credit cards.
This is especially true if you are going to use the micro-cut shredder in a house where there are children and pets. One of the safety features that you should look for would be the automatic shutdown, which will allow the machine to immediately power off once it is able to detect fingers. Make sure as well as the feeding slot is narrow, which will provide you with the confidence that it will not shred fingers.
An overheating sensor is another important feature that we recommend you look for. With the latter, the sensor will be able to detect if the machine has performed beyond capacity and hence, it will shut down on its own. This will avoid overheating.
This is another important consideration if you are looking for one that can be used in the office. The bin that is integrated with the shredder has varying sizes, often expressed in gallons. If you have extensive shredding needs, choose a bigger bin, which means that it will take some time before you need to have it emptied.
The technical specifications will prove to be critical in differentiating one model from the other. More often than not, it will be indicative of how powerful will be the performance that a machine can deliver. The following are some of the specifications that will determine the power of the shredder:
Horsepower: Generally speaking, the horsepower of the micro-cut shredder will be up to 2. The higher the rating, the more powerful the machine is. This will be indicative of having excellent capability to shred thick papers or cards.
Sheets per Pass: This is an important specification to consider if the micro-cut shredder is going to be used in an office with extensive needs for such machine. As the name implies, this would simply refer to the certain number of pages that can be shredded in a single pass. For the light-duty models, they can often shred 6 pages simultaneously. On the other hand, those at the higher end can shred up to 20 pages in a single pass.
Continuous Run Time: This will be indicative of the duration at which the micro-shredder can operate without stopping. When they reach the maximum time limit, they will immediately stop and you will have to wait for a couple of minutes before it will operate again. Light-duty micro-cut shredders may have a run time of two to five minute. Heavy-duty models, on the other hand, can operate continuously for up to 20 minutes.
Duty Cycle: This will be indicative of how many pages the shredder can handle within a single day. The manufacturer specifies the maximum shredding capacity in order to prevent the machine from deteriorating easily. Make sure that you follow the duty cycle to preserve its functionality.
With the ability to shred up to 12 pages per minute at a speed of 6 feet per minute, this is one of the most powerful that we have seen. It can shred paper continuously for a period of up to 8 minutes.
If you are worried that other people can have access to your confidential documents, this is what you should have as it has the ability to cut a normal size paper into 2,235 pieces. This means that no one would be able to see information contained in your shredded documents. This is much smaller than in the case of cross-cut shredders, which can cut a typical-sized paper only to 360 pieces.
The angled feeding system is another feature that we commend in this model. The latter is incorporated for the purpose of making it safe to operate. Even if a finger has been accidentally inserted, it won’t be fed directly into the machine.
It is also a good thing that it comes with a high capacity bin, which can accommodate up to 6.7 gallons of waste. The basket also comes with caster wheels, which will make it excellent when it comes to portability.
With an 8-sheet capacity, one thing that we loved about this model is its ability to not only cut paper into thin pieces, but to also handle credit cards and CDs.
It also comes with thermal protection, which helps in preventing overheating, and hence, prolonging the functional life of the product. Once the motor works more than the intended capacity and if it becomes too hot, it will automatically stop shredding.
This micro-cut shredder comes with a bin that can handle 3 gallons of waste. The size is a bit smaller than other products we have reviewed in this article, but this will be more than enough for light use.
For portability, it is designed with wheels. You can have it easily transferred from one part to another. Even without wheels, however, you will not have problems in transferring the micro-cut shredder as it is pretty much lightweight.
When it comes to ease of use, we also find this model to be commendable. Under the auto mode, it will automatically start once it is able to detect that papers have been inserted in its feed. If in case you experience jamming, it has manual reverse function that will spit the paper out.
One of the things that we commend about this model is its innovative blading technology, which is patented by the company. This exclusive technology has been developed to make it effortlessly cut through 8 sheets of paper in a single pass.
This shredder has dimensions of 17.7 x 8.6 x 13.8 inches and it weighs only 7.6 pounds. With such, it will prove to be an excellent option for anyone who is on the lookout for a lightweight and compact micro-cut shredder. This will be the perfect addition to any small office, or even at home.
To help make it withstand long-term use, it has an advanced cooling system and overload protection. Once it has operated past its intended capacity and if gets too hot, the machine will stop on its own.
Another thing that we liked about this model is how it operates in an ultra-quiet manner. You would not even know that it is shredding documents because of its whisper-quiet motor.
With 60 minutes continuous run time, we are one with the many who believe that this is going to be an option that is hard to match for the best micro-cut shredder. Many of the options within the product category can withstand only 5 minutes of continuous use, but this model can operate non-stop for an hour.
This micro-cut shredder is equipped with a medium-duty motor that can effortlessly tackle 12 sheets of paper in one pass. It has a shredding speed of 5.3 feet per minute, which is quite commendable compared to the performance of other models within the competitive landscape.
The integrated trash bin is another thing that we loved about this model. It can hold up to 6 gallons of waste. It also has a small transparent viewing window, allowing you to easily know when it is time to have it emptied.
If you are looking for a machine that is easy to use, there is another good reason to keep your eye on this model. It has an automatic feature that allows it to instantly shred once paper is inserted and stop when it is done.
Among the products that we have reviewed in this article, this is the one with lowest single pass capacity as it can only shred 6 sheets of paper at a time. This, however, should not be too much of a problem if you are looking for one that will only be used occasionally or for light shredding, such as for your home or a small business.
To make the machine withstand long-term use, it comes with an overload protection that allows the machine to stop functioning once the capacity has been maximized. It also has an advanced cooling system to avoid the motor from being damaged due to excessive heat.
It is also important to keep in mind that it has a continuous run time of only three minutes. Again, just like in the case of its single pass capacity, this is indicative of the fact that it is excellent only for light-duty use.
The machine comes with a reverse switch, which is easily accessible. Just have it pressed once jams occur and this will instantly resolve the problem.
A micro-cut shredder, without a doubt, will be an excellent piece of equipment to have if you are concerned about properly disposing confidential information. Nonetheless, keep in mind that not all of the options available in the market are the same. To be sure of ending up with an option that you will not regret, make sure to consider the five models that we have recommended above for the best micro-cut shredder.