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Low Noise Paper Shredders

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 1 2

Ultra Quiet Paper Shredders

Low noise paper shredders for destroying documents can be any important part of any office setting, or even in the home.  There are some that can shred 12 sheets at a time, while only giving off the smallest decibel reading imaginable.  In this article, I’d like to go over some basic information you’ll need for both home and commercial grade paper shredders, including pricing, benefits of ultra-quiet models, where to shop for the best deals, and what to look for in your purchase. 


Pros and Cons of Ultra Quiet Document Shredders

As with any office or personal use equipment, there are benefits and drawbacks that you must consider when you decide to buy.  Whether you’re looking for a cheap one, or a heavy-duty, 12 sheets at a time machine, you’ll have great benefits to consider.

Benefits:  Reduced noise levels.  Obviously, this means that the sound of running equipment will not be as loud.  In an office setting, the super noisy models can be a distraction to other workers.  The low noise document shredders that you buy could help to improve productivity through decreased distraction.  Just like commercial or industrial use, home models can be a distraction and annoying to others in the area, so getting one that’s easy on the ears benefits everyone, whether you use strip cut or crosscut machines.

Drawbacks:  Pricing can be an issue if you opt for an ultra-quiet, yet heavy duty shredding machine.  In addition, some make the units quieter while sacrificing power and the ability to handle many sheets at a time.


Where to Buy

Of course, there are several places where you’ll want to look to buy.  Listed below are some of the places you’ll want to look, including if you prefer to buy used office equipment, and not just new.

Online:  You can check out low noise paper shredders and find great deals at Amazon.  Other sites that offer good value are office supply sites, eBay, and a host of other sellers of office equipment for sale.

In Person:  You can take advantage of clearance sales, cheap price discounts, and free disposal of old units if you buy local.  Just about any office store will have industrial document shredding machines for sale, so you’ll have plenty of local options.

Used Options:  Have you considered a used low noise paper shredder?  If not, it might be worth it to take a look.  As offices and businesses go out of business, they often liquidate all of their equipment.  This could give you a great chance to save a lot of money and buy for a discount of 50% off or more, from the manufacturer’s suggested retail price.  Buying used is perfectly fine for most people and small businesses.

What to Look for

Cutting Pattern:  Maybe pattern isn’t the right word, but you can choose from strip cut or cross cut, often called diamond cut document shredders.  Obviously, the strip cut models simply cut long strips, while the diamond cut or crosscut models cut them crosswise, making them tiny little diamond shapes.  This ensures the document is fully destroyed.  Others include confetti cut, and particle cut.

Heavy Duty or Light Use:  This depends if you’re looking at home use or commercial and office use.  Some can handle up to 17-20 sheets at a time, hundreds of sheets per minute, while other models, generally for home use, have less powerful electric motors (and sometimes a hand crank) that can only do one sheet at a time, or sometimes 5, 6, or 8.  The type you buy will simply depend on the amount of use you feel it will get.

Warranty:  This is very important.  Make sure you get a decent model that has a good warranty to avoid costly repairs and replacement part purchase.  This will help you save money long term and ensure you get a good value for your money.

Safety Features:  These are somewhat dangerous.   Some have an automatic shutoff through sensors that can detect if your hands or fingers are too close to the blades or paper feed area.  The noise reduction is nice, but the safety features can reduce injury.

Energy Savings:  Whether you’re looking at Black and Decker, Fellowes, Aurora, Dahle USA, or any other brand, it’s important to select and energy efficient model for reduced cost of operation.  Models that are energy efficient cost less to operate, which helps to save money over the life of the document shredder with noise reduction accessories.


Swingline LM12-30 Micro-Cut Jam Free Shredder, 12 Sheets, 20+ Users (1770055)
Amazon Price: $2,499.99 $1,199.00 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 2, 2013)

Disposing of Shredded Paper

Many times, people are unsure of what to do with the shredded paper waste they accumulate.  In many areas, it’s actually illegal to simply throw it away, so there are some alternatives you might want to consider to avoid getting a fine and in some cases, help you to save money.

Animal Bedding:  Document destruction can serve as bedding for various animals.  Many farmers are more than happy to take the shredded paper and use it to keep their farm animals warm and comfortable.

Packaging Material:  Why use peanuts?  The destroyed documents and memos are sometimes even better to use and they don’t cost a thing, since the waste would otherwise just be discarded.  This can actually save money for the business, allowing the machinery to pay for itself, or at least reduce the overall cost of purchasing the equipment.

Simple Recycling:  This is probably the most convenient method for commercial and home use.  Many businesses and personal users simply put the waste into their recycling container each week.

Insulation:  In Japan, shredded paper is used for insulation.  Many other areas of the world, including the US are far behind in this area.  It would very possible to use them for DIY projects, like an animal hutch or doghouse, or even a playhouse or something similar.


Don’t want to buy a shredder?  Look into paper shredding services.  It’s not nearly as expensive as you may think it is.  Many metro areas have document shredding services that can show up daily, weekly, or monthly, to take care of all your document destruction needs.  It’s a legitimate alternative to low noise paper shredders.

Swingline SC170 Strip-Cut Shredder, 12 sheets, 1 User (1757250)
Amazon Price: $181.00 $51.00 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 2, 2013)


Dec 2, 2011 12:13am
Using the shredded paper as packing material is a great second use of what would otherwise be waste.
Dec 2, 2011 12:25am
Nice article on shredders. I like your suggestions for disposing of shredded paper.
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