Does the document shredder hook again? Does it almost take forever for a small pile of paper or does it always have to be emptied? With a glance at our spreadsheet you can avoid these problems from the beginning. Incidentally, most devices also help you shred CDs or credit cards.
If you work in a law firm or other office where data security and confidentiality are important, we recommend a shredder with a high level of security . The higher this turns out, the harder it is to reassemble snippets afterwards.
Buying advice: How to find the right paper shredder in 2019
- Shredders shred documents so that the sensitive content is no longer coherently readable.
- The biggest difference is the cutting unit. In addition to paper, some shredders can also perform a volume destruction. Not only in shredder tests can you find detailed information.
- In addition to the type of shredding other features such as automatic paper jam solution or noise play a major role. For shredders to have test winner chances, they should have a certain standard of equipment.
Sensitive content is available every day in the office and at home. On bills, statements, forms and other documents are personal information that third parties do not concern. If you want to separate and dispose of these letters, then a shredder is recommended. This shreds your data so that third parties can no longer read it. Privacy and privacy remain guaranteed. Shredding is safer than throwing sensitive documents into the trash can, which is open to anyone.
When purchasing a document shredder, there are some criteria to consider, which we present here. In addition, the Document Shredder Comparison 2018 tells you how to perform your own paper shredder test and which shredder has test-winning potential.
1. What is a document shredder?
A shredder has many names: shredder, paper shredder, paper shredder, shredder, document shredder or paper shredder . All names indicate a device used to shred paper and other media. They are shredded to make the document or disk illegible .
With important data on data carriers or hard drives landing in today’s digital age, shredders have evolved. Years ago, there were only classic paper shredders, shredders are now offered with advanced features. You can destroy CDs, DVDs, and larger discs. The destroyed documents and data carriers can be safely disposed of. Curious third parties will not have a chance to make the content legible again.
2. Observe data security and shred contents
For many users, the cutting performance of shredders is crucial. This affects how the document is shredded and how many documents can be shredded at the same time.
With regard to the type of cutting, security levels have been introduced which must fulfill certain requirements for the destruction of the documents.
For all models applies: Shredders with test winner qualities should work without any problems without constant paper jams and powerful.
Each shredder offers a security level. There are a total of 6 stages that must comply with the DIN standard DIN 32757. In paper shredder tests and document shredder tests, these are always taken into account:
|Security level 1||
Private and general documents are to be shredded. Suitable for home use, shopkeepers or offices that do not work with customer data.
|Security level 2||
Internal documents should be shredded.Suitable for offices and home.
|Security level 3||
Sensitive data should be destroyed. Suitable for offices.
|Security level 4||
Data destruction of secret documents.Recommended for offices with special secrecy criteria.
|Security level 5||
Data with maximum secrecy claims should be destroyed.
|Security level 6||
Required for the destruction of documents with intelligence requirements.
In normal household use shredders with a security level 1-3 are required. In the office, a document shredder with security levels 3-5 is recommended. The higher security levels are of interest to users for whom it is imperative that documents be reliably destroyed.
Since privacy and privacy is also an individual feeling, home users should occasionally see the table as a recommendation. As a customer, you decide whether you need a higher level of security or not.
3. Purchasing advice: What should you look for when buying shredders?
3.1. Which different cutting types are available?
Shredders can destroy paper in a variety of ways. In the cutting type one distinguishes between:
- strip cut
- Particle cut
The strip cut already explains the name of how the copy paper is shredded. The document is cut into strips by the shredder . Strip cuts perform numerous good shredders, such as Genie shredders, Amazon shredders and HSM shredders. One drawback is that patient third parties can put the strips back together to make the data legible again.
Depending on the model, the strips are cut in different widths. The span ranges from 2-15 mm.
Here we show you the advantages and disadvantages of a strip cut:
- The shredders with strip cut are usually cheaper.
- Quick crushing
- Shredders in tests show a high performance: Many copy papers can be shredded at the same time.
- Easy to use
- Strip section corresponds to security levels 1-3
- Restoration of the cut document possible
The shredders with test-winner qualities offer a particle cut in most cases .
This cut makes it much harder to recover the documents. Therefore, in most cases these cuts are made at security level 3 and higher.
Characteristics of the particle section / cross-section is the cutting of the document into small particles . The sheet of paper is cut not only across, but also longitudinally.
- Restoring the documents is almost impossible
- Suitable for very sensitive and secret documents
- Less prone to paper jams.
- The cross-cut shredders or particle cut file shredder are usually more expensive.
- It is possible to shred less documents at the same time compared to shredded paper shredders.
- The noise level is usually higher.
3.2. Comfortable operation for easier handling
If you use a document shredder only occasionally, then data shredders with little equipment are sufficient in terms of price. Theoretically, a mobile shredding is sufficient. The shredder attachment is ideal for putting it on the wastebasket. After shredding takes place directly the file disposal.
You should have higher comfort requirements if you need a document shredder for medical practices, companies or law firms and generally value high office technology. In daily use, the following equipment has proven itself:
- Operating speed: How many sheets can be fed per minute?
- What can be destroyed? Paper, staples, credit cards, CDs / DVDs
- Easy emptying
- level indicator
- Automatic paper feed
- Large collection container
- Automatic paper jam resolution
- Automatic shutdown when foreign objects enter the shredder
3.3. Keep electricity costs in mind
The power requirement is interesting for all who use the shredder frequently. Then the daily use has an effect on the electricity bill. In rare use, you can neglect the power consumption, if the device is switched off directly after use.
In the document shredder comparison of numerous testers came out an average annual energy consumption of 10-20 kWh . The shredders with test-winning qualities still offer important features to further reduce power consumption. These include, for example, an off-switch, which does not draw any power after pressing.
However, a few shredders still draw electricity, which averages about 1 watt. Therefore, you should definitely consider the technical details before buying cheap shredders.
Some Hama shredders and Fellowes shredders are even equipped with an automatic power saving mode. This is activated directly if the device is not used for a few minutes or even seconds.
Tip: To save power, you should always turn off the shredder completely and not leave it in standby mode.
3.4. Pay attention to the volume development
Especially in the office, office supplies are chosen that will not bother you in your daily routine. These include file shredders that work quietly. Because in addition to talks, phone calls and concentrated work, a loud shredding would distract. In each document shredder test, therefore, the noise level is checked.
Comparing various paper shredder tests, the following average values are shown:
- In operation: Approximately 63-75 decibels
- Idling: 57-67 decibels
This makes it clear that no device works whisper-quiet. Nevertheless, we would like to recommend devices with the lowest possible noise level.
For orientation: A vacuum cleaner sucks with an average of 70 decibels, a conversation at room volume is usually carried out with an average of 60 decibels. For the office we recommend devices with less than 65 decibels.
4. Which shredder category suits you?
A purchase advice for paper shredders and shredders is useful for people who only occasionally want to shred paper and for frequent users who handle sensitive data every day. Therefore, you will receive recommendations as to which shredders are suitable for you in comparison:
|use||Recommendations for shredders|
|Occasional use||A document shredder that is used only occasionally should, above all, be compact and energy-efficient .Technical subtleties, a high level of security or a special cutting performance are not needed for occasional use.Here is worth a mobile shredding. Alternatively, according to paper shredder tests, low priced models also offer ideal services, such as a paper shredder from Rexel or a paper shredder from HSM.|
|Frequent usage||When used frequently by you and / or colleagues, shredders should be more demanding. Instead of the compact design, the following criteria for acquisition should be taken into account:
|Professional use||If data protection and security is very important in your daily job, then you should choose a file shredder with the highest level of security and comfort . It’s worth reading paper shredder tests and shredder tests thoroughly to pick out the best shredders at security levels 4 and higher.|
5. The main manufacturers and brands of shredders
There are big differences in the price of shredders. The manufacturers differentiate between shredders for home use and professional use in the office.
Since you, as a buyer, ultimately set your own standards, you should consider all brands and manufacturers for your personal shredder test:
6. Shredder in the test
Unfortunately Stiftung Warentest has not carried out a document shredder test yet. The situation is different with the testers of the English magazine “Which?” who carried out a large shredder test in April 2016.
The result shows that the document shredder test winner of Fellowes costs about 150 € and in addition to a reliable work also convinces with useful features. If you want to buy a cheap document shredder, the magazine of Q Connect shredders will serve you well. With about 100 € it is much cheaper.
7. Questions and answers about shredders
7.1. How to oil a shredder
Shredders should only be oiled if explicitly stated in the user manual.
Simple shredded paper shredders usually require no maintenance, while particle shredders need a bit more maintenance.
If you need to oil your shredder, then please follow the instructions carefully. It is important that you first unplug the device and only use the oil sparingly.
7.2. How much does a document shredder cost?
The price range for shredders is relatively large. Cheap shredders for home you get from 20 €. These are document shredders without special comfort or additional services. The professional document shredders, which also shred staples, CDs or credit cards and have a minimum security level, cost up to 400 €.
Due to the price differences, it is worthwhile to look at different document shredder comparisons before making a purchase decision.
7.3. What to do if a shredder is clogged?
The best thing to do is to carefully pull the sheet out. Also, test if you can move the paper out with the reverse function. You can also tear the paper up and down and push a thick piece of paper behind it. If everything does not work, read the operating instructions carefully for further tips.
Attention: Please do not try to reach into the cutting unit and do not put any tools in it.
7.4. How do I use a shredder for sure?
A shredder is equipped with a sharp cutting tool, so you should pay attention to this:
- not reach into the shred opening
- Turn off the power when cleaning the unit
- to keep long hair, tie, scarves and chains away from the opening