What is an Industrial Paper Shredder?

Industrial Paper ShreddersAs you may have noticed, word definitions can vary greatly from one person to another. A great example of this is the term “Industrial Paper Shredder.” An industrial paper shredder to you may be something entirely different to me. I deal with office paper shredders, commercial shredders and industrial shredders on a daily basis. This is what I consider an industrial paper shredder to be.

To begin with, I have had customers look an office shredder and ask me if it was an industrial shredder. I can understand. To many people, an over-the-can strip cut shredder is pretty high-end. I can tell you that most industry experts would consider an over-the-can shredder to be very low volume in capabilities and most office shredders to be medium-volume in output capacity.  Industrial shredders are not used at home and seldom in the office.

Here are features I would consider to be “industrial” in a paper shredder:

Sheet Capacity – While many office shredders are capable of shredding 20-40 sheets of paper at a time, most industrial paper shredders can shred in excess of 50 sheets of paper at a time or more. Some can even shred in excess of 500 sheets of paper at once. Pretty impressive….right? As is the case with most shredders, industrial strip cut shredders typically cut a lot more paper per pass than an industrial cross cut shredder.

Continuous Capabilities – An industrial shredder has to be able to run continuously throughout the day, for hours at a time. Many industrial shredders are used in shredding trucks or in warehouses and are literally used “continuously.”

Paper Disposal – While most standard paper shredders have a waste bin, many industrial paper shredders use what’s known as a baler. If you’re shredding 100s of sheets of paper at a time, you’re more than likely not going to want to empty a massive bag of paper. It would require multiple people and would be very cumbersome. Industrial shredders use a special type of compactor that will create a bale of paper much like a farm baler creates a bale of hay. This bale can then be carted of for disposal or recycling.

Dust Extractors – As you might imagine, shredding thousands upon thousands of sheets of paper per day can result in a lot of paper dust. Many of the highest-volume industrial paper shredders use special vacuums called dust extractors. These extractors remove dust during shredding to keep the work area clean. I hear it’s pretty nice for the sinuses as well.

Pre Shredders – Some paper shredders run at such fast speeds and handle so much paper at a time (entire phonebooks, reams of paper) that they need a pre shredder. Pre shredders cut paper down into more manageable pieces of paper before they enter the final shredder. This helps streamline the shredding process and creates less stress on the final shredder motor.

Here is a video of a mid-range industrial paper shredder. This is the MBM Destroyit 4107 industrial paper shredder:

I don’t know if this helps you better understand what an industrial paper shredder is, but I certainly hope you no longer think a shredder purchased at a local department store is an industrial shredder.

At ABC Office we offer a great selection of paper shredders. You can find our entire selection of industrial paper shredders here and all our paper shredders here.

Keith Barlow

Keith is a third generation office equipment expert. ABC Office was started by his grandfather back in 1980 and he is proud to be caring on the values that made ABC Office what it is today… unsurpassed selection, detailed information, low prices, and courteous support.

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