Product Type: Fellowes shredders
Newest Review: ... i tried to shred 6 together, the shredded bits used to be stuck together in many places making the document still in readable condition... more
As Easy As Shredding Money?
Member Name: Great_reviewer07
Advantages: Does the job
Disadvantages: Doesn't shred 6 pages as stated, very noisey, can't cope with credit cards
Any sceptic will tell you it isn't and as you're likely to get hanged these days for burning things in your garden as everybody obsesses over global warming it seems that we now instead have to waste electricity to keep ourselves safe, where's the sense in that? I don't know but despite it's contradictive nature I feel that shredders are now invaluable objects to have in your homes, so much so that I even convinced my 82 year Nan to get one!
There are many types of shredders; from the big office shredders that can cope with 20 sheets of paper at a time to the tiny hand operated types that are very cost and energy efficient but seem get jammed if you put anymore than two sheets of paper in them.
As a family of three we receive a lot of mail (or we did before the postal strike!) and of course 99% of the mail has our name and address printed on it, some of course have bank details/statements therefore in the hands of a fraudster this seems to be all they need to steal your identity and take out loans/mortgages/credit cards in your name and you unfortunately could be none the wiser.
*** Choosing a shredder that suits your needs ***
I'm by no means an expert but I feel that you need to consider:
1) How much are you going to be using it?
2) What volume of paper are you going to be subjecting it to?
3) Is it just paper you want to shred or is it staples and CD's too?
4) How much are you willing to spend?
All things considered we set our budget at around £40 (as that seems to be the price of most decent shredders these days) and we took ourselves down to Staples. We wanted a shredder that would be able take around 4 sheets of paper at a time because we tend to let our paper build up before using the shredder and we wanted something that we could put staples into as well. This is very important as shredders that are not built to accept staples and could break if deposited into the shredder.
*** Availability ***
This is how we came across the Fellowes P-45 Cross Cut Shredder. At the time of purchase around 12 months ago it cost us £49.99 but it is now purchasable from Amazon for £58.86, this may seem a little steep but it all comes down to how much you're willing to pay to keep yourself safe from identity theft.
*** Why this shredder? ***
When we saw this shredder in Staples we were taken with it straight away, it claims to be capable of taking 6 pieces of paper at a time, staples, paperclips and credit cards. This definitely went beyond our needs in terms of paper capability and at only £10 over our budget we thought it was too good to miss. Another thing on our list was a cross cut shredder which is what most shredders are these days. Our previous shredder was a strip cut just cutting the paper diagonally down the page, leaving us more vulnerable because an experienced fraudster could easily put a piece of paper back together.
The shredder is pretty simple looking, it's not a stylish one that you're likely to pay hundreds of pounds for but at the end of the day this was going to be hidden away in our office anyway so it made no difference what it looked like, as long as it does the job it's intended for.
The shredder bin holds 17 litres of paper which is equivalent to 100 sheets of A4 paper. Which in theory is quite a lot but if you're not emptying the bin on a regular basis this soon builds up and you'll find yourself pushing the paper down further into the bin.
*** Setting Up ***
The shredder doesn't need much setting up at all, you simply plug it into the mains and you're away, there's no real need to read the manual unless you feel that it's absolutely necessary. Before you start it's a good idea to just check to see whether the child lock is on.
*** Using the shredder ***
If you look at the display picture you'll see a grey bar at the top of the machine, this bar slides from left to right; sliding to the left will turn it on ready for use to the right is reverse feature, moving the bar to the middle turns it off. There is a child lock feature just above the on off button, you simply press the button down and slide it up to take the child lock feature off, and slide it back down to activate it once more. This is an invaluable feature if you have young children that will be fascinated with the device as it obviously is dangerous, especially for young girls with long hair.
The shredder claims to be capable of handling 6 sheets of A4 paper at a time, this isn't true at all. At a stretch it can cope with three, anymore and it will make a lot of loud noises, become very slow and on occasions it sparks. Since finding this out early on we have retained a 2 sheet maximum rule in which the shredder cops with fine. This ultimately takes a little longer which can be annoying but it works fine with two sheets and I feel very safe using it as I know that my details aren't going to be used by a fraudster.
Once turned on the shredder is able to sense when paper is being loaded into it, unlike our previous shredder where you had to hold down a button for the entire time that you were shredding. The shredder senses A4 paper fine but anything smaller it sometimes has trouble with so I tend to put smaller things in with bigger paper to enable the shredder to detect the items with no hassle. The shredder is able to handle staples with no problems, I was worried when I realised it couldn't handle 6 sheets of paper that it wouldn't cope with staples either but to it's credit it handles them perfectly well and you don't hear a big crack when they go in which is what I was expecting. Credit cards are unfortunately a big more tricky, as they are undoubtedly thicker than paper the shredder doesn't cope very well with them and sometimes gets a big jammed, meaning that you have to use the reverse feature. As I mentioned before with smaller things you may have to put credit cards through with an A4 piece of paper so the shredder can sense that it's there, however this just leads the shredder to jam even more with the extra item. Therefore I wouldn't suggest using the shredder for credit cards, do it the old fashioned way and cut them up into little pieces with a trusty pair of scissors!
The reverse feature is fantastic and works very well, it instantly regurgitates all the paper that was being shredded at that time, to avoid an unnecessary jam. It does cope with jams rather well though however you may have to give it time to get rid of all the jammed paper before inserting more.
One downside is that the shredder is amazingly noisy and even more so during a blockage. Luckily being in our home office it doesn't interfere with the TV when it's on but whilst in the kitchen you're able to hear it being used while the doors closed therefore if you're planning on using it in a place where people may be watching TV make sure they're out of the room while you use it!
*** Emptying ***
Emptying the shredder can be a bit of a pain, it requires you to take the lid off. The lid is where the mechanism is held therefore it's relatively heavy and because of that I wouldn't recommend this shredder to the elderly. Removing the lid is very easy but when it's been lifted it makes a bit of a mess on the floor with all the shredded pieces of paper that are clinging onto the cutter therefore before putting the lid on the floor it's a good idea to rip all the hanging pieces of paper from the bottom of the cutter and put them into the bin underneath. This is perfectly safe to do just make sure the device is turned off first!
One of the most innovative things that I discovered about the shredder is the pivoting head. We didn't discover this until about 6 months after purchasing the device therefore we found that we constantly had to remove the head to push paper down in order to make more room. However with the pivoting head it means that you can position the mechanism when it's shredding to aim at all parts of the bin meaning that you wont have to regularly push the paper down.
Once the shredder is full, removing the head is very easy as it's not clipped onto anything. The bin itself is very lightweight making it easy for you to lift it and take it to the bin. Before emptying into the recycling bin you may want to push the paper down to make it more compact, in turn taking up less space in the bin.
Putting the head back onto the bin is very easy however it's not helped with the head being quite heavy. The head simply clicks into place, if you don't hear it click into the place then it wont be correctly placed therefore the shredder will not work, so make sure you always hear it click.
*** Is it worth buying? ***
Despite it's faults I think this is a decent shredder, I don't however believe it's worth the £58 price tag that it's currently being sold for. I feel that the fact that it isn't capable of handling 6 sheets like it's supposed to is a big downside. It means that you have to spend a lot more time inserting sheets into the bin. The noise levels don't go in it's favour either as I've used much quieter shredders that are able to cope with more paper.
Overall this was quite a good buy that and we don't plan on changing our shredder anytime soon however I'm confident that there are numerous better buys on the market today so before settling on this shredder, shop around first as you may find yourself a better deal.
Summary: A decent buy but not worth nearly £60.
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