Saturday, May 22, 2021

Product Review: the Fellowes Powershred Cross-Cut Shredder

Not actually Erin.
& is used with permission.

On first glance you might be wondering why a paper shredder is being reviewed on a prepping blog. This is a valid question, but as someone who has spent the past two weeks going through my hoarder father's papers and destroying old bills, old bank statements and old medical records from the past two decades (no, I'm not exaggerating, I'm shredding things from as far back as 2008), I've found that a paper shredder is an incredibly effective way to dispose of documents which contain sensitive information and/or could be used by thieves to steal an identity. 

The shredder we've been using, and in fact have been using for so long that I don't recall when we bought it, is the Fellowes P-12C Powershred Cross-Cut Shredder. Before we bought the P-12C we needed to replace a shredder every 2-3 years; this one has lasted at least twice as long for it to have passed out of my memory. Given the amount of use it's had, and given how long we've owned it, I'm giving it a 5 star review just for durability and reliability alone. 

I think one of the reasons it's lasted as long as it has is because and the end of an extended shredding session I lubricate the cutters with machine oil, and I recommend that everyone who owns an expensive shredder to this. However, lubrication alone will not preserve an office shredder; it also has to be well-made, and Fellowes shredders definitely are. 

In addition to being durable, this shredder is strong. It can shred up to 12 pages of paper at once (although in our case it makes a straining sound when it does; I don't like to put through more than 6 at once) and it grinds up staples as well. It documentation says that it will also eat paperclips, although I haven't tested that given that it's easy to remove them. The shredder will also gobble up credit cards, and that's my preferred way to dispose of them. 

The worst thing I can say about the P-12C is that its 4-gallon bin fills up quickly and unevenly, and given that the bin pulls out from the side this often means that when you go to empty it you'll have a large pile of shredded paper fall onto the floor once the bin is removed. 

All of these problems would be solved with a larger bin that was accessed from the top, rather than from the side, and conveniently its sister model the Powershred 60Cs has both of those features along with a price tag that's $30 cheaper.

While I have no experience with the 60Cs, if it is built to the same standards as the P-12C then I have no doubt that it will quickly pay for itself and be an essential part of your identity protection preps for many years. 

My Rating: 5 Stars

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