If you’re dealing with sensitive documents from your home office, investing in a reliable paper shredder will eliminate any chance of you being stung by identity theft. You’ll be pleased to hear that you don’t need to spend masses of money on a shredder you can trust with the jobs that matter. We have all the details on the best cheap paper shredders under £50.
Our top picks slice through your files quickly and efficiently. They’re affordable, easy to use and guaranteed to keep your personal information away from scammers. The best shredders use large, detachable bins and safety measures that prevent overloading and overheating.
Take a look at our expert guide and grab yourself a bargain for the home office.
Types of paper shredder
The type of paper shredder you want to buy for your home office will have an impact on the price you pay. Of course, all shredders will rip the paper into pieces, but it’s the size of those pieces that are determined by the shredder type.
Below, we’ve rounded up the three main types of paper shredder. Micro-cut shredders are the most secure but aren’t always an option if you want to keep costs low.
- Strip-cut shredder – strip-cut shredders are generally far cheaper than other types of shredders. That’s because of the clippings they produce – small ribbons that could be pieced back together if you had the time (and lots of patience!)
- Cross-cut shredder – a good middle ground. Cross-cut shredders make smaller clippings than strip-cut alternatives.
- Micro-cut shredder – the most secure type of paper shredder. As the name implies, micro-cut machines will turn your paper and credit cards into confetti. You’ll have no way of restoring a document after it has gone through a micro-cut shredder.
How much do paper shredders cost?
It depends on the type of paper shredder you buy. If you’re looking at strip-cut shredders, you can grab a top-rated model for as little as £20. Even at that price, you can get shredders strong enough to slice through plastic credit cards that you need to get rid of.
Cross-cut shredders generally land towards the £30-40 mark, with the price rise justified by smaller clippings.
Unsurprisingly, micro-cut shredders are the priciest option. You’ll most likely be spending beyond £40 for one of these super-secure machines.
Keep scrolling and you’ll spot five of our favourite cheap paper shredders. We’ve highlighted models from established brands – AmazonBasics, Fellowes, Texet and Zoomyo.
The best cheap paper shredders
Amazon has its own range of home office products, with this budget-priced paper shredder making up a part of the lineup. The AmazonBasics paper shredder has a 6-sheet capacity, with blades strong enough to slice right through credit cards.
According to the retail giant, the AmazonBasics paper shredder has a 2-minute continuous runtime with a 30-minute cooldown period. Feed the hungry machine your cards and paper and it’ll create shreddings measuring 0.56 by 4.68 cm.
A 14.4-litre bin will catch all of your small, cross-cut shreddings, which are safer compared to strip-cup shreddings. If you’re looking for an affordable paper shredder that won’t take up too much space in your home office, this AmazonBasics model should be on your shortlist.
You can insert up to 6 sheets of paper into this shredder at a time to destroy your confidential information quickly and easily. If the machine jams, you can use the reverse feature to sort the problem. This is one of the best cheap paper shredders – click our buying link for more details.
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Fellowes has a couple of different paper shredder models listed on Amazon. The cross-cut Powershred M-8C can shred eight sheets of paper at a time, which is good news if you’re trying to work through documents in a hurry. Based on customer reviews alone, Fellowes makes some of the best cheap paper shredders around.
You can switch the Powershred to the ‘locked’ position at any time, which will prevent the machine from getting switched on. This will help to prevent any accidents if you’re using the shredder at home. Fellowes says you can shred with this machine for “up to five minutes” before needing a 30-minute cooldown period.
This machine will obliterate paper without a fuss, but it can also power through staples, paper clips and credit cards. There’s a 15-litre bin ready to collect the waste.
Fellowes is confident that this use-at-home shredder is a great addition to your office. The product page boasts that this shredder is “built to last with solid steel cutters and a powerful motor”.
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Texet’s cross-cut shredder is one of the cheapest you’ll find on Amazon. It’s a stand shredder with an auto-start/stop control panel.
The brand says you’ll get around two minutes of continuous use from it before it needs a 30-minute recharge. That’s enough if you just need a shredder for occasional use, but if you’re regularly shredding then you’ll want to consider an alternative.
A 12-litre bin is sat beneath the machine’s blades. You can feed up to 6 sheets of paper into the mouth of this cross-cut shredder at a time. It has a built-in overload protection feature that means the machine will shut off automatically if it’s being overworked. This extra layer of protection will help you avoid paper jams.
Texet says that to maintain the quality of the shredder’s blades, you’ll need to pick up the brand’s Lubricating Sheets LB12.
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The precision blades of this Zoomyo paper shredder will create slices measuring 5 x 16mm. It can chomp through 8 sheets in one go without hassle, also capable of breaking down plastic credit cards, CDs and DVDs. There’s a separate compartment in the waste container bin for non-paper materials.
Designed to tuck neatly under your desk when it’s not being used, this paper shredder features an automatic start sensor and manual reverse. With four wheels stuck to each leg, you can wheel it around the office.
You get a 14-litre waste paper bin with this shredder, which will hold plenty of shreddings before it needs emptying out. It detaches and slides out effortlessly. The same bin comes with a built-in container that’s used for shredded CDs, DVDs and plastic credit cards.
So what about running times? Zoomyo’s product page says that you’ll get “up to 3 minutes of continuous operation” before you need to allow for a 60-minute cooldown period.
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This is the second Fellowes paper shredder in our roundup. The Powershred P-35C creates clippings measuring around 4 x 40mm. Crucially, it had a reverse function and a built-in safety lock.
The cross-cut P-35C is designed for secure personal use, shredding up to five sheets of A4 paper at a time. The strong steel cutters are powerful enough to work through staples and paperclips, so you don’t need to bother removing those before you feed the machine.
A 12-litre bin is attached to this shredder, holding a high volume of strips but still remaining light enough to carry from your office to the kitchen bin. This model uses a safety lock switch that’ll disable the shredding function when you’re not sat near the machine.
This machine runs non-stop for two minutes but only takes 20 minutes to cool down. To stop the machine from getting damaged, an internal protector will sense if the shredder is overheating and temporarily slow the motors inside. A red LED will signal if the machine is being overworked.
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