How To Clean and Maintain a Cardboard Shredder

18th Nov 2021

Has your company recently invested in a cardboard shredder? It’s certainly a great idea to do so. This cost-effective asset brings many benefits to a business. It allows you to transform your waste into sturdy cardboard packaging, saving you money and simultaneously making your processes more sustainable.

Once you’ve bought a cardboard shredder, it’s crucial that you take care of it properly. The last thing you want to deal with is unnecessary repairs. It would be very annoying to have your shredder go out of action just when you need it most! If you’re wondering how to look after your cardboard shredder and keep it at optimal performance, you’re in the right place.

Read on for some top tips on how to clean and maintain your cardboard shredder.

Familiarise yourself with the instruction manual

Before you attempt to shred anything, read over the instruction manual. Take notice of all safety recommendations. You should perform a full health and safety evaluation on any industrial equipment, and a cardboard shredder is no exception!

Although cardboard shredders are easy to use, it’s important to first understand how they operate. Each machine will have its own specifications. Remember that a cardboard shredder is still a powerful machine, so it should be handled with care and close attention.

Don’t overstuff the machine

Cardboard shredders work quickly, so there’s no need to pack the machine with an excessive load. If you do, you risk jamming up its mechanisms. Instead, only insert as much as the shredder can handle. If you’re having to force it in, that’s a bad sign.

You’ll process more if you let the machine work how it is supposed to. Overwhelming the machine could cause serious damage, so treat it with respect that any company asset would deserve and it will in return produce shredded cardboard for years to come.

Only use it with the appropriate materials

Once you see how the cardboard shredder operates, you might be tempted to try it with other materials. However, this would be a bad idea. You could end up permanently damaging the machine if you use it to shred anything but cardboard.  

This is an appliance with a very specific purpose – it’s not something you should experiment with. In fact, it could be very dangerous.

If you’re looking to recycle different types of waste, you should look for the appropriate machines and processes for that specific material.

Remove staples or other metal accessories

The cardboard you’re disposing of may have staples or other metal accessories attached. Before you put the cardboard into the shredder, make sure you’ve removed any foreign objects.

Although the shredder will probably still accept the cardboard, over time it will dull the teeth of the shredder and doing so will diminish its efficacy. Just a little effort on your part will ensure your cardboard shredder functions effectively for longer.

Clean it regularly

Have you ever cleaned a paper shredder? The same principles apply to a cardboard shredder. First, turn the machine off at the source. Then, you can clean the blades by removing any cardboard remnants that are stuck.

Then, you might find that a can of compressed air is helpful to get rid of any dust or tiny pieces. You could also regularly use shredder oil to lubricate the mechanism.

Educate all staff members on its operation

You may think that since a cardboard shredder is easy-to-use, it doesn’t necessitate any formal training. Failing to provide any guidance on how to handle the machine would be a mistake, though.

Anyone who uses the cardboard shredder should have been shown how to do so safely and effectively. You should also implement a baler maintenance schedule.

Choose a safe location and move it carefully

A cardboard shredder is an electrical appliance. You should choose its location in your workplace carefully. It shouldn’t be exposed to the elements, for example. It needs to be in a spot with enough surrounding room for people to safely access and use it.

If it needs to be moved, make sure you have enough manpower to do this without damaging the machine or injuring anyone. You’ll find that cardboard shredders are very heavy!

Don’t ignore any issues

Have you started to notice a strange sound coming from the cardboard shredder? Is it much slower than usual or is it failing to fully shred the cardboard inserted? In a workplace, it’s easy to ignore these issues and hope that someone else will handle it.

However, with a machine like a cardboard shredder, it’s important to report any problems you perceive. Otherwise, they could worsen and permanently damage the machine. Make sure you hire a qualified professional if repairs are needed.


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