Fellowes paper Shredders. Caveat Emptor

When Peter Costello spread his largesse by giving all businesses the princely sum of $200 each to help cover the costs ot preparing for the commencement of the GST in 2000, we received 3 x $200 vouchers for our 3 companies.

We used part of it to but a Fellowes paper shredder from Officeworks in June, 2000, and it never missed a beat until it dropped dead a week ago.

We went to Officeworks on Sunday and automatically bought another Fellowes based on our 20+ years of trouble free use.

Big mistake.

The new one did not last for 24 hours. It developed a paper jam which we could not resolve after cutting less than a bin full of paper.

I looked at the listing on Officeworks, and to my horror, saw the scathing reviews, primarily regarding paper jams.

I returned to Officeworks today and the person at the entrance asked if I just wanted to swap it over to which I replied that I wanted to get something better.

He said to pick out what I wanted and take the old and new ones to the checkout.

I choose this one which I had already searched before leaving home today.

The lady at the checkout asked if I had the receipt and happily processed the changeover.

No arguements, no dramas, no problems with not having the packaging.

Well done Officeworks.

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As for the Fellowes shredder.

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For what it is worth we had a huge heap of papers to shred when we retired. We bought a large shredder but it was a tedious job. The solution; get a large bucket, almost fill it with papers, add a few teaspoons of detergent and top it up it with water. Leave it for 2 weeks stirring and using your hands occasionally to pulp the papers. After 2 weeks you have a bucket of unreadable paper pulp, essentially reversing the reaction to make paper.
Check it has no readable paper, tip it out on the lawn to dry and put it into the recycle bin in a big dry lump.

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No paper goes to waste at my house. I shred it and add it to my compost pile. It breaks down quickly when mixed with kitchen scraps and a little bit of old compost. I add a three inch layer to my vegetable beds once a year. No other fertilizer is added. The home made compost feeds the soil microbiome which then makes the nutrients plant available. For full details of this “no dig” way of gardening look up Youtube for videos made by Charles Dowding.

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OT but I have a confetti style shredder. I shred everything I can that is suitable and give it to my local animal rescue. Better that than in the recycling bin.

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One should never place shredded (stands or confetti) paper into a domestic recycling bin (some specialised office based paper only collection services can handle and accept shredded paper). It becomes a nightmare at the MURF and causes no end of trouble causing blockages and contamination of other recyclables. It is possible that if the shredded paper makes up a significant proportion of the material in the truck’s bin, the whole of the trucks load may be diverted to landfill.

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I was not aware of that so we will put in in the green bin from now on or take it to NQRA who accept it for recycling.

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For clarity I confetti shred it and give it to animal rescue INSTEAD OF putting it whole in the recycling bin. As you correctly point out putting any shredded paper in the regular recycling bin is counter productive, big time.

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What a great idea! I have a ton of papers that need shredding and although my Fellowes shredder is still working years later, I just dread the boring job ahead.

And oh yeah, not for the recycling, it has to go in the trash.

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In the green bin (organics, garden waste), not the red bin (garbage, to landfill) or the yellow bin (recycling) - granted that bin colours may differ from state to state and council area to council area.

All assuming that you don’t dispose of it on your own property e.g. compost bin.

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Some green grocers, kennels, kindergarten etc often will take shredded paper for use in their businesses. It is worth contacting them also if you want to give the paper another use before composting etc.

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I don’t think we are allowed to put that kind of thing in our green bin. garden waste only…

OK, I can do that, When I get round to shredding. Some has been waiting 10 years, so… no rush…

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As always, check with your specific council.

Some councils definitely say that shredded paper goes in the FOGO bin e.g. https://www.whichbin.sa.gov.au/tips/shredded-paper-is-good-to-go-in-the-green-bin

FOGO == Food Organics Garden Organics i.e. broader than just garden waste.

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Important then to keep the shredding of paper to strictly paper. Some shredders also deal with plastic inserts and things like Credit Cards, which don’t make for happy “organic” mulching.

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And check the paper doesn’t have a plastic coating or plastic component (e.g. windowed envelope). Some of these may be accepted in a recycling bin unshredded. Check with your council or waste collection contractor.

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Great idea. I know from experience that animal shelters need heaps of shredded paper for rabbits, guinea pigs, and cat litter trays.
And they need lots of newspaper too.

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