how to clean a paper shredder

How to Clean a Paper Shredder: A Step-by-Step Guide

Last Updated on February 6, 2023

Maintaining a paper shredder isn’t just about feeding it the occasional stack of documents. You also need to clean and care for your machine regularly if you want to keep it in top shape! Learning how to clean a paper shredder is surprisingly easy, but knowing how often or what type of maintenance needs to be done can be overwhelming. In this blog post, we’ll provide you with an easy-to-follow guide on how to clean and maintain your paper shredder so that it continues working efficiently without any problems – no matter how many stacks of documents you have lying around! 

Table of Contents:

Preparing to Clean Your Paper Shredder

Before you start cleaning your paper shredder, it’s important to take the necessary safety precautions. First, unplug the machine from its power source. This will prevent any electric shocks or other accidents that may occur during the cleaning process.

Next, empty out all of the waste and debris in the shredder’s bin. Make sure to dispose of this properly in a secure container so no one can access it while you are working on your shredder.

a person emptying the can

Once these steps have been completed, use a soft cloth or brush to remove any dust particles from around the blades and motor area of your paper shredder. Be careful not to damage any internal components when doing this as they could be expensive to replace if damaged beyond repair.

Finally, check for any visible signs of wear and tear on your paper shredder such as loose screws or worn-out parts that need replacing before continuing with cleaning it further. If anything looks suspicious then contact an expert for advice before proceeding with cleaning it yourself, as improper handling could lead to more serious issues down the line.

Cleaning the Blades

When it comes to cleaning the blades of your paper shredder, there are two main methods you can use: a brush or a vacuum cleaner.

Using a Brush

A soft-bristled brush is ideal for cleaning out dust and debris from the blades of your paper shredder. Start by unplugging the device before taking off any removable parts like the waste bin and cutting head cover. Use the brush to carefully sweep away any visible dirt and lint that has built up on both sides of each blade. Be sure not to press too hard as this could damage them. Once all visible dirt has been removed, reassemble your machine and plug it back in.

Using a Vacuum Cleaner

If you prefer to use a vacuum cleaner instead, make sure that you have one with an appropriate nozzle attachment that will not scratch or damage the blades of your machine when used around them. Start by unplugging your paper shredder before removing any removable parts such as its waste bin and cutting head cover if necessary. Then attach the nozzle to your vacuum cleaner hose before slowly moving it across each blade until all dirt has been removed from both sides of each one. When finished, reassemble everything back together again before plugging it in once more ready for use.

Maintaining Your Paper Shredder

Maintaining your paper shredder is an important part of keeping it in good working order. Regularly oiling the blades and avoiding overloading are two key steps to take when caring for your paper shredder.

Oiling Your Paper Shredder: Oiling your paper shredder regularly helps keep the blades sharp and prevents them from becoming clogged with debris or dust. Most manufacturers recommend using a special lubricant specifically designed for use on their product, but you can also use vegetable oil if needed. To apply the oil, simply place a few drops onto a piece of scrap paper and then run it through the machine several times until all of the oil has been distributed evenly throughout the blades.

a green canister full notepads

Avoid Overloading: It’s important to avoid overloading your paper shredder as this can cause it to jam or break down completely. The best way to prevent this is by only feeding one sheet at a time into the machine and making sure that any staples have been removed beforehand. Additionally, be sure not to overload its bin capacity as this will put extra strain on its motor which could lead to permanent damage in some cases.

Inspecting your blades regularly is another essential step when maintaining your paper shredder, as dull blades may need replacing sooner than expected due to wear-and-tear caused by frequent usage or improper care practices such as not oiling them enough or failing to remove staples before running documents through them. If you notice any signs of wear-and-tear such as nicks, dents, or discolouration then replace them immediately so that they don’t become further damaged while being used again in future sessions without proper maintenance having taken place first.

Lastly, make sure that you clean out any dust and debris from inside of your machine after each session so that it doesn’t accumulate within its internal components which could eventually lead to malfunctioning parts requiring repair work or replacement altogether – both costly scenarios. You can do this easily with compressed air cans available at most hardware stores; just make sure not to blow too hard otherwise you risk damaging delicate electrical connections within its circuitry.

Key Takeaway: To maintain your paper shredder, oil the blades regularly, avoid overloading it, inspect its blades for wear-and-tear, and clean out dust and debris after each session.


Knowing how to clean a paper shredder is very easy. By following the steps outlined above, you can easily clean a paper shredder and keep it running smoothly for years to come. With regular maintenance, your paper shredder will be ready whenever you need it.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top