Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder

Last updated date: February 21, 2019

DWYM Score
9.0

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We looked at the top 1 Paper Shredders and dug through the reviews from 3 of the most popular review sites including All The Stuff, The Architect's Guide, Paper Shredder Zone and more. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Paper Shredder you should buy.

Overall Take

The Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder lets you feed 12 pages through at once, but it runs for only two minutes before needing a 30-minute cooldown. However, its low price makes it attractive to many consumers, especially since it micro-shreds paper smaller than other models in its class. The bin only holds 4 gallons of paper, so that's worth considering if disposing of shredded paper is inconvenient. In our analysis of 66 expert reviews, the Sentinel Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder placed 4th when we looked at the top 9 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 12, 2019:
Checkout The Best Paper Shredder for a detailed review of all the top paper shredders.

Expert Summarized Score
10.0
3 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
9.1
669 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
Its high-speed processing and 12-sheet capacity mean that it’ll tackle your basic shredding needs quickly and effortlessly.
- All The Stuff
January 24, 2019 | Full review
Auto start/stop means you simply leave the shredder on and simply feed the paper or credit card into the intake.
- The Architect's Guide
September 25, 2018 | Full review
This shredder is lightweight and possesses nice storage space. This is shredder that micro-cuts documents.
- Paper Shredder Zone
What experts didn't like
Its 2-minute running and 30-minute recovery time mean that it won’t be able to process large stacks of paper in one session.
- All The Stuff
January 24, 2019 | Full review
It has short continuous runtimes.
- Paper Shredder Zone

From The Manufacturer

The Sentinel 12 sheet micro-cut shredder is a medium to heavy duty shredder. A 0.16" x 0.59" (4mm x 15mm) micro-cut shred for optimum security of your personal data. Auto start/stop means you simply leave the shredder on and simply feed the paper or credit card into the intake. A manual reverse function allows you to reverse the cutting blades in the event of a jam. Want to shred credit cards? no problem, the Sentinel 12 sheet micro-cut shredder can do that too. Simple to empty with a 4 gallon capacity pull out waste bin. No plastic bags required; simply slide out the wastebasket, and dump the shredded material in the dumpster. Casters make moving the Sentinel 12 sheet micro-cut shredder easy. Equipped with an over-heat indicator to protect the shredder motor. Reliable, easy to use and easy to empty makes the Sentinel 12 sheet micro-cut shredder a must have for home or office.

Overall Product Rankings

1. Royal 18-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 9.6
Expert Reviews: 7
2. AmazonBasics 8-Sheet shredder
Overall Score: 9.6
Expert Reviews: 8
3. Fellowes Powershred 79Ci
Overall Score: 9.4
Expert Reviews: 13
4. Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 9.0
Expert Reviews: 3
5. Aurora 8-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 8.9
Expert Reviews: 2
6. Swingline 14-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 8.3
Expert Reviews: 4
7. AmazonBasics 12-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 8.2
Expert Reviews: 12
8. AmazonBasics 17-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 7.7
Expert Reviews: 4
9. Bonsaii 6-Sheet Shredder
Overall Score: 7.2
Expert Reviews: 7

An Overview On Paper Shredders

About one in 15 consumers fell victim to identity fraud in 2017, with a new victim every two seconds. With details like your Social Security number, bank account numbers, date of birth and contact information, a criminal can take out a loan in your name. Using only your credit card number, fraudsters can start spending, especially if they have the card verification value (CVV) number on the back.

Data theft poses such a big problem, many consumers have realized the importance of securing their information. This extends to the paper documents they toss in the garbage, which can easily end up in the wrong hands somewhere between the house and the landfill or recycling center. Ripping up every sheet of paper can be time-consuming, especially if you deal with a significant amount of paperwork on a monthly basis.

There are several things to consider when you’re looking around for shredders, though. Perhaps the most important is capacity. Some shredders can handle large stacks of paper, while others make you feed only one or two sheets at a time. If you plan to shred items like credit cards, you’ll need to seek out a shredder with that capability.

One of the biggest issues with paper shredders is jamming. Unfortunately, most shredders will eventually jam, especially if you exceed their capacity or they overheat. It’s important to find a shredder that can help you easily recover from those jams. Another issue specific to all shredders is that they have a limited runtime, after which you’ll need to wait while they cool down before you can insert another document. This can understandably be inconvenient, so make sure you’re aware of the limits of whatever shredder you choose.

It may not seem a top priority at first, but shredders come in various sizes. If you plan to slide your shredder under your desk or set it on a table, measure in advance to determine the maximum space you’ll need. Some shredders also include wheels, making them easy to maneuver around as necessary.

DYWM Fun Fact

You may not realize it, but paper shredders have been around since 1906, when a Brooklyn entrepreneur came up with the idea and later patented it. However, the first shredder wasn’t manufactured until 1935. That was when a German man wanted a way to safely dispose of the anti-Nazi propaganda he was creating. His version of the shredder was based on the design of a pasta maker. He began selling his shredder soon after, with government agencies and financial institutions eventually buying them. The need to revolutionize shredding beyond thin strips of paper came from a 1979 raid of the American Embassy. The Iranian revolutionaries were able to put together the shredded documents and decipher what was on them.

The Paper Shredder Buying Guide

  • If you’ve ever shredded a stack of paper, you likely know the tedium that can come from the task. The more pages you can slip through the feeder at once, the quicker you can move on to other tasks. The Royal 18-Sheet Shredder promises to shred as many as 18 sheets in one pass. It also can shred one sheet of paper in less than five seconds. The Fellowes Powershred 79Ci comes close at 16 sheets, while the Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder can handle 12 at once. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder can only handle eight, although you may be able to squeeze in up to 10.
  • Paper isn’t the only thing shredders can tackle. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder and Fellowes Powershred 79Ci can shred credit cards, as well. You don’t even have to remove your staples or paper clips with the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci, which can shred these supplies along with the paper connected to them.
  • Traditionally, shredders cut paper into long strips, which was great, but not nearly as secure as today’s cross-cut shredders, which slice paper both horizontally and vertically. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder cuts paper into 3/16″ x 1-27/32″ strips, while the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci creates 5/32″ x 1-1/2″ pieces. The smallest shredding capacity, though, comes from the Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder, which is highly rated for its security, producing microshreds sized only 4mm x 15mm.
  • Capacity isn’t just about the number of pages your feeder can handle. The size of the waste bin also matters. The larger the bin, the less frequently you’ll need to stop to empty it. The Royal 18-Sheet Shredder has an 8.5-gallon bin, making it the largest, while the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci still impresses with a bin that holds 6 gallons of paper. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder and Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder are on the smaller end, with bins that only hold around 4 gallons.
  • If you plan to slide your shredder under a desk, the Royal 18-Sheet Shredder has the edge, thanks to a front-loading feeder that will let you use it without sliding it out.
  • If you do need to maneuver your shredder around, consider the sheer weight the bin has before you have even put the first sheet in. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder is by far the lightest, at only 9.74 pounds. This is followed by the Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder, which weighs only 16.3 pounds. Both the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci and the Royal 18-Sheet Shredder are pretty heavy, at 28.2 pounds and 38 pounds respectively. However, it’s important to note that all of the shredders but the AmazonBasics one have wheels, so their weight likely won’t be an issue as long as you keep it in the same general area.
  • Ideally, your shredder will rarely jam. If it does happen, though, it will help to have an easy way to get the pages out. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder and Fellowes Powershred 79Ci each build in reverse features so that you can back your pages back out in the event of a jam. However, the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci and Royal 18-Sheet Shredder are designed to prevent jams.
  • Every shredder only has a short runtime before it needs to cool down. With the Fellowes Powershred 79Ci, you can shred for 20 minutes before allowing it to rest for 30 minutes. The Royal 18-Sheet Shredder extends that to 40 minutes. The AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder and Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder are considerably shorter, though. Amazon’s shredder runs for three minutes before cooling off for 20 minutes, and the Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder is two minutes on, 30 minutes off.
  • Since shredders can vary dramatically in price, the cost may heavily influence your decision. On the low end is the AmazonBasics 8-Sheet Shredder, which retails for less than $50, and the Sentinel 12-Sheet Shredder, which sells for between $50 and $100. The Fellowes Powershred 79Ci and Royal 18-Sheet Shredder sell for between $100 and $200.