Finding the Cheapest Place to Shred Your Documents

Save Money by Choosing the Right Shredding Service. Cheapest Shredding Services Near Me. cheapest way to shred documents

Professional document shredding is an affordable, safe solution that allows you to ensure that your personal and sensitive business records are securely destroyed. Documents that aren’t securely destroyed are often at risk of compromised data and cause several issues for your business; for businesses looking to use secure document destruction services, both off-site and mobile shredding services can provide ways of shredding documents that prevent compromising documents or data throughout the process. However, there are some key differences between these two services, and the costs depend on the type of project you need and other factors to determine which will be cheapest for you. 

What are Drop Off Shredding Services?

Typically, drop-off shredding is best used for projects 90 lbs or less and charged by the pound. The price will differ by location but can be as cheap as $1/lb. Drop-off shredding can be a cost-effective option if you have low-volume or personal projects, do not require an appointment, and can easily locate any nearby drop-off site for document shredding. 

  • When you arrive at a drop-off shredding location, the papers are weighed to determine your fee.
  • Once weighed, the papers are stored in locked containers until it’s time for them to be shredded.
  • A partner shredding company will pick up the locked containers at the drop-off location.
  • Then, once they arrive at the offsite facility, the documents are shredded, and the shreds are baled and recycled. 

Drop-Off Shredding AdvantagesThe Drop Off Shredding Service Process. Cheapest Shredding Services Near Me. cheapest way to shred documents

  • Convenient Location: There are many locations for shredding services, with over 6,000 locations in UPS, and other private businesses throughout the US
  • No Scheduling: Through this service, you can drop in on your schedule within as little as a 5-minute stop
  • Cheaper Payments: When you don’t have too much to shred, you won’t be paying much either, providing a cost-effective solution.
  • High Security: While you are unable to see the shredding process, you drop off your papers in locked shred bins for security.

What are Mobile Shredding Services?

Mobile shredding services are often used for higher paper volumes and recurring shredding needs. Because of the large bulk projects this service handles, it’s often offered at better-discounted rates due to the scope of work involved with the service. The average cost for mobile shredding service is around $130-$175 for a project of 1-10 boxes, but the pricing will vary based on your project size.

  • During the mobile shredding process, you are provided with locked shred bins to store your documents in before they’re shredded. 
  • Once placed, you contact your provider to schedule an appointment to shred the bins. 
  • During the scheduled time, a truck equipped with an industrial shredder will arrive, pick up the document bins, and then dump the papers into the shredder, allowing you to watch as your documents are destroyed. 
  • Once the process is completed, you are given a certificate of destruction, and the shredded papers are recycled. 

Mobile Shredding AdvantagesThe Mobile Shredding Process. Cheapest Shredding Services Near Me. cheapest way to shred documents

  • Arrives at Your Door: Instead of taking papers to a location yourself, shredding trucks come to shred the papers in front of you
  • Personal Witness: Mobile shredding is the most secure option because you’re able to personally witness the shredding process.
  • Costs Don’t Scale: The costs of your shredding don’t scale, making it effective for most projects
  • High Security: Because of the higher security, it’s better used for papers such as blank checks, certificates, and promissory notes.

Drop Off Vs. Mobile Shredding: Which is The Better Choice? 

How To Calculate Paper Quantity For Document Shredding 

If you’re planning to use a document shredding service, you’ll need to calculate the number of documents you have to shred to get a better picture of the size and costs of your project. Here’s how you can determine the number of papers you need to shred: 

  • Identify the Type of Containers: Know the containers you use.
  • Assess the Container Size: Measure or note the size of these containers.
  • Weigh the Paper: Calculate how much paper you have in pounds.

If this task poses some challenges, then the best way to estimate the total costs related to your project is to learn how much paper can fit your current file boxes. Below, you’ll find a quick reference chart for determining these factors: 

Type of Container               Container Size                     Amount of Paper

File Cabinets           Vertical File Cabinet 24” Drawer   1 box (30 lbs) per drawer

                                Horizontal File Cabinet 30” Drawer 2 boxes (60 lbs) per drawer

Bags                        Black Plastic Yard/Leaf Bag        1 box (30 lbs)

                                Tall White Kitchen Bag             1 box (30 lbs)

File Boxes               Letter/Legal Box (15” x 12” x 10”) 30 lbs

                                Large Letter Box (24” x 12” x 10”) 60 lbs

                                Large Legal Box (24” x 15” x 10”)  90 lbs

Pallets                     4 Rows High (4 ft)                 50 boxes (1,500 lbs)

                                5 Rows High (5 ft)               60 boxes (1,800 lbs)

                                6 Rows High (6 ft)                 72 boxes (2,160 lbs)

Bins                         64 Gallon Bin                      7 boxes (210 lbs)

                                95 Gallon Bin                      10 boxes (300 lbs)

How to Calculate Document Volume for Destruction

Understanding the volume of your documents is just as crucial as its quantity. When you need to dispose of documents, you must know the logistics and costs. The number of documents per inch in a shelf or filing cabinet will vary depending on how densely the papers are packed together. 

Typically, you might find about 150–200 sheets per inch of shelf or cabinet space. This density affects how many boxes of documents you might need to destroy:

  • Lightly Packed Documents: If your documents are not tightly packed and average about 150 sheets per inch, you will need one standard banker’s box for every 13–16 inches of storage space on your shelves.
  • Tightly Packed Documents: If your shelf is packed to capacity, to the point that not even one more sheet could fit, you likely have about 200 sheets per inch. In this scenario, you would require one standard banker’s box for every 10–12 inches of shelving.

While these are estimates, they provide a more useful guideline for assessing the volume of documents you need to destroy. Knowing this volume, you can better estimate the total efforts and resources required for cheaper document destruction with your choice of professional shredding services. 

Which is the Cheapest Option? Drop-Off vs Mobile Shredding 

Both of these services can provide better costs and conveniences for your business, but both services depend on the quantity and volume of your documents: 

  • For Small Volumes: Drop-off shredding will likely be cheaper if you have a small amount of documents. Since this service requires you to transport them yourself, the per-pound costs at a drop-off facility will make more sense for the costs. 
  • For Large Volumes: Larger volumes of documents will benefit more from mobile shredding services despite the higher costs. This service becomes more cost-effective at larger scales when transporting larger document bulks becomes impractical for your business. This service allows businesses to shred massive amounts of documents quickly, and on-site shredding can help offset the higher costs. 

If your shredding needs are minimal and sporadic, drop-off services will provide a cost-effective option. However, for businesses or large-scale cleanouts where security is paramount, mobile shredding can provide better value. 

Find The Right Shredding Service with Shred Nations 

At Shred Nations, we partner with trusted document destruction providers across the US. Furthermore, we can help you find the best solution for your shredding needs. Whether it’s a one-time purge or a regularly scheduled service, we can connect you with tailored services that fit your budget and logistical needs. Call us at (800) 747 3365, fill out the form for a free quote on shredding services, or find a nearby drop-off shredding location with our store locator to ensure that your information and sensitive data are securely destroyed.