Aurora micro-cut shredder review

Protecting your identity both at home and at the office is much easier with a reliable paper shredder. Having a compact, powerful paper shredder near your desk makes it easy to quickly destroy mail and documents that contain sensitive personal information.

The Aurora AU870MA High-Security Paper Shredder can shred up to eight sheets at a time using a high-security micro-cut. It even promises to shred credit cards. We wanted to see if the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder could easily destroy the kind of papers that contribute to identity theft, so we put it to the test. Here’s what we found.

Testing the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder

We tested the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder in a home office setting over a period of two months. We ran a wide variety of potentially vulnerable materials through the Aurora shredder, including medical bills, cashed checks and credit cards.

What is the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder?

The Aurora AU870MA is a 3.9-gallon paper shredder with a micro-cut function for level P-4 security. It can run continuously for up to five minutes before it needs to cool down and features an auto shutoff in case of overheating. The basket can hold the equivalent of 230 sheets of paper before you need to empty it. A manual reverse function helps clear paper jams. The Aurora AU870MA paper shredder comes with a one-year limited warranty.

Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder price and where to buy

Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder

The Aurora AU870MA High-Security Paper Shredder costs $58 and is available at Amazon.

How to use the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder

The Aurora AU870MA is simple to set up: just place the top shredding piece onto the basket and plug it in. It only has three settings — on, off and reverse — and the top is marked with safety warnings as well as an alignment guide for correctly shredding credit cards. The shredding teeth continue to rotate for a few seconds after feeding through the sheets to ensure no paper bits are left behind.

We were able to shred eight pages at a time easily, and the Aurora could even handle 10 sheets at once, though it made the motor sound strained. The shredded papers were impressively tiny and folded up accordion-style. We were confident that identity thieves wouldn’t be able to reassemble them.

Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder benefits

The Aurora AU870MA paper shredder is a micro-cut model which offers the highest possible security of the three types of paper shredders. It can cut paper into small chips that are practically impossible to reassemble. Its P-4 security rating means that the surface area of each shredded piece won’t exceed 160 square millimeters. For comparison, the highest level is P-7, which is only necessary for top-secret government use.

The Aurora AU870MA is also capable of shredding credit cards. The viewing window lets you see when your paper shredder is getting full. Emptying the bin is simply a matter of lifting off the top portion using its built-in handle, then dumping the paper shreds.

We appreciated that the Aurora AU870MA was small enough to store easily in a home office and that it wasn’t as loud as some models we’ve used. The volume was no louder than a blender or vacuum. On the rare occasion that a paper clip caused a jam, we were able to easily fix it by switching to the “reverse” setting.

Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder drawbacks

When we began testing, we were worried that the Aurora AU870MA’s shredding top would make the machine too top-heavy. It weighs more than 10 pounds, and the basket is made from fairly lightweight plastic. While the shredder never fell over during our testing period, we did feel we had to be cautious with it. The top portion’s weight made us appreciate the built-in handle; otherwise, emptying the Aurora AU870MA could be challenging.

While the 3.9-gallon bin was a decent size for the occasional, light-duty shredding of our home office materials, it may not be large enough for frequent or larger shredding tasks. The shredder needs 20-30 minutes to cool down after being run to its maximum of five minutes, which isn’t uncommon for home paper shredders. This timing is important to keep in mind when you’re getting ready for a longer shredding session.

While the shredder doesn’t get clogged easily by staples or paper clips, it shouldn’t be used for envelopes with plastic windows, metal credit cards or adhesive pages like labels or stickers. Even though the Aurora AU870MA may be capable of handling those materials, it’s more likely that they’ll cause a jam or reduce the shredder’s lifespan. It’s also important to note that this Aurora model can’t destroy CDs or other media, and it can’t shred credit cards with chips.

Should you get the Aurora AU870MA Paper Shredder?

For a home office or overall household security, the Aurora AU870MA is a great choice. It offers effective and affordable paper shredding, and the P-4 security level is one of the highest you’ll find for home settings. As long as you follow the user manual’s recommendations and use the Aurora AU870MA within its recommended parameters, its ease of use and high-security shredding capabilities will bring you peace of mind.

Consider other products

Fellowes Powershred 99Ci 18-Sheet Paper Shredder

Fellowes Powershred 99Ci 18-Sheet Paper Shredder

For high-volume shredding in an office, this model can handle up to 18 sheets at a time, plus paper clips, staples, CDs and credit cards. It can run for up to 30 minutes without needing to cool down. 

Sold by Amazon

Amazon Basics 150-Sheet Autofeed Micro-Cut Paper Shredder

Amazon Basics 150-Sheet Autofeed Micro-Cut Paper Shredder

Chew through up to 150 sheets at once with this surprisingly quiet shredder. It micro-cuts papers to meet level P-4 security standards. 

Sold by Amazon

Aurora AS420C Desktop Paper Shredder

Aurora AS420C Desktop Paper Shredder

This petite yet powerful Aurora model is great if you only need to do occasional shredding. It measures just 10 inches tall and can shred four sheets at a time, and up to 40 sheets before its basket needs to be emptied. 

Sold by Amazon

 

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Laura Duerr writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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