Cardboard Shredders & Perforators

6 February 2024 Shares

Home Cardboard recycling Cardboard Shredders & Perforators

By 6 February 2024 Shares

Cardboard Shredders & Perforators

Updated on May 27th, 2024 | Authors: Pim Brouwer & Brent Nijssen

cardboard-shredderA cardboard shredder transforms used cardboard boxes and corrugated waste materials into eco-friendly and cost-free packaging material. This recycling machine offers a sustainable and innovative solution for repurposing cardboard waste into flat netting, cushioning padding, strips, or chips. A cardboard shredder not only pays for itself but also contributes to a reduction in packing material costs and waste hauling.


HSM ProfiPack C400 / Single Phase


The HSM ProfiPack C400 is a compact cardboard perforator that turns old cardboard boxes into cushioning padding material. It’s equipped with a 1.6 horsepower motor, an adjustable scale for desired width, and a user-friendly control panel. However, it lacks the ability to connect to a dust extraction kit.
  • Capacity: 110.23 lb/h
  • Speed: 26 ft/min
  • Intake width: 16.34″
  • Intake height: 0.4″
  • Power: 855 W
  • Voltage: 110-120 V / 60 Hz
  • Weight: 102.85 lbs
  • Download data sheet

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HSM ProfiPack P425 / Single Phase


The HSM ProfiPack P425 is a high-performance cardboard shredder that converts discarded cardboard into two types of sustainable packaging material, flat or cushioning. It’s designed for heavy-duty operations, can shred up to three layers of cardboard, and features an adjustable scale. The machine is mobile, easy to operate, and can be connected to a dust extractor kit for efficient dust removal.
  • Capacity: 176.37 lb/h
  • Speed: 33 ft/min
  • Intake width: 16.73″
  • Intake height: 0.8″
  • Power: 1870 W
  • Voltage: 100-240 V / 50-60 Hz
  • Weight: 362.74 lbs
  • Download data sheet

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HSM ProfiPack P425 / 3-Phase


The HSM ProfiPack P425 3-Phase is a powerful cardboard shredder machine designed for intensive commercial use, capable of processing high volumes of cardboard waste into padding material. It features an adjustable measuring scale, smooth-running castors for mobility, and a user-friendly control panel. The machine operates quietly and continuously, and can be connected to an optional dust extractor kit for efficient dust removal.
  • Capacity: 264.55 lb/h
  • Speed: 43 ft/min
  • Intake width: 16.73″
  • Intake height: 0.8″
  • Power: 3800 W
  • Voltage: 208 V / 60 Hz
  • Weight: 399.04 lbs
  • Download data sheet

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Optional: HSM DE 1-8 Dust Extraction System


The HSM DE 1-8 Dust Extractor is an optional industrial vacuum designed for hassle-free dust extraction when using the HSM ProfiPack P425 packaging machine. Powered by a single-phase connection, its integrated pulse-jet filter cleaning nozzle ensures effortless maintenance, prolonging the life of its filter cartridges.

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“We did research and seemed economical and fit the bill best. Furthermore, the buying process went super simple, straight forward and easy.”
Eric Hazen | Verus Engineering


Table of contents:

What is a cardboard shredder?

A cardboard shredder, also known as a cardboard ‘box’ shredder, refers to a commercial or industrial recycling machine designed to transform cardboard waste into usable packaging material. This recycling machine enables immediate repurposing and recycling of cardboard. Depending on the specific model, the cardboard shredder can produce various forms of packaging material, including cushioning netting, flat netting, chips, or strips.


With a cardboard shredder you reduce cardboard waste by converting it into eco-friendly packing materials for outgoing products. It also reduces the cost of plastic packing materials and waste hauling.

A cardboard perforator is a machine that transforms cardboard into flexible, cushioning, and shock-absorbing cardboard netting. This netting can be used for various purposes, such as packaging fragile items, creating cardboard boxes, or producing cardboard slip sheets. In contrast, a cardboard shredder is a machine that processes cardboard into small shreds or strips, which can be utilized for different applications, including packaging material or recycling purposes.

When considering shredding corrugated cardboard, using a paper shredder is not our recommendation. Paper shredders are specifically designed for shredding paper documents and are not suitable to shred thick cardboard sheets and boxes.

Although a shredder for cardboard is not the same as a paper shredder, it does operate in a similar way. The machine’s gearbox, motor, and cutting block work together to cut the cardboard material.

The cardboard is transformed into tiny chips, long strips, or perforated sheets, depending on the type of shredder used. The purpose of the machine is to reuse processed cardboard as a free packaging material. Learn more about the types of shredded cardboard.



Cardboard packaging material is not only cheaper but also more environmentally friendly than using plastic. So, if your business uses a lot of packaging material for shipping products a­­­nd you have lots of cardboard waste.

A cardboard shredder is an ideal solution to reduce costs on this material and waste collection of your scrap cardboard.

Convert cardboard waste into eco-friendly packaging material.

You can insert almost any piece of cardboard into the opening of the shredder, and the machine perforates the material in cushioning netting, or it can shred the cardboard in square-shaped chips, among other forms. These chips fall into a plastic bag or another container, which acts as void-filling material to protect products and goods in cardboard boxes that need to be shipped.

Any excess cardboard is trimmed off and can be shredded again. Keep in mind that these machines also have limits and can be overloaded, leading to jamming. Most of the perforators or shredders can run continuously for multiple hours.

Light-duty, medium-duty or heavy-duty?

Cardboard shredder for light-duty use

light-duty-tabletop-cardboard-shredder-thumbLight-duty cardboard perforators are affordable machines that are space-saving and easy to move, designed for converting cardboard waste into packing material. These compact and low-volume perforators are perfect for small businesses and basic shipping departments. They can produce up to 12 moving boxes filled with shredded cardboard per hour.


Cardboard shredder for medium-duty use

medium-duty-freestanding-cardboard-shredder-thumbMedium-duty cardboard perforators are freestanding machines designed for converting cardboard waste into packing material. These perforators are suitable for medium-volume usage and are ideal for commercial and industrial applications. They can produce up to 25 moving boxes filled with shredded cardboard per hour.


Cardboard shredder for heavy-duty use

heavy-duty-freestanding-cardboard-shredder-thumbHeavy-duty cardboard perforators are large and powerful machines designed to convert high volumes of cardboard waste into packing material. These industrial-grade perforators are ideal for intensive commercial and industrial use, where large quantities of cardboard need to be processed. They are capable of producing up to 40 moving boxes filled with shredded cardboard per hour.


How does a cardboard shredder work?

A cardboard shredder is easy to operate and user-friendly. The following steps outline the simple process of operating a cardboard shredder or perforator:

  1. Turn on the machine using the on/off switch.
  2. Take a piece of cardboard and insert it into the front opening of the shredder or perforator.
  3. TThe converted cardboard will be discharged from the back of the machine.

Cardboard shredders are designed to shred any type of cardboard, including corrugated cardboard. The only requirement is that the cardboard is flat, such as flattened cardboard boxes, slip sheets, and paperboard. It is important to note that thick cardboard rolls cannot be processed by these machines due to their thickness. Additionally, very thin craft paper cannot be shredded or perforated as it is too delicate for the process.

You can shred or perforate:

  • Cardboard boxes (brown and colored cardboard)
  • Cardboard sheets and plates, also known as slip sheets
  • Corrugated cardboard (single and double wall cardboard)
  • Paperboard, chipboard or fiberboard (gray cardboard)
Corrugated cardboard and grey paperboard.

Cardboard shredder or cardboard perforator?

When you want to convert cardboard into packaging material through a machine, you have to choose between a cardboard shredder and a cardboard perforator. But, what is the difference?

Both machines repurpose cardboard sheets or boxes into high-quality packaging material. Deciding which device you want to buy depends on what kind of eco-friendly packaging filler you wish to use.

Do you want perforated cardboard that is shock-absorbing and flexible netting? Or do you want shredded cardboard void fill, which exists of strips or chips?

Cardboard shredders thumb-cardboard-chips

A cardboard shredder cuts or shreds your cardboard waste into (long) strips or (small) chips. Both the strips and the chips are great to use as void fill and can easily replace plastic packing peanuts.

  • Shreds cardboard into strips, confetti, or chips.
  • Use it as void-fill material for packing and protecting products in shipping boxes.
  • It avoids the reuse of cardboard boxes with confidential on them, such as addresses.
Packer CP424CMI cardboard shredder

Cardboard perforators thumb-cardboard-netting

A cardboard perforator turns your cardboard scraps into a kind of matting or netting. This machine doesn’t shred but instead perforates the cardboard to give it more cushioning characteristics. The netting can be used as a shock absorber box’s bottom or to roll a product in to protect it. The perforated cardboard replaces bubble wrap and packaging airbags.

  • Perforates cardboard into elastic matting, and mesh netting.
  • Use it as a shock absorber for packing and protecting products inside shipment boxes.
  • Very flexible and cushioning material.
HSM ProfiPack C400

Recycle and reuse cardboard scrap as free and eco-friendly packaging material.

Different sizes and models

Both cardboard shredders and perforators come in different sizes and models. Models are available in a small, compact, and portable tabletop shredder for small businesses or domestic use.

You can get a perforator with castors (small wheels) for easy mobility. But there are also large industrial cardboard shredders and perforators for heavy-duty use and processing high volumes of cardboard waste.

These industrial machines can process multiple cardboard layers and have long-lasting steel blades and special gears for heavy-duty cycles. The amount of layers you can process with a cardboard shredder depends on the model and especially the input height of the machine and the thickness of the cardboard material you want to convert into packaging.

Why use a cardboard shredder?

With a cardboard shredding machine, you quickly convert cardboard waste into packaging material. This material is eco-friendly and it saves on waste hauling costs and the need for buying packing materials. A cardboard shredder produces void-fill material in different shapes and sizes to protect products in transit while at the same time repurposing and reusing your cardboard waste in an environmentally friendly manner.


Research shows that in the US, only five to six percent of the 42 million tonnes of plastic waste generated annually is recycled. This means that 94 percent of plastic waste in the US is disposed of in landfills, burned in incinerators, or ends up polluting oceans, waterways, and landscapes.

A cardboard shredder can really have a positive impact on decreasing the volume of plastics your company uses. Since a lot of packing materials are made of plastics, such as peanuts and air pillows. Cardboard forms a great alternative for plastic packaging, and it is an eco-friendly and cost-saving solution.

Shred cardboard into chips to use as a void fill.

Why reuse cardboard as packaging material?

By reusing cardboard as a packaging material, you can extend the additional value of cardboard. How so:

  • Sustainable packing material – Cardboard is a more environmentally friendly and sustainable material than plastic. So, you are protecting the environment when you use cardboard as void fill material instead of plastic packaging material such as bubble wrap, EPS packing peanuts, Styrofoam blocks/sheets, or foam wrap.
  • Reduce packaging costs – Besides being sustainable, it is also economically more attractive to recycle your cardboard waste into free packaging material since you need to buy less or no packaging material elsewhere. So you will be saving money on cardboard disposal costs, as there will be less cardboard to collect by your local waste hauler. Want to read more about reducing shipping filler costs?
  • High-quality material – Cardboard is a fantastic shock absorber and is very flexible. Therefore, it is an excellent material for protecting heavy or fragile products, especially those you want to ship or transport safely.


Costs of package filling materials

  • Perforated cardboard – FREE (excl. costs of cardboard perforator machine)
  • Air pillows – approx. 27 cents per cubic foot
  • Styrofoam peanuts – approx. 22 cents per cubic foot

Read more about the benefits of repurposing cardboard as eco-friendly packaging material.

Pros and cons of cardboard shredders

Pros of Cardboard Shredders/Perforators:

  • Easy operation of the machine.
  • Reduces your carbon footprint.
  • Allows repurposing of your own cardboard waste.
  • Reduces costs on packaging and shipping materials.
  • Reduces costs associated with cardboard waste hauling.
  • Saves money while benefiting the environment.
  • Equipped with powerful motors for continuous shredding.
  • Cardboard is an excellent packaging material.
  • The machine pays for itself through the availability of free packaging material.
  • Enables continuous operation without cooldown time.

Cons of Cardboard Shredders/Perforators:

  • The machines generate dust while shredding.
  • Most cardboard shredders can only produce netting.
  • Cardboard shredding machines are heavy.

For further information on the benefits of cardboard shredders, please visit the provided link.

Cardboard perforators reduce the need for expensive packing materials. Reusing and recycling your own cardboard instead of purchasing new packing materials is a cost-effective solution.

Recommended for dispatching and warehouses

Cardboard shredding machines are beneficial for industrial businesses or departments in the logistics sector with large cardboard waste stocks. Such as manufacturing facilities, recycling plants, warehouses, shipping departments, and distribution centers.

However, offices can also use a cardboard shredder for the received and sent packages, such as e-commerce shops with their shipping departments. Much cardboard typically gets discarded. Therefore, we recommend these machines to anyone with lots of scrap cardboard and can use the shredded or perforated material as packaging or void fill.

Plastic peanuts or cardboard chips?

Can you use a cardboard shredder at home?

Typically, a corrugated shredder or perforator is used in industrial or commercial environments. However, if you would like one for home use, a smaller compact cardboard shredder model would be appropriate, such as a tabletop cardboard shredder.

Although somewhat unconventional for home users, the produced cardboard shreds may also be useful for composting, worm farming, or bedding for pet cages or even horse stables. However, keep in mind that these shreds and perforated sheets are quite large (approx. 1 x 1 in.) and come in different shapes (elastic mash, strips, confetti).

How much does a cardboard perforator cost?

Prices start at around $1000 for an entry-level tabletop device, but prices can go up to $8000 for a more heavy-duty freestanding unit. The price mainly depends on the size, power, and capacity of the cardboard shredder.

They are a pretty significant investment, but they will allow you to reduce costs from buying packaging material and paying for cardboard waste collection. Therefore, you will find that the machine pays for itself in the long run.

Front and rear of the HSM ProfiPack C400.

However, suppose it is still too much of an investment for you. In that case, you may even want to consider the option of purchasing a second-hand shredder/perforator or leasing one for a fixed monthly rate from one of the manufacturers.

Suppose you are considering buying or leasing a shredder or perforator but aren’t sure about maintenance and the possibility of repairs. In that case, you may want to inform yourself about a maintenance contract that some manufacturers and resellers offer.

These maintenance contracts allow you to be worry-free when it comes to maintaining or repairing these machines, as a manufacturer-approved technician will visit the site to take care of everything for you.

Nevertheless, if you are still curious about these machines’ maintenance, here is a video you may find interesting. However, be careful. These machines can be dangerous, and any action is at its own risk. Therefore it is advised to leave these activities to a professional.

Where to buy a cardboard shredder?

We recommend that you first get expert advice on which cardboard shredder suits your business or needs best. We can help you get the right information and advice for free. Just request a free quote, and we make sure you are contacted as quickly as possible.

Buying a cardboard shredder/perforator checklist

Easily measure the width of the cardboard.

Tools, supplies and accessories

To make your cardboard shredder or perforator more comfortable and convenient, there are a few tools and accessories that you can opt for.

  • Both cardboard shredders and perforators have the option of an attached vacuum kit, which will collect dust while the machine is in use.
  • For a clean and organized production of shreds or perforated sheets, a container to catch the new product is handy. A container may be a simple plastic bag or larger cardboard box but could also be something more convenient and appropriate for heavy production, like a box made of plastic, wood, or framed cloth with wheels or integrated pallet bottom.
  • A simple table in front of your machine can also simplify its use of it. Having a tabletop within proximity can help you prepare the cardboard (flattening it and removing metals) and feed it to the machine.


Cardboard shredder product videos

Cardboard shredder and cardboard recycling information

Material information

Alternative solutions

Testimonials and customer cases

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Advice and pricing for cardboard perforators

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