Cardboard boxes are one of the most versatile materials one can find in any household. You don’t just see them used everywhere; they’re also rarely used just once.
While people often reuse corrugated cardboard boxes as they are — for storing belongings when moving houses or building cardboard castles for kids —, did you know that there are also plenty of uses for their shredded form? But before you go experimenting on the different uses of shredded cardboard, you should have a high-performance shredder like the HSM ProfiPack 425 Perforated Cardboard Shredder. With that tool on hand, you can start shredding your cardboard boxes and reusing them to do the following:
To stuff packages
You may not have the cardboard box itself, but you still get to use it for stuffing packages. Cram a handful of shredded pieces into parcels with breakable materials and they work as well as Styrofoam beans, minus the toxic elements.
You can use shredded cardboard to stuff anything: gift boxes, tool crates in the shop or old antique chests in the attic.
To fill the litter box
Speaking of filling, you can also use shredded cardboard to catch your cat’s droppings. While the more popular option is a shredded newspaper, it’s too flimsy and doesn’t hold the solid droppings well, often to the cat’s disappointment.
Cardboard, on the other hand, are sturdier even in its shredded form, thus making it easier to stow away the dirt afterwards. Go ahead and try it to see the difference!
To build fuel bricks
Need more fuel for your fire? Use shredded cardboard, instead. Thin cardboards work especially well when building recycled paper bricks to be used as fuel because they are lighter and easier to mould.
While cardboard can be an adequate alternative, take note that burning whole cardboard does not have the same result. Also, keep in mind that using glossy cardboard as a fuel to your stove or fireplace may release toxic fumes from the plastic coating and inks.
To use as a drop cloth
Painting the walls or coating your furnishings? Don’t spend money on a new drop cloth, and use shredded cardboard instead. Set the perimeter of your work area, and put down layers of old cardboard or scatter handfuls of shredded cardboard onto the floor.
Most cardboards are made of a mix of recycled natural and synthetic fibres, making them absorbent but without the risk of the liquid seeping through.
To stop weed growth
Prevent those pesky weeds that leech the nutrient off your other plants by burying a layer of cardboard. This acts as a weed barrier and keeps the weeds from growing up by insulating the soil to a temperature that inhibits weed growth.
Either manually shred the cardboard or run it through a shredder. Soak the shredded cardboard into a mush, shape it into a thin layer, and let it dry. The difference this makes instead of burying whole cardboard is that this eliminates the wax, oils and some ink that might be toxic to plants.
To be used as compost
In the same manner, you can use shredded cardboard as compost for your garden box. Cardboard is also a suitable replacement for high-carbon brown materials, such as hay or leaves. It’s also useful in establishing air pockets, which introduces oxygen that speeds up plant growth.
Stop spending and start shredding all your cardboard wastes to help save space in your local landfill!