What are storage containers and where do they come from?
Commonly referred to as storage containers, shipping containers, or conex boxes, they are all the same. Containers have an initial purpose which is to ship product from one country to another. They are a vessel for carrying cargo, not much different than a cardboard box you would use when shipping with UPS. Used containers come from shipping fleets where they are used typically for a period of 10-14 years before being retired.
New containers (referred to as “one trip” containers are manufactured overseas, filled with cargo, brought to their destination and unloaded. Many people ask why these boxes are used once and the answer is simple, there is a market in the US for new boxes and once again, their initial purpose was to move cargo. By using the container to move cargo, it significantly reduces the price of the container was it arrives, thus saving you money.
What are containers made out of?
For all practical purposes, all containers are made the same. The roof and walls are made of 14GA corrugated steel. All used containers will come with double doors on one-end of the container, with steel cam-locking doors.
Container floors are made out of 1 1/8” marine grade plywood. Container floors are made of pressure treated lumber as well as being treated for termites and other pests. The container floors are sitting on top of a steel substructure and are elevated 4” above the bottom of the container so that the wooden floor is not in contact with the ground.
What is the difference between a “Standard” height container and a “High-Cube” container?
In a used container, standard height containers (8’-6”) are available in 20 foot and 40 foot lengths. You can get a High Cube container (9’-6”) in 40 foot and 45 foot lengths. New containers are available in both standard height and high-cube.
What is the width of a container?
In all our containers, the exterior widths are 96” wide and interior widths are 92” wide. When both doors are open, you have full 92” access going in the container.
How much do containers weigh?
Although the empty weight of the containers vary slightly, generally 20 foot container weigh 4500#’s and 40’s weigh 9000#’s.
How long will a container last?
Containers are tough and built of 14GA steel. Compare this to metal building steel which is commonly made out of 26GA to 28GA, considerably lighter. The key to longevity with containers is to control exterior rust. Containers are virtually indestructible, but as with anything, they may need repairs over time. The key to getting the most out of your container is paying attention to rust and preventative maintenance should be performed to keep rust from causing you problems in the future.
Can I move my container in the future if needed?
Absolutely. We move containers for people all the time. Containers do need to be empty when moved. We can relocate them on your property or long distance. Price for moves depends on the original container location and where the final destination is.
What is site preparation?
Containers need to be placed on a fairly level, flat surface. Containers are self-supporting and are designed for the weight of the container to be transferred to the corner posts. It is recommended that the container be placed on cement pads (commonly called trailer bases) which are solid cements pads typically 16” x 16” x 4” thick, but railroad ties or other wooden blocks can also be used. It is very important that all four corners are firmly in contact with the blocks. If a container is sitting on a soft, unstable surface, the container can actually twist, causing the doors to become hard to open and close.
What can I expect during the delivery process?
When the driver reaches your destination, he will meet with you to discuss and inspect the location where you are wanting the container to sit. We will be looking for overhead obstructions, make sure the driving surface is adequate to hold the weight of the truck, and be looking for any safety concerns. All of this done prior to unloading the container.
Delivery of the container is done with a tilt bed truck or trailer. We set the back end of the container down and slide the bed out from under the container. It is a very precise unload, it doesn’t just slide off the back.
When unloading a 20 foot container, we need a minimum of 75 Feet of straight clearance and a 40 foot container we need a minimum of 120 Feet. The driver is able to turn, jackknife, etc. to get into position for unload but the truck and trailer have to be straight during the actual unloading (if not the container can flip off the side). Keep in mind that we need 21 Feet of unobstructed vertical height to safely unload the containers, so keep power lines, signs, and awnings in mind.