Do you have plans to purchase a shipping container?
A standard ISO shipping container measures 8' wide and 8' 6" tall, and typically comes in 20' or 40' lengths. A third option offers higher ceilings; these are called high cube containers and measure 9' 6" inches tall. A shipping container often makes a perfect starting block for a wide range of purposes including modifications such as homes, business, or cabins. Before beginning any type of modification of shipping containers, it is important to ask yourself a few questions in order to avoid any trouble along the way.
1) Do I have to have a permit for my shipping container?
Depending on your use for the container, you may or may not need several permits. Some areas don’t allow residential construction using shipping containers, so if you're interested in turning your shipping container(s) into a home, you’ll need to first check in with your local planning department. However, if you are not going to be living in the box and will just be using it for storage, you probably won't need to have a permit. It's always better to be safe than sorry, so be sure you do your homework on what (if any) permits are needed in your area.
2) How will the weather in my area affect the integrity of the box?
Insulating a shipping container can be tricky and may cause problems, depending on your plans for the container. Other potential issues include extreme weather changes that may lead to interior moisture condensation, as well as moisture seepage up through the bottom of the box. Remember, the walls and ceiling of the containers are steel but the bottom of a container – while steel beam studded – is built from marine grade plywood that may rot over time. Make sure the area where you plan to put your box has good drainage, and that moisture does not sit under the box.
3) Once I find a container, how will I get the container onto the property?
An empty 20-foot container can weigh almost 5,000 pounds. You’ll probably need to have your container delivered by a professional. Make sure a large truck may easily enter your property and place the container on-site, or else you may have to deal with renting a very expensive crane to lift the container and put it where you want it.
4) What was housed in this container before it was put up for sale?
Buyers be forewarned – the contents of many containers are often sprayed with pesticides and protective coatings to prevent deterioration during ocean travel, and some shipping containers that are currently for sale have previously transported toxic chemicals which may cause problems with your intended finished container project. Do your research on what the container was used for before you decide to buy it.
More information on DropBox Inc. and all of our shipping container modifications may be found online at www.DropBoxInc.com. If you'd like a quote CONTACT US HERE or call us toll free at 888.388.7768.