You are currently viewing Factors that Affect the Durability of Shipping Containers

Factors that Affect the Durability of Shipping Containers

Modified shipping containers are renowned for their durability. However, some factors affect shipping containers’ durability. Continue reading to find out more about the factors that affect the durability of shipping containers. 

Too Many Trips at Sea

Some shipping containers get referred to as “used containers.” This means that they have traveled across the ocean more than once. Some containers are referred to as “one-trip,” meaning they’ve only traveled by sea once. If you’re modifying a used container, be sure that the current state of the container is structurally sound. 


It’s imperative to inspect the shipping container before modifying it. This includes checking for significant dents or rust patches. It’s also essential to be sure that the container isn’t tilting and is still rectangular. These are all things that can affect the structural durability of a shipping container and make it unsafe for modification.

Too Many Alterations

While modifications are necessary to turn a shipping container into a container-based structure, the structural integrity of the shipping container can be negatively affected if too many alterations are made. The two most common ways a shipping container’s structural integrity can be adversely affected include cutting corner castings and cutting into container walls. 

Corner Castings

Corner castings are the four corners of the container, which hold up the weight of the entire shipping container. Removing any of these corner castings will damage the container and affect the structural integrity. 

Container Walls

Cutting into container walls is quite common when modifying a shipping container. These cuts are necessary to add doors, windows, and wall-mounted A/C units. However, if a cut is too big, it can damage the container’s structural integrity. Cutting out an entire wall, for example, will cause the roof to sag. It will also cause the floor to become spring-like with a lot of give. If cuts are necessary to modify the shipping container for your needs, make sure the cuts are practical. Only cut what’s required and remember to consider what is needed to support the weight of the shipping container.

Improperly Stacking Shipping Containers

You can create larger structures by stacking shipping containers. However, the containers must be appropriately stacked to avoid posing severe safety concerns. To properly stack shipping containers, it’s essential to utilize the proper equipment, such as cranes or industrial-sized forklifts, to maneuver the units. The units should then be fastened together by the corners to combine them into a single structure. The units should NOT be stacked diagonally, as this is unsafe. Finally, twist locks should be utilized to secure the corners of the containers together.

Getting the Right Shipping Containers

When modifying shipping containers to create container-based structures, it’s imperative to start with durable shipping containers. At Storage On Wheels, we provide the most structurally-sound shipping containers. Contact us for more information on the best shipping container for your specific needs.

Leave a Reply