Are Shipping Containers Airtight?

Put simply, a shipping container is a large, reusable, standardised box-like container used to transport goods and materials worldwide, either on land through trucking or railways, by sea on cargo ships or by air via aircraft. Shipping containers have been used all around the world for over 80 years and continue to be a preferred method for shipping merchandise with ease and convenience.

Shipping containers are commonly made of steel, although other strong and durable materials can also be used, allowing them to withstand extreme weather conditions and shipping impacts, including rough seas, strong winds, and long-distance shipping periods.

These containers come in standard sizes and shapes, thanks to the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO). This allows for efficient use of storage space, as well as an easier process for shipping items from one place to another, without having to worry about how they will fit inside the container.

 

Are shipping containers becoming outdated?

Shipping containers are still widely used for transporting goods around the world and are a fundamental component of global trade. They are durable, stackable and secure, making them an excellent choice for shipping a wide variety of goods.

In recent years, there has also been a trend towards using shipping containers as a building material, particularly small shipping containers, which has led to an increase in demand for them. However, many have been painted with lead-based paint to withstand salty air and water when being shipped across the world, meaning that if they’re being repurposed into living spaces, they do need to be treated properly to prevent health hazards. There are some success stories of shipping containers being repurposed to create living spaces, such as the silo and container development in Johannesburg, which was developed to help accommodate university students and reduce the dropout rate.

But this goes to show that the use of shipping containers shows no signs of abating. Not only are they fully recyclable, but more and more uses are being discovered for this versatile unit. They’re already a popular choice for storage, temporary buildings and even housing, with many more uses out there for those with creative minds. ModCon is a company that specialises in the sales of shipping containers created for fit-for-purpose uses, which are becoming increasingly popular.

 

What are shipping containers made of?

Shipping containers are typically constructed of corten steel, a high-strength, rust and water-resistant alloy that is designed to withstand the harsh conditions of ocean transport. The walls, roof and floor of a shipping container are made from corrugated steel panels that are welded together to form a strong, watertight structure. They may also contain other materials, such as plywood or other types of wood for the flooring, insulation materials and coatings or treatments to protect the steel from corrosion.

Are shipping containers watertight?

When used as cargo boxes, shipping containers are considered wind and watertight, sealing out wind and water. The protection against these elements allows containers to travel at sea, keeping any contents being transported dry and safe inside. They need to be able to protect the contents from exposure to moisture and other environmental factors. However, it is worth noting that while containers are generally considered to be watertight, there can be some situations where water can still enter the container. For example, if the container is damaged or if the seal on the doors isn’t properly maintained, water can potentially leak inside.

 

Are shipping containers airtight?

Shipping containers are also designed to be relatively airtight, but they are not completely airtight. There may be slight gaps or openings around the doors, vents or other parts of the container that can allow air to enter or exit. In addition, some containers may have been damaged or modified in a way that compromises their airtightness. For example, if a container has a hole or a rusted area, air can easily enter or exit through that opening.

Most containers have one-inch square vents running along the top rail which allows some air to circulate within the container and helps to prevent ‘container rain’. Container rain is the name given to condensation which gathers on the inside of containers when the outside temperature is lower than the inside. This gathering of moisture within the container can cause the items being stored to be damaged by the water or the mould that can subsequently grow. Having vents on opposite sides of the container will allow air to pass in, through and out of the container and prevents the worst issues of container rain. If a container is being made into a living space or even an outdoor office, it will need to be properly ventilated and insulated. Windows, extraction and ventilation fans, as well as installing correct insulation to allow for heating to effectively warm the inside, can turn a container into a viable office or ‘home’ space.

If you’re looking for a small shipping container to create a garden office or even a luxury cabin to rent out as an Airbnb, ModCon Cabins has shipping containers for sale of various sizes and modifications. Able to create modular homes with lighting, flooring, and insulation, as well as water and waste-water facilities, our expert team has the knowledge and skills necessary to support your project. Perhaps you need a storage unit for chemicals or appliances that need to be safely and securely contained, or you need a turnstile entrance cabin for an event – and if you need accessible features for your unit, ModCon has the expertise to fulfil your requirements. Whatever your needs for a storage container, ModCon is confident that they can supply what you require on schedule and within your budget.

Get in touch today or call on 0333 404 8822 to chat with a member of our knowledgeable team to find out more about the versatility of a modular cabin or container.

FIND A BUILDING...

Modular Buildings

We make modular buildings, including bespoke, flatpack and eco options for a variety of sectors. Visit our modular buildings page to find out more.

Portable Cabins

Whether you’re looking for cabins that provide an additional layer of security or want to prioritise environmental goals – or both – we make a range of different portable building types to meet your each and every need.

Used and Refurbished

Our used and refurbished cabins and modular buildings can be used for literally anything. As part of our service, we ensure that they are fit for purpose, whether you need them for standard storage or specialist use.