Three Advantages Of Using Steel Shipping Containers Over Traditional Building Materials

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The typical steel cargo container can last for up to 20 years, according to Container Auction. However, they are often only used for a fraction of that time. Admittedly, part of the reason for this is because they’re sometimes, to put it simply, lost. About 650 steel cargo containers are lost at sea each year. This is in part simply because this is what the primary use of shipper containers and storage containers consists of. Right now, 95% of the world’s cargo is still moved by sea. Shipping things over sea is more cost-effective than shipping things by mail, and it allows a large volume of goods to be shipped at one time. Steel cargo containers are often eventually retired — even if they’re still usable. In fact, a refurbished container can be used for a variety of means, such as storage, and sometimes even housing structures. Temporarily modular housing structures are often made from used shipping containers, and are perhaps most often used by construction companies, which obviously have a need for temporary structures. There are many reasons why someone might want to buy used steel cargo containers. Below, we’ll look into the many advantages of buying steel storage containers used.

1. Recycling

In fact, buying used shipping containers is recycling, and therefore has a number of “green” benefits. When a used steel storage container is refurbished, 3,500 kilograms of steel are saved. For that matter, a used shipping container is often replacing the traditional building materials like wood, mortar, and bricks that would otherwise be used. Recycling steel means that you also are preventing the overuse of such supplies, which is particularly helpful in the case of wood, which is often overused. As a matter of fact, there are about 17 million steel storage containers around the world right now — and only 6 million of them are in use. This leaves 11 million unused, and ripe to be refurbished and converted into everything from storage space, to actual homes for people. Not all used shipping containers are used to create spaces that only exist on a temporary basis. Some people take these recycled goods and make permanent homes out of them, which further cuts down the space and materials that would have been used for a traditional home. This, of course, brings us to the next advantage.

2. Cost

The great thing about choosing almost any used item over a new one is that it will often cost less than the new item. This applies to used shipping containers as well. Used shipping containers usually aren’t competing against new shipping containers — rather, they’re competing with the above mentioned materials used to make traditional housing structures or storage spaces. Everyone knows how expensive those materials are — they tend to add up rather quickly. A used shipping container is a type of converted, refurbished material. It therefore takes a smaller amount of supplies to turn it into a temporary or permanent structure, and less time as well (which we’ll detail below). This means that the cost is going to be lower — sometimes significantly lower — than a structure made from more traditional materials. This can be extremely beneficial to people living on a lower income, and shipping containers can be great alternatives to traditional homes in this sense.

3. Production Time

As we’ve stressed above, one of the things that makes used shipping containers cost effective is the lessened amount of time and manpower that goes into converting them. As steel shipping containers are pre-existing structures, a lot of the hard work has already been done in terms of building them. They simply need to be refurbished and altered. Although it depends on the individual project, these shipping container modules can be produced often in a matter of weeks, and sometimes in less than a month. They’re great for people working on a tight schedule.

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