You have ordered your portable shipping container, but questions may linger about what you need to do to prepare for this important delivery. The many aspects of topics to investigate include permit requirements, delivery fees, ground conditions, and clearance space.
You don’t want to be in an unfortunate position of having to remove your portable container because you neglected to look into these important matters. There is no getting around the fact you need to do your homework regarding onsite requirements before your portable container arrives.
What You Need to Know Before Receiving Your Portable Container
Preparing Your Property
If you plan to move your container frequently, you can place the container on a cleared, flat piece of ground with open soil. You could also opt for a parking lot. If you do put the shipping container on bare soil, be sure that the soil is well packed. In addition, it cannot have more than a 2-percent grade.
If you intend to keep your portable container in that same location longer than 30 days, you will need to place it on a parking lot, driveway, or concrete slab. If you place your container on bare earth, make sure that the container stays level by checking it every month. An off-level container is a dangerous proposition, as it can cause electrical hazards and plumbing problems.
Preparation For Electrical Hook Up
Keep in mind that all electrical work needs to be carried out by a licensed electrician. Here is what you need to do as you wait for your portable container to arrive:
- Confirm that the area where the portable container will be has access to electricity.
- Check with the local building department to find out if you will need special permits.
- Confirm that the electrical system on the property is compatible with the container.
You should also hire a licensed electrician to complete electrical work before you receive your portable container and to connect electric service to the container once it gets there.
Preparing for Plumbing
For health and safety reasons, we recommend you use a licensed plumber to connect the water and sewer lines to your container.
- Determine if permitting is required by checking with the local building department.
- Inquire about water and sewer line availability where you plan to place your portable container.
- Hire a licensed plumber to set up water and sewer systems.
Questions to Address Before Your Shipping Container Arrives
- Is the delivery fee included in the total price?
Typically, the delivery fee is not part of the total price. The fee is based on mileage, factoring in how far away your property is from the storage container site.
- How much is the delivery fee?
The delivery fee amount is calculated based on how far your property is from where the storage container will be shipped. The fewer miles between these two points, the lower the delivery fee will be.
Keep in mind that suppliers usually charge a flat fee for anything within a 60-mile radius, then an additional rate per mile outside of that radius. In some instances, if it is problematic to assess your property by flatbed truck and trailer, you could be charged more for delivery. Confirm these details in advance with your supplier.
- How soon do I need the shipping container?
Usually, shipping containers can be delivered within one week or less. However, it will depend on the supplier you go with. There are suppliers who deliver as quickly as 24 hours to 72 hours from the initial order. If you need a shipping container in a shorter time frame, then confirm delivery availability with the seller in advance. There may be cases where you can pay to expedite the delivery of your portable container if you need it as soon as possible.
- How much clearance space do I need for delivery?
On average, a 20-foot storage container requires approximately 75 feet of straight clearance. A 40-foot storage container will need about 100 feet of straight clearance. The vast majority of containers will need a minimum of 12 feet of width clearance and 20 feet of overhead clearance.
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