shipping container refrigeration unit July 31, 2023 – Posted in: Uncategorized

Refrigerated Shipping Containers: A Complete Guide

shipping container refrigeration unit

‍Photo by 21967857 on Pixabay

## Introduction

shipping container refrigeration unit

Refrigerated shipping containers, also known as reefers, are versatile intermodal containers that provide cold storage solutions for various industries such as restaurants, farming operations, and packing houses. These containers are designed to maintain a consistent cold temperature, making them ideal for storing perishable goods without the need for ice or refrigerators. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the benefits of using refrigerated containers for storage, how they work, the different types available, their sizes and dimensions, how to choose the right container, maintenance tips, troubleshooting, and where to buy or rent them.

Benefits of Using Refrigerated Containers for Storage

Maintains a Consistent Temperature

One of the key benefits of using refrigerated shipping containers for storage is their ability to maintain a consistent temperature. This is crucial for preserving the quality and freshness of perishable items. Unlike traditional storage methods, refrigerated containers provide an even temperature distribution, preventing goods from getting too hot or cold, and minimizing the risk of damage.

Easy Movable and Convenient

Refrigerated shipping containers are designed with mobility in mind. They can be easily transported and relocated, making them a convenient choice for businesses that require quick access to their products or have limited storage space. Whether you run a home office or have multiple stores across town, refrigerated containers offer the flexibility to meet your storage needs. shipping container refrigeration unit

Ideal for Businesses with Quick Turnaround Times

For businesses with short turnaround times, refrigerated containers offer a significant advantage. By keeping products cool and safe, refrigerated storage expedites the process of getting perishable goods into the hands of customers. Whether it’s fresh produce, dairy products, or other temperature-sensitive items, refrigerated containers ensure that your inventory remains in optimal condition until it is ready for use. shipping container refrigeration unit

How Refrigerated Storage Containers Work

Refrigerated shipping containers are specifically designed to store and transport perishable goods such as food. These containers are constructed with insulated materials and utilize cold air and well-insulated walls to maintain a controlled temperature environment. The insulation helps to prevent heat transfer, while the ventilation system ensures proper air circulation within the container.

Refrigerated containers require three-phase electrical power and can operate on either 440-volt power or 220-volt power with the use of a transformer. This electrical setup is essential for powering the cooling and ventilation systems of the container, ensuring the desired temperature range is maintained.

Types of Refrigerated Shipping Containers for Storage

There are several types of refrigerated shipping containers available, each designed to suit specific storage requirements. Let’s explore the different types:

Standard Refrigerator Container

The standard refrigerator container is the most common and cost-effective option for storing perishable goods. It is suitable for items that do not require specialized care or preservation, such as frozen foods. These containers provide a controlled temperature environment, ensuring the freshness and quality of the stored products.

Reefer Container

Reefer containers are versatile and can handle a wider range of temperature fluctuations compared to standard refrigerator containers. They are well-insulated and designed to maintain a constant temperature environment, making them suitable for storing perishable items that require precise temperature control. Reefer containers are ideal for storing food, pharmaceuticals, or any item that needs to be kept at a consistent temperature.

Temperature-Controlled Container

Temperature-controlled containers offer the most precise temperature control and protection from external factors such as moisture. These containers are perfect for storing items that require extreme temperatures or are sensitive to moisture damage, such as pharmaceuticals or electronic parts. They provide a controlled environment with minimal temperature fluctuations, ensuring the integrity of the stored items.

Sizes and Dimensions of Refrigerated Shipping Containers for Storage

Refrigerated shipping containers come in different sizes and dimensions to accommodate various storage needs. Here are the most common sizes:

20ft Refrigerated Shipping Containers

The exterior dimensions of a 20ft refrigerated shipping container are as follows:

  • Length: 20 ft.
  • Width: 8 ft.
  • Height: 8 ft.

These standard ISO-sized containers are widely accepted worldwide and provide ample space for storing perishable goods.

40ft Refrigerated Shipping Containers

A 40ft refrigerated shipping container is a large rectangular metal box with the following dimensions:

  • Length: 40 ft.
  • Width: 8 ft.

These containers offer a significant increase in storage capacity compared to the 20ft option, making them suitable for businesses with larger inventory requirements.

40ft HC Refrigerated Shipping Containers

A 40ft HC refrigerated shipping container is similar to the standard 40ft container but with increased height. Its dimensions are as follows:

  • Length: 40 ft.
  • Width: 8 ft.
  • Height: 9 ft 6 in.

The additional height allows for the storage of taller items and provides greater flexibility in organizing the container’s interior space.

Choosing the Right Refrigerated Container for Your Storage Needs

Choosing the right refrigerated container is crucial to ensure optimal storage conditions for your perishable goods. Consider the following factors when making your selection:

Size and Capacity

Evaluate the volume of goods you need to store and choose a container size that can accommodate your inventory. Consider the dimensions and weight restrictions of the container to ensure compatibility with your loading equipment.

Temperature Requirements

Determine the temperature range required for your stored items. Different containers have varying temperature capabilities, so select the one that can meet your specific needs. Consider whether you require precise temperature control or if fluctuations within a certain range are acceptable.

Electrical Setup

Ensure that your delivery site has the correct electrical setup to power the refrigerated container. Depending on the container’s power requirements, you may need three-phase electrical power, either at 440 volts or 220 volts with a transformer.

Insulation and Ventilation

Reefer containers come with R30 insulation as standard. Consider whether this level of insulation is suitable for your storage environment. Additionally, check the ventilation system to ensure proper air circulation within the container.

Once you have considered these factors, you can compare prices and specifications from various suppliers to find the best refrigerated container that meets your storage needs.

Maintaining a Refrigerated Shipping Container for Storage

To ensure the longevity and optimal performance of your refrigerated shipping container, proper maintenance is essential. Here are some maintenance tips:

Cleanliness and Dryness

Regularly clean the interior of the container to remove any dirt, debris, or spilled substances that may affect its performance. Keeping the container dry is equally crucial to prevent moisture buildup, which can lead to mold or damage to stored goods.

Insulation and Seals

Regularly inspect the insulation to ensure it is in good condition and not compromised. Check the seals on the container doors to prevent any air leaks that may affect the temperature control.

Electrical Setup

Ensure that the electrical setup is correct and functioning efficiently. Regularly check the electrical connections to ensure they are secure and free from any faults.

By following these maintenance practices, you can ensure that your refrigerated shipping container continues to provide optimal storage conditions for your perishable goods.

Troubleshooting Refrigerated Shipping Containers for Storage

Troubleshooting refrigerated shipping containers can help identify and resolve issues that may affect their performance. Here are some troubleshooting steps you can take:

Temperature and Humidity Levels

Check the temperature and humidity levels inside the container. If they are not within the normal range, it may indicate a problem with the unit itself, such as a malfunctioning cooling system. Additionally, ensure that the container doors are not being left open, as this can affect the internal temperature.

Ventilation System

Ensure that the ventilation system is working correctly and that no drafts are entering or exiting the container. Problems with the ventilation system can affect the temperature control and overall performance of the container.

Electrical Connections

Test the electrical connections between components inside the container to ensure they are secure. Loose or faulty connections can lead to issues such as inconsistent temperature control or system failures.

If troubleshooting steps do not resolve the issue, it may be necessary to consult a professional technician or the supplier from whom you purchased or rented the container. shipping container refrigeration unit

Buying or Renting Refrigerated Shipping Containers for Storage

Refrigerated shipping containers can be purchased or rented to meet your specific storage needs. If you require long-term storage solutions or frequent access to refrigerated storage, purchasing a container may be the most cost-effective option. However, if your storage needs are temporary or fluctuate over time, renting a refrigerated container provides a flexible solution without the commitment of ownership.

Aztec Container is a reputable supplier offering a wide range of refrigerated shipping containers for sale and rent. Whether you require a standard refrigerator container, a versatile reefer container, or a temperature-controlled container, they can help you find the right solution for your storage requirements.


Refrigerated shipping containers are an excellent storage solution for businesses in need of cold storage. Their ability to maintain a consistent temperature, ease of mobility, and suitability for various industries make them a practical choice. By understanding how refrigerated containers work, the different types available, their sizes and dimensions, and how to choose the right container for your storage needs, you can ensure the freshness and quality of your perishable goods. Proper maintenance and troubleshooting will help you maximize the performance of your refrigerated container, while options to buy or rent from reputable suppliers like Aztec Container provide flexibility for your specific storage requirements. Whether you need to store food, pharmaceuticals, or other perishable items, refrigerated shipping containers offer a reliable and efficient solution. Contact Aztec Container today to explore their inventory and services!