With all this in mind, it’s very important to remember that the cargo container does spend most of it’s shipping life stacked on a ship, in a depot, or sitting on a chassis or flatbed truck; in all of these places it’s under the eye of a shipping line employee, truck driver, or security guard.
The Weakest Part of a Storage Container – Easily CorrectedThe weakest point on a used shipping container isn't even really part of the container itself, it's the lock. Container locks are purchased by the end user and can have any level of strength. Cheaper pad locks tend to be weak, while expensive locks can be more secure, but also much more expensive. No matter the type of lock, on most used shipping containers it’s exposed, as is the one in this picture.
There are several ways to protect your lock, and thus protect everything that’s inside of your shipping/storage container. However the two most recommended involved a lock box, either welded on or bolted onto the container.
- Weld on lock box – a weld on lock box provides a “house” for your lock to live in. This means that anyone trying to break into the unit and would normally just cut the lock shank, now has to try and get access to the lock shank, which isn’t easy when it’s in a small enclosed area. The downside of weld on lock box is that you’ll need welding equipment.
- Bolt on container lock box – a bolt on lock box provides all of the benefits of a weld on lock box, but instead of welding it into place you only need to bolt it to your container. Once bolted on, it behaves the same as a welded on unit and your lock is nearly impossibly to cut (don’t lose the key!).
A weld on lock box costs around $100 installed, and a bolt on lock box starts at around $50, without installation. Weld on units are available at your local depot or container reseller, and bolt on lock boxes can be purchased on ContainerLockBox.com.
Installing a bolt on lock box can be done in around 15 minutes if you’ve got the tools and have an idea of how to use a drill and wrench or socket set. If your lock box isn't painted, you may also want to have a rattle can of paint to finish off the color. ContainerLockBox.com has posted several videos on how to install a lock box, and you can download instructional material that you can print and take with you while you work.
If you have any questions about how to install a lock box on a shipping container please contact the folks at ContainerLockBox.com, or ContainerAuction.com. They’ve been helping to secure used shipping containers for years and will gladly provide you with the assistance that you need to make sure your possessions are safe and secure.