How Much Does A Shipping Container Weigh

A Shipping container is a large, water-resistant steel container used in various industries to store multiple products and goods and for shipping purposes.

Depending on the type of container, Generally, an empty 20ft shipping container’s weight ranges in between 1.8-2.2 metric tonnes (about 3,970 – 4,850 lb). An empty 40ft shipping container weight ranges in between 3.8-4.2 metric tonnes ( 8,340 – 9,260 lb). The containers with greater height tend to be heavier. 

So, by going through the whole article “How Much Does A Shipping Container Weigh,” you can have a vast idea about different factors in which container’s weight depends and the weight of different types of containers.

Is Weighing a Shipping Container really Important?

In many countries, there are specific guidelines about the weight of shipping containers, and sometimes it is required to provide official weight before shipping. If your container is overloaded, it may give rise to a high risk for shippers and container ships. It may create an unbalanced situation. So, weighing a container is important because an overloaded container is dangerous, and an accident can occur suddenly.

In 2016, the International Maritime Organization declared a rule that all shippers must provide Verified Gross Mass (VGM) of the shipping containers before export. For overseas shipping, the shipper must provide a Verified Gross Mass (VGM) of the container to the IMO (International Maritime Organization). This is done to minimize the accidents that occur due to overloaded containers. The shipping organization also must weigh the containers correctly to avoid fines and penalties.

A shipping container generally weighs depending upon the size of the container. The shipping container size is the most important thing to consider when selecting a shipping container to buy for yourself. The shipping containers are of many sizes. The most common shipping containers have a dimension being 40ft, 20ft, and 10ft in length. The bigger the container is, the more weight it will have!

What does Tare Weight Mean?:

A Shipping container has its own weight without any storage or cargo in it. This weight is called Tare weight. Tare weight is also called Unladen weight. We determine the weight of goods by subtracting the tare weight from the Gross weight. However, this method can be inaccurate during calculation as other variables, such as fuel, also get involved. In some containers, the exact tare weight is written on their doors.

Weight & Dimension of Different sized Shipping Containers:

The weight of a shipping container is really important to know. It is not only essential at the time of buying but also important when you are loading it. It is always necessary to know the tare weight of a container. A shipping container’s weight depends mainly on the size of the container and dimensions. It can also depend on the manufacturing technique.

  • Weight and dimension of a 10ft shipping container:

For a 10ft sized shipping container, the tare weight is about 2645lbs, and payload weight is about 19,753lbs. So, that makes the gross weight 22,398 lbs.

Dimensions:

  • External Length: 10ft
  • External width: 8ft
  • External Height: 8.5ft
  • Internal Length: 9ft 2inch
  • Internal width: 7ft 8.5inch
  • Internal height: 7ft 10inch
  • Capacity: 4,197 gallons
  • Weight and dimension of a 20ft shipping container: 

For a 20ft sized shipping container, the tare weight is about 4,914lbs, and payload weight is about 47,900lbs. So, that makes the gross weight 52,813 lbs.

Dimensions:

  • External Length: 19ft 10.5inch
  • External width: 8ft
  • External Height: 8.5ft
  • Internal Length: 7ft 8inch
  • Internal width: 7.5ft
  • Internal height: 19ft 4inch
  • Capacity: 32,200 gallons
  • Weight and dimension of a 40ft Standard Shipping Container:

For a 40ft standard shipping container, the tare weight is about 8,159lbs, and payload weight is about 59,039 lbs. So, that makes the gross weight 67,199 lbs.

Dimensions:

  • External Length: 40ft
  • External width: 8ft
  • External Height: 8.5ft
  • Internal Length: 39ft 5inch
  • Internal width: 7ft 8inch
  • Internal height: 7ft 10inch
  • Capacity: 67,670 gallons
  • Weight and Dimensions of a 40ft High Cube Shipping Container:

For a 40ft high cube shipping container, the tare weight is about 8,747lbs,  and payload weight is 58,448lbs. So, that makes the gross weight 67,196lbs.

Dimensions:

  • External Length: 40ft
  • External width: 8ft
  • External Height: 9.5ft
  • Internal Length: 39ft 5inch
  • Internal width: 7ft 8inch
  • Internal height: 8ft 10inch
  • Capacity: 76,300 gallons

The only difference in the dimension of a 40ft standard container and high cube container is noticed on their internal and external height, and the difference is exactly 1ft. 

The shipping containers that are old might not weigh and dimension the same as mentioned above as they weigh heavier due to their manufacturing technique.  The modern manufacturing technique has guided the manufacturer to build the same quality and more lightweight containers.

The shipping containers were created to have a solution to various problems like- transporting goods from one state to another state. The shipping containers are perfect in size to transport multiple products easily. The dimension and weight of these containers have made it really easy to select and buy the container you are looking for.

Methods of Weighing Shipping Containers:

The weighing of a fully-loaded shipping container is very challenging. The Three methods of weighing shipping containers are mentioned below:

  1. Trailer Suspension Weighing System: In this method of weighing, to know how much load is there on the truck, a weighing system is fitted on the truck’s suspension system and set to give an indication. This is not a highly efficient method because it provides an accuracy of around 3% to 5%.
  2. Weighbridge: A weighbridge is a large platform scale that is used to weigh large vehicles and their payload. The vehicle’s weight is displayed on the digital meter. It provides an accuracy of about 0.2% to 0.5%. This method can be a bit expensive.
  3. Axle Weigh pads: The axle weighs pads can measure the weight of both vehicles in rest as well as in motion. The data which is found is transmitted to a central indicator. This device is portable, lightweight, and economical.

Conclusion:

The weight of shipping containers depends on their size and dimensions. Each shipping container has its own size and dimension. The shippers use them for cargo shipping and storage according to their needs.  It is essential to measure the weight of the containers after loading and before shipment to avoid accidents and to ensure maximum safety.Shipping containers have turned into a trend in today’s world. Shipping containers are a very affordable and easy way to store items and goods and transport them from one place to another. So, if you have gone through the article “How Much Does A Shipping Container Weigh,” I hope you are not anymore confused about what type of shipping container you should buy for your desired place.