What is an Easy Open Shipping Container Door?

Budget Shipping Containers are one of the few major shipping container retailers in the UK that provides customers with the most extensive range of shipping container options and modifications to such.

Easy open shipping containers have been in circulation for a few years, and in this post we highlight the differences between an easy open shipping container door, and a standard shipping container doors.

So first before we look at the easy open door, lets take a brief look at a standard shipping container door.

Standard Shipping Container Doors

Here are some pictures of a standard shipping container door:

On the standard shipping container doors you can see there are 4 vertical locking bars (2 on each door). The door all have a heavy duty rubber seal around the doors.

Each locking rod has one handle on it, and the heights of these handles can vary. Some are waist high, some will be towards the bottom of the shipping container (allowing someone standing on the ground to open it, whilst the container is sat on the back of a truck). The waist high locking handles are more common on one trip containers, the lower handles are standard on used shipping containers.

Easy Open Shipping Container Doors

Easy open shipping container doors are the same in terms of size, thickness of door and weight, but they come with a few features that make it easier to operate. These easy open doors are very popular with storage yards as well as for single retail sales where the customer wants a storage container. The main features of an easy open shipping container are:

Most of the example photos above have been repainted and the original markings on the container doors have been painted over.

  • Only 1 locking bar on the right hand side door (the right hand side door is always the first to open on a shipping container)
    • This locking bar is a lot thicker than standard to ensure there is a still a lot of strength in the door shutting and locking mechanism.
    • The single bar means its possible to open and close your container with only one hand (very handy if you are carrying something at the time!). Opening a standard shipping container door will always require 2 hands.
  • Extra Long Handle on the single locking bar. The longer handle means it takes much less effort to rotate the locking bar and unlock and open the right hand side door.
  • Rubber grip on the extra long handle, providing a safer and more comfortable grip when operating the doors.
  • Grease fittings on the hinges, providing a smoother door operation throughout the containers life.
  • Extra secure cam keeper at the bottom of the locking rod for additional security.
    • All shipping containers have a cam keeper at the bottom of every locking rod. These help hold the container doors shut. These extra secure cam keepers are thicker, and have a hole in them allowing for a customs seal to be fitted here. This is very popular in the freight industry as it allows someone to fit / check or remove a seal on the container, whilst its on the back of a truck. It saves the user needing to get 10-12ft into the air / work at heights to access the seal which would otherwise be fitted to the locking handle.

These easy open containers have a design patent: Patent Number ZL 2014203303622, owned by Flex Box Hong Kong.

Advantages of an Easy Open Shipping Container Door

  • You can open the right hand door on an easy open shipping container with one hand
  • The longer locking handles means it takes less force to unlock the locking rod and open the door.
  • The grip makes for easier use, especially in cold and damp conditions
  • The extra secure bottom cam keeper make using a customers seal much easier.
  • The grease help ensure a smooth door operation for longer.

How hard is it to open a shipping container door? Do container doors get stiff?

This is a very common questions, but not at all easy to answer.

A standard, used shipping container door might be fine for a strong person. However, the same door may not be manageable or might be difficult to operate for someone less strong and less used to operating heavy shipping container doors.

If you are looking to buy your own shipping container and you want to make sure of this, here are some sure fire tips to help you make sure what you get is suitable for you.

General points to consider about easy opening container doors. 

  • The doors on one trip (new) shipping containers are pretty much always easier to use than the door on used shipping containers.
  • Ensuring your container is sited well at the point of delivery can make a big difference to how easy the doors are to operate.
  • All the containers we sell are checked and repaired by industry professionals. If you are buying privately (via eBay or similar) we strongly recommend you check any containers in advance of buying. Door gaskets, and occasionally, hinges do wear, can be damaged and wear/break over time, a broken door gasket or hinge can make a container door near impossible to close.
  • For used and refurbished quality shipping containers, we do also offer our fabricated flat panel door option. This is a very different build to the doors described in the article, but this can offer a different easy to use option if you are worried about stiff doors on used shipping containers.

Before Purchasing / choosing the right type of container door for your needs. 

  • Obviously the first person to help you will be your sales contact – the person helping you to select the right shipping container for your needs. Ask them questions, let them know your situation (how you intend to use the shipping container, who will be using it) and ask for their opinion. Yes plenty of salespeople want a sale, but the vast majority of reputable traders will try to be fair to you. If you aren’t happy with the product it will only reflect badly on them. This is great for any aspect of the shipping container you may have questions on, not just the doors.
  • Request a viewing. Sometimes this can be very hard or impossible, if for example the containers are stored in a yard that won’t allow the general public in. However most traders will try to help where they can. If we aren’t able to offer a viewing on your exact container, we will try to make available one of the same grade or specification for you to see.

After Purchasing your shipping container 

  • Always ensure you have read any guidance sent through from your supplier well in advance of delivery.
  • Your shipping container should be level and supported on its 4 base corners. A common issue is ‘racking’. When a container ‘racks’, it twists a little, the door frame shifts slightly and is no longer square. You are now trying to close square doors into an off square door frame and the doors will be extremely stiff, or they will jam open or closed. This is the most common issue we see from deliveries so we cannot understate the importance of this.
  • Grease or oil your hinges every 1-2 years for best results.

Where can I buy a used shipping container with easy open doors?

If you’re based in the UK, then we can help you!

Budgetshippingcontainers.co.uk offer the UK’s largest online range of shipping containers for sale with a nationwide network of storage and conversion yards and crane equipped delivery vehicles.

If you need a shipping container feel free to browse our online range of shipping containers for sale, which also includes our ranges of flat pack sheds, container canopies and more. You can also call us on freephone 0808 1234 215 any time 9am – 5pm weekdays and our team will be happy to discuss your requirements. Alternatively, you can use our online shipping container quote form or request a telephone callback. In both cases we aim to get back to you within 1-2 working hours (may take longer for more detailed quotes).

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