Portable storage containers have found many uses in recent years. In addition to shipping goods, these containers have been used to construct homes and hotels, build offices, create emergency shelters, and generate grow areas for specialty plants and foods.  

Portable storage containers have become workshops and garages, on-site offices, and even training facilities for fire and rescue workers. It is truly amazing what can be done with a shipping container. 

However, when you get back to basics, these shipping containers are made for just that – shipping goods. Many people have found that a portable container makes the perfect space for shipping their personal or business belongings over long distances.  

Portable containers are weatherproof, solidly built, and some even have refrigeration if you need to keep your goods at a certain temperature during transport. Knowing how to pack a storage container is important. Regardless of how sturdy these containers are, for the best protection of your items, you should: 

Pack the Heaviest Items in the Middle 

To keep your container balanced while it is being picked up and set down, it is always better to pack your heaviest items in the middle of the container. Make sure that you secure them to the container so that they do not shift when the container is being moved.  

Pack all of your other belongings around the heavy items until the container is full. Make sure that you have space to open and close the door. You should always secure boxes and other items with bungee cords or stops, even if they are lightweight.  Adjustable straps are excellent for keeping items from shifting during travel. 

If you are packing a refrigerated container, you will want to make sure that the airflow is not interrupted in the container. The air conditioning works by circulating the cold air throughout the trailer.  Usually this is accomplished through vents in the flooring. Make sure that all of your vents are open and that nothing is blocking the hoses running the system. This will help protect your items from temperature damage. 

If you are traveling over long distances, or through areas where there will be weather changes from your current temperatures, make sure that your items are protected from the weather change. Unless you have already insulated the shipping container, there is a risk that the container could become very hot or very cold when you are moving to a different climate. Items like electronics, vinyl records, DVDs or CDs can all be negatively impacted by temperature changes. If the items you have packed in the container will be harmed by severe temperature changes, you need to take precautions. 

The final thing to remember when you pack a storage container is to put all the light or breakable items at the top of boxes or bins. Moving can be difficult for delicate items.  Take your time and ensure you have protected and secured everything as well as possible.