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11 FAQs About Electricity & Modified Shipping Containers

electricity shipping container modified

Starting a modified shipping container project can feel daunting, especially if you’re unfamiliar with Falcon’s process and capabilities. Some of the most common questions we receive during that first phone conversation center around electricity. Our rockstar Customer Success Manager fields these questions and helps our customers get a clearer understanding of electrical requirements of their shipping container project. We sat down with our Customer Success Manager to put together the most common questions about electricity and modified shipping containers, along with her expert answers.

 1. Can I connect power to a modified container myself?

We only recommend a licensed electrician connect a modified shipping container to power. It’s important the container is properly grounded by a professional to avoid the risk of stray voltage.

2. Does a container structure plug into power like an RV?

No, our containers don’t plug into power like a recreational vehicle. Falcon’s containers are meant for semi-permanent to permanent use and typically require more power than an RV cord can provide. 

3. Can a generator power a container structure?

Yes, a generator can power one of Falcon’s modified shipping containers. However, it depends on the container design and the generator that will be used. If your container needs to be powered via generator, let us know early in the process so we can design accordingly. We’ll need to know what kind of generator you’ll use, as that will inform the electrical design. 

electrical shipping container

4. Does Falcon sell generators?

No, we don’t sell generators with our containers. 

5. How can I power my container if I plan to relocate it often?

Our containers are designed to be mobile and relocatable. Customers who move their containers often simply reconnect them to a power source at their new site or use a generator. 

6. Do I need special permits to power my container?

You'll likely need some sort of permit or inspection to connect your container to power. This is dependent on the power provider and local authority having jurisdiction. This is another reason we strongly recommend bringing in a licensed electrician to connect your container to power. They’ll know the requirements in your area. 

7. Should I be concerned about running electricity to an all-metal building?

No, Falcon’s containers are modified with modern wiring that is safely insulated and properly installed. With a properly grounded container, any shorts would quickly trip a breaker. 

8. How much power do I need to draw to the container?

This depends on the scope of your container project. Once your container is in the design stage, we’ll provide an electrical design to give you a realistic idea of what the power draw will be. For reference, our standard 20-foot climate-controlled storage container needs less than four kilowatts, as does our standard 20-foot office. If you add modifications like water heaters or an HVAC system, the power requirements increase. 

electrical wiring modified shipping container

9. What kind of site prep do I need to do before connecting my container to power?

We recommend consulting with a licensed electrician to see if your site has unique challenges before connecting to power. For example, if you’ll be placing your container on very rocky soil, you’ll need expert guidance to properly ground it. 

10. Can a modified container work with a non-domestic power source?

No, all of Falcon’s container structures are designed for American domestic power, like line power from a power company.

11. What kind of power-using modifications can I add to my container?

The electric-using modifications we offer are similar to those you’d find with stick-built construction. We can add PTAC or HVAC units, extra outlets, indoor and outdoor lighting, ventilation fans, kitchenette ovens and microwaves, and more. Get an idea of the modification options available on our website, and speak with a member of our team for specific solutions. 

Do you have more questions about powering a modified shipping container? We’re happy to answer them! Contact us to chat with our Customer Success Manager or one of our industry-leading salespeople, and we’ll help you get the information you need. Reach out to our team at 512-131-1010 or

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