New call-to-action

4 Tips to Maintaining Your Shipping Container Roof

2 min read
Oct 16, 2019
Marissa Morin

It’s true that shipping containers often live long and helpful lives – many repurposed containers last over 25 years! But to ensure this longevity, it’s important to maintain a shipping container by paying special attention to the container roof, as well as shipping container drainage overall.

Shipping Container Drainage

Traditional buildings have sloping roofs to allow for drainage from rain and snowfall. The slope is created to help prevent standing water from pooling and warping the structure underneath. Shipping container rooftops, on the other hand, are flat. Do flat roofs make shipping containers inadequate as modified structures? Not at all. Container roofs are flat to maintain their structural integrity; to change the slope of a container roof would alter the safety of the structure. Comparatively, the container roof and side walls are made from corten steel which doesn’t warp under standing water like traditional roofs.  However, over long periods of time, standing water can still take its toll on a container. Therefore, we recommend you maintain your container – and its roof – to ensure it will last for many years to come.

Follow these 4 tips to make sure you get the most out of your shipping container.

Shipping Container Roof-1

Shipping Container Rooftop Tips

Tip 1: Purchase your container from a reputable source.

Today, thousands of shipping containers are available for purchase in the market so it’s important to investigate the quality of the container and the capabilities of the modification manufacturers before committing. This means that an interested customer should make sure the container is in good condition, by checking the age of the container or if it has significant damage, and that it can be modified according to their needs. Here at Falcon, we carefully select what containers we use, most often opting for one-trip containers at varying sizes while providing a 1-year warranty on parts and workmanship.

Tip 2: Avoid putting too much weight on the roof.

It’s the corner castings – the reinforced corners of the container – and not the roof, that are responsible for the structural integrity of a shipping container. So, if you walk across the roof or store heavy items on top of your container it will flex.

If rooftop access or storage is needed, a supplier or manufacturer should reinforce the roof, which will allow the roof to be utilized as desired.

Tip 3: Remove debris, standing water, ice, and snow from the roof.

Although shipping container roofs are resilient, the best practice is to remove standing water, ice, and snow that can accumulate on the roof for extended periods of time. If standing water is ignored for too long it may lead to rust, thinning metal, or moisture intrusion. After weather events, be sure to clean off the roof as soon as possible.

Tip 4: Remove visible dirt and surface rust.

Use a commercial wetting agent, mild bleach, or anti-mildew solution along with a water hose and broom to release rust and dirt. Call a professional to repair larger dents, scratches, rust spots, and holes and to repaint the container as needed.

Interested in the complete 10-Step Maintenance Guide to help you maintain your shipping container? Download the guide now. 

10 Step Shipping Container Maintenance Guide

If you have questions about shipping container maintenance or if you would like to discuss a new application, contact us at 877-704-0177 or email us at Sales@FalconStructures.com. One of our Falcon sales representatives will be happy to help.

Think Inside The Box®

WITH OUR BLOG

Get everything from shipping container basics, to detailed how-tos and industry news in our weekly blog. Stay inspired and subscribe!