Tips On Avoiding Condensation Within A Shipping Container

Tips On Avoiding Condensation Within A Shipping Container

The shipping container became an integral part of international exporting and storing due to its ability to 

protect against the elements effectively. Nevertheless, they are not moisture-proof. What can you do to ensure you reduce the amount of condensation as much as possible? 

This comprehensive blog will describe the several different methods you can use to maximise the dryness of your 10 ft, 20 ft or 40 ft shipping containers. This article will also briefly detail the loss of integrity that can occur from moisture damage. Understanding how to eliminate condensation can increase the longevity of your shipping container and help reduce the damage inflicted on the contents within. 

What is Condensation?

Condensation is the process where liquid arises from water vapour in the air. Usually stemming from one of two ways, condensation happens worldwide and in different environments.

1. Air is cooled enough to the point the gas becomes a liquid and will accumulate on surfaces.

2. The air becomes so saturated with water vapour that it can no longer hold the water.

It may already be clear from the above how moisture can occur within a 20 ft shipping container. However, as these steel boxes are transported across the map and may remain on docks for extended periods – they can experience different temperatures. 

During the cooler months, ample moisture can arise within the shipping containers, impacting the structural integrity. Furthermore, there will also be concerns for the cargo within. If the contents are not secure from water, they too may be at risk of potential ruin. 

How Does Moisture Damage Shipping Containers? 

First and foremost, warm air contains more water than cooler air. Therefore, any shipping container originating from humid locations (particularly New Zealand) will be more susceptible to moisture damage when travelling to colder regions. Why exactly? 

When the condensation accumulates on the roof and interior walls, you increase the potential for staining, dampness, mould, mildew, warping, rust and oxidation. Warping and rust are likely the most harmful to your shipping container, affecting the protective ability. 

Damage to the interior walls, corners and doors may require replacements that will be costly to you or your company. Taking preventative measures will be your best chance to ensure longevity with your shipping container and long-term money-saving. 

How To Prevent Damage From Shipping Container Condensation? 

You can use multiple devices and tools to decrease the risk of moisture damage to your shipping container. Some of these methods include: 

  1. Dry Pole Desiccants  

Familiar with those small packs of silica gel within brand new shoes? Imagine a large pole version of those. The dry pole desiccant will essentially trap the moisture within the air and reduce the point at which dew or wetness will occur. 

They’re typically hung from the ceiling or attached to the wall. It’s ideal to have a few installed as you want to maximise the moisture potential. The dry pole desiccants are easy-to-use and absorb 200% of their weight in moisture. These leak-proof devices can decrease the moisture presence within your shipping container. 

  1. Dehumidifiers 

The dehumidifier is always an effective device for decreasing moisture within an environment. For example, turning on a dehumidifying device within your shipping container can significantly reduce the extent of water within. 

The only barrier with this method is that it does require an external power source. If your shipping container is situated at the docks or a port, it may be more challenging to use this method of drying. 

  1. Whirlybirds and Ventilation

It may surprise many, but the extent of moisture within a shipping container can be drastically reduced with ventilation. Increasing the amount of airflow within these enclosed environments will lead to a better transport of the water vapour within. Moisture results from the accumulation of this water vapour, however, ensuring it’s constantly leaving through gaps will decrease the chance of condensation. 

Whirlybirds are the “bulb” like metal devices that spin on the top of shipping containers. The physics behind this unique device is that wind blows the bulb around quickly, increasing the airflow rate within the shipping container. With air being able to transport out of the container passively, there will be decreased water vapour and thus reducing the chance for rust and oxidation. 


At ContainerCo, we have several 20 ft shipping containers for sale in NZ that can be delivered to your desired location. Depending on the purpose of the container, you can also hire for the short or long term. However, purchasing the container can offer a more permanent solution to your needs. We have 40 ft, 20 ft and 10 ft shipping containers for sale NZ-wide. 

We also undertake container modifications in NZ for site office creation, break rooms and bathrooms and various other portable buildings. Dangerous goods, refrigerated shipping containers, and accessible containers with a side door offering full side access. Open-top containers can also be purchased through ContainerCo. 

Our containers range from 10 ft, 20 ft and 40 ft containers for sale. We have containers for sale in Auckland, Tauranga, Christchurch, Wellington, Waikato and NZ-wide. Or try hiring containers in Hamilton, Tauranga, Wellington, Christchurch, Auckland, and NZ-wide. Buy containers that are entirely suited to your individual needs. 

Contact us on 0508 732 873 or request a free online quote today!

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