Get Your Shipping Container Painted
Shipping containers will practically last forever if treated right because they’re made of a special steel, then primed and painted with special weather proofing paint. But there are still some scenarios where you might want to get your shipping container painted.
Why paint your container?
There are four different reasons you might paint a shipping container – protection, branding, decoration and blending in. All of which, except for decoration, can be completed at Gateway Containers. We offer a wide range of custom colours to suit your requirements.
Correct paint systems protect the integrity of the container from wear and tear over time. If you buy an old container near the end of its life you can refurbish it by de-rusting and re-painting it, as you would an old ute. Like the old ute it will carry on trucking for years to come.
Many companies like to advertise themselves while their goods are on the road. Branding is an important thing for most companies and with containers often doing thousands of kilometres a year on the road it’s a great way of creating brand awareness. Paint your container in your company colours to highlight your brand. Shipping Containers make a great canvas for sign writing.
The third reason is as a work of art. You might hire a famous graffiti artist to make a statement on a piece of architecture or even on a mobile pop-up shop.
4. Blending In
By painting your shipping container a certain colour, you can help it blend into its environment.
As mentioned the very steel that containers are built from is designed to be self-protecting. CorTen steel is a patented alloy that rusts in the first millimetre or so and the rust protects the metal beneath.
This means that, along with the protective paint in the factory, containers should survive all sorts of abuse from the weather at sea without needing a repaint.
Containers are usually put into service for around 10 years. When being moved between countries whose economies are broadly balanced, this can often be the case, with finance companies leasing them out for transport. This might be the case across the Tasman Sea routes for example.
Where there is an imbalance of trade – between China and Australia for example, containers end up stacked up and either sold for scrap or to companies like us, even after one or two runs across the ocean.
You can often pick up a high quality one-trip container quite cheaply that may not need painting, though for less money you could pick up one that has done a lot of miles and refurbish it by painting the container.
Paints for protection and branding
Traditionally, oil and solvent based paints have been used for shipping containers. Due to their toxic nature for both the environment and those applying it, this has largely stopped, though you can get polyurethane paints for heavy duty applications.
Solvent based paints have high levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that can be thousands of times more powerful than CO2 as a greenhouse gas. VOCs are very toxic to living things too – including the poor guys painting the shipping container!
Now, even in the factory, Direct To Metal (DTM) paints are used for protecting and branding shipping containers. Here at Gateway Container Sales we do too. You can see our pallet of colours here:
A new paint base has just started to be used, called alkyd enamel paint technology. This is as good as the old solvent based paints yet isn’t so toxic. Except for extremely heavy duty use, the alkyd enamel technology means that oil and solvent paints are now a thing of the past.
Acrylic for making a statement
Acrylic paints come in an almost limitless pallet of colours, but they’re not used for container branding or for protection. That’s because they degrade after a few years of exposure to the climate. You can put a layer of varnish over it but again that won’t take the bangs and scratches that containers receive when transported.
That said, there are thousands of artists beyond Banksy – and many ambitious local ones in nearly every town and city here in Australia – who you could help promote. Give them a few pots of acrylic paint and let them run riot!
Gateway Container Sales can paint your container
So there we have it – why you should paint or repaint your shipping container for a range of different reasons! Drop us a line today to discuss getting your own container painted.