If you have little to no experience with shipping containers, then the options can get confusing unless you know what they all mean. At first glance it appears all shipping containers are basically the same, just different lengths, but that’s not actually the case.
For example there are:
- New & used containers
- Different grades of used containers
- Refrigerated or reefer shipping containers
- Side opening or top loading shipping containers
- Dangerous goods shipping containers
- And quite a few more options
In this post we’re going to briefly be looking at the “WWT” shipping container, which is expanded to “Wind & Watertight” shipping container.
What Is a WWT Shipping Container?
All brand new shipping containers should be wind and watertight. All door seals are new, and unless they’re a container especially designed with ventilation, they will be airtight.
When a shipping container is referred to as a WWT container, it’s referring to a used shipping container and not a new one. We assume new ones are watertight and windtight, but we don’t know whether that’s the case with a second hand shipping container.
I mentioned earlier that used containers come in different grades depending on their quality: A, B and C, with A being in the best condition. Now just because a container is WWT – wind and watertight – that doesn’t necessarily mean the rest of the shipping container is in great condition.
When sending cargo overseas inside a shipping container, yes, you want it to be wind and watertight, but you also want to know the rest of the container is solid enough to protect your cargo during its travels.
WWT simply means that if you were to step inside the container in sunlight and closed the doors, you would see no daylight seeping in anywhere, as there are no holes or cracks and the door seals are sealing completely.
A WWT container could be rather beaten up and rusty, and one important thing to keep in mind is this: Even if the container has been classified as WWT, if it’s extremely rusty, then it could only be a matter of time before a hole appears right through the steel in one of those rusty areas, leaving the container anything but wind and watertight.
To be certain of the quality of a WWT container, you really want to look at purchasing or hiring an A Grade used shipping container, or a B Grade container at worst. If the condition of the rest of the cargo container is as important as WWT, then you don’t want a container that has seriously seen better days.
If all you’ll be doing is storing some items at home or your place of business, the container isn’t going to be moved about, and your primary concern is whether it’s wind and watertight, then any container that’s classified as WWT will likely do the job.
It’s a different story if the shipping container is going to be transported or moved regularly. Then you want a higher quality WWT shipping container.