Shipping Containers and How to Insulate Them

I have always liked shipping containers for storage and other uses. My family has several and I have had one in my yard for many years. They are inexpensive to purchase, require little maintenance, and hold up well to the weather. In all the years I have had mine I have never had any problems with leaks or rodents.

My shipping container is currently stored under a carport to protect it from the sun. This helps to keep it much cooler. Recently I have decided to reorganize some of my storage and want to store some items in the container that are more heat sensitive. Just by painting it a light color and putting in under the carport has lowered the temperature significantly, but not as much as I would like.

shipping containers and how to insulate them
Here you can see the container under the carport.

shipping containers and how to insulate themSo after looking at what one of my friends has done, I am insulating my shipping container. It turned out that the hardest part was emptying it. I lined it with two-inch foam insulation board. The board with the aluminum foil on one side. The foil is important and should go on the side facing out. I used liquid nail to glue the board to the sides and top of the container.  Only use the Liquid Nails or other glue on the aluminum foil side. Some of the glue will melt or damage the foam insulation.

The insulation is easy to work with; all it takes is a good pocketknife to cut it up. To line an 8×20′ container took 19 sheets. After I got the insulation up, I filled up all the joins with expanding spray foam insulation. This comes in aerosol cans and can be purchased in any hardware store. After this project, I will now install a small wall air conditioner. Based on my friends experience, it should stay about 65 degrees on the hottest days.

Because of the insulation and the fact that the shipping container is shaded, it should not cost more than $20 a month to run in the middle of summer. I may even go so far as to run the air conditioner off solar panels  in the future.

Here is the link to a previous post I wrote on shipping containers and what to look for when you purchase them, Inexpensive Storage Space.

If you need extra storage space, and what prepper doesn’t, these are an inexpensive way to go. You can purchase a eight by twenty container for between $1000 to $2000.

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