What you should know before renting our container

ordering a storage container

There are a few things you should take into consideration before ordering a storage container: it usually takes a little more than just picking up the phone. At Porta-Stor, we want to make sure that you are prepared. Here are a few of the most common things to look for to make the process of ordering a storage container as smooth as possible.

What size do I need?

First things first, what size storage container you need depends on a lot of factors. If you are going to be remodeling a portion of your home or cleaning out your garage, you might only need a 12 foot container. If you are moving and need to store all of your household items, you might need a 26 foot container. Our 12ft container fits the equivalent of a studio apartment, whereas our 26 foot container can hold an average 3 bedroom home. Our 20-22 foot containers hold an average 2 bedroom home. However, this can vary from person to person depending how much furniture they have, so we can’t guarantee that these averages are 100% accurate.

Do I need racks?

A lot of people ask us about the purpose of racks. Basically they’re a shelving system. The racks are easily installed on the sides of the container, then you provide your own plywood to place on them, crating a shelving system. They are great if you have smaller items that need to be off the ground. These are popular for both office use and long term storage. We offer pipe racks on our 12, 22, and 26 foot containers free of charge in either half set or full set.

 
Porta-Stor racking system.
Porta-Stor racking system.

Be sure to measure five extra feet.

Once you figure out what size you need and whether or not you need those racks, it’s time to figure out if you can fit the container on your property. The container will need to stay on your property and cannot be placed on the street unless you receive a permit from your city. Most people have their container placed on their driveway. When measuring the length of your driveway to see which container might fit, you’ll want to measure for an extra five feet than the actual container size. This is because most people want the doors facing the garage, and the doors swing out four and a half feet. Having them open fully is important when packing or unpacking your container. However, you can always have the doors face the street if you don’t quite have enough space. For example, if you need a 20 foot container but your driveway is 23 feet long, you can still fit the container if the doors face the street. Also remove an extra foot or two of space when measuring if your garage door is the type that swings up when opened. You don’t want to get the container situated and then find out that even though you can open those doors all the way, your garage door won’t budge!

This 12ft container fits in this driveway with a little room to spare.
This 12ft container fits in this driveway with a little room to spare.

Which way should the container face?

Which way do you want the container doors to face? We ask this because our 12 & 20 foot containers have doors on one end. You won’t need to worry which way the doors face if you order our 22 or 26 foot containers, because they have them on both ends. Just like we mentioned above, you will want to measure first and allow about 5 extra feet to make sure the container will fit and open properly.

12ft container with doors on one side.
12ft container with doors on one side.
22ft container with doors on both sides.
22ft container with doors on both sides.

Do you have any gates or overhangs?

Some people have gates or fences at the end of their driveway or in another area where they might want to place the container. You will want to make sure your gate measures at least 12 feet wide, otherwise we cannot fit our truck without knocking it down. We won’t deliver a container if the gate is less than 12 feet wide unless you can remove it, which is usually not easy. If your gate has an overhang, it needs to be at least 14 feet high. Some properties have trees with large branches over driveways or low power lines. You will need to make sure that they are at the 14 foot clearance or more, otherwise we won’t be able to deliver. Be sure to check if any of these apply to make the ordering process go smoother. You can take a look at our truck measurements page to see all of the lengths and heights of our trucks with and without the containers.

One of our shipping container trucks.
One of our shipping container trucks.

Is the area clear?

Making sure the area is clear of any obstructions makes it easier for both of us. If your driveway is smaller in width, you will want to make sure you park your car(s) on the street until we finish delivering the container. Other obstructions that could be in our way would include trash bins/containers, plants in pots, and statues. The most common is cars, so be sure you move them before we deliver.

Does the driveway need to be protected?

Does the driveway need to be protected? This question comes up quite often. We have very careful drivers that take great care when unloading the containers, but our containers are heavy and metal, so there is a possibility of them slightly scraping the driveway. If this is a concern, then you might want to provide plywood to be placed where the container is going to sit. This will protect the driveway from any small scrapes. If you are placing your container on dirt, there is a slight possibility that over time the container can sink, especially after a rain. Plywood placed on the dirt can help prevent this. The sinking could also cause the doors to hit the dirt and not open all the way. If your container is on dirt and does sink, we will come out and fix it free of charge.

26ft container on wood to protect the driveway.
26ft container on wood to protect the driveway.

Know where your sprinklers and gas meters are.

When we deliver containers, sometimes we need to drive our truck over the sidewalk or onto the grass to position the container correctly. You’ll want to be sure and take note if there are any sprinklers, gas/electric meters or small decorative gates/items that could potentially get run over or hit. Our drivers are very careful and would never hit any meters or anything else they can see visibly. Sprinklers tend to be very small and unnoticeable, and so there’s a greater chance that they get run over and break. Be sure to check the surrounding area and note if anything could get run over. If it can’t be moved, let us know it’s there when ordering.

Is the area wide enough for our truck?

Sometimes the areas we deliver to are in a tight spot and our trucks can’t always back up into the driveway if there are obstructions in the way. The most common obstacles are cars. If delivering to a tight street or alleyway, there needs to be enough clearance to allow the truck to back the container into its location. If you’re unsure if there’s enough space because of a wall, fence, car, or other obstructions, call our office. We can take a look at your property and have our expert drivers determent whether or not they can maneuver the area. Most of the time it’s not a problem, but most problems can usually be fixed by moving cars or items out of the way on the day of delivery.

Well that’s it! These are the most important things to look for before having a container delivered do your property. We are always happy  to help here at Porta-Stor, and our knowledgeable office-staff can help you with any additional questions you might have, so call us today to order your storage container!