Delivery of a Basic Shipping Container

Thank you for choosing the Shipping Container Specialists for your shipping container needs! You may be asking yourself what is next or how you can prepare to have a quick and easy container delivery?

We have combined our knowledge to give you 6 Easy, Yet Essential Steps to prepare for the delivery of your shipping container!



It is a good idea to contact your local code enforcement office prior to delivery of your shipping container to see if you will need to obtain a permit. In many cases, a permit will not be required as it is considered a temporary structure. If you plan on making the shipping container a permanent structure on your property, a permit may be required. This is dependent on your property’s location, specifically if it is in a rural or urban area. However, codes vary from place to place, so be sure to check with your local government.



There are 3 things to consider when choosing your delivery site:

1. Accessibility

2. Delivery Site Surface

3. Elevation

First, make sure your delivery site is easily accessible for the delivery driver to drop the shipping container off. A good rule of thumb is the area should be twice the length of the shipping container in a straight line. Your delivery driver will be driving either a 1-ton pickup truck or semi-truck with a 40' tilt-bed trailer, meaning they will need at least 130’ of space to drop the container at the selected location. Even if you purchase a 20’ shipping container, it will still be delivered on a 40’ tilt-bed trailer.

XCaliber’s Drivers will not deliver to areas that do not have improved roads that allow the trucks to maintain good traction. Additionally, if your desired delivery location is located south of I-10 in west Texas, including Marfa, Terlingua, Fort Davis, Marathon, and Alpine, your Sales Rep will need to verify that delivery can be made to your location. This is also true for areas in west New Mexico and east Oklahoma.

Now you need to assess if your delivery site can support the weight of a shipping container. A 20' shipping container weighs around 5,000 lbs. empty and a 40' shipping container weighs around 9,000 lbs. empty. You will need a solid delivery site to support at least a 9,000 lb. shipping container in addition to a delivery truck and that the site can support the shipping container's weight after dropping. If your planned delivery site is on bare ground, it will need to be solid to support the weight. Other ideal delivery site surfaces include concrete or gravel pads. Additionally, the roads or land leading up to where you will place the container need to be solid so the trucks can maintain traction and leave the property rut free. Driving through loose sand or mud is not an option for our drivers.

Avoid placing your shipping container in low-lying areas without adequate drainage, so it doesn't sink into the ground. If the container begins to fall, this will jeopardize the container's structural integrity, causing the doors not to function correctly and causing the sides to bend and flex.



If the location you have chosen for your shipping container is already relatively level and firm, then this step should be straightforward. First, you will need to remove any low-hanging branches, trees, or anything in the way. If you are laying a foundation such as cement, gravel, or pavement, be sure the surface area is level. If you do not have access to pavement, cement, or gravel, you can also use wood blocks, railroad ties, or mobile home pads to support your storage container at the four corners.



Always make sure to clear anything that may be in the way of the driver delivering the shipping container. This means removing any overhanging materials, such as power lines and low-hanging tree limbs. The drivers need at least 10’ of width on each side of the container and 13’ of overhead clearance.  Also, consider any sharp turns that may be difficult for the driver to navigate. The driver will need at least 30’ of width to turn into any location and 10' to pull straight through. If there are obstacles that the driver needs to know of, do not hesitate to contact XCaliber’s Logistics team to ensure they can successfully deliver the shipping container.
Our Sales team will ask in advance if you would like the cargo doors of the shipping container facing the cab or facing the back of the trailer. This is important because it will determine the direction of the shipping container when it is unloaded.

Doors to Cab means the container will slide off the trailer with the cargo doors hitting the ground last, and the cargo doors will be facing the truck as it pulls away. Doors to Back means the cargo doors will hit the ground first and face away from the truck as it pulls away.



If the cargo doors are not level, they will be challenging to open. Our drivers will have wooden blocks they can place underneath each corner to help level the container. XCaliber’s drivers will ensure the cargo doors open and close before leaving.