FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

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What's the Difference between CWO & WWT?

CWO means "cargo-worthy" or that a container has the structural integrity to be stacked 7-high on a cargo ship.  WWT means "wind and water tight" and is primarily used for storage.

Check out the video to learn more.

Can I pick a color?

The most common question we get is, “can I pick a color” and the answer is: sort of, sometimes.
Because we’re essentially getting the next container off the stack at the intermodal depot that meets the criteria you requested, we can’t select a color… however we can sometimes get a handful of colors (blue, yellow, red, green, maroon, etc.) if a certain shipping line has excess capacity in your market.

You can always have your container painted, and that usually takes a week or two and price varies by market (it’s also only seasonally available in some markets, and not available at all in others).


The one time we can guarantee a color is when you order a one-trip container new from the factory. We can then have the unit painted with your color request at the factory (delivery takes 90-120 days for custom color units).

Can I look at the shipping container before I buy it?

Because the containers are stacked at the intermodal depot, we cannot obtain photos or guarantee a specific unit. The depots are storing empty shipping containers for shipping lines and intermodal equipment providers. When we place an order for our customers, they just get the next container off the stack that meets their criteria.

We help our customers buy containers from the depot, the same way the big national storage container companies buy their boxes. When you buy through Railbox Consulting, you’re buying a shipping container at wholesale. We help you navigate the process of purchasing a used shipping container directly from the cargo pool.

Can I pick up the container myself?

If you have the proper equipment to safely transport a shipping container, our preferred option is for the customer to pick-up their own box.

After purchase, we will provide you with a release number and pick-up information. You can then go to the intermodal depot on the release and have the container loaded on your truck.

Please be aware you are required to comply with all DOT and OSHA rules while at the intermodal depot and Railbox Consulting cannot be liable for any issues during transport.

If you don’t have a truck capable of safely hauling a container, we can help you with delivery.

Is the transaction secure?

We take your online security seriously. All payment processing happens on secure third party sites like Paypal, Stripe, Bread, or Shopify's Payment Gateway (credit cards used in the Shopify portal are processed by Braintree and credit card payments for rentals are processed by Stripe). Railbox Consulting uses these third party sites because they are industry leaders in eCommerce transactions. Stripe is trusted by companies like Pinterest and lyft for processing online payments. Braintree is used by companies like Boxed, Uber and StubHub. We simply tell the payment gateway what you had in your cart and they manage your secure transaction.

Beyond the payment, our site is validated with the high level EV SSL. You'll notice in addition to the green "https" that your browser displays to show your connection is secure, you'll also see our company name next to the web address in a green box. We took the extra step to ensure your transaction was more secure.

Because all of our payment processing is managed by third parties, Railbox Consulting doesn't keep any information regarding your credit card or payment method. Not electronically, not on paper in a file somewhere either.

How much room is needed at delivery?

We need 40' of additional space for tilt-bed trucks, and 60' of extra space for roll-off trucks.
 

Plan on having at least 10' of width to fit the truck and 13'6" of clearance height (when the container is tipped off the back, plan on a peak height of around 16').

What’s the difference between your “wind and water tight” box and the one the big national company quoted me for $1,000 more?

Probably nothing. Maybe paint…

There are several large national companies selling used shipping containers. The keyword there is selling. Railbox Consulting doesn’t have sales reps on staff, nor do we have an executive management team requiring us to mark-up equipment 50% or more.

We run lean, and pass the savings to our customers. Railbox Consulting leverages our relationships with intermodal equipment providers and shipping lines to find the best used shipping container prices in each market, then we add a wholesale mark-up. That’s it.

What's the Difference Between CWO & WWT

Watch the Video on the FAQ page for more info.


Railbox Consulting uses the shipping container grades that are used by shipping lines. CWO means “cargo-worthy” and that a container can pass a CSC inspection to be stacked and transported on a cargo ship.
WWT means “wind/water tight” with working doors that seal. A CWO box is also “wind and water tight” but a WWT box can no longer be certified for shipment. WWT boxes are more likely to have cosmetic issues, and usually the reason a container can no longer pass a CSC inspection is that there are too many dents (or the dents are too large).
The main difference between a CWO and WWT box is that a CWO container can still be certified for shipment and a WWT box is likely to have more cosmetic issues than a CWO container.
“One trip” containers are “cargo-worthy” containers that were manufactured within the last 1-2 calendar years and generally have little to no cosmetic issues (maybe a few dings/dents and scraped paint from being stacked, but that’s it).

Do you offer financing?

Railbox Consulting has partnered with Bread to offer our customers the opportunity to finance their purchase. Learn more about how to pay over time using bread here.

What’s an “A Grade” container?

A lot of our competitors use grades like “A Grade, B Grade, etc.” but that’s a bit misleading, we think. If you call the big national rental companies and they tell you they can sell you an “A Grade” box that just means a container that is wind/water tight and may or may not have been painted since they bought it. A “B Grade” unit is going to be an older more beat up box.

If you hear “A Grade” you can safely translate it to WWT. Most of the retail companies only buy boxes after they are past their useful life as a shipping container… Railbox Consulting helps you source containers directly from the cargo pool. Usually the retail companies are trying to sell their “A Grade” boxes for almost as much as we can wholesale one-trip containers for. And Railbox Consulting’s WWT prices are usually among the lowest prices in the market (because they are based on currently market rates and lean wholesale margins).

I bought a one trip container and it has a strong paint smell… how do I make it go away?

One trip containers sometimes have a paint or chemical smell because they’ve had their doors closed for 99% of the time since being built.

If you buy a one trip container and it has a paint smell, we recommend leaving the doors open for a few days to let it air out. If you’re still having issues after that, give us a call… but letting the container air out usually does the trick.

Is there sales tax on the purchase of a shipping container?

That depends on where you take delivery.  Railbox Consulting primarily acts as a broker, helping customers buy shipping containers from intermodal depots. We only charge sales tax in states where we have an office. At this we only have offices in Arizona, Georgia, Minnesota, Montana, South Carolina, Texas & Utah. All deliveries within those states will be charged sales tax.

We do not charge sales tax in states where we don’t have a physical location. We also do not charge sales tax if the buyer is tax-exempt (form must be provided to Railbox Consulting prior to purchase, please contact us if you believe your purchase should be tax exempt).

We make every effort to comply with local and national tax laws, so this may change at some point.

What if when the container isn’t what I expected when it gets here?

The customer has the right to refuse delivery if for some reason the container does not meet the criteria requested at purchase.

Our goal is to give you a realistic idea of what you’re getting up front. Check out our sample photos and read about the process before purchasing a container for the first time.

If the container is rejected because the truck cannot safely drop the container exactly where you wanted it, the customer will be charged for trucking as well as a re-stock fee of 15% of the original purchase price.

Neither you nor Railbox Consulting wants the container to be rejected at delivery. Please make sure you check out the sample photos and have a full understanding of what you’re getting before you purchase for the first time.

If you’ve looked at everything on the site, and you’re still not sure, give us a call. We’re always happy to help.

How should I prepare the site for delivery?

The most important thing is to have enough room for the truck to drop the container. 20’ containers require 60’ of space (20’ for the box and 40’ for the truck), while 40’ containers require 100’ of space (40’ for the box and 60’ for the truck).

If a 20’ container is delivered on a semi (for instance if multiple 20’s are being delivered on the same truck) please account for the additional space.

If delivery is rejected due to the driver being unable to safely back into the location, the customer will be charged for trucking plus a re-stock fee of 15%, so please make sure you have adequate space at your location.

The location also needs to be level. You can either lay concrete or gravel, or you can place railroad ties or blocks capable of supporting the container. A good rule of thumb on railroad ties or blocks is to have on under each end and then additional blocks every 10’ or so (depending on your surface area).

A level surface is crucial to doors lining up, so blocks are a good idea to have in place. Railbox Consulting does not provide blocks, so please make sure you have your site ready at delivery.

What are the shipping container dimensions?

Not sure what the difference between a high cube and a standard container is? Check out this chart for interior and exterior dimensions as well as weights and capacity by size.

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Do you sell refrigerated or insulated units?

We can locate refrigerated/insulated units. Please be aware the process takes a little longer, and the cost is usually $3,000-$5,000 more than dry containers by market.

We’re not refrigerated container experts, but we can leverage our relationships with shipping lines to purchase those types of units if that’s what our customers need.

Do you sell 48’ or 53’ containers?

We can locate larger boxes than 40’s, but customers are responsible for their own trucking of larger units. Pricing for 48’ and 53’ boxes tend to be between 20%-50% more than one trip 40’ high cube containers (all 48’ and 53’ containers are high cubes).

What if I have a question that wasn’t answered in the FAQ?

Contact us if we weren't able to answer your question in the FAQ, we're always happy to help.