How to Choose the Best Lock for a Shipping Container
Made of heavy-duty thick steel, a shipping container looks solid and secure as it is. It will protect your cargo from any possible damage and negative environmental impact during transportation. And an appropriate lock will ensure container security against theft, burglary, and any other type of unauthorized access.
The question is how to choose a lock for a shipping container. Which is the best shipping container lock type and system? How to make sure it delivers a high enough security level? Keep on reading to find out.
5 Types of Shipping Container Lock Systems
Whatever you are shipping, you want to rest assured that your cargo will be delivered intact and in full. Obviously enough, a shipping or storage container lock is meant to keep the unit doors securely latched, which is important not only for safety and protection but also for insurance purposes since a good sturdy lock can help you get better insurance coverage.
Before we dig into the principles of selecting the locks for shipping containers, let’s first review the 5 most common and popular types of container locking systems available.
Heavy-duty padlocks are a vivid example of tried and tested traditional shipping container door locks. A U-shaped steel piece fits into the loopholes on the container doors, with a shackle keeping the doors shut and secured.
Simple and dependable, padlocks are great for containers used both for transportation and storage purposes. They come in various sizes and designs to match any container type and size accordingly. This is the best lock for shipping containers with latch boxes by far. The box will hide the shackle, making it difficult to break and protected from any other external damage.
Completely different from padlocks, crossbar locks are no less popular. They are widely used as locks for storage containers thanks to their extremely high-security features.
Crossbar locks, fitted with extendable clamps, can be attached to the door rods or handles. Usually made of high-class heavy-duty steel, crossbar locks are resistant to picklocks and can withstand cutter attacks. It’s a reliable option for enhanced security.
Those who seek a budget-friendly lock for a storage container or a cargo unit that would keep the doors shut rather than prevent breaks can’t go wrong with truck seals. Reminding plastic zips, truck seals will come in handy when securing shipping and storage environments. Also, there are available reinforced models made of steel that offer improved security as well.
If you like the simplicity and security of a classic padlock, you’ll appreciate it even more in a hidden-shackle version. It still offers a no-frills performance of an ordinary padlock, but features leveled-up tampering protection similar to that of a single-latch lock. Ensuring stellar security, this lock for a shipping container is a prime choice for transporting valuable cargo when you need to be 100% sure your shipment is theft-proof.
Lock Boxes for Roll Container Doors
It’s a specific lock type for a specific container door type. Some units have roll-up doors that are convenient and easy to open or close. While some lock boxes can host common padlocks and allow using them for this door type accordingly, a dedicated lock designed for a roll-up door will ensure higher security. Some models can even latch automatically when the door closes.
Tips on How to Choose the Best Lock for a Shipping Container
Different types of container lock systems in certain situations work better than others. Yet, to pick the lock that will fit you to a tee and deliver the protection level that brings complete peace of mind might be easier said than done. To facilitate this task for you, we’ve made a list of features to consider when looking for the best lock for a shipping container.
Currently, most container lock producers use solid, high-quality steel or combination materials to ensure the lock’s durability and maximize its service life. When looking into the type of material, keep in mind the weather resistance, which matters a lot if your container will be exposed to the elements.
Modern locks come in a variety of styles and shapes. The overall design also impacts the lock’s security features to a great extent. Thus, a hidden shackle and a latch box will bring an additional security layer. And a combination lock further reduces the risk of being opened with a picklock.
Check for some type of protective features that make a lock resistant to breaks. Many models, especially those of a heavy-duty range, come with anti-drill plates, while others feature hidden shackles or thicker bolts that are nearly impossible to picklock or cut through.
A good container lock will keep your cargo safe and protected both from damage and unauthorized access during transportation. So, take your time to choose a reliable locking system for your container shipments.
And if you also search for a perfect container for your items, feel free to contact Pelican Containers. Operating and delivering across the US, we have a wide range of new and used units in all sizes to match any budget and needs. Whether you are going to use shipping containers for a retail business or use them for storage, we have the right unit for you.
What type of container lock system is the best?
With many options on the market, there is no single correct answer to this question. Which lock best works for you will largely depend on your individual needs and shipping conditions. Thus, you can use a padlock for shipping containers in most situations or pick a heavy-duty lock model when the ultimate security is required.
What kind of lock is the best for a storage container?
When it comes to a cargo unit you use for storage, you want to be sure your belongings are not at risk of burglary or theft. A heavy-duty lock or one with enhanced drilling, picklock, and cutter protection is the best choice for a storage container lock.
How do I improve a shipping container's security features?
A steel shipping, properly locked container is a secure place to transport and store your goods. Shipping container door locks can be further enhanced with a code-protected entry function, latch bars, or lock boxes.