No, not necessarily. However, the longer a container has been in use, the more likely it is to have a dent or two. However, this does not affect the contents of the container.
A shipping container can last about 20 years in international freight transport, depending on the damages it incurs. After that, it can still serve for approximately 10 more years as storage, but eventually, rusting will become a significant issue. In that case, the container needs to be recycled.
Most containers have plywood (a type of wood composite) floors. In the past, containers were made with plank floors. Reefer containers (refrigerated variants) have an aluminum floor.
Like the sizes of shipping containers, the weights of containers also vary. The length, height, and applications determine the weight of the container. A 20ft container weighs from 2,100kg. Learn more about container sizes and their corresponding weights on the respective container pages.
Standard containers are made of corten steel, an alloy of different substances. Unlike stainless steel, corten steel can rust, but the rust layer is tight enough to prevent further corrosion.
A shipping container can be used for about 15 years, after which it can be in one of two conditions. In the first case, it is still suitable to pass the CSC inspection, and it can still be used for international transport. In the second case, it is damaged to the extent that it is only suitable for storage purposes. In both cases, the containers may have dents, scratches, or multiple layers of paint. The main difference is that a container with CSC certification is wind and watertight and suitable for cargo, while a container for storage is only wind and watertight. Therefore, it is no longer suitable for transporting goods.
Container factories are mostly located in China. Whether they are shipped filled or empty does not affect the damages. Additionally, we always inspect the containers at our depot to determine if they are suitable for sale as new. Ultimately, there are always various moves involved.
All new containers are finished with a marine-grade paint that is required for international shipping. Nowadays, most containers are coated with waterborne paint, although they used to use solvent-based paint as well.