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Storage Trailers vs. Storage Containers: What’s the Difference?

When looking for storage opportunities for your business, you’ll likely come across the terms “storage trailer” and “storage container.” Both have the word “storage.” At a high level, they seem similar. So which is right for your needs? Both have a range of purposes, but depending on your specific needs, one may be better than the other. Start the process by thinking about the storage situation you’re in, such as the products that you need frequent access to, items that need frequently transported, whether you’ll be storing on pallets, etc. Then, you’ll have a better idea of which option will suit your needs. Read on to learn more about storage trailers vs. storage containers and how to choose one that’s best for you.

What is a Storage Trailer?

A storage trailer sits 52” off the ground and is wider than a storage container. Widths range between 96” and 102”. They have axels and wheels that make them easier to move. They can be attached to vehicles when not fully loaded (like trailer trucks) to haul, or can be brought to a loading dock and moved on-site. Trailers are easier to load and unload, and depending on your needs, overhead or swing-style doors are available.

The downside to storage trailers is that they have a higher level of maintenance due to the tires, breaks, and other components. In winter weather, snow and ice need to be periodically cleared from the roof because they are not totally weather-proof. 

What are Storage Trailers Best For?

Storage trailers are best for storing items and easily accessing them via loading dock. A trailer can be used as an extension of a warehouse, retail space, school, or other building. They are also great for storage of items on pallets due to their greater width. Trailers provide quick loading and unloading, so this can be helpful for businesses who move goods often.

Storage Trailers vs Road Trailers

Storage trailers are often retired road trailers. They are available in a wider range of sizes (40’ to 53’). Road trailers are typically newer and available in larger sizes (48’ to 53’). The biggest difference is that road trailers are registered and carry a DOT safety inspection, whereas storage trailers are unregistered and can only be transported empty.

What is a Storage Container?

Storage containers primarily function as shipping containers, originally made for ocean freight services. While they sit level to the ground so you can walk right in, they are also designed to be stacked for optimal storage purposes. Transported to a location using a flatbed truck or tilt bed, storage containers are low maintenance and provide more protection against weather, including being unaffected by snow loads.

Storage containers are typically 96” wide (exterior) and can have swing-style doors on either one or both ends for easy loading and unloading.

What are Storage Containers Best For?

Storage containers are best for those who want a low-maintenance storage option. They should be checked for water leaks periodically. You may need to oil the doors, but otherwise they don’t require much upkeep. Containers are good for ground-level access as well as stackable storage needs.

Plus, while containers can be used for storage, they can also be converted to fit other needs such as office space or a pop-up restaurant or retail location.

Contact your Local Storage Experts

Page Street Leasing offers storage containers and trailers to fit all of your needs. We have hundreds of containers and trailers available to rent, lease, or buy. If you need a storage container or trailer, our experts will help you determine which is best for you. Contact us today at 603-622-1673 to learn more about storage trailers vs. storage containers, or fill out our online contact form.