Can I use a shipping container as a garage?

As the UK seeks to solve the housing crisis, more new build homes than ever are constructed. Unfortunately, many of these homes are smaller than traditional properties and often omit one of the most important things for British homeowners – a garage.

For many, this means they have to park their cars on the street which can affect insurance and lead to a general lack of safety. These same people often turn to Google for a solution and end up searching for ‘can I use a shipping container as a garage?’

Of course, homeowners are just a small portion of the people who ask this query. The majority are businesses and private companies who have exceeded their actual garage space and need safe, secure storage for valuable vehicle stock.

To all of these audiences, the answer is simple: yes, you can use a shipping container as a garage – provided you take care of some key adaptions that make it viable and understand the limitations of vehicle size.

Why use a shipping container as a garage?

If you’re a homeowner with a large garden space or own private land, you can house a shipping container on your site, although you may need planning permission and you should also contact your Local Planning Authority for further advice. Delivered directly to your site, a shipping container garage offers extreme security and durability as well as total weathersealing – which prevents wear and tear to any vehicle stored inside.

The security is the main selling point of a container garage, as they are virtually impregnable to all but the most determined theft attempts when locked with a quality device. This high security makes shipping container garages a favourite for collectors of motorcycles, which fit easily into the container but are protected against thieves.

What to consider

To use a shipping container garage, you need to consider a number of factors. First, you need a level and solid surface to lay the container on such as a concrete slab, as otherwise the weight of its contents may cause issues or it may move when you drive a heavy vehicle into it. Secondly, you need to choose a container which has the right opening width to fit your vehicle in it. Conversions are available to make the actual entryway of the storage container garage is easier to fit into. Finally, you need to ensure ventilation is built into the unit so that condensation doesn’t cause your vehicle to rust.

Shipping container garage conversions

There are some excellent ways to convert a shopping container to function as a garage. A side door to the container can be added which means you can simply open your car door and exit the side door without having to try and squeeze back out of the entrance.

If your garage will only be used partly for storage, we can also add workbenches and other traditional workspace amenities to give you a more traditional garage area that allows you to do DIY and vehicle care.

You may also want to consider a different style of door such as a traditional shutter, but this can harm the security of the container so the conversion should only be handled by experienced professionals. You should also perhaps consider a ramp or driveway leading to your container to help make access easier.

We would also recommend adding insulation to protect whatever you store in your garage from the elements – as containers can heat up greatly in the summer and get very cold in winter. Insulation helps mitigate this and reduces the chance of anything negatively impacting your stored vehicles/goods.

If you’re interested in getting your own storage container garage, Mr. Box offers full container conversions to suit the requirements of both individual homeowners and businesses. Find out more on our container conversions page.