What is a Container Grade?
Container grades provide an indication of the condition of any given container. These range from new builds straight from factory, to much older builds with some or many aesthetic blemishes and/or structural issues.
Whilst shipping containers are built to last for many years in harsh conditions, exposure to sun, rain, prolonged moisture and wind will eventually cause natural deterioration. They can also be damaged in transit or onsite by heavy machinery.
Unfortunately, there is not a universal shipping container grading standard that applies to all containers. However, larger suppliers have implemented a more objective and recognised grading system.
When you are considering a container for your own use, be sure to familiarise yourself with these grades when discussing container price and availability.
Also, be sure that the container supplier you end up choosing is not just grading containers based on what is available to them. For example, AA should be a new build container, not the best container that they have in their yard.
SCF has an extensive image catalogue of individual containers. If you are not sure about what you are getting, ask our friendly team for some photos.
New/Near New Container
- Cargo Worthy minimum standard with valid CSC Plate
- Interior will be minimum 95% mark free
- Floor will be clean with no transferable marks or stains, but possible light scratches from transport
- Near New may have minimal exterior surface corrosion, and negligible denting
- Anywhere from just landed in the depot, to 5 years old fall into this grade
A Grade Container
- Cargo worthy minimum standard with valid CSC Plate
- Interior will be minimum 80% mark free with some scuffing or scratching
- Floor will be clean with minimal transferable marks or stains, with scratches not exceeding 2mm in depth
- May have minimal exterior surface corrosion, and negligible denting
- Near new, refurbished and used containers fall in to this grade
B Grade Container
- Cargo worthy or wind watertight standard with or without valid CSC Plate
- Wind and watertight
- Interior will be minimum of 50% mark free, some scuffing or scratching and minor surface rust
- Floor will be stained or marked and may also have minor delamination
- Exterior may have more prevalent corrosion and dents
- Container may have small amount of previous repairs/patches
C Grade Container
- Structural condition of container may be Cargo Worthy, Wind Watertight or As Is standard with or without valid CSC Plate
- Interior will have extensive markings, scratches and corrosion
- Floor will be stained or marked and may also have moderate delamination
- Exterior will have extensive corrosion with a multitude of dents
- Container may have several previous repairs/patches
D Grade Container
- Structural condition of container is As Is standard without valid CSC Plate
- Interior and Exterior will have extensive corrosion and or holes
- Floor will have extensive staining and delamination
- Major damaged containers fall into this grade