Q. Can I amend the vessel or shipping container type after an order is submitted?

A. Yes, you can, and we will try our best to accommodate your needs. If you wish to make changes to your shipping container order, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us via hellocontainersales@gmail.com. Note that if you make changes, your shipment will be repriced accordingly.

Q. Can I change the departure date of my shipping container?

A. Yes, you can change the departure date of your shipping container anytime to fit your schedule.

Q. Can I dispute my invoice if I disagree with what I’ve been billed?

A. If you disagree with the amount you have been invoiced, you can raise a dispute via hellocontainersales@gmail.com with a description of what you had expected plus the issue/error. Our Dispute Resolution team will contact you in two working days with a resolution or further questions.

Q. Can I request a physical invoice via mail? 

A. It depends on the country where the invoice is issued. Please check with your local office whether they are still using paper invoices.

Q. Can I submit shipping instructions in any language?

A. The shipping instructions can only be accepted in English while doing international trade.

Q. What are container seal numbers and how do I use them? 

A. In international shipping, all containers must be secured with at least one seal before a shipping line will allow them to be shipped. A seal is a numbered tag that is secured around the lock of a shipping container.

A seal on a container cannot be opened without cutting it. Because it can only be removed once, the container will remain unopened until it is delivered to the buyer.

Each seal should be identifiable by a series of numbers and letters. This is called the seal number. When the container has reached its destination, the buyer should verify if the seal number is the same as the one listed in the Bill of Lading. The supplier is responsible for entering the correct seal number(s) during Shipping Instructions.

Q. Is Portable Space a UK company?

A. Hello Containers Limited is a US-based company, operating from its head office in Pasadena, California. It specializes in providing portable accommodation and storage delivered within the US by self-loading lorries, including portable cabins, shipping containers, container conversions, flat pack units, and modular buildings for various applications, homeowners, and industry sectors.

Shipping containers and in-gauge converted containers can also be delivered worldwide using the global container network. Units are available for both hire and sale and can be specified to meet the exact requirements of customers.

We are aware that some scam operations aim to defraud buyers of shipping containers by imitating existing companies.

If there is any concern that you are not speaking to us please call us directly at (530) 420 – 7603 or contact hellocontainersales@gmail.com to check that the quotation and any payment details are genuine, or for peace of mind only buy online through www.hellocontainers.com.

Q. Why use Portable Space?

A. Since we were established in 2002, we have been offering affordable and reliable portable accommodation and storage solutions. Please see about us for further information. We have excellent review ratings and as a family-owned and operated business, we pride ourselves on our high standards of personal customer service. Our track record means you can rely on us to deliver your products on time and in excellent condition, and in the unlikely event we make a mistake, we will make sure that we put it right.

Q. Can I come and see your products?

A. By appointment, you are welcome to come along to our headquarters in Altadena, Pasadena, to meet our knowledgeable team and discuss your accommodation and storage requirements face to face. One of the benefits of dealing with Hello Containers is that, unlike most companies, we hold large stocks of both hire and sales cabins, containers, and flat packs. We are not based at a port, so as long as it’s safe to do so, we can even let you select your cabins and containers from our stock. If you would like to physically view the containers, please make sure that you wear strong walking-type boots to comply with health and safety requirements. 

Q. How can I pay?

A. We accept payment by bank transfer or debit and credit card payments, except American Express and other online payment options. For Online orders, you can pay by debit/credit card using our secure payment provider. For security and data protection reasons we do not take payment by credit card over the telephone only by mail. Credit accounts must be paid within 30 days and we can accept bank transfers, debit or credit cards or cheques, bitcoin, and more.

Q. What are your standard payment terms?

A. As with any online shopping, we require payment in advance for all purchases.

Q. How do I place an order?

A. The quickest way to purchase directly is through the website (24/7), where you can add items to your shopping basket in the usual way and check out. We can also take your order verbally as long as you follow this up straightaway with email confirmation. For orders involving detailed conversion work, we will require you to send back a signed copy of the agreed CAD drawing detailing all the planned works.

Q. How much does delivery cost?

A. Delivery cost is affected by the size and number of units being delivered to a single location, how quickly you need the units, and if you are flexible with the delivery date and time. The more time and notice you give us, the greater the chance that you will receive your delivery exactly when you need it at the best possible delivery rate. We usually book transport at least three to five days ahead, but at peak times this can be longer.

Q. How do you deliver?

A. All units are delivered by HIAB lorry, and towed with a transit-style van. On sites with restricted access, we may need to deliver by alternate means, such as 4WD, forklift, telescopic handler or even man-handling our flat pack range of cabins and storage containers. This will be discussed with the Business Development team when you place your order. 

Q. Can I collect an item myself or use my transport?

A. Only items that are fully paid for can be collected and there is usually a small collection fee. We will contact you to agree on a collection date and time and you will be given safety information and details so you or your drivers can safely collect your items.

Q. How can I ensure my container is secure?

A. Our ‘one trip’ containers come complete with a factory-fitted lockbox and we can supply a padlock to fit inside. If you are buying a used container, we can fit lockboxes as an optional extra.

Q. Are the doors easy to open?

A. Some people find this more difficult than others, but please ask about our easy-opening doors which are usually available from stock.

Q. How much is the delivery charge for a storage container?

A. The delivery charge depends on the type and size of the container you are buying and your location. We will provide a fixed quote for your container including delivery.

Q. Do shipping containers smell?

A. ‘One trip’ containers normally smell like new, just like walking into a timber yard. Used containers that have carried many different items in their life can have a slight nose. If a smell is likely to cause a problem please let us know when you place your order and we will select a suitable container.

Q. I have heard that shipping containers condensate, is this true?

A. All shipping containers have baffled vents to let air in and keep water out. Any steel box has a risk of condensation. The air in the container warms up during the day and moisture in the surroundings is released as vapor becomes water droplets when the temperature falls again (normally overnight).

From our experience ‘one trip’ containers are not significantly affected by condensation, but this can depend on their location. If the items you store are likely to be affected by condensation then we suggest you choose a ‘one trip’ container and ask us to quote for a geotherm coating to the ceiling of the container which will help to eliminate droplets forming on the ceiling. Either way, we recommend that you undertake regular inspections to monitor conditions and also to refresh the air inside.

If you experience problems we can either supply container desiccant to absorb the moisture or fit more vents to remove excess moisture. In extreme circumstances, our container conversion division can line out and insulate the containers with rock wool and plywood or spray insulate the whole of the inside of the container, but this is only necessary in unusual climatic situations.

Q. If we buy a container what maintenance do we need to do?

A. You should periodically grease/oil the moving parts of the door locking gear and door hinges and deal with rust patches at an early stage to protect the life of the container. The roof of the container is very important and usually the most overlooked area.

Q. How long will a used container last?

A. The life expectancy of a container will depend on its condition at the point of sale. A ‘one trip’ container with careful use and regular maintenance, such as painting and servicing, can provide 20-25 years of service. A used container is sold wind and watertight and would have a much lower life expectancy which is also affected by local climatic conditions.

Q. What is the difference between a ‘one trip’ and a used container?

A. Used containers have normally been in service with the shipping lines for a longer period rather than just ‘one trip’. Typically Grade A containers will have been used for less than eight years and/ or maintained to a high standard. Standard used or wind and watertight containers have been used by the shipping lines for around 10-15 years. Structurally sound but showing signs of age, they are the most cost-effective form of container storage.

Q. What is a ‘One Trip’ container?

A. ‘One trip’ containers are manufactured in China and have been used to bring cargo into the country on a single journey from China to America, i.e. ‘one trip’. These containers are built to exacting ISO standards but are much cheaper than a container built in America or Europe. ‘One trip’ containers are the standard ‘new’ containers supplied in the US and Europe.

Q. What types of containers do you sell?

A. Shipping containers are designed to an ISO standard for transporting cargo around the world. There are many different types and they are usually plated to carry around 30 tonnes when loaded, with the capacity of the container marked on the doors of the container together with a unique reference number starting with four alpha digits. Shipping containers have vertical bars on each door to pull the door closed onto a watertight seal. The floors are usually 28mm thick marine ply or equivalent and designed to allow loading with a forklift truck. They are made from specialist steel known as Corten steel which prohibits rust.

The robust nature of a shipping container makes it ideal for storage purposes, with the only real limitation being when standard 6m lengths of pipe and steel need to be stored as it is too short. Please refer to the container shop for more details on types and specifications.

Site storage containers usually have a simple key-operated locking mechanism and invisible hinges to make them more secure. Many of the Portable Space site storage containers are compatible for stacking with any Steel Accommodation unit of the same size and are available in lengths of 12ft x 8ft, 20ft x 8ft, and 24ft x 9ft. The 20ft site store is slightly over 20ft to accommodate 6m lengths. We do not recommend that forklifts be operated inside a site store as this can lead to floor damage.

Q. How will my flat pack be delivered?

A. In a pack, craned off our lorry as near as possible to the delivery site.

Q. Can the parts of a flat pack be moved by hand?

A. The pack can be broken down and each component lifted by hand. The floor and roof sections are the heaviest part and will need at least four to six strong people to lift it.

Q. What tools will I need to assemble a flat pack cabin or container?

A. You will need a 13mm and 19mm socket and spanner, as well as a PZ2 screwdriver and a minimum fivetread stepladder.

Q. How long will it take to assemble a flat pack cabin or container?

A. It depends on the size and type of container, but typically one to two hours for a flat pack container and two to three hours for a flat pack cabin with two to four people. Please refer to the assembly instructions for the relevant product.

Q. Can I use a flat pack to store chemicals and liquids?

A. Chemicals and liquids can be stored safely in a bunded flat pack container from our bunded range.

Q. What is a Container Conversion?

A. A container conversion is a modular building or portable accommodation unit that has been constructed using the ISO 20ft or 40ft shipping container as a building block.

Q. How long does it normally take to convert a shipping container?

A. Depending on the complexity, once the final drawings are agreed upon, the typical build time is between two and ten weeks. We cannot agree on an exact date until you place an order and we raise a proforma invoice which would need to be paid by a return to guarantee the agreed date.

Q. Is the container conversion work carried out in-house?

A. We have a specialist in-house team of welders, carpenters, floor layers, paint sprayers, and electricians which means that our work can be monitored throughout the conversion process to ensure it meets our high quality standards.

Q. What warranty do I get with a converted container?

A. We offer a full 12-month guarantee.

Q. Do you supply container homes?

A. We can build container homes to architect drawings or if necessary we can work with you to produce suitable designs. Please remember that homes will need to conform to the relevant building regulations

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