There are many benefits to having your vehicle shipped in a container. When your vehicle is shipped in an enclosed container, it is safe from the outdoor elements and will not get dirty or damaged from rain, snow, ice, or falling debris. Furthermore, it is safe from the risk of theft. Before you ship your car in a container, however, it can be helpful to understand exactly how the process works. With the right preparations, you can be sure your car will arrive safely at its destination.
Prepare Your Car for Shipment
Before the car is loaded into the container, it is important to properly prepare the vehicle for shipment. Here are a few things you need to do before loading your car into a container.
- Wash the Car- The first thing you should do is thoroughly clean your car inside and out. You want to remove any mud or dirt from the vehicle and inspect for any existing scratches or dents.
- Take Pictures-Next you want to take pictures of your vehicle’s condition and make a note of any scratches, dings, or dents with a time-stamped photo.
- Empty the Fuel Tank- Whenever you are shipping your vehicle, it is important to empty the fuel tank and only fill it up ⅓ of the way. A full tank makes the car heavier and additional weight can add extra cost to your shipment.
- Remove and/or Fold Accessories- Before loading your vehicle, you want to remove any exterior accessories such as spoilers and antennas, and fold in side mirrors to allow for easier loading.
- Disable the Alarm- If your car has an alarm, be sure and disable the alarm system before loading your vehicle.
Choose Your Container
When you are shipping a car using enclosed transport, you can choose between two possible container options: a 20-ft or a 40-ft container. The larger container is the most popular because it allows you to share the delivery costs with other customers. There are typically up to four vehicles shipped in a 40-ft container. If you are shipping a high-end luxury vehicle or antique vehicle, however, you may be willing to pay the extra cost to have your car shipped alone in the smaller container.
Loading the Vehicle
Once your car arrives at the loading facility, it is driven into the container via a ramp and carefully positioned before all four wheels are safely chocked. The container will come equipped with fasteners on the floor, sides, and ceiling. Once the car is locked in place and the wheels have been chocked, padded ratchet straps are used to secure the vehicle in all corners to ensure that your vehicle cannot move during transit.
All car shipping containers must comply with strict safety regulations that confirm both the structural integrity of the truck and that the truck is wind and water tight. These requirements ensure that your vehicle is safely secured and well protected from the elements during transport.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to Your Car Moving Questions
The hardest thing for people researching car moving companies to understand is that the prices they are getting are not hard and fast gaurantees, but rather ESTIMATES of what one company thinks it will take to get a vehicle moved promptly versus another company's opinion of what it will take. Don't be fooled, there are not carriers committed to take your vehicle at these quoted prices, the company you choose will still have to get to work getting a carrier to commit to move it at the price they quote you.
Your total price breaks down into two parts, the broker's fee (or 'deposit' as everyone calls it) and the carriers fee (your COD amount) Make no mistake about this, EVERYONE YOU ARE GETTING SALES CALLS FROM IS GOING TO BROKER YOUR MOVE. In this industry, there are brokers who try to fool you into thinking that they are the actual carriers and there are an equal amount of carriers who sell themselves on the fact that they have a truck or two but are not being honest about the fact that they broker out 90% of the orders they book. Here is a quick easy way to tell, if a company takes an up front fee, whether they call it a deposit or any other name, they are a broker. Carriers do not take any payment until the vehicle is delivered.
In our opinion, you are crazy to do so. Have you ever been paid up front for the work that you perform for your employer? Why would you pay a fee up front when there are reliable and trustworthy companies like ours that won't ask for it until we provide you with your carriers details?
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will be between one and two weeks. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.