As part of helping people find the best packing, moving, and storage resources for their project needs, we wanted to take a moment and highlight the advantages of using plastic containers. Already have a solid idea of what you need, and looking instead for buying tips and advice? Okay, let’s take a minute first to show you what’s out there:
How to Shop for Plastic Containers
There are some brand names that you’ve probably heard of—Rubber-Maid, Sterilite, Ziploc—but the truth is it’s difficult to shop for plastic containers by manufacturer simply because there are so many of them. Though far from a complete list, this online directory gives a sense of the number of manufacturers that are out there.
The upside to all these choices is that plastic containers are fairly ubiquitous. Shopping online at a major destination, like Amazon, can provide reviews from other people who bought the same container. Going to the store will provide an immediate solution, and you can still take your phone with you to check for online information about in-store products. Here’s a great place to start, no matter what you’re looking for in a container:
- Find the Best, All-Around Plastic Containers (The Sweethome)
- Find Different Container Styles and Designs (Uline)
- Find the Best Container by Size (Sell All Your Stuff)
- Ideas for Free and Reusable Containers (Andrea Dekker)
- Find the Best Food Storage Containers (Heavy)
- Find Different Types of Bulk Containers (Global Industrial)
Why Plastic Containers?
- Long-Lasting Value: As our cardboard box vs. plastic container comparison-shopping guide shows, plastic containers tend to cost a little more, but that doesn’t mean they’re cost-prohibitive or that they don’t provide value. Plastic stands up to water and pests and is more resistant to punctures and ripping. It can be used at home, during a move, or inside a storage facility.
- All Shapes and Sizes: With their sturdier construction, it's easy to think there are fewer options available for container shapes and sizes. In truth, it's the exact opposite. Especially if you're asking a friend or family member to scrounge for boxes at work, it's not exactly like you can custom-order what happens to be available. Meanwhile, plastic containers may be flat and wide or skinny and deep. They’re easier to find in an elongated rectangular design for longer items. They may have drawers or snap lids. They may be stacked or freestanding.
- Translucent vs. Opaque Containers: Translucent plastic lets you see something of what's inside the containers. This can be helpful if you have lots of home storage and numerous containers, or if you’re moving across the country and may need to retrieve something during your travels. As a trade-off, opaque containers provide an extra measure of privacy and security. Colored containers can also provide a measure of visual appeal or a color-coded organizational system.
- Framed vs. Loose-Stacked Containers: Here's another point of versatility. Stackable containers with front-facing drawers are among the most common type of plastic container. This stackable design is available in both loosely-stacked and framed construction. Some of our customers are looking for single-use, long-term storage that may better suited for the loosely-stacked design. For customers who are looking for seasonal storage in which the containers are going to see regular use as functioning drawers, you'll likely want to splurge on the sturdier, framed design.