What are reefer containers?

Refrigerated containers – or “reefer containers” as they are often called – are containers used to move to perishable goods, maintaining the cold chain where it is vital for product quality and safety.

In the form of deep-freeze containers and insulating containers they are used for the gentle storage and transportation of foodstuffs, but also for other goods – like medication or flowers – whose quality is ensured based upon the maintenance of a certain temperature.


What are reefer containers used for?

If you are shipping foodstuffs or other products with a limited shelf life, you will need cooling containers that are capable of maintaining constant temperatures as low as -25°C. With built-in sensors, they also ensure that humidity levels remain within specific parameters. And they are designed to be stacked and transported easily with forklifts, of course.

In addition, if you need to expand your stationary refrigeration unit – whether temporarily or permanently – a reefer container can be a simple, cost-effective alternative to expensive construction work. In fact, refrigerated containers are found in far more industries than you might imagine.

How does a reefer container work?

Modern refrigerated containers are divided up into the loading area along with the cooling unit. The cooling machine can be adjusted to a wide range of temperatures, which means that the containers are suitable for many applications, from deep-freeze containers to storage at a constant temperature of up to +30°C.

Reefer walls are heat-insulating. They usually consist of polyurethane foam between steel plates. Temperature sensors detect the conditions inside and control the temperature regulator.
The exact technical function depends on the type of container.

Kühlaggregat Thermo King

In which sizes do reefers come?

The following table shows the dimension in which refridgerated containers are available:

Container typeExternal dimensions mm (LxWxH)Internal dimensions mm (LxWxH)Door dimensions/ Door opening (WxH)Volumen Weight kgPaletts StellplätzeISO Type keyISO Group- key
45 Feet High Cube Reefer container13.716 x 2.550 x 2.89613.316 x 2.440 x 2.5672.440 x2.56783.9Empty weight: 6.090 Payload 27.910 Total weight 34.0003345 R145 RT
40 Feet High Cube Reefer container12.192 x 2.438 x 2.89611.550 x 2.290 x 2.5452.290 x 2.55767.5Empty weight 4.660 Payload 29.340 | Total weight 34.0002345 R145 RT
40 Feet Reefer container12.192 x 2.436 x 2.59111.577 x 2.294 x 2.1102.294 x 2.17459.8Empty weight 3.900, Payload 28.600 Total weight 32.5002345 R145 RT
20 Feet Reefer container6.058 x 2.438 x 2.5915.456 x 2.294 x 2.2632.290 x 2.26428.4Empty weight 2.900 Payload 27.600 Total weight 30.48010 bis 1222 R122 RT
10 Feet Reefer container3.050 x 2.438 x 2.5912.383 x 2.190 x 2.2912.291 x 2.25912Empty weight 2.250 Payload 7.910 Total weight 10.160 kg4 EUR Paletten12 R112 RT

What types of reefers are there?

You can distinguish between actively and passively cooled units.
Conair containers, which are now almost no longer in use, are brought to low temperatures via external cooling rods. The external cooling is achieved by the introduction of cold air from the outside.

Today’s integral containers have an active cooling system based on a built-in cooling unit. This unit can be operated with electricity or via a diesel generator.

In addition, it is possible to operate a reefer container without a a cooling unit as an insulating container. In particular, former Conair containers are used so that the porthole openings are sealed with insulating panels. Integral containers with defective cooling units can also be used as ISO containers until they are repaired.

These insulating units are able to keep a constant temperature and so that delicate perishables or machines are protected from outside influences.

Features and speci­fications

  • Wind & waterproof / valid CSC badge
  • PTI OK / Pre Trip Inspection / Goods Test Badge
  • Temperatures adjustable between +25°C and -25°C
  • For newer containers, temperatures can be set between +35°C and -40°C
  • Stainless steel interior lining made from aluminum
  • Polyurethane insulation / 10-12 cm
  • T-Grating aluminum floor with air duct
  • RAL-tone lacquer in white or desired color
  • Cooling units from Thermo King / Carrier Transicold / Daikin / Starcool and Mitsubishi
  • Refrigerant 134a / R404a
  • Power connection 380V / 32 amperes
  • Operating voltage CEE 50Hz / power: 6-10 kW / h
  • Aggregate volume at 1m distance 63-78 dB
  • Can be driven by a lift truck and forklift

Areas of application

Kühlcontainer Innenraum

Refrigeration containers are often used at sporting events and activities, trade fairs, festivals or on occasions such as Oktoberfest that require perishables. Frozen containers are particularly suitable for keeping drinks (wine / beer / other spirits) cool and keeping meat, sausages or other foods such as fruit, vegetables or cheese fresh at such events. Furthermore, coolers can be installed in hotel and catering sectors.

Refrigeration containers provide a great solution for the food industry. The best part is that the refrigerated unit keeps the cooling room constantly at the required temperature (plus or minus), allowing for comprehensive usage of all perishables:

in a bakery, dairy, butcher shop or brewery,
meat and fish merchants or other major markets.

Reefer containers also make food storage easier for hospital cafeterias and retirement homes as well as big supermarkets that have their own eateries.

TIn addition, reefer containers can serve as cold storage for factories or farms. They are perfect for storing large products, frozen products and harvest surpluses at the proper temperature. Furthermore, the refrigerated containers can serve as intermediary storage.
Refrigerated containers are very flexible and are also used in the following areas:

nurseries, hunting, wine making and much more.

Climate regulating containers play an important role in product development in the industrial sector.

For example, refrigerated containers are the perfect area for functional tests of new products, since different climatic conditions can be simulated using the refrigerated unit.

Whether in the production of carbon or tires, in the vehicle or machine industry, this use extends to several areas.

As a suitable storage unit for easily affected medicines or chemical substances, a refrigerated room is perfectly fit for the job. Laboratory tests and long-term studies with, for example, bacteria or other synthetic substances, can be carried out optimally in cooling cells.

Equipment and our services

Reefer container configuration

You can find our refrigerated containers in different sizes based on your specific needs. In addition, we ship the containers that you can buy or rent from us with your desired equipment. These include, for example, a strip curtain, as well as outlets and lighting in the interior. Theft protection is ensured through a locking mechanism.

Cooling unit

The refrigeration system contains a compressor that works similarly to a refrigerator. Our refrigerated containers use refrigeration units from well-known manufacturers such as Daikin, Thermo King or Carrier. If necessary, we can also supply you with separate units or provide repairs from an expert technician if you notice a problem in the refrigeration unit.

We rent and sell refrigerated containers from established manufacturers

At our company, you can rent or buy container boxes from Hapag Lloyd or Maersk. The containers consist of a stable and durable steel frame. Delivery is nationwide all over Germany, but also to other countries in Europe like Switzerland or Austria.
Our containers are also for sale on Autoscout24 and Ebay classifieds.


On the safe side

MT Container GmbH is not just a reliable and competent partner for refrigerated containers.
In addition to reefer containers and cooling cells, we are your contact for a whole range of other container services. If you need it, we also offer swap bodies.

You can also buy or rent maritime containers with or without a cooling unit.
We offer you an all-round carefree package with the PTI (Pre-Trip Inspection) for your containers. Overall, we ensure that all containers delivered by us, not just those that are used exclusively for refrigerated storage, but all containers meet the legal requirements. This means that overseas containers in particular have all necessary approvals and certificates.

Additional offers

  • WC containers
  • Office containers
  • Living containers
  • Tire storage containers
  • Material containers
  • Refrigerated trailers
  • Shipping containers
  • Tank containers
  • Specialized containers
  • Integral containers
  • Storage containers
  • Swap bodies
Depot Area View 3

Why choose us?