Shipping Container Bathrooms – 2022 Complete Guide

Have you ever been to an outdoor event where people went inside a cargo container and called it a bathroom? Why do they do that? And how is a shipping container restroom different from a public port-a-potty?

A shipping container bathroom is a cargo container that has been transformed into a restroom. The container doors are often replaced with a solid steel man door creating a bathroom on site.

This restroom can go anywhere while still providing you with fancy bathroom features like motion-activated vent fans, for example.

What are the available modifications of these restrooms, how to buy them, and what are their designs — all is coming up!

What Are Shipping Container Bathrooms?

false wood vinyl interior door

Shipping container bathrooms are shipping containers that have been repurposed to use as a bathroom. Those container bathrooms are customized off-site with everything the client requests and then delivered within a few weeks. 

Shipping container restrooms are fantastic replacements for port-a-potties. They’re a lot more spacious and have more features. They’re also better ventilated, have better odor control, are more durable, and overall better for hygiene.

Unlike port-a-potties, though, you won’t occasionally run into a container restroom. It’s typically designed as a cost-effective container bathroom for various outdoor events.

A shipping container bathroom can be designed to be standalone or attached to an office container. It can also be connected to water and waste drainage pipes to ensure constantly running water.

Plans, Ideas, and Designs of Shipping Container Restrooms

bathroom floor plan with lounge area and plumbing ready
Source: pacvan.com

A shipping container bathroom is highly versatile. It comes with various plans, ideas, and designs. We’ll list down some of them.

  1. The Basic Design

The basic design is the simplest and often the smallest container restroom design. It includes one or two flushable toilets and their water sinks. It may also come with a urinal and it has custom durable flooring.

On request, you can add extra accessories like a ventilation system or a shower.

  1. The Running Water Restroom

A running water restroom prevents moisture buildup and can easily have more than one toilet.

This 2022 design utilizes a 20- or a 40- foot modified shipping container. These industrial-grade units can easily attach to your main water and sewer lines. Because of that, running water restrooms have much better hygiene control than basic designs.

Additionally, the non-skid floors are slip resistant to prevent accidental falls. 

  1. Bathroom Blocks

Bathroom blocks may not be running water restrooms, but they’re highly customizable. Based on the size of the container you choose, you get to decide the number of bathrooms you need.

You can request as many accessories as you need like slip-resistant vinyl flooring, a ventilation system, mirrors, and showers.

  1. Bathroom Cabins
one stall exterior

Bathroom cabins have the same box layout port-a-potties. They’re much better ventilated, though.

Bathroom cabins are also larger than port-a-potties and can accommodate a flushable toilet and a shower at the same time.

They could also include metal-plated floors, lighting, exhaust fans, and draining floors.

Much like most shipping container bathrooms, bathroom cabins are customized from small shipping containers. However, they’re not used for outdoor events like larger containers.

Instead, they serve to replace the port-a-potties in public places like parks.

  1. All-In-One Container Public Bathroom
security bars container restrooms

All-In-One Containers are essentially boxed versions of bathrooms that you can find in a hotel or in a club. This container has only one or two doors but it’s essentially a full bathroom. 

This shipping container restroom has all the features. It comes with basins, flush seats, mounted urinals, bathing cabins, a drainage system, and a ventilation system. It’s also often connected to an external plumbing source.

You can request some extra container modifications. A vertical sliding window, for example, is good for climate control inside such a large container.

If the container is large enough, you’ll even have some benches to use and some hangers for your clothes.

What Can You Use Them For?

pac van shipping container

You can use shipping container bathrooms for outdoor activities and commercial purposes. They’re equipped with a wide array of features and are easy to customize. 

Most designs of container restrooms provide running water. So, they replace indoor bathrooms without the uncomfortable experience and smell of port-a-potties.

Here’s a list of occasions you can use container bathrooms for:

Construction Sites

Construction sites often require engineers and workers to stay for long days without going home. Workers would then rely on nearby facilities or port-a-potties as their bathroom breaks. However, when the construction site is in a deserted place, container bathrooms become especially useful.

Industrial Facilities and Power Plants

Industrial facilities and power plants are too large to have easily accessible bathrooms near every work site. Shipping container bathrooms are a good solution in such cases . They can be placed anywhere and can be transferred whenever needed.

Outdoor Parks

Outdoor parks and any other public place usually rely on port-a-potties. Container bathrooms, however, are a great replacement for a more hygienic bathroom break. Those restroom containers aren’t as widely used as port-a-potties but with all the advantages they have to offer, they’re soon going to replace them.

Campsites

Regular campsites that people often visit should have hygienic restrooms. Campsites are often full of families and not all of them come with their own RV. A shipping container restroom can easily provide a clean bathroom area on site. 

Festivals

Festivals are always on the move and they cannot rely on public bathrooms. Shipping container bathrooms are versatile enough to be placed anywhere and even carried along with the festival equipment. 

Disaster Relief

Earthquakes, tsunamis, and other natural disasters often cause large scales of damage. It can take time for the government to repair that damage and find new homes for the victims. Container bathrooms are a great option to maintain the hygiene of victims as they wait for help.

How Much Do Container Restrooms Cost?

vinyl covered gypsum

Container restrooms cost an average of $10,000. This depends on the size of the restroom, the modifications used, and the customization options required. 

If you’re skilled enough and are considering a DIY bathroom, you can save some good money on labor costs while building your own restroom.

If you purchase a customized shipping container with all the modifications you’d want in a bathroom, it may cost you over $8000. If you want more toilets, sinks, urinals, and showers, you’ll have to pay some more.

Building your own bathroom, however, will make you pay less in exchange for some effort. The first thing you should do is to get one of those shipping containers.

A 20-ft container will cost $1,200–$2,500 depending on its condition. If you want more space, a 40-ft container will give you what you need in exchange for $2,600–$3,30.

Plumbing should cost anywhere between $1,800 and $2,500. Air conditioning, ventilation fans, and other miscellaneous items can raise the price a little but won’t be as expensive as purchasing a ready-made container bathroom.

FAQ

Is Custom Designing Available for Shipping Container Bathrooms?

Custom design is available. You can choose the size, the number of toilets, showers, sinks, soap dispensers, and more. You can also select the types of windows and add ventilation or air conditioning systems

What Is the Manufacturing Process for Modular Bathrooms?

The manufacturing process begins with agreeing on the design and modifications.
The manufacturing company would then take measurements of the installment location and then custom design the modular bathroom offsite. Once finished, the bathroom is shipped and installed.

What Delivery Options Are Available?

The container can be delivered by land, sea, or air. However, the container arrives at the installment site on the back of the truck. It then gets unloaded and installed in the desired location.

Who Can You Contact for Modular Restrooms?

Many companies are specialized in designing and delivering custom modular restrooms. Boxx MODULAR, Commercial Structures, and Mobile Modular are examples of such companies.

Conclusion

That’s all we have regarding shipping container restrooms.  The shipping container bathroom is flexible enough to be used anywhere while still providing decent employee satisfaction. 

It can have as many toilets as needed and, if water is running, dispose of waste just like a normal bathroom. 

Ryan Stetson

Ryan Stetson

Currently own two 20' and 40' containers converted into an office/workshop. Having worked in the shipping industry for 6 years, my goal is to share my personal experiences as well as connect potential container buyers with suppliers around the US.

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