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IBC Container Guide

What is an IBC container?

An IBC container (Intermediate Bulk Container) is an industrial grade reusable container, designed for the transportation and storage of large quantities of hazardous and non-hazardous liquids. IBCs are mounted on pallets allowing them to be easily moved using a forklift truck or a pump truck, this pallet base also allows the IBC to be stacked two high when full or four high when empty.

The inner containers or “bottles” are made of a durable plastic, such as polyethylene or high density polyethylene (HDPE). The outer cage of the container is made from either iron or galvanised tubular steel.

IBC Guide


What are the benefits of an IBC container?

IBC containers take up the same space as four 220 Litre plastics drums and so IBCs allow users to maximise the volume of liquids stores in the same space. The rigid construction also makes them easier to transport and helps to minimise risk while in transit.

IBCs are easy to use, all of our IBCs have a screw-cap lid for easy filling and a bottom outlet valve for emptying or decanting into smaller containers.

Because IBC containers are made of durable materials, it makes them ideal for multiple uses and as such we stock a large range of Reconditioned, Rebottled as well as Cut-off IBCs. We offer a complete laundering service so you can choose to have your IBCs professionally cleaned to an industry leading standard – rather than having to replace them with new tanks – saving you money.

What pallet bases do we have?

Our Reconditioned and Rebottled IBCs are available with a number of different pallet bases, deciding which is right for you depends on where its intended to be used and what its being used for.

Wooden IBC Pallet – Our Reconditioned IBCs with wooden pallets are a great option for short term storage or storage in dry conditions. Wooden pallets are the most environmentally sustainable option and will be suitable for the majority of general-usage applications, however,  they are not as durable as our metal or plastic pallets over a long period when exposed to moisture. These IBC containers are ideal for storing products inside a dry warehouse or storage area.

Metal IBC Pallet – Our Reconditioned IBCs with metal pallets are the most durable solutions for storage of hazardous and non-hazardous products, ideal for storage outside or in an environment where the IBC is frequently moved as they are less susceptible to damage in transit. These pallets help reduce the overall weight and increase their load-bearing capacity. They are also more hygienic for storing products for consumption than the wooden IBC pallets. 

Plastic Plastic – Our Reconditioned IBCs with second most durable IBC pallet after our metal pallet. These offer a strudy base, whilst being easier to move by hand than the metal pallet. These pallets help reduce the overall weight and increase their load-bearing capacity. They are also more hygienic for consumption than the wooden IBC pallets. 

Who uses IBCs and what do they use them for?

Non-UN for non-Hazardous materials

– Farming, Agriculture and Gardening. Within these industries, IBCs are used for water irrigation systems and for collecting rain water – effectively acting as a water butt to be used for watering plants at allotments. Beyond this IBC containers can be used for storage of herbicides, pesticides as well as fertilisers for use on farms. Reconditioned IBCs are also perfect to be used as storage solutions and bowsers for diesel for farm and warehouse machinery like tractors and forklifts.

– Construction industries. The durable nature of IBCs makes them ideally suited for construction sites. They are perfect for storing large amounts of water for a wide range of uses, whether it be to mix with cement, or for dust suppression. IBCs can also be used a ballasts for scaffolding work. Our Cut-off IBC containers are perfect for storing waste materials such as sawdust, rubble  or other aggregates on site before being disposed of.

– Polymers and Glues. IBCs are perfect for all stage of the manufacturing and storage process of glues and polymers.

UN for Hazardous and non-Hazardous materials

– Chemical and Pharmaceutical Industries. Chemicals and pharmaceuticals are often sensitive to heat, air and other outside contaminants like water. All of our IBCs come with a screw-cap lid as well as a fully functioning valve to ensure the safe storage and transportation of these products. Corrosive chemicals need to be stored in IBC containers with a ‘UN Approved’ marking, this is because the sealing medium in the bottom valve is made of a different material than the one used in non-UN approved IBCs.

– Paints and Chemical Coating Industries. Because of the hazardous nature of the liquids, they are often stored and transported in ‘UN-Approved’ IBCs and are protected from contaminants like air and moisture by the screw-cap lids and valves.

– As well as all uses in the non-UN section

Rebottled or New for products for animal or human consumption

– Distilleries and Wineries. Brand New or Rebottled IBC containers are perfect for use in many aspects of the manufacturing process. They provide safe storage as well as distilling and fermenting. Pleas ensure that if you are needing to store or transport materials for animal or human consumption that you only use our Brand New or Rebottled IBCs.

These are only a few examples of industries that use IBCs and is by no means intended as an exhaustive list.