Should I Use Anti-Corrosion Products for Shipping?

Whether you are shipping domestic or international, air or ocean, chemicals or metals, you will want to consider what level of protection your cargo needs from the elements. In this article, we will focus on ocean shipping’s chief complication: corrosion. The fallout of sellers exporting their brand new, valuable machinery only to have them arrive corroded is not pretty. Remedies include insurance claims, discounts to the buyer, sending replacement parts or units, in-person apologies…the list goes on – none are great. If you are transporting metals, electronics, or machinery with components containing those elements via ocean freight, or even via flatbed on a rainy day, it is worth looking into and investing in anti-corrosion products.

“An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure.”

There are several products and methods to protect cargo from corrosion while in transit, but Total Export primarily relies on two tried-and-true methods: VCI and vapor bags with desiccant.

The first line of defense we recommend is VCI film. VCI stands for volatile corrosion inhibitor. It is essentially a sheet or tarp that wraps around the equipment and keeps water and ambient moisture out and prevents rust. Not all VCI’s are the same as every manufacturer has their own recipe and some can come as film, heat-shrink wraps, or paper. TE has been in the packing game for over 50 years and we’ve come to enjoy the reliability of the Zerust product line that we now distribute (check out our products page). VCI is sufficient for ground and air transport, but when shipping ocean or you know that your equipment will be in storage for awhile, you will want to consider a vapor bag with desiccant.

Yellow VCI wrap used as packing material in a crating project

When You Need Protection in The Bag

Equipment being shipped overseas will spend months in ocean spray and salty air. Even with crating and containerization, crates can become moist and containers can leak, adding ambient moisture to the environment surrounding your equipment. The best counter for this is to create an air-tight barrier around your equipment with a vapor-barrier bag with Desiccant. Total Export uses a military-grade foil laminate material to cover equipment, large or small, adds desiccant (like those sodium packets you see with your beef jerky or new shoes), and uses a heat-sealer to create an air-tight seal in the bag. The bag itself creates a protective bubble and the desiccant removes any moisture that may have been captured when the bag was sealed. Now crate the bagged equipment and you can rest easy.

Equipment that has been bagged, vacuumed, sealed, clear wrapped, and (partially) crated

That’s a Wrap

Thank you for taking the time to read this brief look into anti-corrosion methods in the packing industry. Check out our products page for more information on VCI, barrier bags, or other anti-corrosion products. Or if you still need more insight on how to ship you equipment, send us an inquiry. Thank you!

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