Know the Functions, Types and Components of Reefer Container!

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Reefer containers are a type of container or containers specifically designed to transport goods that require temperature control and a controlled environment. The word “reefer” itself is an abbreviation of “refrigerated” which means cooled. Reefer containers are equipped with cooling and heating systems that allow precise temperature regulation inside. These containers are often used to transport goods that require low or stable temperatures during transportation, such as frozen food, fresh food, pharmaceutical products, sensitive chemicals, and so on.

The advantage of reefer containers is their ability to keep these goods in good condition and safe during transportation, making them suitable for long-distance international shipping. The temperature inside the reefer container can be adjusted as needed, and sophisticated sensors and control systems monitor and maintain the desired temperature throughout the journey.

In the logistics and international trade industry, reefer containers are essential because they allow shipping goods that are susceptible to temperature changes to remain fresh and undamaged during transit across oceans or international borders. Get deeper in this TransTRACK article!

Reefer Container Function

Reefer containers have several main functions in the logistics and shipping industry, especially for goods that require temperature regulation and a controlled environment. Following are some of the main functions of reefer containers:

Setting Temperature

The main function of a reefer container is to maintain the temperature inside the container according to the needs of the goods being transported. This could mean maintaining a cool temperature for frozen goods, a low temperature for fresh foods, or a stable temperature for pharmaceutical or chemical products that are sensitive to temperature changes.

Prevent Damage

Reefer containers help prevent damage to goods during shipping by maintaining proper environmental conditions. This helps maintain product quality and integrity, such as preventing food from spoiling or medicines from losing their effectiveness.

Monitoring and Control

These containers are equipped with sophisticated sensors and control systems to monitor and control temperature, humidity, air circulation and various other environmental factors. This monitoring ensures that items remain in the desired condition throughout the journey.

International Shipping

Reefer containers are essential for shipping goods across international borders and long sea journeys. They allow items that require controlled temperatures to stay fresh and safe during long-distance shipping.

Extends Shelf Life

These containers help extend the shelf life of goods, thereby allowing manufacturers and distributors to provide more durable goods to their consumers.

Diversification of Goods Sent

Reefer containers allow various types of goods, including food, pharmaceutical products, chemicals, and so on, to be transported efficiently and safely. This helps in diverse international trade.

Cost Savings

Although the cost of using reefer containers can be expensive, long-term cost savings can occur because they help reduce losses due to damaged or wasted goods.

With these functions, reefer containers are very important in maintaining the integrity and quality of goods transported in international shipping and distribution of goods that require strict temperature regulation.

Reefer Container Type

There are several types of reefer containers available to meet different shipping needs, depending on the type of goods being transported and temperature requirements. The following are some common types of reefer containers:

All-Purpose Reefer Containers

This is a versatile type of reefer container that can be used for various types of goods that require temperature regulation. They can usually regulate temperatures from a few degrees Celsius below zero to positive temperatures.

Low-Temperature Reefer Containers

This reefer container is specifically designed for items that require extreme low temperatures, such as frozen products or frozen foods. They can maintain very low temperatures, often down to -40 degrees Celsius or lower.

High-Temperature Reefer Containers

This reefer container is used to transport goods that require higher temperatures than can be achieved by ordinary reefer containers. They are suitable for products that need to be stored at temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius.

Reefer Container Ventilated

This reefer container has a ventilation system that allows air circulation inside the container. They are suitable for products that require good air circulation, such as fresh fruit and vegetables.

Reefer Container Controlled Atmosphere (CA)

This type of reefer container has the ability to control oxygen, carbon dioxide and humidity levels in the container. It helps in slowing down the ripening process of fresh produce, such as fruits.

Reefer Container for Pharmaceutical Products

This special reefer container is designed to transport pharmaceutical products and chemicals that require stable and tight temperature and humidity. They have a strict monitoring system to ensure product safety and quality.

Reefer Container for Transport of Live Animals

This reefer container has additional facilities to accommodate live animals, such as a special ventilation system, proper temperature regulation, and drinking water facilities.

Isothermal Reefer Container

This is a type of reefer container that maintains a constant temperature inside the container without the need for an active cooling system. They are usually used for products that only require thermal insulation.

The choice of reefer container type will depend on the type of goods being transported, the required temperature, and other special environmental requirements. Proper selection is essential to ensure goods remain in good condition during delivery.

Reefer Container Components

Reefer containers or refrigerated containers have various components that work together to maintain the desired temperature and controlled environment inside the container. Following are some of the main components of a reefer container:

Cooling System

The cooling system is the core component of reefer containers. This includes the compressor, heat exchanger, and various other cooling components. This system produces cold or hot air (according to needs) which is used to maintain the temperature inside the container.

Heating System

The heating system functions to heat the container if the temperature inside needs to be increased. This is important to keep the temperature stable, especially when the container is in a very cold environment.

Control System

Reefer containers are equipped with sophisticated control systems that monitor and regulate temperature, humidity, air circulation and other environmental factors. The operator can set the desired temperature parameters and the system will attempt to maintain them.


This container has various types of sensors to monitor the conditions inside. Temperature sensors, humidity sensors, carbon dioxide (CO2) sensors, oxygen sensors, and other sensors are used to ensure proper conditions.

Ventilation System

The ventilation system is used to regulate air circulation in the container. This is important to distribute temperature and humidity evenly and maintain the quality of the air inside.

Thermal Insulation

Reefer containers have an efficient thermal insulation layer to keep the temperature stable inside the container and prevent heat or cold from outside from affecting the conditions inside.


These containers are usually equipped with alarms that will notify the operator if a problem occurs, such as the temperature rising or falling beyond desired limits.


Reefer containers require an external power supply or have their own generator to operate the cooling system, heating and other components. They can be connected to a shore power source in port or use an internal generator while on the move.

Doors and Covers

Airtight doors and lids are essential to maintain controlled environmental conditions inside the container and prevent cold or hot air leaks.

All of these components work together to maintain proper conditions inside the reefer container, making it possible to ship goods that require strict temperature control. With advanced monitoring and control systems, operators can ensure that goods remain in good condition throughout the journey.

In the modern logistics era, the successful delivery of goods that require strict temperature control is highly dependent on efficiency and timeliness. One solution that helps achieve this goal is the use of the Truck Appointment System from TransTRACK. This system makes it easy to manage and coordinate shipments with reefer containers, and ensures that goods remain in good condition throughout their journey.

So, are you a manufacturer, distributor or logistics provider? The Truck Appointment System from TransTRACK is an irreplaceable tool for optimizing the delivery of goods with reefer containers. By leveraging this technology, you can increase efficiency, reduce the risk of damage to goods, and ensure higher customer satisfaction. Don’t let this opportunity pass you by. Switch to TransTRACK’s Truck Appointment System now and watch your deliveries become more organized and more efficient than ever.


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