Whirly Bird – Shipping Containers

Naturally reduce temperature & improve air flow

The benefit of using containers is their versatility and the fact that you can customise them. Today containers are used for transport over long distances and even between continents. Though this may have been the reason to start designing containers in the early 19th century, the industry has developed quite substantially. These days you can use containers to help with a variety of transportation needs. These functions include storage and even housing. Their diverse uses fulfill an important need: the dynamic preservation of the items inside.

This is where genius inventions such as a whirlybird come in. This nifty installation helps with natural air flow into the room—or in this case container—it is installed. This flow helps to reduce temperature and to minimise odours. These are the exact needs you would have when using a container for housing or for perishable items. The steel panels serve in giving ample protection and security, but they don’t lend themselves to offering comfort. The steel can become quite hot when baking in the sun and stagnant air becomes unhealthy. Natural air flow as well as a way to reduce temperature are vital for a container to be efficient when used for storage and for human housing.

whirlybird modifciation

Perishable items

When you’re using a container as storage, food items are not the only type of cargo that can perish due to insufficient ventilation in the container. Cold, heat and moisture can work together to create mould or rust. This can ruin many types of contents such as wood, metal and paper. Whatever your container is protecting also needs to be protected from natural dangers.

For frozen items, technology has made it possible for refrigeration containers to take on the role of preserving the cargo. But what about other needs? Apart from helping to reduce temperature, a whirlybird ventilation system will ensure natural air flow and the device assists in keeping the atmosphere dry, because it lets moisture out. The absence of moisture is beneficial to any item inside and you can have peace of mind about its safety. Because airflow will minimise odours, no unsavoury smell will stick to your merchandise.


Containers are the ideal size, shape and strength to be used as rooms or even complete houses for low cost housing. Whether it’s a short term answer in a time of crisis or even a long term plan, there will never be a budget to install air conditioning units in this type of building project. A whirlybird becomes the easy answer to initiate natural air flow. This helps with many comfort factors.

  • Odours: A small place that accommodates many people or activities may quickly end up with an unwelcome smell from body odours or food. With air moving in and out, you can minimise odours and make the space a more inviting haven.
  • Temperature: Moving air helps in a hot environment. A fresh breeze relieves a sweltering hot interior, adding to a more comfortable workplace or home.

whirlybird modifciation

How does a whirlybird work?

Quite simply, a whirlybird is a ventilating system that does not necessarily need electrical power. This characteristic makes it ideal for situations where power is in short supply or not available at all. Think about low cost housing, or storage facilities in remote or newly developing areas. Without the luxury of power, you need a different way to create natural air flow and reduce temperature.

A whirlybird is a turbine vent which is installed on the top of a container. A hole will be cut into the roof, so you will have to make sure that this is the correct long term solution for you. More specifically it’s a dome that’s made up of spinning fins. There are mechanically-driven whirlybirds that continually spin. On the other hand you can install a passive version which only requires wind to turn. The fins suck up warm air and moisture from the inside of the container and push them to the outside. Because cold and less-moist air descends, you are left with a less hot and less moist interior inside of the container.

Easy installation

The uses of containers are always expanding and there are various companies that will assist you with installing a ventilation system into your container. The good news is that a whirlybird—especially the ones that do not need power—are simple enough to install yourself. Having natural air flow which will minimise odours and reduce temperature is now obtainable for you. As long as you have the correct tools, you can customise your storage or housing container into a more user friendly item.