December 19, 2022

How to Transport Bulk Liquids: The Ins & Outs of Getting the Job Done

How to Transport Bulk LiquidsLiquid bulk transport can present unique challenges for shippers and receivers. For example, any item sent abroad, quality, consistency and integrity are all vital aspects to keep in mind about the item being shipped.

Essential documents that include the destination, shipping origin, volume, weight and precise contents are also important to the transportation of bulk liquids.

Regardless if you’re shipping to a storage warehouse or international dock, you must fully comply with all mandates, regulations and maritime laws.

So, the best method for liquid transportation depends on the liquid itself. Below, you will find a brief guide to the benefits of different shipping methods and how to find which one works best for your needs.

Weighing the Benefits of Different Methods for Liquid Bulk Transport

Thinking in advance about the benefits and downsides of which container you’re using to conduct liquid bulk transport saves both time and overhead costs.

Shippers know what it’s like to face ever-changing problems and that they must be ready to adapt to shifting needs quickly or lose business. What is the best way to transport liquids?

Different options are available for liquid transportation, depending on the limit and capacity. Different methods of transportation also depend upon the type of liquid being shipped.

ISO Tanks

ISO tanks are considered to be the standard go-to for various shippers as the interior layer is made of protective materials and a stainless steel exterior that prevents corrosion. ISO tanks hold oils, petroleum, fuels and additional chemicals considered to be dangerous.

Quite versatile, ISO tanks can be used to transport many kinds of hazardous and non-hazard liquids at various capacities. The lowest capacity for an ISO tank is 5,000 gallons, while the highest capacity is up to 11,000 gallons of liquid.

Intermediate Bulk Containers (IBC)

While intermediate bulk containers (IBC) tend to run smaller than ISO tanks, they can also handle hazardous and non-hazardous liquids. These industrial-grade containers can hold anything from food to chemicals and solvents.

Why is an IBC called “intermediate?” The capacity of an IBC can hold a minimum of 200 liters and up to 1,250 liters. This container is called an intermediate because it’s considered to be halfway between a drum and an ISO tank. This method of liquid bulk transport is easy to use and transfer and is best for shippers that require smaller capacities.

Drums and Barrels

These types of containers come in different materials but have the smallest capacities, limited to 250 liters. The minimum amount that drums and barrels may hold is 20 liters.

These drums and barrels are lined with a specific type of coating to ensure that transported food is safe and hygienic. However, drums and barrels can also handle hazardous liquids if certified for hazardous liquid transportation. Unfortunately, due to their small size, there is a risk of the container and the contents being mishandled.


Flexitanks are a type of collapsible container made of various polyethylene layers. Flexitanks do not have a specialized interior or structure to handle hazardous liquids. Underloading a Flexitank can cause leaks, and overloading a Flexitank can destroy it.

Flexitanks have a capacity of 25,000 liters and come in various sizes but may only be used once due to their nature and design. These types of tanks are best for moisture-sensitive products and time-sensitive shipments.

Contact us to secure the best delivery method for liquid bulk transportation today. We’ll ensure that all logistics and safety needs are met with quality consideration and control.

« Back to Blog

Comments are closed.