Closed-Head vs. Open-Head Steel Drums

When choosing a steel drum container for your business, there are numerous important details to consider. You need to think about the kinds of materials you want to store, the level of security you require, and how accessible you want the drum’s contents to be. This information will help you determine the size, thickness, and—perhaps most importantly—what kind of head you want for your drum. Both open-head and closed-head drums have perks and drawbacks depending on what you need them for. Find the right option for your business with this guide to closed-head vs open-head steel drums.

What Are Closed-Head Steel Drums?

Closed-head steel drums feature a tight head that doesn’t separate from the rest of the drum. With both the top and bottom permanently fixed to the drum, there’s much less risk of leaks, contamination, or other forms of damage to the materials within. Closed-head drums also have one or two drum plugs at the top to allow for the filling and dispensing of product. For this reason, many businesses use closed-head drums for liquid products. However, this limited access can make closed-head drums more difficult to clean and refill.

What Are Open-Head Steel Drums?

Unlike closed-head drums, you can completely remove the lid or cover of an open-head steel drum. This makes it incredibly easy to access, empty, and refill the product within. However, open-head drums aren’t necessarily leak-proof, which means it’s riskier to use them for liquid materials. Instead, most businesses choose to store dry products in their open-head drums.

Which Works for You?

When it comes to closed-head vs open-head steel drums, there’s no clear answer as to which one is better. Instead, you have to find which type of drum suits your specific needs. While there is only one major difference between closed-head and open-head steel drums, that detail has a major impact on the work you do and the materials you handle. For liquid products that require an extra amount of protection, a closed-head drum is probably best. You can also add extra security to your product by choosing quality drum caps and tamper evidence locks. If accessibility is more important for you and your product, an open-head drum will be better. Make sure you do your research and choose a high-quality manufacturer to find the products you need to get the job done safely and successfully.

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