Corrugated, or cardboard, boxes are still the preferred type of packaging for many products — and for good reason. For starters, corrugated packaging tends to be durable thanks to the multiple layers (a liner and a medium) that are protecting the contents inside of the box.
Because of their makeup, cardboard is one of the most durable long-distance shipping mediums, and the products corrugated packaging protects can often endure the likes of bumps and drops without incident.
What’s more is that various types of protective packaging options can be seamlessly added to the cardboard box to further enhance product protection.
But not all types of corrugated packaging are created equal. In fact, there are various size and thickness guides that you should be abiding by pertaining to the product that you’re shipping. Here’s a closer look:
Corrugated Size, Thickness Guides
So what type of cardboard is best suited to ship your product. Here’s a closer look at the size and thickness guides, from least durable to most durable:
- Single face: As we noted previously and as the name implies, this is the least durable type of cardboard. It’s best suited for lining the interior of boxes for secondary product protection, as it’s not durable on its own to makeup a shipping box. However, it’s also the most affordable type of corrugated packaging that’s available.
- Single wall: This is the most common type of corrugated package, and it consists of one medium piece of fluted liner glued between two pieces of liner board to form a box. It’s ideal for products that aren’t easily breakable.
- Double wall: Double wall corrugated is essentially single wall cardboard times two. It provides an extra layer of security to any corrugated package and also makes boxes much more feasible for stacking. Double wall packaging is usually used for industrial containers or heavy products.
- Triple wall: Triple wall is essentially a cardboard substitute for wooden crates. It’s ideal for shipping heavy, industrial grade products.
Corrugated flutes are essentially the pieces of liner that exist between the pieces of liner board. So if you were to take any box and cut it, you’d come across the flutes that are designed to give it strength and durability.
And just as there are different types of corrugated boxes, there are also different types of flutes. The better the flute and the more walls a box has, the stronger it generally is. The most common types of flutes are B flutes, C flutes and E flutes.
Here’s a closer look at each of them:
- B flutes are usually 1/8 of an inch thick and are best used in smaller cartons that aren’t going to be carrying heavy products.
- C flutes: This is the most common type of flute, usually slightly thicker than B flutes at 3/16 of an inch, and are the preferred type of flutes for everyday shipments.
- E flutes: These are thinnest and least durable types of flutes, at only 3/32 of an inch in thickness. These flutes are only used for small boxes and cartons. Perhaps the best example of a package with an E flute is a pizza box.
For a complete guide to understanding corrugated flutes, including a look at more uncommon flute types, click here!
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What type of size and thickness is best for your product or application? Our team of experts is happy to help ascertain the perfect size and thickness for shipping your product.