Drum bitumen

Customarily, bitumen has been packaged and exported in new steel drums.  Drum bitumen capacity ranges from 150 Kg to 200 Kg. The most commonly used drum packaging capacity by nearly all bitumen consumers in the globe is 180 Kg. 180 Kg drums are used more widely by bitumen consumers as they are the most beneficial to them. Bitumen importers can save on costs by using 180 Kg drums. The areas of savings are associated but not limited to, drum production cost, handling and shipping related expenses.

drum bitumen in 20 feet containers
drum bitumen in 20 feet containers

150 Kg drums for Chittagong Bangladesh

147 kg drums also known as 150 Kg drums  are mainly purchased by bitumen buyers in Chittagong Bangladesh.

When stuffing 110 drums of 150 Kg drum weight however, the total weight that can be stuffed in a 20 feet container is only 16 metric tons. In comparison, when using Drum bitumen weighing 180 Kg per drum, 110 drums can be stuffed in each 20 feet container. This means a total of 20 metric tons can be stuffed in each container.

150 Kg drums are also costlier to ship. This is simply because less Drum bitumen can be shipped per container. In addition, it takes more steel to produce this smaller sized drum. In addition, more drums are needed to hold the same amount of weight as the standard 180 Kg drum weight would require.

Standard size bitumen containers

20 feet containers are the standard size when it comes to transporting Drum bitumen.  They are the most economical container size available in the market today. When it comes to carrying bitumen in 40 feet containers the cost is nearly double that of 20 feet containers. However; the capacity of 40 feet containers is 135 drums which is only 25 drums more for the bigger sized container. This is not economical in almost every instance as the Terminal Handling Charge THC of a 40 feet container alone are also higher. More containers equals more work, higher shipping rates and more port charges both a the loading port and the discharge port.

Drum bitumen clients are advised to use the standard 180 Kg drums to ensure savings on shipping expenses.

200 Kg drums for Pakistan

Another country which uses a different sized and weight drum is Pakistan.  Pakistan a mainly imports its bitumen through a shared border with Iran named Tafton border which requires bitumen to be transported by land in trucks.  Karachi port in Pakistan is also a popular destination for Iranian bitumen of high quality. Shipments in Bitumen drum are made via containers by sea.  200 Kg packaging is costlier than 180 Kg drum packaging.  When shipping by sea, only 80 new steel drums can be placed in each 20 feet container versus 20 metric tons in 180 Kg drums.

Pakistan and Bangladesh’s markets are accustomed to these sized drums and mainly use their traditional drum sizes. However, in the recent years we have seen a small shift towards the standard 180 Kg drum packaging by bitumen importers from these two countries.


Buy drum bitumen in multiple sizes
Buy drum bitumen of 180 kg to save on costs

Standard Bitumen Drum Specification

Specification 180 kg Bitumen Drum 150 KG bitumen Drum  200 KG bitumen  Drum
New Cold Rolled Steel           *            *             *
Height (mm) 980 860 980
Diameter (mm) 500 500 500
Body Thickness (mm) 0.6 0.6 0.6
Top/Base Thickness (mm) 0.6 0.6 0.6
Net Weight (kg) +/-2.5 182 150 210
Gross Weight (kg) +/-2.5 192 158 220
Empty Drum Weight (kg) +/-1 9.5 8.5 10