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Coolants and Refrigerants
Packing Materials
Coolants and Refrigerants
Coolants and Refrigerants are used to keep temperature sensitive products cold or frozen while in transit. When shipping temperature sensitive products, ask yourself the following:

  • What is the safe temperature range for storing your product?
  • How much does your product weigh? What are its dimensions?
  • Will you ship your products seasonally or throughout the year?
  • Will you have regularly scheduled shipments to the same customer, single shipments to many customers, or a combination of both?
  • Where are your customers located?
  • What is the anticipated time-in-transit for shipping your product?
  • Does your product require shipping overnight with a guaranteed early morning delivery or can it travel for three-to-five days?

Dry Ice (frozen Carbon Dioxide) and Gel Refrigerants are the most common types of shipping coolants/refrigerants. 

Dry Ice is available in block and pellet form and has a surface temperature of minus 109 degrees (minus 78 degrees C). As dry ice melts, it displaces oxygen and freezes. Special care must be taken in handling dry ice. Special Hazardous Materials regulations may apply to its use. Shipping with dry ice is by contract only. Please contact UPS for more details.

Gel Refrigerants are available in block and wrap form. They are used to keep products between 30 degrees (minus 1 degree C) and 60 degrees F (16 degrees C).

All refrigerated packages sent via UPS must be clearly marked with the following information:

1. The type of refrigerant used inside the package.
2. The amount of refrigerant inside the package.
3. The type of product being refrigerated.

Additional Considerations

  • Do not place the refrigerant at the bottom of the package because cold air will not circulate
  • Fill any empty space in your package with appropriate packing material to prevent product movement in transit
  • Wrap temperature sensitive products in two watertight plastic bags or use absorbent material along with a plastic liner
  • Avoid shipping temperature sensitive products over the weekend
  • When using dry ice, wrap the refrigerant in paper or another carton to slow the melting rate and prevent excess space
  • When using dry ice, do not seal the inner insulated container. Venting is required to allow some Carbon Dioxide gas to escape the package
  • As of 1 May 2000, all refrigerated packages shipped via UPS Air Services that contain five pounds of dry ice will require additional Hazardous Material shipping papers. Please contact the UPS Package Test Lab for refrigerated packaging specifications


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