Find answers to commonly asked questions regarding bulk bag types, technical terms, usage guidelines, and more. For additional questions or requests, please contact our product specialists at (800) 645-3183.


What Does 5:1 or 6:1 safety factor mean?

The bag is rated to hold 5 times the SWL (Safe Working Load) that is listed on the label. This does NOT mean you can load the bag with more than the SWL rating, but that the bag is designed with a “safety” factor of over compliance.

What does SWL mean?

Safe Working Load. This is the maximum amount of total weight the bag is rated, tested, and guaranteed to carry safely.

What is an FIBC?

Flexible Intermediate Bulk Container. This is a technical determination for bulk bags.

What are bag “Types”?

Bulk bags can be “Typed” A,B,C, or D. This type of designation refers to:

Type A

Type A bulk bags are basic, all-purpose bags. No special requirements or designations for this type. No hazardous material or electrostatic capabilities. Non-flammable products only, not to be used in areas with explosive potential or around flammable gases.

Type B

Type B bulk bags have a fabric with a low breakdown voltage insulating fabric. Used in the presence of combustible dusts with MIE of greater than 3mj but not around flammable vapors. Use these bags to safely transport flammable powders.

Type C

Type C bulk bags have the capability to be electrically grounded. These bulk bags have conductive threads woven throughout the bag and are connected to tabs which must be grounded during filling and/or discharge. The threads dissipate static energy safely from the surface of the bag. Use these bags to safely transport flammable powders or when flammable dust or vapors are present.

Type D

Type D bags are static dissipating bags similar in use to Type C, but do not require grounding the bag. Instead the fabric itself has special additives which give it static dissipative qualities. Use these bags to safely transport flammable powders or when flammable dust or gases are present.

What does fabric weight mean?

Fabric weight refers to the actual weight of the fabric of which a particular bag is constructed of. Fabric weight units may be listed in ounces (ounces per square yard) or GSM (grams per square meter). Fabric weights correlate closely to overall bag weight carrying capacity or Safe Working Load (SWL). Higher SWL bags will have higher fabric weights. Conversion (1oz. per 34 GSM).

What does coated or laminated bag mean?

A coated or laminated bulk bag is constructed with fabric that has a thin layer (usually 1 mil) of polypropylene bonded to one side. Coated bags provide a moisture barrier from condensation or low amounts of water. Coated bags do NOT provide complete 100% waterproofing. For greater protection, consider bags equipped with liners.

What are bags with liners?

Bulk bags can have plastic liners either inserted loosely or attached to the inside of the bag. All of Bulk Bag Depot’s stock lined bags are fixed inside with tabs during manufacturing. We also sell bulk bag liners which can be installed into most unlined bulk bags. Lined bulk bags offer good moisture and contaminate protection, but unless specifically made for liquids, they are not 100% waterproof.


Can bulk bags be stored outside?

Bulk bags can be stored outside, as long as UV and environmental impact is taken into consideration. All bags have a “UV” rating in hours, usually around 1600 hours, but that can vary depending on the weather conditions and global proximity to the sun. All of Bulk Bag Depot’s bags have a UV inhibitor added to the fabric when manufactured. While this does offer a limited time of UV protection, it is still recommended that bulk bags be stored in a protected environment.

Can bulk bags be lifted with a single point hook?

Standard bulk bags with four corner lifting loops cannot be lifted with a single point hook on their own. Pulling the corner lift loops together causes additional stress on the loops and surrounding fabric that the bag was not designed for. Bulk bags can be lifted safely with single hooks when equipped with specialized straps such as Stevedores or with a bulk bag lifting bar.

How are bulk bags filled?

Bulk bags are filled through the top of the bag in various ways, depending on the needs of the user. Bulk bags come in several configurations each designed for the specific filling method used. Spout top bags are commonly used with bag filling machines and hopper applications. Duffle top bags are usually used when the filling method is not as controlled, such as using a shovel or skid steer, but product protection when transporting is still desired. Open top bags are similar in use to duffle tops, but offer no product protection for transport.


How are bulk bags sold?

Bulk bags are usually sold by the pallet. The number of bags on a pallet vary depending on the size and structure of the bag. Bulk Bag Depot does sell some sizes in partial pallets down to a minimum of 50 bags. Please call Bulk Bag Depot for pallet quantities at (800) 645-3183.

Do you sell bulk bag liners?

Yes. Bulk Bag Depot carries several sizes of “tube” style liners in-stock. Liners are sold by the case (50 pcs) only. These liners can be inserted into most styles of bags, but not all. Bulk bag liners are open on one end and sealed on the other. Please refer to your particular bag style when ordering liners.