Will the 4C Pedestal Mailbox Replace the Cluster Box Unit?

As we move through the 21st Century the commercial mailbox industry couldn’t be more fascinating for the manufacturers, distributors, customers, and the U.S. Postal Service. The manufacturers face challenges with their distribution channels with the birth of the internet and as catalogers flock to their more standardized products. Distributors continue to fight profit margin issues as more suppliers jump into the commercial mail receptacle industry. Potential customers and clients find the commercial mailbox marketplace confusing and cumbersome. The USPS is battling red ink and fighting themselves over the best ways to solving their issues from a centralized pedestal mailbox perspective. It should be interesting to see how the marketplace and suppliers solve the 4C pedestal mailbox dilemma.

Is the 4C Pedestal Mailbox Better?4C pedestal mailbox

In the early 21st Century the Postal Service entered into postal licensing agreements with manufacturers that received certification for manufacturing cluster box units. The cluster box unit is currently the only USPS approved pedestal mailbox in the commercial mailbox industry. Cluster boxes provide the marketplace with standard configuration designs, high security, ease of mail carrier delivery of the mail, and durability. However, as the need for centralized mail receptacles grew the shortcomings of the cluster box units became apparent and were quickly pointed out by the marketplace. The main drawback of the cluster box was the inflexibility of mail receptacle configurations. In 2006, the USPS put into action USPS-STD-4C regulation which required 4C horizontal mailboxes to be used for wall installations for new construction and major renovations. The birth of the 4C mailbox brought additional product extensions of this type of commercial mail receptacle to the market. These product extensions brought a new commercial mail receptacle to the industry which today is called the 4C pedestal mailbox. This pedestal mailbox was the manufacturer’s response to the general public’s demand for a customizable pedestal mailbox to rival the cluster box unit. In many ways the manufacturers built a mail receptacle that has all of the qualities of cluster box but with more versatility.

Postal Service Still Rules the Roost

Will the 4C pedestal mailbox make the cluster box unit slowly obsolete? The answer to this question probably lies in the Postal Service’s reaction to this product in the industry. Currently, the USPS has chosen a passive response and done nothing concerning the 4C pedestal mailbox. However, this response has still left the 4C pedestal mailbox without the postal certification that the cluster box unit has. Therefore, the commercial mailbox buyers who wish to use the 4C pedestal mailbox must gain local USPS approval. Subsequently, it is safe to say that the 4C pedestal mailbox until it gains postal certification will not be replacing the cluster box unit soon.

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