A shed is a small building, usually made of wood, used for storing things or sheltering animals. Sheds can be useful additions to your backyard or garden, but how do you choose the right one for your needs? Here are some factors to consider:
Size: The size of your shed depends on how much space you have available and what you want to store in it. You should measure the area where you want to place your shed and make sure it fits comfortably. You should also think about the height of your shed, especially if you plan to store tall items or work inside it.
Material: The material of your shed affects its durability, maintenance, and appearance. Wood sheds are the most common and offer a natural look that blends well with the surroundings. However, wood sheds can rot, warp, or attract pests if not properly treated. Metal sheds are durable and offer lots of protection from hazards such as fire, moisture, and pests. However, metal sheds can rust, dent, or fade over time. Plastic sheds are lightweight and easy to assemble, but they may not be as sturdy or attractive as wood or metal sheds.
Style: The style of your shed reflects your personal taste and preference. You can choose from a variety of styles, such as gable, gambrel, lean-to, saltbox, or barn. Each style has its own advantages and disadvantages in terms of storage space, roof design, and aesthetic appeal. You can also customize your shed with windows, doors, skylights, shelves, hooks, or ramps.
Price: The price of your shed depends on the size, material, style, and quality of your shed. You can find sheds at different price ranges, from cheap to expensive. You should compare different options and look for discounts or deals before making a purchase. You should also factor in the cost of delivery, installation, and accessories.
Choosing the right shed for your needs can be a rewarding and enjoyable process. By considering these factors, you can find a shed that suits your budget, space, and purpose.
How to Build a Shed
Once you have chosen the right shed for your needs, you may want to build it yourself. Building a shed can be a rewarding and satisfying project, but it also requires some planning, skills, and tools. Here are the basic steps to build a shed:
Determine the shed location: If possible, build the shed on ground that is within 6-inches of being level. Building a shed on a slope is more difficult and requires either a special foundation or for you to level the ground yourself. Avoid locating the shed at the foot of a hill or low-lying area where water collects. You should also check for any underground utilities or pipes before digging.
Build a foundation: There are several options for building a foundation for your shed. You can use concrete blocks, gravel pads, wood skids, or concrete slabs. Each option has its own advantages and disadvantages in terms of cost, durability, and ease of installation. You should choose the one that suits your budget, soil type, and shed size. For our example, we will use treated 6x6s on gravel as the foundation.
Complete the floor frame with joists and sheathing: Add floor joists every 16-inches on-center. Use treated 2x6s for the joists and attach them to the 6x6s with metal hangers or screws. Then cover the floor frame with treated 3/4-in. plywood sheets. Use nails or screws to secure the plywood to the joists.
Frame the walls: Cut the wall studs and plates from 2x4s according to your shed plan. Assemble the wall frames on the floor using nails or screws. Make sure the corners are square and the walls are plumb. Add window and door openings as needed. You can also add siding to the walls before you stand them up. Use OSB siding or any other exterior finish you prefer.
Frame the roof: Cut the roof rafters from 2x4s according to your shed plan. Assemble the roof trusses on the floor using nails or screws. Make sure the angles are correct and the trusses are symmetrical. You can also add sheathing to the roof before you lift it up. Use plywood sheets or any other roofing material you prefer.
Install the roofing: Lift the roof trusses and attach them to the top plates of the walls with nails or screws. Make sure they are evenly spaced and aligned. Then cover the roof with tar paper or any other underlayment you prefer. Use staples or nails to secure it to the sheathing. Then install the roofing shingles according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Start from the bottom edge and work your way up, overlapping each row by at least 4 inches.
Install the door and windows: Cut out the door and window openings from the siding using a jigsaw or circular saw. Then install the door and windows according to their specifications. Use hinges, screws, shims, caulk, and trim as needed. Make sure they are level and operate smoothly.
Paint or stain: Apply a coat of paint or stain to your shed to protect it from weather and insects. Choose a color that matches your house or complements your landscape. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application and drying time.
Congratulations! You have built your own shed. Now you can enjoy using it for storage, shelter, or whatever purpose you have in mind.