So, have you decided to buy a storage shed and finally use the garage to park cars? Choosing a storage shed can be quite confusing. The market seems to have been flooded with barn builders and outlets claiming to be of the best quality and price. So who do you believe? We will try to give you some tips to look for in your search.
The construction of storage buildings varies from place to place. Any building can be made beautiful with a good paint job and inexpensive options. The real test of a well-made storage building is in the construction and the quality of the materials used. Here are some tips to look for when shopping.
Floor Systems – Since most storage sheds are designed to be in direct contact with the ground, make sure all floor construction is made from treated materials. Do not accept that the rails are treated only, all the floor joists and the floor deck must also be treated materials. Building codes in most areas require any lumber to be treated within 24 “of the floor. Many businesses build their sheds without joists and treated decks. Regular plywood or even OSB flooring is unacceptable.
Framing: Ask what the floor joists focus on. Any space between floor joists more than 16 “on center is a problem. Make sure all walls are framed with full 2 x 4 posts. I have seen 2 x 3 framed barns and although it may look good in showroom floor will one day be a problem. Does your barn have a ridge beam? A ridge beam is a structural member on top of the building that the rafters are framed from. Roadside lots offer buildings with a metal truss plate attached to both sides of the beam, without a structural ridge beam. Also pay attention to beam spacing. 2-foot center framing is always acceptable Layer clips are installed. This is a code requirement in most areas. Layer clips are small metal inserts that must be installed at the butt joints of the roof deck, between each joist, they are used for evi cause the platform to sag between the joists.
Roofing – Make sure your barn has gone over the roof sheeting. Many stables are sold without this protective base. In many cases it is sold as an option or a premium.
The drip edge is another essential item that many storage shed companies offer as an option. We consider this to be a very important feature. The drip edge is a small metal strip that sits over the edge of the roof deck and is made to prevent water from running under the shingles.
Ventilation: Almost all storage sheds come standard with metal gable vents, and they should! But many do not include a ridge vent. The purpose of the vents is to allow air to flow through the roof system and prevent premature deterioration of the shingles. Most storage sheds are not built with much or no overhang, which in your home allows air to flow through the attic space. A ridge vent becomes the only way, working with gable vents, to create this positive airflow through a storage shed roof system.
Cladding: The most common cladding is plywood cladding. This is fine and gives you the option to paint to your liking. In my opinion, the best storage shed siding is Louisiana Pacific’s smart panel siding. It is a structural grade composite laminate siding that has a life of 30 years. manufacturer’s guarantee. Plywood-backed siding is another option, but they lack the long-term durability of Smart panel siding. In my area, we’ve seen an influx of pressure-treated T11 coating, and while the thought is that pressure-treated coating should last longer, the product has virtually no warranties. My experience with the T11 treated is that within 2 years it will turn a very ugly gray color and will require painting. This will be difficult to paint. Another reason to avoid these plywood-backed siding is that since storage sheds are built relatively close to the ground, they tend to absorb moisture around the bottom edges and rot prematurely.
Doors: The first thing that gives you problems in a shed are the doors. Look for double frame doors. Inside and outside framed doors are less likely to warp. Also take a good look at the hinges. Often times, the service life of doors is related to the strength of the hinges.
Storage buildings are very useful and practical solutions and meet a variety of needs, but they are also an investment in your home and landscape. Do not accept low quality products. If you look around and compare a bit, you will find a quality building. Built with quality materials and properly maintained, your building will last a lifetime.