Shed Advice

  1. Top 5 Summer houses and garden offices

    Looking for something a little special to add to your garden? Well, we have a diverse range of Log Cabins and summer house designs for you to choose from.

    There is a growing trend for people to work from home or for people to move their businesses home. By using a Log Cabin or Summer House, you can maintain the separation between your working and home lives. Equally, some of our larger Log Cabins are perfect for use as a home gym or extra living space.

    Our top 5 Log Cabins and Summerhouses:

    Aurora Dome Summerhouse with windows10x8 Aurora Dome Summerhouse - £1,079.99 (was £1,399.99)

    This summer house has plenty of double glazed windows which provide a light, airy and comfortable environment. The contemporary design is great from the outside and in and has a 10-year anti-rot guarantee.





    Helston Summerhouse with windows7x6 Helston Summerhouse - £479.99 (was £519.99)

    This smaller summer house wouldn't look out of place on a beach and has big windows for you to admire your garden from. The dip-treated timber protects the wood and has a 10-year guarantee against rot and fungal decay.





    Henley SummerhouseHenley Summerhouse - £1,799.99 (was £2,599.99)

    This graceful hexagonal summerhouse features a glazed door and windows to flood the interior with natural sunlight. The tongue and groove boards are pressure-treated and are guaranteed against rot for 15 years.






    4x3m Virginia Log Cabin with windows 4x3m Virginia Log Cabin - £1,999.00 (was £2,949.99)

    The elegant Virginia log cabin would look great in any garden. The clock-tower-style peak is an amazing feature. The double-glazed windows produce a light and airy atmosphere and retain heat in winter – making this a usable space all year round. Mortise locks and window fasteners are fitted for added security.





    5.5x4m Charentes Log Cabin with windows 5.5x4m Charentes Log Cabin - £3,499.00 (was £4,849.99)

    With almost 20 square metres to play with, this is a truly spacious addition to your living space. Perfect to house your home gym or office. The thick log walls and double-glazed windows and doors offer a comfortable environment throughout the year.

    Looking for something a little special to add to your garden? We have a diverse range of Log Cabins and summer house designs for you to choose from.

    There is a growing trend for people to work from home or for people to move their businesses home. By using a Log Cabin or Summer House, you can maintain the separation between your working and home lives. Equally, some of our larger Log Cabins are perfect for use as a home gym or extra living space.



    * Please note: Prices correct at time of publishing, prices can go up and down so please check the current value before purchase.


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  2. Top 5 Garden Storage Solutions

    Choosing the right garden storage solution can be a task in itself. If you've out grown your humble garden shed, you might want to consider a smaller garden storage chest or tool store? These are easily secured and provide the storage space you need. Here are our top 5 favourites to help you decide which is best for you.

    Our Top 5 Storage Chests, Trunk & Tool Stores:

    Wooden overlap Garden Chest Overlap Garden Chest - £73.99 (was £84.99)

    This compact wooden storage chest is great for the smaller gardens and features a hinged lid for easy access to its contents. With a capacity of 25 cubic feet, there is plenty of room for garden chairs and the odd tool.

    Wooden overlap Maxi Garden Wall StoreOverlap Maxi Garden Wall Store - £139.99 (was £167.99)

    The larger and taller Maxi Garden WallStore is idea for storing large lawn mowers and garden tools. Thedouble doors provide easy access to larger items and although spacious, this storage unit has a modest footprint.

    Plastic Large Plastic Storage ChestLarge Plastic Storage Chest - £74.99 (was £84.99)

    Constructed from heavy duty plastic this garden chest is both durable and waterproof. The built-in wheels and handle allow you to easily relocate the chest, even when full. There is enough storage space to house all your tools or garden blankets and pillows.

    White Tall Plastic Garden StoreTall Plastic Garden Store - £199.99 (was £249.99)

    Similar to the Maxi Garden Wall Store,this plastic garden store provides ample room for a lawn mower plus all your garden tools. The full length double-doors give you total access to the items stored within.

    Overlap Tool Store with Tools Inside Overlap Tool Store - £99.99 (was £129.99)

    This tool store has a small footprintand is ideally place against a wall or shed and provides extra securable storage for all your garden tools. The handy shelf allows you to separate out smaller items so as they can be more easily accessed. The timbers are all sourced from FSC approved suppliers.

    Choosing the right garden storage solution can be a task in itself. If you've out grown your humble garden shed, you might want to consider a smaller garden storage chest or tool store? These are easily secured and provide the storage space you need. Here are our top 5 favourites to help you decide which is best for you.

    To secure your expensive garden tools and mowers:

    Basic Security Kit in a box Basic Security Kit - £29.99 (was £39.99)

    You have your garden storage unit, now you need to think about keep the items within secure. This security kit features a PIR detector and alarm as well as a Yale branded padlock and fixings.






    * Please note: Prices correct at time of publishing, prices can go up and down so please check current value before purchase.

    If your garden isn't quite big enough for a shed, take a look at our video below and find out more about the small storage range we have to offer:

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  3. Garden shed security tips

    When thinking about buying garden sheds, there are several things which can affect security aside from your choice of shed. You may think that by ordering a security shed, you don’t need to worry about the safety of whatever is inside. Yes, a ‘security shed’ with no windows is one of the more secure options, but there is a lot more to consider.

    Garden sheds can contain valuable assets and criminals are very aware of this. Whether your shed is used as a bike shed, to store garden furniture or a lawn mower, you should look into keeping your possessions secure and out of sight.

    There is no use in buying a shed, plonking it at the end of the garden, loading it with gear and not thinking about the protection of whatever is inside. If you spend three figures on a garden shed and cheapen out on a padlock or alarm, you may as well not bother with a shed in the first place. Here are a few pointers in the right direction to give your shed the security it deserves…

    Securing your shed

    Start by securing access to your garden. This is not always possible, but for those that have gates ensure a decent lock is installed. Hedges and fences also provide effective barriers, while gravel is noisy to walk over so can also be a good deterrent.

    Location

    The location of your shed can be as important a factor as any. Put yourself in the position of the thief: they are looking for a shed which is unlikely to be seen by you or your neighbours who may come calling. Positioning your shed near the house is recommended, simply to make it easier to see a potential thief. Having the shed on show to those around you may seem risky, but this is a great way to deter burglary – the more neighbours or even street bystanders that can spot a theft, the less likely the chance of one happening in the first place. By locating the shed properly, a thief is likely to discard your property and move on.

    Windowless/security sheds

    The obvious benefit of a shed without windows, in terms of security, is the fact that your valuables will not be on show. As well as this, there is that fact that either a styrene or glass window is the most fragile and penetrable component. Our security sheds are all constructed with overlap cladding, the thickest and generally the strongest type. The real benefit of this range is their physical construction and lack of view inside – but they are at their best when complemented with security accessories detailed below.
    If you don’t have a windowless shed and you are concerned about your tools being on show, you can place some blinds or a curtain over the window to obscure the view. For fixings which look a little flimsy, many of them are easy to beef up – screws are usually better off replaced by large nuts and bolts. The easiest methods are often the most effective!

    Padlocks and alarms

    If the sheer value of your belongings is your main worry, fixing on the biggest, scariest padlock - or possibly more than one padlock - could well be the giveaway that there is something inside worth stealing. Therefore, the best padlocks do their job efficiently without drawing attention.

    An alarmed padlock, such as the ones we stock, makes sure that any burglar doesn’t have a chance to stick around should they penetrate the lock. The benefit of the Security Alarm Padlock (£17.99) is that its small size can deceive the thief into thinking that it is easily dismantled, whereas the thick casing, not to mention the extremely loud alarm sound, make the lock a formidable defence.

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  4. Power your Shed with a Solar Power Station

    Our environmentally friendly solar panels for sheds will save you money

    During last years 'shed of the year' contest, we were particularly impressed with Kevin Holland's Solar Shed entry, which supported eight 250 W solar panels. If you want to emulate this great shed, we have some great solar power products to get you (most of the way) there.

    Solar Panel Solar power stations

    We now have several solar power station systems so that you can easily supply electricity to your garden building, without having to pay for an electrician to lay a power line. These systems have the advantage of providing bill-free electricity without impacting on the environment.

    In the UK it is best to mount these solar panels on a south facing shed roof panel, ideally at a steep 60° angle. If your shed or garden building isn't orientated to allow this, these panels can be placed on a wall or platform. Be aware that the further north you are, then less solar energy will get to you, so you may need more cells – especially during Winter. But what can you use these solar cells for?

    Garden Workshops

    If you are thinking of powering low-power fluorescent lighting and power tools from your inverter, you could get away with installing a 80 W solar power plant. This is because these tools are only used for a few minutes at a time. You could even run a digital radio while you work.

    Log Cabins and Summerhouses

    Should you wish to run a TV with a games console and a few fluorescent lights for up to 4 hours a day, you could opt for out 120 W solar panel system. This system is also great for running a PC for a couple of hours or charging your laptop.

    Your Garden Office in a Shed or Log Cabin

    Our 150 W solar panels are ideal for use in you garden office. The solar panels should provide enough power to run a fax, printer or even a laptop (charging for 4 hours a day) as well as fluorescent lighting each day.


    During the darker Winter months you may need to invest in more solar panels to achieve the same power levels. If you wanted to run your under floor heating system off of solar panels you will need at least 450 W (3 x 150 W system).

    Man inside a shed Internal lighting powered by solar PV cells

    We now have some great internal lighting systems to keep your log cabin, shed or garden office lit for at least 7 hours a day. The best part is that the whole system is quick and easy to install, without the need for an expensive electrician.

    Solar powered light on a wall External lighting for your shed

    We have several external lighting options which are activated with either a PIR sensor or by remote control. These are a great deterrent against unwanted visitors and is especially useful considering that theft from the garden is on the increase.

    Be sure to check out the outdoor lighting that we have to offer to help brighten up your garden.

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  5. Why would I want to maintain my shed? Surely they just look after themselves?

    Man with old shed

    The humble garden shed – highly functional, Tardis-like in its storage abilities, holder of all your clutter and a great retreat for Dad.

    Old shed with overgrown vines We invest a lot of money in our garden sheds and just expect them to last forever, often we neglect their basic maintenance. This is a false economy, maintaining your shed take little effort or time but could result in your shed lasting 20 years or more!

    So it makes perfect sense to keep your shed in good order.

    Getting it right from delivery of your shed

    All of our sheds and garden buildings require you to prepare a suitable level base onto which they can be built. Without a solid base, your garden building, which you have invested in, could subside and become damaged. Firstly, you must clear the area of rubble and detritus – any decaying organic matter could lead to fungal or rot damage to the timbers of your shed etc.

    You should make your hard-standing from concrete, level paving slabs, timber decking (great for log cabins) or even one of our timber or plastic base kits. If using decking or paving slabs, in time these can become uneven with ground movement or decay. It's worth checking under you sheds, periodically.

    Once you have a base in place, you can begin building your garden building. Sometimes it makes sense to place a plastic membrane between the bottom of your shed and the hard-standing – especially when using timber decking. At the very least, it's worthwhile coating the bottom of your garden building with a preservative coating.

    Once built, you should ensure that the grass or foliage around the perimeter of your shed, or garden building, is cut back. Allowing plants to grow close to a shed's walls could lead to damp and decay. Equally, it is best not to store your bags of peat, soil or mulch against the walls of your garden building.

    Hinges and key locks are often overlooked. These should be sprayed with a water-repellent lubricant, especially before winter.

    Keeping an Eye on your Shed Roof

    Damaged shed roofThe roof of your shed is most likely protected from rain by a layer of mineral felt. This can tear or become damaged during heavy storms. You should examine your shed roof periodically, particularly after storms and patch up any torn or damaged areas. You may also check inside your shed for evidence of leaks or damp. Generally, roof felt lasts at least 5 years – once your shed is around this age you should consider re-felting your shed's roof. If left, water could accumulate which will lead to rot and premature decay.

    Another way to protect your shed is to attach guttering. This helps to channel water away from the perimeter of your shed or into a water-butt. The stops the ground around your sheds base becoming waterlogged, which can lead to subsidence or rot.

    If you think your shed needs new felt adding to its roof, take a look at our video below to learn how to do it.

    Protecting your Shed's Timber

    Wooden shed wallOur sheds either have overlap or tongue and groove cladding, which is superior and better and keeping the elements out. The timbers can also be dipped or pressure-treated. If dip-treated you will still need to apply a protective coating at regular intervals.

    If you have a log cabin, you will need to treat the timbers within a week of assembly. The logs are not treated at the factory so as to make it easier to install.

    By maintaining your garden building properly, you can enjoy it for many years to come. So don't neglect your shed, they need a little attention from time-to-time...

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  6. How to paint a shed

    With Spring here, your focus shifts from the housework to the garden. Painting and Treating your Garden Sheds is an annual thing for most shed owners. Painting your garden sheds is not a strenuous activity and it can bring the family together, but remember, wear some tatty clothes!

    Your Shed is your shed! The colours they can be are endless. You don’t have to stick to one colour, it is entirely up to you.

    Preparation - Before painting your shed, grab yourself a wet cloth and wire brush and remove any dirt, moss or muck from the shed so you have a clean surface to paint. This way you will keep the layer fresh and not miss any patches. Apply masking tape to any edges, window frames and hinges so that you do not spoil the metal. If your shed is on a timber base, we also advise that you lay down a dust sheet to stop any splodges of paint on the surface.

    Priming - Next, apply a generous amount of primer to the entire shed, this way a coat is created stopping paint being absorbed into the wood and requiring several coats. Leave the primer to dry before attempting to paint. We have primer available which will also create a protective layer on your shed here – http://www.buyshedsdirect.co.uk/garden-sheds/timber-treatments/. Any questions you have will be gladly answered, contact us at 0844 248 9865.

    Painting – Take your brushes or paint sprayer and start to paint the outside of the shed in a vertical motion swaying up and down, applying a fair coat. We advise you start by painting the vertical panels and then move onto horizontal panels and plinths where more intricate painting is required. We suggest applying one thin first coat to avoid any dripping and splodges. Once you have given your garden sheds a coating, wait for it to dry then go over once again to create a fair and even coating. Once you have finished the outside and are happy, remove the masking tape and touch up any final bits that you may have missed and voilà!

    Paints are available from all garden stores, ask an employee if you have any questions.

    Depending on how you want your shed to look, choose a type of paint that will offer the finish you want.

    Spruce up your garden sheds this year with a quick paint, it really does impress.


    If you still need to build your shed, take a look at our video below to find out how to do it, and then paint it following the tips are given above.

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  7. How to build a shed base on uneven ground

    When purchasing a shed, you firstly need a base. For most people, that is no issue due to a flat garden. However, some gardens are not always flat and have gradients, that’s when installing shed bases becomes a little trickier.

    If you want to find out how to make shed bases or what bases are best, please click here.

    From experience, the simplest way to build shed bases on uneven ground it to use a foundation of blocks, ideally concrete. This way, to compensate for higher or lower ground on one side you can add or remove blocks to make a level base.

    Tools Required -
    Spade
    Measuring tape
    Masonry Blocks
    Pea Gravel
    Treated Timber Planks
    Marking posts
    ribbon

    Firstly, start by marking out how big your shed is, this way you can be accurate as to where to place blocks. Use posts and position in the square using ribbon to keep in line.

    Take your spade and gently dig the top layer attempting to get the ground as flat as possible. Clear any excess soil to one side. Now, take a measuring tape and measure 4 rows of 3 blocks, this will create efficient weight distribution.
    Underneath each block, dig approximately 2 inches wider than your blocks and around 6
    inches deep and fill the hole with pea gravel until it gives a flat surface. The pea gravel acts as a water distribution method but maintains vigour.

    Take your timber planks and place it along the rows of blocks and measure how flat it is. From there you can add or remove blocks If there is a serious height issue. If its a matter of minor size difference, grab some pieces of shingle and place underneath the timber post until its completely level. Continue to do this until all 4 posts are level and level with each other.

    Once you are happy that your shed base is level, you can continue to place your shed base on top. Start from one end and nail or screw the base on top of your timber panels, This will produce a rigid and sturdy overall base for you the place your shed on top of.

    Without a flat surface, your shed will not be able to function properly and can break, damaging you and your items inside and also, your wallet.

    Discover how to build a wooden shed base by watching our video below

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  8. How to dismantle a shed

    Whether your shed has come to its end and needs to be dismantled and disposed of or you need to move your shed to a different location in your garden, today we will be running through how to dismantle a shed safely. Each shed will be different to dismantle but following a general rule you will have it down in no time, reverse the build process.

    When dismantling your shed you will face 4 major problems.

    • Fixtures and screws/nails have rusted. 
    • Parts to heavy to remove yourself. 
    • Broken glass/rotting timber.
    • Disposing of the debris.

    When your shed is delivered, unless you have paid for assembly you will have to undertake self-assembly to build your shed. Instructions are always supplied and are heavily detailed using pictorial diagrams to make it as easy as possible. In the case that your shed is still in great condition but you need to move it for some reason, the best way is to grab out the instruction manual and follow it backwards. This is a really easy way to dismantle a shed as you follow the assembly guide which is designed to help build your shed the safest and easiest way.

    In most cases, the reason you need to dismantle your shed is to remove it from your garden. When sheds start to fall apart from rot and other damage it may become tricky to remove the shed safely.
    The first thing to do is to assess the shed overall if there is an obvious hazard then try to remove that first.

    Windows and doors are the best place to start, you do not want a heavy door falling on you or a window smashing which will increase the clean up time. Use a crowbar to levy the windows frame of the shed which should be easy, if your window is cracked grab a big painters sheet and wrap it up to prevent cutting yourself. The door will be easy to remove too using a crowbar, start by applying pressure to the frame and it should slip straight off.

    Next will be the roof. The roof is the largest component to the shed and most likely to have rotted. Start by ripping off any felt to see where you are going to start. Using either a screwdriver or crowbar again, remove any attaching screws and then pull the roof off. This can take more than a few sets of hands and it can be a heavy item to remove so its always helpful to have some help. The roof is responsible for the stability of the walls so be careful that walls do not immediately fall down.

    The sheds walls will be the final break down. If you need to add temporary supports then use timbers that can be dug into the ground to support the walls whilst you break the others down. Either prize the walls apart and then remove them with a crowbar or if it's a newer shed unscrews the fixtures.

    Once your shed is dismantled and parts are dotted around the garden you can either dispose of the shed or if some parts can be re-used then that’s up to you.


    If you are dismantling a shed that needs to be re-built remember to be very careful and use a claw hammer to remove nails and then gently force off the parts rather than breaking them apart.

    Check out our range of sheds on offer at the moment if you need to replace your dilapidated shed.

    Remember your safety is first. Be conscious and careful at all times and use a good range of tools to dismantle the shed.


    More information and photo credits -
    http://www.ehow.com/how_5161723_dismantle-shed.html
    http://www.secrets-of-shed-building.com/dismantling-a-shed.html

    If you want to know how to rebuild your shed after you have moved it, take a look at our video below.

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  9. How to build a shed base with paving slabs?

    Paving slabs are an excellent way of creating a solid foundation, able to keep a shed stable through its entire life. Sheds require a stable base in order to keep its solidarity. Their are many different shed bases you can make or even purchase however paving slabs are one of the simplest and easiest.

    Before you carry on reading, if creating a shed base isn’t the choice for you, head over to our site to check out the wooden shed bases you can add on to your order to make life easier.

    The first thing you will want to do is to clear any vegetation from the area that your shed will reside. Collect up the rocks and stones as well as bits of plants and roots, anything that may cause uplift and make it easier for the slabs to be placed.

    Peg out the size of your shed using string and pegs, giving 20cm extra and start shoveling the top layer of soil, digging down around 2.5inchs (6cm) deep. This will provide enough depth in order to create a flat surface ready for slabs to be placed.

    A mixture of sand and cement (1 part cement to 8 parts of sand) is then placed inside the dug out square. Using a rake, you can evenly distribute the sand to the point visually it looks level. You can use a spirit level to try get the layer as even as possible.

    Taking your paving slabs, start from one corner and use a rubber mallet to hammer down the slab to get it as even as possible. Using the spirit level, you can work out and get the slab perfectly flat, adding more sand if needed underneath the slab until its perfect. The slabs need to be just above the ground layer, this way rain water is encouraged to drain below. Once you have placed all the slabs needed, brushed off the excess mix and checked all the slabs to make sure they are flat, you can go ahead with the shed placement.

    Now you have your shed base, the Shed can be built and placed on top of the base, creating the even foundation needed to keep the shed stable.


    If you want to know how to build a wooden shed base, take a look at our video below for detailed instructions.

    Remember to check out the shed bases we have on offer at Shedstore.

    Image reference:- Square Patio Slab | RONA. www.rona.ca

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  10. Soundproofing a shed for drums!

    There are a few ways you can go about how to soundproof a shed for a drum kit. If you have no budget then we advise that you approach a specialised company who can soundproof your shed for you. But where is the fun in that?

    Soundproofing your shed is a fun project that will enable live sessions all year round. You will never fully soundproof your shed however you can greatly reduce the sound escaping the shed, even if you are on a budget.

    This is an example that will not break the bank but will greatly reduce sound output.

    Flooring –

    Believe it or not but sound even escapes through the floor. To reduce this find some old carpet and tack it down like any other carpet. This will reduce vibrations and escaping sound. If you want a more professional look, get yourself some rubber gym mats that interlock together. You will have to cut sections down in order to cover the entire floor however this will visually give you a better finish and still reduce sound output.

    Walls -

    Depending on budget, this is the biggest factor when soundproofing your shed.

    First of all, if you can afford it, lots of music stores will sell an acoustic foam which are big squares of insulation that have sticky backs and can be stuck directly to a wall. If they are too expensive for you, ordinary insulation foam can be used and this will still reduce output but not as well as the specialised materials.

    In order for you to do this, you will have to essentially build another shed inside your shed. To do this is very easy. Take your rolls of insulation and tack it to the pre-existing wall. From there you will use plasterboard and screw it to the beams on the existing shed wall. This will insulate the shed and reduce the amount of noise escaping. Noise escapes through the screw fittings so assess the wall and use as few screws as possible whilst maintaining a safe build.

    Rock Wool is a great insulator and is around £4 a roll in DIY stores.

    If you want to add even more protection then text your family to save all the egg boxes and gradually you can cover the walls which will again reduce output and cost next to nothing!

    Windows -

    Windows can be one of the biggest problems when it comes to escaping sound. Especially older sheds, windows will be a thin layer of glass. All DIY stores have plastic sheets that you can glue to your window and this essentially doubles up the glass and makes it tougher for sound to escape. For opening windows make sure the rubber seal is still in good condition and if not replace it as this will lead to lots of escaping air and therefore more escaping sound.

    Door -

    The door on your shed is probably the leading factor for escaping sound when it comes to a shed. Most shed doors will have no rubber seal and air and sound can escape through the tiny gap between the frame and door. A cheap way to fix this is to attach plastic around the door so that when it shuts it covers the gap between the frame and door. Another better solution is to add a rubber seal, trapping and preventing sound from escaping. Key locks should have covers as again sound can escape.

    Roof -

    We advise that you to the same as the walls when it comes to the roof. Instead of plasterboard use plywood instead as it is a lot lighter but will keep the insulation in place. Again cover the outer section in egg boxes or acoustic foam as this will reduce sound escaping.

    When it comes to how to soundproof a shed for a drum kit, as long as you take the necessary steps to close all gaps and cover walls, you will find that any loud music will be massively reduced. If you have a long garden and your shed is at the end then it sometimes means that you can never hear the drumming from your house and therefore neither can your neighbours. Maintaining a good relationship is essential to living a stress-free life and by soundproofing your shed you will gain your neighbours respect.


    Take a look at the garden sheds we have to offer here.

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