Buyers Guide

It's not every day you buy a shed, we believe that knowing what to look for, how to spot quality and the difference between cheap and value for money is vital.

Our guide below tells you everything you need to know....

Cladding

Cladding

A vital component in the build of a shed is the cladding. There are many options available, all with differing quality and price. By far the best way to produce a 'cheap' shed, is to use cheap cladding.

Budget cladding is often referred to as 'overlap'.  The timber used is fast grown spruce and identified by its texture being rough.  This timber is fencing grade, it often suffers from warping, distortion and knot holes. The overlap design is used to allow water to simply run off.

Low grade shiplap is manufactured using fast grown pine, it will appear identical to other shiplaps but does not usually lock together with a tongue and groove.  As it is fast grown, it will often suffer with knot holes from new and after it has been erected.  The shiplap is not locked together and can bow apart leaving gaps as well as knot holes.  Often the quality is too poor to be able to machine the tongue and groove into the timber.  Thickness of this vary from 9mm upwards.

Quality Shiplap should be machined as a tongue and groove so it interlocks. It should go through quality control to identify knot holes and reject them - it is still possible to have them, but rare.  The shiplap forms a structural part of the shed integrity and should be good quality.

Framing

Framing

The framing used in the build of a shed should be in proportion to it's size, purpose and quality - a taller, larger shed with heavy duty cladding would normally use a heavier duty frame.  However, some budget manufacturers will use a heavy duty framing as standard - this is often but not always because a budget cladding is being used and more strength is needed in the frame. It is cheaper to make a shed with bigger framing and low quality cladding than good quality cladding with the correct size framing. Shed framing should be fit for it's purpose !

Eaves

Eaves

The Eaves height of a shed - corner height should be a height of approximately 1.65m and above on apex sheds and 1.75m or above on Pent roof sheds. This ensures sufficient head room is achieved inside the building. Lower than this does however save cladding costs in manufacturing, and compromises the practicality of your shed.

Doors, Floor, Roof

Doors, Floor and Roof

The Roof, Floor and Doors of a shed, materials and design are absolutely vital for the life expectancy of your shed. The roof is subject to the elements, the floor from ground moisture and the doors are under stress by being hinged on one side. In most cases a shed that has reached the end of it's life will have failed in one, two or all three of these areas.

The roof and floor should be manufactured from timber, ideally that used for cladding and of sufficient thickness. Sheet materials do not have the same integrity and often will expand and contract significantly with moisture. The floor should be on runners to keep it clear of the ground, and the shed must be placed on a level surface to avoid undue stresses in the structure of the building.

Doors should have a frame on the inside in full - sides, top and bottom, between this frame diagonal braces that meet the frame should be placed - these take the stress of the hinge effect rather than the cladding. The framing should also be manufactured to accept the lock assembly, door furniture and additional bolts etc. We always advise customers to never compromise the quality of door, floor or roof with cheap materials and design.

The content of this guide are solely the views of Warwickshire Sheds and are for guidance only.