Once again, we are teaming up with WhatShed to help you make your allotment that extra bit better. There is a wonderful article on how to make wood last longer over at WhatShed that will come in very handy, but today we have joined forces to help you know what you need to do and what you need to look for to ensure that the wooden building you have in your allotment is going to give you many years of service and not look all rotten or haggard after just a few years.
Purchase A Pressure Treated Garden Building
You may think that a pressure treated garden shed is going to cost you an arm and a leg. But these days they are very affordable. Why would you want a pressure treated garden shed? Well, the wood has been pressure treated and this means that it is going to be able to stand up to the harsh winter conditions that our country has.
For example, you could buy something like this 6×4 Tongue & Groove Apex Pressure Treated Shed which is well under 400 pounds and it is made with pressure treated wood. You do not have to worry about treating this shed too often with wood preservative to protect it from the bad weather.
We all have the best intentions of giving our allotment sheds a coating of wood treatment once a year, but you would not be the first person to realize that one year has turned into three since you last treated it. Purchasing a pressure treated shed takes away the need for you to have to remember to treat it once a year.
Treat Your Shed On An Annual Basis
This ties into what we were just talking about. The fact is, usually it is a little cheaper to buy a shed that is not made with pressure treated wood. But if you do decide to do this, you have to be willing to take on the responsibility of treating the shed.
It will need to be treated shortly after construction and then in an ideal world, you will want to give it a fresh coating once a year. If you do this, rot and decay should not be an issue. However one thing that people overlook is the actual application of the wood treatment. This is not something you want to do a quick job on. You need to make sure you get in every nook and cranny so that the whole shed is well protected.
Do Not Forget To Check Your Windows
If you have a shed without windows this is not an issue. But as most sheds do have at least one window, you need to check that the window is properly sealed. It is one thing to paint your whole outer shed thoroughly, but if the windows are not properly made (which can happen if the shed is mass produced by a machine) and there is a little gap or area that the rain can sneak into. You may have problems with the inside of your shed or even your floor rotting if you do not catch it quick enough. Seal the windows with silicone, timber beading or anything that is going to make sure these windows are watertight.
Do Not Let Mother Nature Interfere With Your Shed
This may sound a little silly, but you would not believe how many allotment sheds have had their lives cut short because they had a tree branch touching them which ripped the roofing felt which then caused rain to get in and start a slow rot or even tree branches scratching off your wood treatment and again letting the rain penetrate and cause problems.
Even things like weeds and other plant life can grow around your shed and get inside which can cause small cracks and little areas that rain can get inside. If there are trees, bushes or anything else touching your shed, cut them back on a regular basis to help protect your shed.
Check Your Roofing Felt On A Regular Basis
If you look at any major garden building retailer you notice that many sheds use a similar kind of roofing felt. Now you can, of course, upgrade to get a thicker, more robust kind of roofing felt or even tiles if you want to have the fanciest shed in the allotment. But when it comes to bog standard shed roofing felt, it needs to be checked and it will need to be replaced.
If you do find a rip, crack or even a large tear, this needs to be fixed right away and it is best to replace a whole section rather than just trying to do a quick and easy patch job. One other thing to look for in regards to roofing felt is tacks. When you tack down the roofing felt, you are penetrating the shed roof. Make sure there is no rot around the areas that the tacks have come in. Tacks can easily come out in a bad storm and this gives rain somewhere to sneak into your shed.
Solid Foundations Are Essential For A Long Lasting Shed
Some people think that they can just throw their allotment shed anywhere in their allotment and it will be good to go. Actually, this is not the case and the importance of a solid foundation for your shed cannot be overstated. The reason for this is that first of all, you want your shed floor to not be directly touching the mud or grass underneath it. You can actually get sheds with pressure treated floor joists that can help prevent floor rot.
It is not just because of floor rot that we are suggesting you make sure the shed is solid from the ground. You see if the shed is not on a solid piece of ground, when you start adding weight by putting tools in the shed or even pottering around in the shed yourself, you can actually cause the shed to move if the foundation is not solid.
What is the big deal? Well, any movement can cause the shed doors to move and even drop. Have you ever noticed in an allotment that has lots of sheds, many will have doors that have large gaps at the top or at the sides? This is because the shed is not built on a solid foundation, of course, any open area on a shed is going to allow rain to get inside. This is also a security concern as well, a space to get a lever in and break into the shed.
Treat Your Shed With Care
The shed or other garden building that you have in your allotment should be treated with the same amount of care that you treat the food you are growing or the plants you are taking care of.
Do not just swing open the doors and throw your shovel in there or just drop dirty and wet things on the floor. If you treat your shed with the right amount of care and respect, you will be amazed at how much longer it lasts. Like anything else, if you abuse it and do not take care of it, you are going to have problems.