1. Building the shed base
To make sure that your garden shed is level and sturdy it is important to take time to prep the base. Clear the site of your shed and level the ground before laying your chosen base. If you are working on a sloped site, consider putting posts into the ground to create a level area. Most shed bases use wooden beams on concrete or concrete slabs. If you decide to use wooden beams, make sure the beams are treated before they are set to avoid rotting or decay that could cause structural issues with your shed later on.
For wooden beam bases, attach the rim joists first to create the outer edges of your shed, and fix your floor joists across the length of these. Install a piece of blocking in between each floor joist to keep them in place. Now is also a good time to nail down plywood to form your shed floor.
Once you have set your base, mark along the edges to indicate where the wall studs will sit, this will make it easier to fit your wall panels so they are in line and square with the whole structure. Before you get started on your wall panels, use a spirit level to make sure that your base slabs are straight.
2. Building and fixing the wall panels
The next stage of building your garden shed is to build and secure the walls in place. If you are building the walls yourself, build each frame separately as they will not all be the same. Make sure to account for windows and doors when creating your wall frames, and ensure that your side walls are slightly sloped to allow rain to easily run off. Also, although your back wall and front walls may be very similar, make your back wall sits slightly lower to ensure rain does not collect on your roof.
Using timber beams, build the outer frame of your wall and support the shape with smaller timber studs vertically down the inside of your frame. As your back and side walls will be sloped, each stud will need to be a slightly different height. Mark the centre of each wall panel along the bottom edge to ensure that they are aligned when you put them up.
To fix the walls to your base, ask someone for help holding them up to ensure that your walls stay aligned when you nail them into place. Finish your walls with panelling or textured wood to create a smart finished look.
3. Building and fitting the roof
When making the plans for building your shed, you may have already decided what style of roof you would like to make. Two common roofing types for garden sheds are apex roofs with a central peak and pent roofs that have a single sloping edge. Building a shed roof can take a bit more time to get right, but it is important that you ensure it is done correctly so that your shed remains watertight.
If you are making your own roof, start by measuring and cutting your rafter boards to size. Once you have fitted the outer rafter boards to your walls, run a piece of string between them to use as a guide for keeping your other rafter boards centered. Nail in each board at an angle to secure the frame.
With the structure in place, apply a sheet of roofing felt, overlapping each sheet to prevent any water seeping into your shed. Now you can attach your chosen roofing material, some popular shed roofing choices include corrugated metal, shingles, rubber roofing or clay tiles. If you are using clay tiles, it is recommended that you consider a steeper pitch for your roof due to their weight.
4. Fixing the windows and door
Now it is time to bring your shed to life by fitting your door and windows. To fix your windows into place, first fit the plastic window sill, then from the inside of your shed, slot the glazing into the frame, fix with nails or screws and finish with plastic beading before peeling off the protective film to reveal your new window. If you have bought your windows pre-made, make sure to closely follow the manufacturers’ recommendations to keep your shed air and water tight.
Next, onto fitting your shed door. Before securing into place, first ensure that your door is aligned with the frame and is hanging straight so it can be easily opened and closed, even if the wood starts to expand or shrink with the weather. If you are making your own door, one easy and cheap method is to laminate two layers of timber boards together, ensuring the panels overlap at the corners for additional strength.
5. Painting, varnishing and finishing touches
Your new shed is now complete, and all that is left is to add the finishing touches of paint to give it some character, wood protectant to keep your shed looking smart all year round and some outdoor lights.
If you have any questions about our sheds or need more guidance building your own, browse our latest blog posts. We are always on hand to help with any shed or summerhouse related questions, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today.
We’d also be happy to build your shed for you! We’ve love creating bespoke garden buildings so be sure to explore our range of garden sheds.