Comparing Shed DesignsBy: Carports, Tents and Sheds Staff Writers
Sheds are not only utilitarian in nature, but they can offer aesthetic benefits to the exterior of your home as well. Shed designs come in many varieties, and before making the decision to buy or build one, there are a number of things you should consider.
Determine the Function
Determine what the purpose of your shed will be before you set out to design a shed. Sheds can be used as additional storage space for excess items that take up too much space inside the house. They can also be used to store outdoor equipment such as a lawn mower, bicycles and more. They can also serve as a workspace for hobbyists or artisans. Some shed designs are ideal for use as green houses or potting sheds. And of course, most types of shed design are ideal as storage for carpentry, automotive, gardening and other tools. You can also convert sheds into a home office, or even a fitness room or game room, if they’re large enough.
Understanding the intended functionality of your new shed will better help you select the proper shed design to best fit your needs.
Choose the Shed Design Style
The easiest shed design to put up is the gable style shed, followed by a clerestory style, with a saltbox style shed being the most difficult.
Gable sheds are distinct for the triangular sections of wall between the edges of a sloping roof. These are least used in hurricane regions as the roof can more easily be ripped off by the winds
Clerestory sheds are designed to allow more natural light into the space with the use of windows that are generally fixed in place, while still allowing them to be adjustable to regulate heat and ventilation.
A saltbox shed has a long pitched roof that angles down to the back. It has two stories in the front and one in the back. It is distinguished by its uneven sides and the low roof line in the back.
A gambrel shed has a two-sided symmetrical roof with slopes on each side. The upper slope is positioned at a shallow angle while the lower slope is quite steep, offering more space in the upper level.
Among the four types of shed designs, the gambrel offers the most space and is one of the best types of storage shed designs. For garden shed designs, on the other hand, the saltbox or clerestory styles are great choices because they offer a bit more decorative elements to your backyard.
When you are building a shed and laying out the best shed design for your needs, you should also consider some of the options and accessories you can include. For example, if you are planning to store large equipment, like ATVs or a small tractor, a large double door is recommended, as well as a sloping entranceway. For better accessibility, a door 60 inches wide or greater is advisable. Otherwise, a single door with a minimum width of 36 inches will suffice. If you are planning out a storage shed design, you should consider what will work best as far as shelving, utility bins and more. In executing any shed design, if you are planning on installing windows, smaller ones are usually recommended for your shed in general. But make sure to install ones that offer sufficient lighting and better ventilation.
The types of accessories and options you select will differ with different types of shed designs but should be considered when drawing up the initial shed design plans.
Buying Materials for Your Shed
Shed designs are just one part of the decision for your new shed, but you also need to choose from a variety of materials, like wood, plastic, aluminum and metal before you start the building or buying process.
Wood is a typical choice for a shed. A wooden shed can be as large as a garage or as small as a cabinet. It is the most used material for garden shed designs, because it blends in so well with the natural surroundings. To prolong its lifespan, use durable timber, such as cedar heartwood or pressure treated lumber which is less prone to decay. Alternatively, you may also apply paint or wood stain and a sealer to keep the wood protected.
Metal garden sheds also can be of any size, shape or color. They are popular because they are easy to install shed designs, require low maintenance and are less vulnerable to damages from pests like insects and rodents. Make sure to safeguard them against rust. Add windows and vents for better air circulation. This shed type is ideal for storing equipment or easily-combustible materials.
Plastic sheds are generally smaller in size and are often used in storage shed designs or tool shed designs. These sheds are typically bought pre-constructed and are cheaper than other shed designs, or they are bought in easy-to-install kits. Some are also modular, allowing for future expansion. Plastic sheds are less likely to overheat, mildew or rust.
An Eco-shed design is another alternative you can choose and is available in a wide range of specifications. They are usually made from green materials that have a low impact on the environment, while still being functional and durable.
Buy or Build?
If you are looking to save some money, then you may want to consider building your own shed rather than buying one. This will require some carpentry skills, as well as some patience, but to save you the troubles of figuring out from scratch exactly how to build the shed, you can either buy shed designs online relatively inexpensively (you may even find some shed designs free!), or you can use shed design software to lay out all of the dimensions, style elements and accessories you are interested in so that you can easily get the plans to build a shed exactly to your own specifications.