Updated: 24/07/2020

How to Care for Your Shed

Sheds are known to create issues over time with the wear and tear that is natural with being outdoors. The UK weather patterns are notorious for an increase in mildew, damp, discolouration of exterior wood paint, swelling or shrinkage of timber, seizing hinges, locks, doors, and windows, and an increase in mould. These issues cause serious health concerns like asthma, irritation, and allergies. The best way to combat these issues, and keep your garden shed accessible all year round, is by maintaining and caring for it regularly. 

It is natural to invest in a good quality garden shed. Good quality timber does not degenerate very quickly but needs constant maintenance and care. If you treat and look after your garden shed correctly, it will last for several years. This maintenance does not cost a lot and can be managed with a few annual improvements. 

Let us look at ways you can care for your shed. 

 

Check the Roof:

The roof is where maximum leakage occurs. Rainwater drips through the roof and trickles down onto the walls of the shed, causing an overgrowth of mould and damp. If you have leakages, you should immediately fix them up to avoid the roof rotting and falling through. Many shelters also have an increase in mould and moss. Invest in a good quality moss killer to help remove moss from the roof, and keep it clean and dry throughout the year. 

You might also find stray leaves and twigs that are caught up on the roof. These block the rainwater and cause pooling of water on the roof. Clearing out plant debris helps keep the roof tidy and clean. You should ideally clear the roof once a month to prevent excess twigs and leaves build-up. 

 

Preserve the Wood:

Regularly treating your garden shed with exterior wood paint and wood preserver will help increase the life of the timber. A good quality wood preserver helps the shed from weather abuse. Always use wood preservers once a year that help improve the life of the wood, and also help preserve the wood from rain, snow, heat, and direct sun rays. Since timber can slowly wither over time, a wood preserver helps keep the grains intact, while increasing the strength of the wood. 

Ideally, you should apply the wood preserver, allow it to dry, and only then apply exterior wood paint.

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This increases the longevity of the timber and allows the colour to catch on correctly. Before using the wood preserver, check the weather forecast for the day. Clear weather will help the preserver dry out quickly, allowing you to apply a second coat without any hassles. 

 

Shed Security: 

Taking care of the roof and increasing the shelf life of the wood is excellent, but irrelevant if you do not pay attention to the security of the shed. The security features of the shed like durable windows, shed locks, sturdy door frames and doors all matter while caring for the shed. It is widely known that most outbuildings in the UK are broken into far more often than the main residential houses. 

Shed locks should be extremely secure. Many people also use padlocks for shed security. You should remove any rot that is present on doors and windows since rotten wood is easy to break through. If the frames and panels are damaged, you should either fix them or get them replaced for additional security. 

 

Clear Debris:

Clearing the debris from the surrounding area helps prevent a build-up on fungus and mould. Most debris sticks to the walls of the shed, and causes damp and rot to set in quickly. Most sheds start crumbling due to the surrounding uncleared debris. Knocked over plants, dead leaves, twigs, branches, and misplaced water sprinklers, can all add to the hazard of the garden shed.

Since wood rot is a severe concern in the everchanging UK weather, it is best to ensure that the shed stays dry at all times. While many times this is unavoidable, it is possible to protect the shed as far as possible to keep it healthy and dry. Keeping the walls dry, and the area surrounding the shed clear is crucial in maintaining the health of the walls and timber. Airing out the shed, and clearing away overgrown plants also helps immensely in keeping the shed dry. Plants tend to clog the air surrounding the shed, and do not allow the shed to air out quickly, causing an increase in wood rot, mould, and fungus. They also prevent runoff of rainwater and increase water logging around the shed.

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