Top 3 Suitable Shed Foundations
Laying a proper shed foundation for your new outbuilding is the best way to ensure its longevity. Without a foundation, your shed may end up leaning over time, and can become unsafe. You've spent time choosing just the right style, colors, and features for your shed, so it only makes sense to protect your investment by laying a solid foundation.
Although placing a shed on the ground seems like an easy solution, there are a few reasons why this is inadvisable. First, if your shed is placed directly on the grass or dirt, it will be completely unprotected from moisture. Most yards will get fairly saturated, particularly after a good rain, and if your shed is placed directly on the ground, all that moisture will seep through the soil and soak the bottom of your shed. This can cause the wood of the shed to rot and deteriorate. By taking the time to prep the site for your new shed and lay a proper foundation, you can ensure it will last for many years.
Another reason proper shed foundation is important is that yards are rarely 100% level and flat. Sheds that do not have foundations and are instead built on just ground can lean and become unstable as they settle and shift over time (no one wants a Tower of Pisa in their backyard!). Setting a shed on an uneven surface is also risky because it can cause your shed doors and windows to stick and not open and close properly. Plus, it will affect the stability of your shed, potentially shortening its lifespan.
That’s why taking the time to really ensure you provide a suitable foundation for your shed is vital! Below are the top three most common shed foundations to consider:
Paver stones are the most popular choice for shed foundations since they are so easy and effective! Paver stones raise your shed’s runners up off the soil to help prevent rotting of the wood over time, while still providing a way to accommodate minor slopes or leveling dilemmas from an uneven yard. Plus, paver stones are very accessible and can be purchased at most hardware or home improvement stores and are relatively inexpensive.
We recommend using pavers at least 8” x 8” and 2” thick. The number of pavers needed is directly correlated to the length of your shed. If your shed is 16 feet long, then you will need 16 pavers.
Crushed stone is an easy solution for a shed base, and works well with small to medium sized sheds. We recommend that you level out a crushed stone base 4”-6” deep. Also, be sure to use “crushed” stone that packs well as opposed to “pea” stone. We also recommend making the gravel base 2′ wider and 2′ longer than the size of the shed, giving you 1′ extra on all sides. This helps to prevent dirt from getting on the sidewalls of the building, discourage pests, and prevent rot!
It’s also a good idea to make sure the stone is compacted. You can get a walk-behind compactor at most tool-rental companies, or even driving over the stone with your lawn mower will do the trick!
Concrete slabs are the strongest, most durable type of foundations for your shed. The biggest benefit to a concrete pad is that your shed won’t shift or settle. This is something to consider if you are planning on building a rather large shed or one that will be storing extra heavy equipment like tractors.
Plus, concrete is completely waterproof which is important if you are placing your shed in an area where the soil is prone to moisture.
As you can see, you have some options when it comes to selecting your shed foundation. You will need to choose what will work well for you, your yard, and your shed. Still not sure what option might be the best fit for you? Don’t worry, the team at Recreation Unlimited is here to help! Give us a call at (317) 773-3545 or come visit our Noblesville showroom where we have a variety of sheds on display.