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23 July 2019
Keeping your garden buildings protected from any extreme weather is important, not only to help keep the items inside safe, but also for the structure itself, making sure it lasts for many years to come. So while the weather is nice, we thought now would be the perfect time to look at waterproofing your shed.
Here are our 5 top tips on how to waterproof your shed:
Installing a Base
Waterproofing your shed should start from the ground up, and, if possible, even before you have erected the structure. Installing a sturdy base for your shed to sit on raises it off the ground, keeping it away from the damp soil as well as making sure the air is circulating. There are a vast range of wooden shed bases available, but make sure your choice is pressure-treated to ensure the base is more resistant to rot. Also, for large, heavy duty sheds, you will probably need to purchase a more substantial base made of concrete. Though be warned, concrete bases don’t allow air to circulate underneath so you might need to add floor bearers that sit on top of the concrete base to help the air flow.
Check Windows and Doors
Wooden frames around windows and doors need to be checked and maintained regularly to ensure they are keeping your shed as dry as possible. Wood can start to shrink over time, creating gaps and cracks, which allows water to seep in. Fill any holes with foam or caulking. Water can also cause wooden frames to rot which weakens the wood. Using a screwdriver, probe the wood to find any soft spots. These then need to be filled with wood filler before sanding and repainting.
You may also want to consider fitting a draft excluder around your door for extra protection and insulation.
Treat with Wood Preservative
Even if you purchased a pressure treated shed with a guarantee against rot, it is essential that you continue to treat your shed with a preservative treatment, annually. Whilst pressure treatment protects your garden structure against rot, insect infestation and fungus, this can lose its effectiveness over time. Therefore, topping up the treatment every year is a great way to ensure your shed is protected.
Both water-based stains and waterproof shed paint are good options as they dry quickly and help to keep dampness at bay. They are also a less toxic alternative to the more chemical, spirit-based stains.
Clear the Gutters
Blocked gutters cause huge problems. If water is unable to drain down the gutters, due to leaves and debris build-up, water will start to collect which can cause flooding. Regularly check your gutters, especially in the winter and autumn months, using a stepladder and removing any debris you find.
Check the Roof
Due to the constant, and often very heavy, downpours we experience in the UK, keeping an eye on the roof of your shed is vital. Any gaps or weaknesses will cause rain to penetrate the structure.
Regularly check your roof for signs of damage and general wear and tear. The edges of the roof and the ridge line are particular hot spots for issues, as well as areas where material has been nailed down.
Many roofs are covered in felt, which is easy to fix, simply requiring extra felt and sealant. Lift up the damaged area and spray below with the sealant, then apply the patch and press down to stick. If shingles are ripped, spray sealant on the lower surface of the rip and press together.
If the roof felt is badly damaged, you may want to consider replacing it entirely. You can choose to replace with felt again, or go for an alternative option, such as EPDM rubber sheeting, which is incredibly hardwearing and long-lasting.
Posted by Matt Jordan