Are Metal Sheds Any Good

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Are you thinking that maybe a shed may be the answer to the clutter which is taking up space in your house? Are you on a budget? Then you may be considering purchasing a metal shed. But just because they are cheap, does this mean they aren’t any good? The answer may just surprise you.

So, are Metal Sheds Any Good? Metal sheds are the perfect answer to your storage needs if you are looking for something inexpensive, long-lasting, and easy to maintain. They are also easy to assemble and move to a new location when you do.

Although a metal shed may be the solution to your storage needs, there are certain reasons a metal shed may not be for you. Keep reading to learn more about the benefits and facts of metal sheds.

Are Metal Sheds Any Good For What I Need

If you want to get a shed there are a few things you must consider before you make that purchase. In some ways a metal shed trumps a vinyl or wooden shed, and in other ways it falls short.

As with anything metal, its prone to rust, and although most metal sheds are pre-treated, there is a good chance the elements will eventually win the fight. Depending on the quality of the shed this may be soon or in a few decades. If you live in a particularly wet area then this may be something you consider more.

On the flip side, If you live in a more wooded area, where those pesky critter will chew through anything, then a metal shed will be the perfect solution.

Whichever shed you decide upon, you’ll always need to check if a permit is needed for where you live – a permit will largely be decided on the size of the shed and its intended use. If you are intending on a very large shed ideal for a second office space or perhaps one that’s attached to your house then you will probably be needing one, on the upside, it might even increase your property value if done correctly.

Let’s check out some of the benefits compared to the negatives associated with a metal shed before we expand on further.

Benefits of a metal shedDisadvantages of metal sheds
Good value for moneyDifficult To Modify
Low maintenance upkeep Rust And Corrosion
Weather-resistant Can Be Flimsy
Longer warranty Appearance
Solid poured foundation not always needed
Quick to build and move when needed
Fireproof shed
Critters won’t chew and destroy the shed

The Pros of Having A Metal Shed

There are so many good reasons to have a metal shed, the majority of which are outlined below.

Value

Metal is a very affordable shed material, making these sheds a great choice if you are on a budget. In most cities, a nice metal shed will cost around $300 or less, depending on the size of the shed that you are looking to buy. The average individual can assemble a metal shed all on their own, or with a small amount of help. This means you don’t need to hire any additional labor to get your shed set up either.

Low Maintenance

Metal sheds require very little maintenance, which is surprising because they tend to last a long time. And the issues that metal sheds do have, are usually small and require that you do very little on your end.

Metal greenhouse can even be insulated using the correct materials, find out more on how to insulate a shed

Weather Resistant

If you live in an area with extreme temperatures, rain, or snow, you may be worried about the impact the weather will have on the shed you are planning to build. The good news is, metal sheds are the most weather-resistant, they won’t warp in either the high heat or the cold. They can also be built to withstand extremely windy conditions.

Longer Warranty

Because of their durability, metal sheds tend to come with a longer warranty period than any other style of shed. This is an especially nice feature if you are worried about the quality of your metal shed. Most warranties for metal sheds last 10 or even 20 years.

No Foundation Required

Another nice feature of metal sheds is that they typically do not require a concrete foundation, and if you already have a flat spot in your yard, you can purchase a metal foundation with the shed. This saves on money, as hiring someone to pour cement can be extremely costly.

That said, its never a good idea to simply just place any shed directly on grass but having a base that raises the shed above the ground might be all is required.

Easy to Assemble/Move

The best part about metal sheds is that they usually come in pre-cut kits that are very simple to build and set up yourself. You may need a few simple tools such as a drill or screwdriver, but otherwise, the instructions for these sort of sheds tend to be straightforward. This process can typically be accomplished in under a day and isn’t a massive project to fret over. And if you find out you need to move to a new location, or maybe you don’t like where you originally built your shed, metal sheds are lightweight and easy to move. This makes them ideal for a home where permanent shed installation is not possible.

No Fire Hazard

You may be considering building a shed to store flammable items such as those which use gasoline to run. The nice thing about having a metal shed as opposed to one which is made of wood is you won’t have to worry about the possible fire hazard as metal can withstand extreme temperatures. This may be especially important to you if you live in an area where fires are a common problem.

No Critters

If you live in an area that is heavily forested, or prone to bugs such as termites, a metal shed is less likely to attract these animals. This is because the metal is much less habitable than a shed which is made of a material such as wood. Small animals, such as mice and squirrels, are also much less likely to find a hiding place in the walls of a metal shed.

The Cons Of Having A Metal Shed

Although there are lots of good reasons to purchase a metal shed, they aren’t for everyone, and there are some downsides to having one.

Difficult To Modify

Unfortunately, the hard part about having a metal shed is that it is difficult to modify. This means if you don’t buy the exact shed you want; you probably won’t be able to change anything. They can be changed, however, but it generally requires a lot of expertise and welding tools, which can be very expensive and defeat the purpose of buying a metal shed in the first place.

Rust And Corrosion

Above it was mentioned that metal sheds needed very little maintenance, and part of this is because when metal sheds start to have problems, such as rust and corrosion, there is nothing you can do to fix it. Rust is especially bad, and if your shed does start to show signs of it, it will eventually eat all the metal until there is nothing left. And once this happens, your only option is to get a new shed, as your current shed will not be salvageable.

rust-shed-wall

Can Be Flimsy

There are a wide variety of metal sheds on the market, and a number of them are made using very thin and inexpensive metal. This could lead to a shed that is easily damaged or destroyed by the elements. You can help mitigate this by spending a little extra money to ensure you get the best quality metal that you can when you purchase your shed. Although it is more expensive, the thicker the metal your shed is made out of, the better.

Appearance

Another negative of metal sheds is that they, unfortunately, don’t tend to have the best appearance. Depending on your home and neighborhood, this may not matter to you. But if you live somewhere with a strict HOA, a metal shed may not be allowed. And if you are planning to sell your home soon, it is generally advised to remove any metal sheds before showing the property as this can scare off potential buyers.

How To Decide If A Metal Shed Is Right For You

Now that a metal shed is sounding pretty great, it’s time to determine if it is the right choice for you. And one of the ways you can decide if a metal shed will work for you is by considering what you plan to use your shed for.

Storage

If you need a shed truly just for storage, a metal shed is probably for you. If you are storing valuables, or things which could be damaged by water or other elements, then consider placing your shed on a foundation or ordering a metal foundation that the company providing your shed may offer.

Garage

You can easily use a metal shed as additional garage space. Metal sheds are actually preferred for vehicle storage and there are several inexpensive options to protect any hot rod you may have. Just make sure you order one which is large enough for the vehicle you plan to store.

Home Office

If you are wanting to design a shed that also doubles as a home office, a metal shed could work for you. The main aspect to consider is the weather in your area. If it gets really hot, or really cold, you will probably be uncomfortable in the shed without some sort of air system. And metal sheds can be the most difficult to add electricity to. So, if you live somewhere with weather extremes, a metal shed probably can’t be your new home office.

Man-Cave

Similar to a home office, a shed can act as a man-cave—as long as you don’t live anywhere where there are temperature extremes. You can also make your shed a man cave and then be manly and not worry about the temperature. The choice is yours.

Word Working Studio

If you want to create a woodworking studio, then a metal shed is perfect for you! Not only is it resistant to flames, but it also is sturdy enough to withstand any job. A metal shed is also weather-resistant so you know your projects will always stay dry.

She-Shed

The female version of a man cave, known as a she-shed, could be another possible use for your metal shed. But similar to the other uses which require you to spend lots of time in your shed, you will need to consider weather extremes and the difficulty of adding power to your shed before you work on your metal shed to she-shed transformation.

she-shed

Somewhere To Run Your Business

If you work from home on the regular, you may be looking for some office space in which to expand, or maybe you’re a barber looking to start your operations at home. Both of these are possible with a metal shed. But if you live somewhere with less than temperate weather, you will need to consider ways to add heating and cooling to your shed—especially if you are planning to have paying customers there.

You also may need to consider a way to have electricity available. And if your business is the type that requires business insurance, you should probably run the idea by them as well before you begin construction—as there may be some insurance regulations you aren’t aware of.

Other Peoples Fustrations With Metal Sheds

So after doing some research to aid with the writing of this post I discovered there were a few common frustrations among people about owning a metal shed. To make this a fully rounded article about if metal sheds are actually any good, it would be good to hear what the common frustrations seem to be from metal shed owners.

Condensation Inside Metal Sheds

The main issue I kept hearing about with metal sheds is they sweat, which is a build-up of condensation within the shed.

Why do metal sheds even have condensation in the first place? Condensation occurs when the warmer air outside comes in contact with a cold surface, such as a metal shed. Water droplets will then start to appear in the form of condensation.

It’s the same principle as breathing your warmer air on a colder window in winter, condensation will form on the window. Metal is a great conductor, better than other shed materials such as wood or plastic, that’s why condensation is more prevalent in metal sheds.

Hugely annoying and if untreated can damage the contents of your shed and the shed its self.

what can you do about condensation in your shed?

There are a few measures you can take to prevent condensation in your metal shed.

Raising your shed off the ground level, on a suitable base will help with ventilation and against condensation.

Also, adding sufficient ventilation to your shed will help with the airflow and aid in combating condensation. Making use of a smart ventilation system (Amazon link) that detects the humidity in the air will help solve a condensation issue while keeping your shed well ventilated.

Lastly, adding anti-condensation roofing tiles will help also. lining the roof with either 50mm Celotex or with polystyrene tiles will help stop your shed from sweating, especially during the winter months.

Flimsy Metal Structure

One of the main things that concern metal shed owners is they didn’t realize how “flimsy” the metal feels. One consideration about getting a metal shed, is that it will add a level of security to your shed. People will feel that metal will be a more secure option than say a plastic shed.

This is true, if some careful consideration is give to the gauge of the shed, the thickness of the metal. All you need to know is the lower the gauge number, the thicker the metal of the shed will be.

How can i stop my shed from being flimsy?

Even though metal sheds are usually cheaper than other sheds, that doesn’t mean you should get the cheapest available one and expect it to have the best characteristics. Buying such will most likely come with “paper-thin” walls. Doing a little research and spending a little more on a metal shed with a lower metal gauge will ensure you will get a good shed for the money.

The strongest metal sheds are made with a gauge of less than 30. Make sure to check out the shed’s gauge before you purchase.

Important Information About Buying Metal Sheds

If you saw your desired use for a metal shed on the list above, and you are ready to take the plunge, there are a few things you should know about metal sheds before you buy one.

Measurements

You may be surprised to find that most shed companies use nominal size rather than regular measurements. And a shed you may be expecting to be a certain size may show up a bit smaller. This is because nominal size is measured using the roof edges and not the actual walls. So, if you need your shed to be a certain size, read the small print to see if the measurements are in nominal size. And if you have any doubts, it’s probably better to size up than have your shed be too small.

It is also common for shed measurements to be rounded to the nearest foot. This means, if while using the roof to measure the width of the shed if a measurement is 9’ and 7”, it will be rounded to become a 10’ shed. This is why it is best to see an example of your shed in the hardware store before purchasing. And if this isn’t an option for you, make sure you order a shed that will be large enough by a foot or two so you aren’t disappointed.

Metal sheds are measured by gauge. And it might be a bit confusing, but the lower the number (gauge), the thicker the metal. This means 22 gauge is a very thick metal while 34 gauge is a very thin metal. Generally, you want a metal shed that is at least 29 gauge or lower. If you live in an area with lots of adverse weather the gauge of your shed will be especially important.

Frame

When buying a metal shed, you will also want to look at the frame. Most metal sheds come with a lightweight frame, which is fine if you live in an area with temperate weather and don’t plan to use your shed for more than storage. For those who live in an area with high winds, you may need to look into a shed with a wooden frame as this may be the only way for your metal shed to withstand the wind.

Floor

The cheapest metal shed options tend to come without a flor of any sort. This means you will have to put your shed directly on the dirt or build a wooden or concrete pad. If you already have either of these things, then you don’t need to worry about the floor for your shed. Otherwise, when ordering your shed, it’s best that you purchase one with a built-in floor. Although these tend to cost a little more, they tend to be less work and maintenance in the long run.

Assembly

When purchasing a metal shed, you generally have two options. You can buy one which comes preassembled, or you can purchase a kit and put it together yourself. For smaller sheds, usually, either option is available at more stores that sell sheds. For larger varieties, you will almost always have to assemble your shed. But if you have the option, perhaps consider ordering the pre-assembled version. Most sheds take at least two people to put together, so if you’re by yourself you want to consider this option. You may even find that it is easier and takes less time.

Also, remember that what you put into a shed is what you get out of it. If your metal shed is put together with a few snaps of some connectors, then remember that someone could use that same process to take the shed apart. This is why it may be worthwhile to invest in a shed that is a little more difficult to put together, especially if you are planning to store valuable items in your metal shed. The best quality metal sheds have heavy duty screws that are holding them together and no pop-together seams.

Décor

After you select your size and type of metal shed, there is one last thing to consider, and that is the color. Most metal sheds come in a variety of pre-painted colors and styles. If you don’t see the style or color you want though, this is okay too as metal sheds are easier to paint than most other types of sheds. If you are planning to paint your shed, order a color that can be easily painted over. For example, if you want to paint your shed red, order a white shed instead of a black one so the red will take fewer coats to get it to the color you want to be. Do be aware though that painting your shed may void the manufacturer’s warranty, so keep this in mind before you buy the paint.

Conclusion

There are several positive and negative attributes to having a metal shed. In general, a metal shed is the perfect low-cost answer to all your shed needs. But before you go out and buy one, take the time to consider if a metal shed fits the use you want it to fulfill. Also, take the time to check that you are getting the metal shed that is right for your size and color specifications. No matter what you decide, metal sheds are an excellent addition to any property and you will love your new storage space!

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