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All posts by Sean Sant

3-Point Checklist When Looking for an Outdoor Shed

Three-Point Checklist When Looking for an Outdoor Shed

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The Covid-19 pandemic has forced some of us to work from home to remain safe from the virus. Despite the changes caused by this public health crisis, there are still plenty of things to do at home, and one of these is adding some storage structures to your yard. Now’s the best time to hire the dependable builders at A-Shed to build you a high-quality shed at your Salt Lake City home. We’ve put together a three-point checklist to guide you buying or building a shed.

1. Quality

When thinking about building sheds in Denver or in Salt Lake City, you’ll want them to last, so you should use high-quality materials. Choose a material that will not only fulfill its storage purposes, but also remain sturdy and functional through different kinds of weather. You can choose steel, plastic resin or timber. Plastic is rustproof and lightweight, timber is strong if maintained consistently and steel also is a good option due to its low maintenance and cost.

2. Purpose

What is your shed for? Do you have the space to build one large shed, or is your yard more suited to several smaller garden sheds?

Sheds are great for providing extra workspace, storing tools for gardening equipment and keeping potentially harmful lawn or pool chemicals. Whichever purpose it might be, the way you will utilize your shed will help determine its location. If you will be using it as a workspace or to store things you need to access frequently, you’ll want to position your shed in a conveniently accessible area of your yard.

3. Budget

Remember to consider affordability when looking for the perfect storage sheds around Salt Lake City. Consider both the shed’s price and costs for manufacturing, design and installation. Keep in mind that extra accessories can increase the price, and opting to hire a shed builder can save you money and time.The Bottom Line: Choose the Right Contractor

Although do-it-yourself sheds can be an option, it still is worth it to hire a builder. A skilled builder will build a top-quality structure. You will not get the same control over design and materials if you put up a shed from scratch by yourself.

If you want a professional to build your custom shed for you, go with a trusted team that establishes open communication. If you’re on the lookout for builders of the best storage sheds in Salt Lake City, call A-Shed USA today.

storage sheds protected winter

Keeping Storage Sheds Protected During Winter

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Maintenance of any storage shed is important throughout the year, and particularly during the harsh winter. This is because the winter often brings the largest risks to a shed, from moisture infiltration to sub-zero temperatures, and keeping your structure in great shape is vital.

At A-Shed USA, we’re happy to not only offer a robust range of storage sheds, from our ranch and barn sheds to many others, but also expertise on how to care for these at any point in the season, including winter. Here are some basics on how to maintain your storage shed throughout the winter, starting with some prep and moving to mid-winter areas.

Pre-Winter Areas

In a normal year, we’d tell you you’re probably a bit late if you haven’t already gotten to preparing your storage shed for winter. By the mid-January period we’re in, you’d normally have dealt with several major snowstorms and perhaps some significant snow on the ground in a place like Utah – but this particular winter, shed owners who neglected this duty have gotten lucky, as it’s one of the driest winters in recent memory.

That said, during a normal year, you should be taking the late-fall period to prep the shed. A few themes to keep in mind here (you can attend to these now if you haven’t already):

  • Fully clean the storage shed, including removing any dust or mold concerns. Also be sure to clean tools that were used during summer, plus bag up any fertilizer or other items that cannot be uncovered.
  • Make any needed repairs to ceilings, walls, windows, floors and seal areas to ensure moisture doesn’t seep in.
  • Trim any overhanging branches that may contact the structure, plus rake leaves.
  • If the shed is a live-in space or you plan to spend any significant time in it during winter, consider insulation and items like space heaters.

Mid-Winter Shed Maintenance

And here are a couple basic precautions for keeping the shed safe and protected during the winter itself, even during a more significant winter than the one we’re experiencing in Utah:

  • Dry: Whenever possible, look to keep the shed area dry and free of snow. Many shed owners will waterproof their shed floor, while others will place a tarp over it during winter to stop any moisture from seeping in. If your shed floor is metal, follow steps to prevent rust and corrosion.
  • Snow removal: Not only should snow that piles up be removed from around the shed, it’s vital to remove it from atop the shed as well. Too much heavy snow on your shed’s roof will risk collapsing it due to the weight, so be sure to attend to this area anytime there’s a major storm.

For more on how to maintain your shed during the winter, or to learn about any of our storage sheds, garages or other structures, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

shed size HOA professional

Shed Size: HOA, Future Increases and Professional Assistance

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In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the important variables that will play a role in choosing the size of your shed. While most naturally think about the items they plan to store when it comes to size, and this is absolutely an important element here, there are also a few others to keep in mind as you plan and order your custom shed.

At A-Shed USA, we’re here to offer custom storage sheds in a variety of size templates and designations – and also to assist our clients with the variables they should be keeping track of when deciding exactly how large their new shed will be. Here are a few of the other important factors that tend to dictate your shed size decision, including the value of working with our team for these kinds of important calls.

 

HOA Regulations

In certain areas, your home may fall under the governance of a homeowners’ association, or HOA. These are groups that are made up of all the homeowners in a given neighborhood or area, and they will often play a major role in property and other regulations – possibly including the placement of sheds or other structures on your property.

Specifically, there may be regulations or limitations on how big a given structure can be on a property if it’s not attached to the main home. Other HOAs may simply require that you submit drawings and plans of the shed and yard so there are records, including the exact shed size and its location in the yard. In other cases, something of a hybrid system will be in place here – these documents will be required to receive approval to build the shed from the HOA. There may be situations where certain large shed sizes are not possible given HOA restrictions.

Future Increases

One vital factor to keep in mind that some shed buyers gloss over: Potential future size increases. While your primary plans should involve the items you plan to store in the shed now and its present purposes, your needs may expand in future years – especially if, like many people, you’re using the shed to hold a collection of tools and equipment, which tends to grow over time. For this reason, consider leaving some extra space around the shed that will allow for expansion if you end up going this route later on.

Consult With Pros

If you’re unsure about any part of your shed or property’s size needs or dimensions, be sure to contact our shed professionals for assistance. We’ve helped numerous property owners find the ideal shed size given their other property characteristics and their shed needs, and we’ll do the same for you.

For more on choosing the ideal shed size, or to learn about any of our custom sheds, garages or other products, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

shed planning proper size

Shed Needs, Items and Planning Proper Size

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For those considering an outdoor shed on their property, whether a storage shed or another custom shed option, there are several potential uses involved. Down similar lines, there are also a variety of sizes available to choose from when it comes to modern sheds – how do you determine the right one for your needs, budget and other factors?

At A-Shed USA, we’re happy to offer a wide range of storage sheds, garages and other custom buildings, all of which can be built to a variety of size and dimension specifications. What are some of the important variables to consider when it comes to shed size? Here are several we recommend keeping in mind, plus how each impacts your shed selection.

General Purpose and Use

First and foremost, the primary uses and purposes of the shed will help define exactly how much space you need and how large the shed should be. For those who are using the shed primarily for storage purposes, the main goal here will be laying out which major items you plan to store there, plus getting some general measurements and dimensions you’ll need to hold each securely.

However, there are numerous other potential uses of a shed. What if you want to use it as a home office or art studio? You’ll need space for a table and chair, obviously, plus some other amenities. What if you want a home gym or child play area? You’ll need plenty of space, plus some basic safety themes in play as well. It’s easy to see why this is the first area you should generally check off when thinking about shed size.

Yard Size

While planning out your shed’s dimensions, it’s also vital to ensure you consider the overall size of your yard and property. There’s such thing as a shed that’s much too large or much too small for a given property, especially when compared to the home itself and the size of the lot. Larger yards can generally hold sheds up to 12’ x 12’, while smaller ones do best with sheds in the 8’ x 10’ range.

Estimating Storage Needs

While we went over storage considerations for those using the shed only for this purpose above, this isn’t the case for every storage shed owner. Some use the shed partially for storage and partially for another purpose, for instance, or some similar type of hybrid. A very general tip here: While estimating your storage needs in the shed, intentionally overestimate how much space you need by maybe 10% or so – this will counteract many shed owners’ propensity to actually underestimate here, leaving themselves with additional storage needs even once the shed is completed.

For more on choosing the ideal size for a storage shed, or to learn about any of our custom sheds or other buildings, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

protecting storage shed fire

Protecting Storage Shed From Fire Risks, Part 2

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In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the basic themes to keep in mind when limiting any minor fire risks present to your storage shed. Sheds will only be at-risk of fire if they are not properly maintained and protected, but a few simple approaches will help ensure this is never a concern on your property.

At A-Shed USA, we’re here to offer numerous storage shed options, including our ranch sheds, barn sheds and many other custom shed selections. In addition, we’re here to help clients with basic tips and expertise on fire prevention and overall maintenance to any of our sheds. Today’s part two of our series will go over some of the broader areas you should be hitting when it comes to not only preventing fires, but being protected just in case a fire or some other disaster type does take place.

Building Maintenance

Many of the themes we went over in part one to prevent shed fires involve storage and security of various items. Also relevant as a broad area here: Overall building maintenance, which will also show benefits in several other areas.

You should be covering everything from your roof to shed siding, screens and other areas. Make sure the ground near the shed slopes properly away from it. Rake or remove and leaves or other debris that might serve as fire risks, plus check for any gaps or leaks that might pose a risk.

Warranty Coverage

Zooming out even further, it’s vital to have proper coverage of your property in case of not only fire, but also other natural disaster risks. Even if these are very unlikely, fire especially given all the steps you’ve taken for protection, you do not want to be caught unprepared.

One of the key elements here is your warranty. At A-Shed USA, we offer 50-year manufacturer warranties on several elements of our sheds – this will vary between manufacturers and retailers, however, and you should check in advance. You should know not only how long the warranty lasts, but precisely what it covers.

Homeowners’ Insurance

Another vital theme here is homeowners’ insurance. If you already have this in place at the time you choose to install a new storage shed on your property, you must take the time to update your policy – it may not currently cover the shed, but you can usually change this easily enough. If you don’t already have homeowners’ insurance for some reason, now is the time to change that while ensuring both your home and your new shed are covered.

For more on protecting your storage shed from fire risks, or to learn about any of our custom sheds, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

protecting storage shed fire risks

Protecting Storage Shed From Fire Risks, Part 1

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Many parts of the country are in fire season currently, and this is one of the worst – if not the worst – in recent memory. Property owners around the western United States should be taking care to both protect their property and limit any activities that might serve as fire risks, and this includes those who have storage sheds on their property.

At A-Shed USA, we’re happy to not only offer a wide range of quality custom storage sheds, but also expertise on proper use and several protection areas, including fire protection. What are some basic ways you can ensure your shed and the rest of your property are protected from potential fire risks, and what are some long-term forms of protection that should also be in place in case of disaster outside your control? This two-part blog series will answer these questions and more for all shed owners.

Shed Fire Risks

Sheds can be a fire risk for a couple relatively apparent reasons. The first is their material, which is often flammable to some degree, and the second is the presence of various potential items that are often flammable as well.

Consider that many homeowners use their garden shed to store items like furniture, fuels, garden equipment, gas cylinders and many others that are directly flammable – and often hard to extinguish once they ignite. Especially if these items are stored improperly or haphazardly, their fire risk increases even further. Other risks that could be present in some sheds include things like electrical wiring, lighting systems and similar themes.

General Fire Reduction Themes

On a day-to-day basis, here are some general tips we can offer on protecting your shed and the surrounding area from any fire risks:

  • Store any fuel, oil or other highly flammable substances in sealed and approved containers that have their own dedicated, out-of-the-way location.
  • If you have any chemicals, fuels or other flammable substances that are not regularly used, do not store them in the shed.
  • Secure your shed against theft and deliberate fire using a security light or other techniques.
  • Check any electronics or wiring in the shed to ensure there are no operational issues or frayed wires. Also check any power sockets and circuit breakers that connect to the shed, plus ensure they are not overloaded at any point.
  • When installing a new shed and choosing its location, ensure it’s far enough away from all other major structures on the property that if a fire does begin outside your control, it can be contained to the shed alone.

For more how to limit fire risks on your storage shed, or to learn about any of our storage sheds, garden sheds or other shed solutions, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

items avoid storing garden shed

Items to Avoid Storing in the Garden Shed, Part 2

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In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the basics on shed storage, plus certain items you should avoid storing in an outdoor shed. While many items, from yard equipment to gardening tools and many home appliances, are ideal for shed storage, there are certain items that have specific storage needs that aren’t conducive to this space.

At A-Shed USA, we’re happy to offer not only a wide variety of custom storage sheds and garages, but also expertise on their use and related themes. In today’s part two of our series, we’ll go over a few other items or product areas you should generally stay away from storing in your storage shed unless you have specific upgrades in place just for these purposes.

Clothing or Bedding

While clothing and bedding fabrics can become bulky and you may struggle with indoor storage for them in some cases, we strongly recommend looking for any other location besides the storage shed. This is because many storage sheds will have at least some quantity of insects, moths and related crawlers present during the course of the year, and these may invade your fabrics and ruin them.

In many cases, shed storage also causes fabrics to pick up a musty, undesirable odor. For this reason, we recommend storing these in a drawer or closet.

Various Electronics

Most of us are well aware that electronics don’t do well in the elements, and this extends even to the limited outdoor conditions they’ll be exposed to if stored in a shed space. One major risk here is rust, which can damage and completely ruin the internal wiring of many electrical pieces when they’re stored outdoors and in the wrong temperature ranges. You also risk moisture damage if the shed has even a single area without proper sealing.

Wine

Some have heard of the different ways humidity can impact wine, and might be thinking they’ll try something new by storing it in the shed. Unfortunately, though, this misses another vital storage element for wine: Temperature, which must be consistent and will risk a metallic taste otherwise. While the darkness of a shed is a good thing, varying temperatures make it untenable for wine storage, which should take place in a dark place with consistently cool temperatures.

Instruments

Finally, while the shed may have space for certain instruments that are an awkward fit elsewhere in the home, many of these will not do well in this environment. Numerous instruments are impacted by temperature and humidity, especially those made of wood, and those made from brass will also risk major rust and corrosion.

For more on items to avoid storing in your outdoor storage shed, or to learn about any of our custom sheds or other structures, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

items avoid storing garden shed

Items to Avoid Storing in the Garden Shed, Part 1

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As those who have owned a garden shed in the past can likely attest, one of the primary benefits of such a structure on your property is storage. Sheds are ideal for storing a variety of items, whether we’re talking gardening equipment and lawn mowers or overflow items from the house where there isn’t enough room.

At A-Shed USA, we’re proud to offer a wide range of custom sheds, including storage sheds and other garden sheds with storage high in mind as a top priority. While we encourage clients to store a wide variety of items in our sheds, there are a few you might want to hold off on storing in such an environment – this two-part blog will go over some of the factors that contribute to this reality, plus several items to avoid storing in the garden shed moving forward and why.

Factors in Garden Shed Storage

For starters, it’s important to consider three basic elements when it comes to storage sheds:

  • Temperature: Sheds generally are not insulated, meaning temperature will swing heavily between summer and winter. Heat expands while cold contracts, which can damage certain equipment or freeze liquids. Extreme heat can also cause chemical changes to valuable possessions.
  • Moisture: Sheds also generally aren’t sealed as tightly as a home, meaning the chances of moisture presence and higher humidity are both present. This means mold can show up if you don’t take the proper maintenance steps, plus rust may damage metal goods over a period of time.
  • Pests: If you do not properly seal your shed, pests like rodents and bugs may invade – particularly if you leave food or other edible items.

Our subsequent sections will look at items we might recommend against storing in your shed.

Canned Food

Canned food can be stored for long periods, but it’s best in a stable, cool environment like your home. Any humidity or major temperature changes can corrode cans, leading to spillage – this risk only goes up during the high temperatures of the summer, and can also decrease food nutritional value. Keep your canned food in a dedicated area in your home.

Artwork

Art created using various paints and other methods is extremely vulnerable to elements like heat and moisture. Any expansion or contraction due to temperature may warp it, destroying its value almost instantly. Humidity may lead to mold – you might think plastic wrap prevents this, but it can actually make the issue worse in some cases. If you own valuable art you do not want to see altered, it shouldn’t be stored in the shed.

For more on items to avoid keeping in your storage shed, or to learn about any of our storage sheds, custom garages or other structures, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

electrical wiring storage shed

Electrical Wiring Tips for a Storage Shed, Part 2

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In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the preliminary basics on setting up electrical wiring for a storage shed on your property. Whether it’s being used for cooled storage, a separate office space or a variety of other potential needs, those looking to wire up a shed need to ensure they take the right steps for both practicality and safety.

At A-Shed USA, we’re proud to offer a huge variety of storage sheds, garages and other custom storage buildings for all our clients, plus tips on areas like electrical wiring and other common uses. In today’s part two of our series, we’ll go over a few additional electrical areas to consider if you’re performing such an installation, including both safety and effectiveness themes.

Power Transportation Format

One of the most important questions you’ll have to answer during this process: How will you run power from your home itself out to the shed without risking any hazards or concerns?

In modern times, the answer is almost always an extension cord or series of extension cords running from the GFI-protected outlets located outside most homes today. Virtually all homes built after 1980 will have such outlets in place, and it’s completely safe to run an exterior-rated extension cord from one of these locations to your shed.

In certain extreme cases where you need several connections in

, the best method might be to run a separate power line buried through the ground. This will be impacted by how far your shed is from the primary building, plus whether other utility lines are already buried in the area and whether any hardscape elements are present.

House Panel Concerns

As you’re considering the above question, it’s also vital to ensure your home has the proper level of amplitude within the circuit breaker to handle the additional load you’ll be placing on it. Most modern homes come with 200-amp service, easily enough for some additional needs, but this could be in jeopardy if you plan to run major tools or heating and cooling elements in the shed. In rare cases, this process might require wiring a sub-panel specifically for the shed.

Electrician Consultation

If you’re concerned about performing any part of this job safely, or even if you’re just looking for expertise on timing, materials or other factors, we strongly recommend contacting a reputable local electrician. Our pros will assist you with all shed-related needs; electricians will ensure your wiring is done safely and properly.

For more on how to wire a storage shed outside your property with electrical power, or to learn about any of our storage sheds or other custom buildings, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

electrical wiring storage shed

Electrical Wiring Tips for a Storage Shed, Part 1

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Sheds on a property can have numerous uses, including some that may require electrical wiring. Whether you require lighting, conditioned air or several other potential electrical features, there are several important considerations as you go down this path.

At A-Shed USA, we’re proud to offer a wide range of storage sheds, from classic Ranch storage sheds to barn sheds, YardMaster and many others. We’ve happily provided tips and assistance to many property owners looking to wire their sheds in some way – this two-part blog will go over a number of themes to keep in mind as you’re beginning this process, including both safety and practical themes.

Local Codes and Regulations

First and foremost, you should be distinctly aware of all local codes and regulations when it comes to running electrical wiring into a shed or similar storage building. These will vary depending on where you live, but generally speaking there are three basic factors that must be present:

  • Proper gauge wire and circuit breaker present
  • GFCI protection on the circuit
  • Special underground wire or conduit that connects to the shed in question

Shed Uses

Once you’ve confirmed you’ll be able to meet all local code requirements, the next big step is to consider the practical uses of the shed with regard to electricity. Not all electrical requirements will be the same – some may require very little wiring while others could be more involved.

In many cases, shed owners are just looking for a simple electrical line that allows a cord-and-plug setup for simple plug-ins. This is usually a simple job you can do within a single day or weekend. On the flip side, if you require power for a shed you’re converting into a workshop for major projects and electrical needs, the job may require more planning and legwork.

Tools Used

A big part of evaluating your shed’s practical uses involves considering the kinds of tools you plan to use within it regularly. If you’ll only be using some basic lights, fans or other low-amp sources, the wiring process will be relatively simple.

If, however, you’ll be using tools like table saws, welders, air compressors or dust collectors regularly, these will require far more amperage than a single electrical circuit can provide. In these cases, you’ll need to run multiple circuits to handle the load. There will also be issues to consider when it comes to voltage – most tools or power appliances run on 110v power, but there are some that will require 220v instead, and this requires different wiring and outlets. If you’re confused here, contact an electrician to ensure you don’t make any mistakes or risk your safety.

For more on wiring a shed for electricity, or to learn about any of our storage sheds, custom garages or other buildings, speak to the staff at A-Shed USA today.

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