Vary the depth to get the top level. Why? Copyright Leaf Group Ltd. // Leaf Group Lifestyle. Now you just need to figure out where in your yard to put it. Don’t make an educated guess. Fill the area with gravel and compact it with a hand tamper. Place a level on top of the 2×4 to check that the beam is level. An easy way to level a shed area is with gravel. Apply it to your landscaping, fertilize your garden, or use it to repair a damaged part of your lawn. How to Level the Ground for an Outdoor Shed. So, how do prep your shed base, and is it something you can do yourself? If you choose this method, you will need to Smooth it out evenly using your 2×4 plank and level to even the surface out. It is simply to install, simply level the ground and lay down the weed proof membrane and connect the grids together. These come in varying heights, usually with a metal bracket on top to hold a floor joist or beam. This will allow you to remove the lines to make way for the excavation process. Use the thinner 2” blocks during the leveling process to align all sides. Having both at the ready will allow you to make the necessary adjustments to level your shed. Start on the high side, adding one block to each support location. Note the distance the end of the level is off the floor. A shed can be a 4-by-4-foot tool bin or a 12-by-16-foot workshop. Total 6 posts and pier blocks. If you'd like to know how to build a wooden base, take a look at our video below: Remember, many of our wooden sheds can be used in conjunction with wooden bases; these are listed in … The crushed stone inside a dug bed acts as a means of dispersing water from under the shed. How should you position your shed, so it doesn’t visually detract from your property? With the string pulled taught, maneuver the third stake until it is exactly 5’ from the second stake. As the gradient on the sloping ground becomes steeper, the problem becomes greater. When considering the following, keep in mind that your shed isn’t just the dimensions of the shed itself. remember there should be a slight slope toward the doorway in case of water leak. Once the ground has been prepped, begin placing the blocks. Another way to level a shed base is with concrete blocks. Place the one end of the 2×4 at the highest corner of the site and place the level on top. The gravel facilitates drainage, preventing the area beneath the blocks from becoming soft. Place a level on top of the 2×4 to check that the beam is level. The best but most complicated way to build a level shed foundation is to pour a slab. In this article we share what we learned about EcoBase, the installation process we followed, and review the product 18 months on. Firm foundations are essential, we recommend either paving slabs or concrete. Any time you are digging into your yard, it’s essential that you know exactly where your utility lines are. Determine the low end spot in the shed and estimate the amount of deflection. Another option is to have the pros come in and build a concrete pad, although be prepared to spend significantly more on this. Our outdoor storage sheds were designed to be easy to construct and install, and in order to make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible you need to start with a good foundation. Attach strings to stretch between the stakes, a few inches above the ground. Sharp sand which is used to level off the sub-base to make sure the base will be stood on level ground. buy some concrete blocks, assuming your shed has a floor, you will need enough blocks to support the floor entirely. Use the thinner 2” blocks during the leveling process to align all sides. To check that your supports are level, rest a 2×4 from one block support to another block support. Level and compact your ground, ensuring that any water will drain down and away from the foundation. Make sure you have a 4’ level on hand along with an 8’ 2×4 to use as a plank, a shovel, metal rake, and hand tamper. It’s important to plan your foundation with some extra space around your shed. Here are the basic steps: Using pegs and string, mark out the base area (allow 5 cm extra) Dig a 15 cm deep, level hole - Insert a wooden framework to contain the concrete You’ll also need wooden grade stakes, a mallet, and a string line. When deciding where to put a shed on your property, make sure you consider how your property drains. Tie a string between each of the four corners and across on both diagonals … This area gives you room to build the shed. Will you need to build a retaining wall? I then covered frame with PT 1/2 inch plywood. Drive wooden or plastic stakes around the area to be leveled. If the 2×4 is level and the one end of the 2×4 is more than 12” off the ground, then you should proceed to Step 3. Move the subsoil until the plank rests evenly. Outline the shed area with some edge restraints of plastic, metal or wood. Ground preparation is a crucial part of installing a plastic shed base, without the correct preparation the benefits such as permeabililty will not be as effective. Remember, you want that shed floor to stay level for a long time. Vary the depth to get the top level. Do you want to be able back a car up to the shed? Next, place masonry blocks on top of the pea gravel. The last thing you want after all is said and done is a shed floor that is off kilter. This requires excavating the area, laying a gravel base, building wooden forms and pouring and finishing concrete. Once the site is leveled and packed down, you have several options for your shed base. In the summer of 2018, we installed the EcoBase Fastfit plastic shed base for our new shed (and it’s still going strong!). Prepare the Ground for the New Shed. Next, add a few inches of pea gravel to each support location, remembering to keep the gravel level. If needed, you can use asphalt shingles to shim the blocks for fine-tuning. Remember, the idea here is to create a level surface, so remove the soil as evenly as you can without leaving a lot of inconsistencies. Use full 8-inch or 2-inch thick concrete blocks; stack them if necessary to get the front and rear blocks at the same height. About the Plastic Pro Base. For proper measurements, it’s essential that this stake is pounded in straight. For a 10’x12’ shed, you would need supports at each corner as well as two additional supports between each corner both on the 10’ sides and 12’ sides. Lastly, use spray paint to mark the footprint of your shed base. So, if your shed will be 10×12, your gravel foundation should be 12×14. The best way to level the ground for a storage shed of this type is to use crushed stone. Adjust the gravel until the tops of the piers are level, side to side and front to back. If you plan on creating a gravel pad for your shed foundation, then it should be 1’-2’ larger than the shed itself to account for a proper buffer. Note: If you want the shed to still be at ground level then you will need to dig down further when leveling your ground. Fill the area with gravel and compact it with a hand tamper. Installing a shed base on uneven ground can be a little tricky. Attach a string to the first and third stake to lock the distance between the two at 3’. I suggest buying the blocks in both 4” and 2” thicknesses. These blocks are typically 8” wide by 16” long and come in a variety of thicknesses. Don’t skip this step. To level ground for a shed, you have two options: level the site by excavating or raise the shed base by using gravel and blocks. In the case of a 11’x13’ shed foundation, you would extend the line 11’, and drive in another stake. Larger sheds — 160 square feet and up — need 4 feet of clearance. Once you’ve removed the topsoil, eyeball, which part of the area looks higher than the other and begin removing the subsoil. Step 4 Pour crushed stone over the prepared area for the base of the storage shed. You can then add either gravel, pressure-treated wood or plastic shims between your skids and joists to level your shed. It will take more time for preparation and for the concrete to cure at least a week before a shed can be built on it. You’ll need supports at the corners and at intervals no greater than 4’ around the shed perimeter to have adequate support. A stake that is installed at an angle will throw off your measurements when you go to square the site. Use pre-cast concrete piers if a shed foundation area is a fairly steep slope. In cases in which you need to level an area with a steep gradient, typically when one side is more than 8” higher or lower than the other side, you may need to build a retaining wall to prevent the slope that you’ve cut into from eventually eroding into your shed. Using a jack is simple. This can vary, but you generally want a depth that is about half the length of the shovel’s head. This will ensure that there are no soft areas when the weight of the shed is applied to the ground. You can also tell by the soil color. Add pea gravel until it is nearly flush with the ground. If you don’t do this, it could result in the garden shed warping, broken windows and even damage to the wood. Your shed’s overall footprint is about 25% larger than the actual shed to account for proper spacing between other structures and your property line. But by following the instructions in this guide, you can create a level site for your shed, ensuring that it will have a solid base to rest upon for many years to come. Continue this process from support to support, making adjustments as needed until the base is level. Next, wrap a line tightly around all four stakes. Call your utility companies and have them come out and mark the ground before you start digging in. In our example, you would extend this line 13’, then drive in your third stake. For more detailed information on how to pour your concrete-slab foundation or any other questions regarding foundations and permits, please feel free to visit www.outdoorlivingtoday.com or call their Customer Support Line at 1-888-658-1658 and speak with a Product Representative. So, you’ve committed to building that shed, or maybe you’ve ordered a pre-built shed to be delivered to your property. Continue mapping out the perimeter of your shed base by stretching a string from the first stake out to the length of the next stake. You don’t live on the side of a mountain, but your property isn’t exactly pancake-flat either. In this article, we’ll discuss how to complete both options. A shed can be built almost anywhere; the ground does not have to be perfectly level, but the foundation must be. The softer the soil, the deeper the hole should be. However, there are different solutions for building a base on a slope for your garden shed.Foundation blocks and a retaining wall are two recommended methods which have been tried and tested. The edges of the dug-out area serve as a retaining wall for the stone. The total number of blocks you will need is determined not only by the size of your shed but also by the steepness of the gradient you are trying to correct. For more detailed information check out my post about how to find the best shed location. It can provide space for potting plants and storing garden accessories or storage for tools, toys, out of season items or other objects. Subsoil typically has a lighter color than topsoil. This is because it includes compost that plants use for nutrients. Make sure the string touches the second stake slightly. See our guide on How to Build a Concrete Shed Base. Repeat this on the other side, this time making sure the string you extend from the first stake touches the third stake. If needed, you can use asphalt shingles to shim the blocks for fine-tuning. Gather the basic materials. Note: If you are lucky your shed site will be relatively level. This is a project that can be completed by most DIYers with a minimal amount of tools and cost, so don’t be intimidated into hiring a pro to accomplish this task. There are also gophers or moles here (underground), which makes the dirt unpr… There’s nothing worse than completing any kind of project only to find out later that you’ve violated a building code or your Homeowner’s Associations covenants. For example, the size of a gravel shed base for a 10’x12’ shed would be 11’x13’. Check building regulations; larger sheds will require permits. Next, begin bringing up the low side by stacking blocks. Whether you’re building a shed yourself, or planning on purchasing a pre-built shed and having it delivered to your property, it’s essential to have an even plot on which to place it upon. Using smaller blocks or hollow cinder blocks isn’t a good idea as they could crack and crumble over time. Pour at least 2 inches of gravel in the area. For most people, this isn’t an issue. All Rights Reserved. The situation was putting a kit storage shed in the back where I have sloping ground. How deep should you go when digging? Check the Level Using a 2×4 ( Gap Photos) Note: Your shed pad should be 1’ wider than your shed on all sides. Lay your plank along the different lengths of the excavated area to identify the high and low areas. The size of your shed pad will vary depending on what type of pad you choose. Set wooden beams or skids on the gravel and level the tops of those by adjusting the gravel underneath; the tops of the beams provide the level shed foundation. Level the ground with a shovel to ensure that the foundation for the storage shed is flat. The ground under a shed doesn't have to be level, but the shed itself must be. 2 Use a string level. Then pound it into the ground. If the slope is fairly steep, dig out an area at the front of the shed. With this method, you’ll level the ground for your shed construction by using concrete blocks. Front posts are about 8" tall the rear posts are about 14" tall. The slab should be the exact dimension of your shed base minus 3/4 inch on all sides to allow the shed to overhang the slab. The first thing that you need to do to prepare the ground for the new shed is to level the surface. Put a long board across the area with a level on it and drag it across the gravel to level it. Measure the slope to determine the different heights needed. How should your shed be located, so it’s not a hotbox or a haven for mold and rot? Haring holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Missouri. Bob Haring has been a news writer and editor for more than 50 years, mostly with the Associated Press and then as executive editor of the Tulsa, Okla. It’s best practice to buy more blocks than you think you’ll need and in a variety of thicknesses to avoid having to make extra trips back to your home improvement store for more supplies. this must be level when you place the shed on them. This will ensure a secure base for each block support. Set nine stacks for most sheds, three on each side and three in the middle. Use a level to help you accomplish this task if needed. First and foremost, check zoning requirements, building codes, and HOA rules. The best but most complicated way to build a level shed foundation is to pour a slab. If possible, avoid this extra project by choosing a location that doesn’t have a significant grade to contend with. Outline the shed area and rake it fairly level. Unlike the graded area, which is larger than the actual shed, your concrete blocks will need to line up with the shed’s actual dimensions. It’s helpful to drive wooden stakes or bamboo canes into the … Mark out the shed dimensions and excavate the area about 6 inches deep. After pounding in your second stake, measure 3’ from the first stake. Drop a 6x6x8 into the hole and get it level and plumb. It also makes for a more stable base. This is probably the most difficult part of this process, but it’s also the most critical to create a square shed foundation. Ground Pad for Storage Shed: I'm sharing this project with you as an instructable because it turned out very well. This ensures an even base free of debris and plant growth. Another way to level a shed base is with concrete blocks. Next, pound the second stake in 4’ from the next stake as you move toward your second corner, again making sure the stake is perfectly straight. Then bring in the shed and set it on top. Outline the shed area with some edge restraints of plastic, metal or wood. Begin by marking and squaring the site as in step one of this guide with one exception. Drive a stake into the ground in each of the four corners of the building pad. Another option is … Not up for all that back-breaking digging, grading, and leveling? Just slide the jack between the skids so that it will make contact with a floor joist and start pumping. Pick a spot for your shed that's close to level and doesn't collect water. This process, commonly known as the 3,4,5 method, uses a basic geometry principle for creating a triangle with a right angle. Lag it down to the foundation and bam, you have a shed. Maybe blocks are a better option for you. Again, make sure that your stakes are firmly in the ground to prevent them from being moved during this step. Now that you’ve completed the soil removal, it’s time to get out that 2×4 plank and see if it’s level or not. Before you begin to build any type of shed, the ground must be levelled out and any vegetation removed. Once you’re satisfied that the area is level, use the tamper to pack the ground flat. Put a long board or beam on top of the blocks with a level on it to get the foundation level in all directions. Once you’ve chosen a location, it’s time to begin staking it out. Mark out the shed dimensions and excavate the area about 6 inches deep. The pro base comes as … Pack the soil down in the area with a tamper. For example, a slab for an 8’x12’ shed will require approximately 1 cubic yard of premixed concrete. But before you do, make sure to consider what is under the ground. After you’ve staked and squared the site, determine where you will need concrete block supports. No one wants to have to dismantle their creation because they placed their shed a couple of feet too close to the property line. You may need to add two or three 4” blocks to the low side of the base to bring it up to the same height as the high side. The pad style plastic shed base, when laid on a solid level surface can produce a base that is almost as strong and supportive as a poured concrete. There are two main solutions to building a shed foundation on a slope: The deck. Runoff can lead to water damage and mold, uses a basic geometry principle for creating a triangle with tamper... 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Blocks or hollow cinder blocks isn’t a good idea as they could crack and crumble over time satisfied that beam. Then bring in the case of water leak slight slope toward the doorway case! Ever purchased topsoil for a sill Zone with our new interactive map you’ve created at highest. People, this isn ’ t an issue generally speaking, your shed prove difficult to assemble purchased! Hold a floor joist and start pumping steeper, the ground to prevent from. Another option is to have the pros come in a low area that tends to collect rain runoff lead! Installation process we followed, and is it something you can use shingles...