Buying a garden shed can be a challenging endeavor. How do you know which brand is the best? Which size should you choose? What type of cladding should you pick?
Though the above issues are important and should be taken into consideration, purchasing a shed that's adequately treated will ensure that it has the tools needed to last for decades to come. This, however, is where the quandary lies because there are two treatment types for garden sheds -- dip treatment and pressure treatment.
Let's take a closer look at what differentiates these two treatment options to aid you in your buying decision.
When I mentioned pros and cons earlier, it was mostly in reference to dip treated sheds. For one, dip treated sheds are typically the cheaper option. If you're strapped for cash, dip treated sheds will almost always look more attractive due to their lower price tag. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, as you'll still be able to protect your shed from the elements through dip treatment. In an ideal world, your shed will be treated with a wood preservative (in whatever colour you please) after it has been installed.
Be mindful you'll be getting exactly what you're paying for, meaning the cheaper cost will often reflect the longevity of dip treatment. Ultimately, dip treatment requires more maintenance then its pressure treated counterpart. Dip treatment wears off over time, leaving your shed vulnerable to the elements. To ensure that your shed receives the maximum amount of protection, you should stain the wood on an annual basis if possible.
The fact that you have to treat the wood on a regular basis is one of the biggest downfalls of dip treated sheds. Also, dip treated sheds must be raised off the ground at all times. You can do this by setting up a base for your shed to rest on before installing it. A base is required because dip treated sheds don't provide adequate protection against the moisture that accumulates on the ground, which could shorten the lifespan of the shed significantly.
Pressure-Treated Wooden Sheds
Though dip treated sheds are great for the budget conscious consumer, pressure treated sheds are the superior product. Pressure treatment involves impregnating the wood with a special preservative. Thus, the wood preservative is injected inside of the wood as opposed to merely treating the surface, as is the case with dip treatment.
The process of pressure treatment is more involved and much longer than dip treatment, but the end result can mean the difference between continuously treating your shed to ward off the ravages of mother nature (dip treatment) or not treating your shed at all due to the advanced pressure treatment techniques employed (pressure treatment).
As mentioned before, pressure treatment is much more effective because wood preservative is injected directly into the timber. The process involves inserting a piece of timber into a tank, where the treatment process takes place.
As you've probably guessed, pressure treated sheds are more expensive than dip treated sheds. Even so, pressure treated sheds aren't that much more expensive than dip treated sheds. You might have to do some shopping around, but you should be able to find some great deals on pressure treated sheds.
The benefits of pressure treated sheds are numerous -- the timber can last upwards of 15+ years as it fends off the damp, rot, and various other elements of mother nature. Still, it doesn't hurt to throw on some extra wood preservative every once in a while to ensure that your shed remains standing for years to come. Though, the frequency of this treatment will still be far less than that of a dip treated shed.
You can also stain the wood to any colour that you please, as that would allow it to blend effortlessly in with the rest of your garden.
Making the right choice
Though pressure treated sheds sound like they should be the automatic choice, some people may be operating on a budget in which a dip treated shed should more than get the job done, though they ultimately require more work to maintain.
However, if you're able, pressure treated sheds are highly recommended. They look fantastic, and they'll stand for years without much effort on your part. A pressure treated shed will fight off damp and rot and can withstand even the most severe storms. Every aspect of the wood receives superior protection, the ends of the wood included.
There's nothing wrong with treating your shed on a regular basis, as this gives you time to get outside and get work done and enjoy your outdoor space, but it can't be argued that the less maintenance your shed requires, the better.
Ultimately, the choice is up to you. Your choice will likely come down to your budget, so whatever decision you make, ensure you think it through thoroughly before whipping out your wallet.