So I have a shed......

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JustMe

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It's free standing about 20ft from the house, sits on about a dozen(?) concrete blocks that holds the framing for the floor. The concrete blocks have the + cut on top for the 2x4's or whatever size was used and the completed shed sits on top of that. Floor was 1/2in OSB with another 1/2in layer over that, except the center 4ftx4ft was not covered. Overall framing is in great condition, roof is solid and has held up perfect and will probably for several more years. 3 of the outer walls are solid, 4th wall is south facing and gets all the weather and is warping away from the framing and has popped off the trim in places. Inside walls have SOME insulation and drywall. There are no leaks inside that I can see. There are no windows or even vents and the door is heavy and gets sticky with humidity levels and doesn't shut all the way. Some days it shuts better than others, but rarely if ever all the way. Also it's tall enough to have a partial second level......not tall enough to stand in , but does offer extra storage space for camping gear and whatnots.

Considering my storage challenges, I am considering trying to fix this thing up and use it for food storage, but I am most concerned about how to keep it more temperate throughout the year to minimalize seasonal extremes. I know I'd have to replace that south outer wall and fix the door in some way so that it will close and lock. Possibly add more insulation in the walls? Maybe add an insulation layer & drywall to the inside of the roof? Adding a small vent on both north & south sides for air flow, that can be opened in summer and closed in winter???

Our more normal temp extremes are as low as teens and high as 100, both of which usually last less than a week........with the exception of last years 110 to 120 for that week, and it's been a good many years but we have gotten to single digits or even below zero in the winter. I am hoping to put nearly all my food storage out there including home canned and store bought. I do not want to have to run an extention cord with heater out there.


Any ideas? TIA



edit to add......overall size is roughly 10x12x15ft
 

LadyLocust

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It's free standing about 20ft from the house, sits on about a dozen(?) concrete blocks that holds the framing for the floor. The concrete blocks have the + cut on top for the 2x4's or whatever size was used and the completed shed sits on top of that. Floor was 1/2in OSB with another 1/2in layer over that, except the center 4ftx4ft was not covered. Overall framing is in great condition, roof is solid and has held up perfect and will probably for several more years. 3 of the outer walls are solid, 4th wall is south facing and gets all the weather and is warping away from the framing and has popped off the trim in places. Inside walls have SOME insulation and drywall. There are no leaks inside that I can see. There are no windows or even vents and the door is heavy and gets sticky with humidity levels and doesn't shut all the way. Some days it shuts better than others, but rarely if ever all the way. Also it's tall enough to have a partial second level......not tall enough to stand in , but does offer extra storage space for camping gear and whatnots.

Considering my storage challenges, I am considering trying to fix this thing up and use it for food storage, but I am most concerned about how to keep it more temperate throughout the year to minimalize seasonal extremes. I know I'd have to replace that south outer wall and fix the door in some way so that it will close and lock. Possibly add more insulation in the walls? Maybe add an insulation layer & drywall to the inside of the roof? Adding a small vent on both north & south sides for air flow, that can be opened in summer and closed in winter???

Our more normal temp extremes are as low as teens and high as 100, both of which usually last less than a week........with the exception of last years 110 to 120 for that week, and it's been a good many years but we have gotten to single digits or even below zero in the winter. I am hoping to put nearly all my food storage out there including home canned and store bought. I do not want to have to run an extention cord with heater out there.


Any ideas? TIA



edit to add......overall size is roughly 10x12x15ft
Only thing that comes to mind other than what you mentioned is just some really good insulation and plenty of it, then possibly sealing any existing cracks so critters don't find your stash.
 

Caribou

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Your problem sounds like a cooling issue more than heat, though you need both. I'd start by fixing the door and wall. Next I'd put a layer of foil faced foam, with the foil facing out, on the outside. Then I'd do my outside siding. Something like HardyBoard or metal would be fire resistant. I'd use a light collar, white is best, to reflect the solar gain. More insulation inside, and don't forget the floor.

I'd dig a small ditch and run direct burial copper wire for lights and power. A heat pump is what I use. this would give you both heat and cooling. Mine also has a mod for just dehumidifying.

When I replaced the door I'd use a steel door, with a steel frame, for added security.
 

JustMe

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Your problem sounds like a cooling issue more than heat, though you need both. I'd start by fixing the door and wall. Next I'd put a layer of foil faced foam, with the foil facing out, on the outside. Then I'd do my outside siding. Something like HardyBoard or metal would be fire resistant. I'd use a light collar, white is best, to reflect the solar gain. More insulation inside, and don't forget the floor.

I'd dig a small ditch and run direct burial copper wire for lights and power. A heat pump is what I use. this would give you both heat and cooling. Mine also has a mod for just dehumidifying.

When I replaced the door I'd use a steel door, with a steel frame, for added security.

What about venting? I don't remember how bad it was on the main part, but up in that top section is an oven. Don't they still make open/close vents? Maybe a foot square or less?

Looking out there this morning it all looks good except that back south facing wall.....door is on the north side
 

JustMe

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I think it would be exceptionally difficult to seal it up well enough to keep rodents out. If you're going to store food in there you need to look at rodent proof containers.

We've battled rats for several years, mainly because of the chickens. I do keep some food stuff out there and have never seen any evidence of rats inside the shed, only out by the coop. And I think we've finally gotten rid of them that were here as I haven't seen them in nearly a year. I know that doesn't mean that they won't come back, but so far so good.


I am also considering a much smaller shed that was built off the back of the attached garage. It is only 5x10 with a concrete floor. It is probably the better idea in the long run just because of the floor and that much closer to the house. But I'm not sure it would hold everything
 

Magus

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Grandma had an outdoor can-house. from the waist up was cans, to keep them above the interior freeze line, from the waste down was chicken, goat, rabbit and dog feed in steel bins, flour and the like freezing had no effect on. it was made in the 50's by her late husband, the insulation was odd, a heavy layer of fiberglass, followed by carpet strips and tar paper. the only heat it had was a single old timey sun lamp, but if it got in the teens, they would turn on a milk house heater. It held heat very well!
 

Spikedriver

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Grandma had an outdoor can-house. from the waist up was cans, to keep them above the interior freeze line, from the waste down was chicken, goat, rabbit and dog feed in steel bins, flour and the like freezing had no effect on. it was made in the 50's by her late husband, the insulation was odd, a heavy layer of fiberglass, followed by carpet strips and tar paper. the only heat it had was a single old timey sun lamp, but if it got in the teens, they would turn on a milk house heater. It held heat very well!
How deep was the bottom of that shed below the surface?
 

Magus

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It was not below the surface, it was elevated on a slab cinderblock thick and a concrete floor. where she lived was on top of a windy hill in northern Tennessee, it would stay below freezing for days at a time. that crazy layered insulation worked, that and knowing where the interior freeze line was I suppose. Me and my brother used to sneak out there and nip a can of tomatoes or jelly and sneak off to the junk yard for a snack. LOL
that insulation must have been almost a foot thick. My Uncle used the same method to build a camping cabin, its only heat was a a 3X2 captain's stove.
 

Caribou

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What about venting? I don't remember how bad it was on the main part, but up in that top section is an oven. Don't they still make open/close vents? Maybe a foot square or less?

Looking out there this morning it all looks good except that back south facing wall.....door is on the north side
Someone here was just talking about a full length ridge vent, a 2" plenum, and full soft vents. That is the way I'd go. I'd build an inner ceiling with insulation. One option would be to make your inner ceiling of rigid foam insulation. I'd pick a brand with at least one side unprinted. You could use foil faced, with the foil up, on the ceiling, tape the seams, and then use a second layer of the color you want for a finish. Overlap the seams so that you don't have a direct path for heat.

I think what is happening on the south wall is that it gets so hot it is warping everything. I bet that on a hot summer day you can't put your hand on that south wall. That wall will benefit the most by a foil faced rigid insulation. The foil will reflect a ton of heat.

The foam slows down the heat transfer. Heat transfers in waves. These waves travel slower through foam than fibreglass. If you put fibreglass on the inside wall, the heat will slow through the foam and then pick up speed through the fibreglass but, much like your car it takes time for the speed to build , so your fibreglass is more efficient. In Alaska we put the foam on the inside to slow heat loss. For you I'd suggest foam on the outside. Again, if the outside is white, a gloss virgin white, it will reflect heat best.
 

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This is my old peach house (until recently we had 200 peach trees). We insulated it and installed a small window air conditioner. We sold to people that came here to the farm and at farmers markets. The markets were open Tues, Thru, Sat. We’d pick mon, wed. and friday then store them in the peach house. It’d only hold about 80 baskets. Anymore and I’d bring the overflow in the house under a/c.

This little house is 8.5ftx8.5ft, not very big but more than capable of holding 700lbs of peaches. It would have held much heavier buckets of grain with no issue.

It was a purchased house on a wood frame. We set in on 6 cinder block pillars. Old farmers tip, we used pieces of 16gauge sheet metal, cut a little bigger than the area of the cinder blocks where the wood frame touched them. This served to act as rat/mice guards. They might climb up the cinder block but can’t reach the wood. Just like metal rat guards on a ship’s lines tied to a pier.

July in Alabama is hot! Yet the little a/c unit would keep the temp below 50 degrees. (we didn't quench our fruit, made it necessary to keep it cold)

The cold air felt good even at 4am while I loaded a truck for the farmers market. Sometimes we needed 2 trucks for different markets. Best year we grew, picked and sold, 16K pounds. Couldn't have done it without the little peach house.

Anyway, this is how we modified and used this little shed. We even built shelving.

Peach house (1) may22.JPGPeach house (4) sm.jpgPeach house (8) sm.jpg
 
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JustMe

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Thank you guys for the information. Sounds like it may be more than my skill level, so it's going to take some serious consideration of what I want vs what I'm capable of doing.

My main goal is to get all my preps into one place, instead of scattered around, like the hall closet, bedroom wall, livingroom wall, bedroom closet, dresser and both sheds.

And as usual my wish list doesn't always reflect reality.
 

Caribou

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There are two easy ways to destroy your food, freezing, too much heat, and a wide variation in temperature.
Fix the back wall and paint it white. If that is all you can do, that is something.
 

JustMe

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There are two easy ways to destroy your food, freezing, too much heat, and a wide variation in temperature.
Fix the back wall and paint it white. If that is all you can do, that is something.

I actually have the paint. And yes to that back wall and would still like to put in a couple of vents in the top portion......And the idea of putting some plywood up there to block the bottom from the top is possibly a doable too.....that would improve the temps in the bottom in winter to make it a bit warmer.....yes??? Then take it out for summer to keep it a bit cooler??
 

LadyLocust

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Thank you guys for the information. Sounds like it may be more than my skill level, so it's going to take some serious consideration of what I want vs what I'm capable of doing.

My main goal is to get all my preps into one place, instead of scattered around, like the hall closet, bedroom wall, livingroom wall, bedroom closet, dresser and both sheds.

And as usual my wish list doesn't always reflect reality.
Wait a minute. Are you implying there's something wrong with having it in closets, nooks, crannies, and scattered around? 😂
 

Amish Heart

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We had a new tough shed put up, and I had food storage in bins that had been food savered, like rice and beans. Also lots of tp and paper towels out there. Cleaned it out a year later and had mice damage. All the food had to be dumped. Mice were pretty ferocious in New Mexico. Even shredded tp.
 

Caribou

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Shipping containers come in 10ft and 20ft lengths. Got room for a 20ft? Chicken coop in one end, storage in the other? They can be dry and secured.


View attachment 86171
Shipping containers also come in 40' lengths, and insulated. I've seen the 53' freezer containers turned into homes.
 

goshengirl

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Is it just me, or does that mini shipping container look cute? 😂

Just my 2 cents, but I'm thinking that smaller shed closer to the house might be easier to work with on climate control. And then the bigger shed offers great possibilities for non-food preps. I mean, just think of all the tp that will go in there! 😀 (Would still need to be rodent-controlled)
 

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