Yearly Shed Maintenance 101

It’s almost time for backyard hangs, dinners on the grill, and growing your garden. As we approach the warmer Spring months, it’s time to make sure your backyard is ready. Part of this cleanup is your outdoor shed. 

We’ve created our yearly shed maintenance checklist to help you feel more prepared for the warmer months ahead. After this blog, you’ll have a better idea of what needs to be done and how you can maintain your shed care throughout the entire year. 

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Interior Shed Maintenance Checklist

The first step of our shed maintenance checklist is to prepare the interior for the upcoming Spring season. This includes cleaning it out, taking note of your shed’s inventory, and making the space an unwanted home to critters and pests. 

#1 Clear Out and Organize

It’s likely that during the colder months, you haven’t used your outdoor storage shed much. Now that you are starting to prepare for the warmer weather, it’s a great time to take inventory and clear out unused equipment and tools in your shed. 

Start by clearing out everything from your shed. Then you’ll have the opportunity to clean the shed floors. A majority of Penn Dutch Structures’ shed floors are plywood, so it’s important to not put too much moisture on the floor as that will cause the wood to rot. 

If there’s minimal debris and leaves on your shed floor, you can simply use a broom to sweep everything outside. If the shed floors are especially muddy, you can combine a small amount of water with white vinegar and coconut oil to mop the floors. 

In order to maintain this cleanliness throughout the entire Spring and Summer season, clean your shed floors regularly. This will also be a useful shed care tip to remember during tip #2 on our checklist. 

With everything still out of your shed, it is an ideal time to reorganize the space. By using shelves, cork boards, and storage racks, you can keep your shed decluttered throughout the year. Having organization tools set up within your shed maximizes the space

Organize your things in a way that makes sense to you. Maybe it’s by how often you use certain tools, or you categorize your items so all your gardening tools are together and all your hardware tools are in one place.

#2 Make Sure No Pests Have Settled Into Your Shed

Anything between spiders, insects, and small rodents can make your shed their home. Especially if your shed has been left completely unattended during colder months, critters may have needed a warm spot to stay. 

Listed below are some shed care tips and tricks to make your shed less welcoming to pests

  • Clean your shed floors weekly so dirt doesn’t build up. 
  • Don’t store any food, including birdseed in your shed. 
  • Improve the lighting in your shed to help reduce the number of dark corners, where bugs and rodents can easily hide. 

Depending on what type of shed you have, vinyl or wooden, it will be more susceptible to insects. So be prepared to have more maintenance done with a wooden shed compared to a vinyl shed.

#3 Inspect Your Windows and Doors

Although this next step is under the interior shed maintenance section, your windows and doors should be cleaned on the outside as well. The same shed window care tips apply. You can clean the windows with your regular window cleaner. 

You will also want to inspect the window panes and door frames for any leakage to ensure that there isn’t any water damage. Generally, the cause of leaking windows is old caulk or seals. Over time, you may notice that the caulk is dried out and cracking. The solution to leaking windows is to replace the caulk or seal.

One side of a wooden shed with lots of gardening materials, boots, buckets, and wooden crates.

#4 Regularly Clean Tools Going In and Out of Your Shed

This next shed upkeep step is to ensure that the transition from each session will be easier moving forward because you’ll regularly clean tools and equipment going in and out of the space. 

Anytime you use a gardening tool or a piece of equipment, clean it off before storing it back in your shed. This will not only help you keep dirt out of the interior but also help keep the space pest-free. 

If you have metal tools, you should keep a bucket of damp sand within your shed to quickly clean the tools after you’re done using them.

Exterior Shed Maintenance Checklist

Now that your interior is ready, it’s time to focus on the outside of your shed. This will be what people see first when they visit, so you’ll want to do some touchups to prepare for the Spring season.

#1 Check Your Shed’s Security

As part of our shed maintenance checklist, we recommend updating your shed lock. Your shed holds valuable inventory for your home, so it’s essential that it is well secured. There are different types of shed locks, what you choose will depend on what level of security you need for your shed.

#2 Clean the Exterior

If you purchased from Penn Dutch Structures, your shed is either wooden or vinyl, so the way you clean the exterior may slightly differ. 

Wooden Sheds. The best tool to use on the exterior of your wooden shed is a power washer. Just like when you’re cleaning your shed floors, make sure your power washer is on a lighter setting that won’t damage the wood siding. 

Vinyl Sheds. Vinyl sheds don’t need as much maintenance as their wood counterparts, but sometimes they may need a good cleaning. A mixture of water and vinegar will suffice to clean your exterior. 

By cleaning the outside of your shed, you can help get dirt and debris off and keep your shed looking brand new.

#3 Repaint

A fresh coat of paint can either be more of a shed upkeep task that just covers any chips or cracks, or you can take the time to repaint the entire exterior to give the shed a completely new look. If your shed is closer to your home, you may want to paint it to match the rest of your exterior. Or you could decide to add a pop of color to your landscaping through your shed’s color.

#4 Check the Roof/Shingles

Especially if you live in an area with heavy snow or strong weather conditions, your roof might need some updates from the winter months. Generally, there are three different types of shed roofs. 

Metal roofs are able to withstand extreme weather conditions, so it’s likely you’ll just need to clean it off to prepare for the Spring season. 

Architectural shingles are the thicker option of the two types of shingles, so they can withstand strong winds with a sturdier and stronger adhesive. 

3-tab shingles are the most cost-effective option but are known to buckle and blow away. If you have 3-tab shingles, make it a priority to check your roof regularly for any damage.

Around Your Shed: Landscaping Checklist

Now that you have the steps to clean your interior and exterior, it’s time to make sure your landscaping matches! As you prepare for the warmer weather, clean up your garden and bushes. This will not only help your yard look great, but can help maintain your shed’s cleanliness. 

There are a few shed care tips that can help your backyard look great and keep your shed clean. 

  1. Trim low-hanging branches to avoid leaves building up on your shed’s roof. 
  2. Use rocks or mulch up against the shed rather than soil. This helps the water go through the garden rather than build up and create moisture damage against your shed. 
  3. Don’t stack firewood against your shed. When you stack firewood against your shed, it causes algae and mold to grow. 

Surrounding your shed, you may decide to have a garden or an entertainment outdoor structure. This brings your entire landscaping together and creates a beautiful space for the Spring and Summer seasons. 

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Garden A-Frame shed with a small garden surrounding it
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