How we review sheds and more
We test and review Amish and Menonnite built sheds constructed of wood, metal and a combination of both wood and metal. These buildings include back yard barns, sheds, storage sheds, lofted barns and sheds, garden sheds and barns. Also included are portable wooden garages, cabins and more.
All of these products are similarly built around the country by the Amish and Menonnite communities, however there are certain differences that may of may not be noticed by the untrained eye. some of these differences are due to different climates and others are because frankly, some folks just don’t build ’em like they used to!
You may take a trip down to the local Home Depot or other big box store and find some nice looking sheds for sale. How do you know if they’re good? Maybe they are but maybe they cut some corners short, literally! Maybe they use inferior lumber or maybe they use lumber that is far better than the lumber used in those mansions that the stars live in? How would you know?
It our job as lumber sleuth’s to check out the nails and screws, the tie downs and batons, the ridges and skids. We use our forensic skills to detect the undetectable. We use our interrogation skills to wear down our captives to get the answers that you so badly desire. We hole their feet to the fire and use CIA torture techniques to get to the bottom of the issues. OK, so maybe we really don’t do any of that. Maybe we’re just nice and polite and just know our stuff. And maybe occasionally we buy our victims lunch, just to get the inside scoop.
So there you have it, our super secret methods, spelled out for you. If you have a particular product from a particular manufacturer or retailer that you’d like us to investigate, let us know! We’ll put it on our list and do our very best to get the right facts.
So people have questioned us asking, “why do I need to know so much about something as simple as a shed, I’m just going to keep some stuff in it.” Ok, we get that, but do you want to make certain that it’s just your stuff being stored in the shed and not some pesky varmints or rodents? Don’t you want to make certain that your shed building will be weather tight and keep the rain out for years to come? How about making sure that the doors open and close no matter what season it is? You never thought about that one did you? You see, depending on the weather and time of year, thing expand and contract. Your doors may open just find during the summer, but when the weather changes, they suddenly stick or they just won’t open or close completely. This is going to be a clear invitation for rodents to move in during bad weather or worse yet, breeding time!
Windows? Yes, what about the windows, do they work well? Windows can be cheap or they can be good, but they can’t be both cheap and good. Vinyl windows work best, however if you don’t mind painting and re-glazing, old fashioned wood may be for you. Personally, I’m sticking with vinyl. They work best, they require little if any maintenance and I want to spend my time with other things. Now if you’ve got a big budget, then aluminum windows might be the way to go, they cost an arm and a leg, but they work great and last forever.
Thermo-pane or not to thermo-pane, that is the question. Why would you need thermo-pane windows? You most likely don’t, and here’s why. You aren’t heating or cooling your shed. It’s not required to maintain a specific interior temperature and unless it’s inhabited by man or beast, you’re wasting you money. Now if you are using it for a living quarters or hobby room, then thermo-pane would be a smart idea. Or, let’s say you’re a snake collector and need to maintain the environment to care for the creepy crawlies, then it would be a good investment.
Shingles or metal roofing? Both are equally good at protecting the building, however metal roofing will last much longer. Maybe you prefer the look of one as opposed to the other? Maybe you’re trying to match the shed to the house and you’ve chosen the same type of roof.
Paint or metal siding? Well paint needs repainting every few years depending on where you live. Metal on the other hand has a baked on finish, however it will still fade after a period of time, so eventually you’ll need to do something to restore the color.
Wooden doors or metal doors? This all depends on what you’re using the shed for. For storing your lawn tractor you may just need the wooden doors and they’ll work just fine. If you’re using it as a workshop then you may want to install a steel door to keep the heat or cool in while you’re working.
Foundation or skids? Does this even matter… It really depends on your location and the uses of the shed. It’s important to consult your local shed manufacturer before making this decision.
We hope that you will find this site useful in making your shed buying decision.