Advanced Informations On Storage Shed Materials

It is a necessity in the construction industry to have their makeshift sheds to store materials there safely. The usage of outdoor storage sheds is not just restricted to the construction industry but also extending to other areas such as residential, farm house, yards, etc.

A storage shed does not need to be used just for storing materials always. It can be customized to suit one’s need and can be used as a car garage, a place to pursue your hobbies, and even a livable shed such as a tiny house, a hut, or a cave. These sheds can come in one- or two-storey types.

Types of materials for outdoor storage sheds

There are different types of panel materials used for manufacturing sheds to suit different tastes of people.

The most common types of materials used in manufacturing sheds are galvanized steel or electrogalvanized steel/hot-dip galvanized (HDG) steel, polymers and resins (plastics – HDPE, polycarbonate, polypropylene), and wooden panels.

Let’s talk briefly about these three types, their manufacturing process, their physical and chemical properties, and their suitability for different climatic conditions! 

Galvanized steel

Durability of steel gets reduced when exposed to harsh environmental conditions. Steel gets corroded, loses its strength and eventually breaks down.

To make steel corrosion resistant, it is coated with zinc through a process called galvanization. Several methods for galvanization are employed. They include but not limited to hot-dip galvanization and electrgalvanization.

In hot-dip galvanization, steel is dipped in molten zinc and the zinc sticks to steel’s surface.

Electrogalvanized steel or zinc electroplating involves placing zinc and steel in an aqueous aqueous bath, and electricity is used to move zinc to paint itself on to steel through a process called electroplating. The process produces a thin coating compared to hot-dip process.

The HDG steel has a raw and thick coating and the electrogalvanized (electroplated) steel has a thin zinc coating. HDG steel has a zinc coating up to 10 times than electrogalvanized steel and is suitable for outdoors.

Electrogalvanized steel is mostly used indoors or in milder environments and gives a smooth and nice finish. They are paintable and can be weld easily. Electrogalvanized steel sheets are available with zinc coating thickness ranging from 20 to 50 microns. HDG steel sheets come with zinc coating thickness from 75 to 250 microns.  

Physical and chemical properties

The fatigue strength and embrittlement of steel are not affected or improved to some extent by using galvanized steel. Drilling and welding reduces the strength somewhat. Acids with pH greater than 5.0 and bases with pH lesser than 12 are mostly harmless to galvanized steel. Bleaching agent such as chlorine corrodes galvanized steel. Acidic foods such as tomatoes and citrus fruits cause corrosion to some extent in galvanized steel. Fertilizers and aluminium cleaners can also corrode galvanized steel.  

Metal sheds have been commonly used sheds because they are the least expensive. They are not as strong as resin or wooden sheds. If you want to build a metal shed in a stormy area, you may consider purchasing an anchoring kit or think of other options. Metal sheds are also very susceptible to denting and rusting, though galvanized steel reduces rusting to a great extent. These sheds do not look attractive and are least customizable. These require frequent maintenance such as repainting, etc.

Before purchasing a metal shed, keep in mind the type of foundation you have to build for your shed because metal shed kits do not include a floor of any kind. If your foundation is gravel, then storing materials other than lawn equipment may not be a good idea. Assembling these sheds is very complicated and is least customizable.

Wooden Sheds

Wooden sheds are the first and foremost known to mankind. They are naturally available as timber from trees.

  • They are, however, seasoned and treated to give extra strength and make them bug free and moisture resistant. 2
  • These sheds can be completely customized to suit your needs. These can be painted and decorated easily.
  • They also support fastening, drilling, etc. Multiple shelves and cabinets can be hung from the walls to give extra storage space. These are costlier than resin or metal sheds of same size. If left unfinished, it is very difficult to clean and can attract bugs and insects.

Wood is a very strong material but is vulnerable. Harsh weather, water, and insects can deteriorate wood. Paint peels off over time and needs repainting and maintenance. 

Plastic & resin sheds

Plastic is processed from plastic resins or polymers. Plastics are widely used in almost all industries such as automobile, packaging, and consumer goods, to name a few.

Different types of plastics are present in the market such as HDPE, polypropylene, polycarbonate, etc.

  • They can withstand less amount of stress and strain.
  • They are resistant to most chemicals except very high acidic and base materials.
  • They can withstand any weather condition.
  • They cannot withstand temperature or wind.

Resin sheds are made of high quality plastic material and the sheds are lighter, yet stronger and more durable than wooden sheds. They are UV protected. These sheds will not crack, fade, rot, or rust and painting is not needed.

Resin sheds are available in different sizes and are customizable. Plastic sheds are easy to build and are maintenance free. Manufacturing panels is not a costly affair compared to wooden sheds but more expensive than metal sheds. 

Plastic sheds are extremely strong but they cannot bear much weight hanging from the walls. These sheds are very attractive and decorative but they cannot be painted and fully decorated to suit your wishes. 

Description

Fire resistant

Mechanical characteristics

Wind effect

 

Water effect

Chemicals effect

DIY

 

 

Galvanized steel

Yes, the outer layer peels off in most cases and do not catch fire easily

Somewhat good mechanical strength

Wind Cannot withstand wind speeds above 20 km/hour

Water Causes corrosion

Cannot take Acids with pH below 5 and bases with pH above, bleaching agents, etc

Suitable for Temporary

 

Polymers and resins

Somewhat fire retardants but can catch fire more easily

Somewhat good mechanical strength

Cannot withstand wind speeds above 40 km/hour

Does not affect

Strong acids below pH 6 and bases above 12 can dissolve plastic

Permanent with some steel added to give strength

 

 

Wood panel

Vulnerable to fire, catches fire easily and burn into ashes

Very good mechanical strength

Can withstand wind speeds up to 80 km/hour

Affect over time

 

Acid and other chemicals have limited effect

Can build permanent sheds without any support. 

 

Conclusion

The choice of usage of materials for outdoor storage sheds depends on your requirements such as the purpose, environmental and chemical exposures, physical endurances, fire resistance, etc. If you want to build a shed in a stormy area, use either plastic or wooden sheds because they provide much more strength than galvanized steel. If you want to store some chemicals, then plastic panels are suitable. Wooden panels are much useful if you want to hang something heavy on the walls and also want the aesthetics of the shed with a high degree of customization.

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