We address a question about shed materials and foundations as well as briefly discuss LED light bulbs.
The Handyguys received a call from Rick from Sawdust Chronicles and The Splintered Board podcasts. He asked:
What materials are good for shed siding? Do I need a concrete slab for my shed?
Great questions, Rick.
Sheds can be built with many different choices in materials. Some people will build them with the same types of finishes of their house (siding choice, colors, etc.) but sometimes people would do something different. A quick google search will turn up thousands of different looks.
If you don’t want to try and go to the trouble of matching siding and roofing to your house and want to keep things simple, there is a commonly used siding called t1-11. Its an exterior rated plywood that looks like board and batten siding. You can also get a version made from OSB that comes pre-primed. I think that’s called “smart panels”. I really like fiber cement siding. I haven’t used it on a shed but it’s on the top of my list for my next shed. Some brands come pre-primed or pre-painted.
You will want to check with your municipality to determine if you need a permit. In most places, you do not need a permit if the shed is build directly on the ground, usually with 4×4 PT runners sitting on some patio bricks. When built this way, it’s not considered a permanent structure. When you build on a slab, it is usually considered permanent and will require a permit. Again, check with your code people as this varies. Some areas will also require anchors in the ground, or slab, to prevent it from blowing away in high winds.
Also consider having someone build one for you or deliver one pre-made. My last shed I was going to build it myself but a local company was having a sale. They were able to build me a shed for less money than I could have bought the materials. One man came with the shed pre-built in sections (walls, roof, floor) and put it together in just a couple hours. I painted it and built a ramp. I saved a few hundred bucks.
Listen to this podcast for The Handyguys discussing all these points.
LED Light bulbs
- Expected to consume just 9 watts compared with 40-watt incandescent/halogen or 10-watt CFL, while delivering nearly the same light output;
- Expected 25,000-hour rated life will last 17 years (4 hours per day), which is 25 times longer than a general service 40-watt incandescent or halogen bulb and more than 3 times longer than a standard 8,000-hour rated life CFL;
- LED technology delivers the instant full brightness of an incandescent or halogen bulb;
- Durable solid-state design with no filament to break;
- Contains no mercury and will be RoHS compliant; and
- Feels cooler to the touch than CFLs and far cooler than incandescent bulbs.
Discussing bulbs led Handyguy Brian to make a claim that short life bulbs have planned obsolescence and that some of Edison’s original bulbs are still burning today. Maybe Brian was imagining things but there are definitely some very old light bulbs still in use today. The discussion further digressed into who preferred DC versus AV electrical, Tesla, Edison or Westinghouse. Seems Paul was correct. Edison was a proponent of DC electrical for the grid and Westinghouse was a proponent of AC.
In the “War of Currents” era (sometimes, “War of the Currents” or “Battle of Currents”) in the late 1880s, George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison became adversaries due to Edison’s promotion of direct current (DC) for electric power distribution over alternating current (AC) advocated by Westinghouse and Nikola Tesla.
Thanks Paul for setting Brian straight. Listen to the podcast to hear the discussion.