A high-quality wooden shed should last you for years. However, even the best sheds can run into rot, mold, and warping issues if the necessary precautions are not taken. We endeavor to help you keep your shed rot-free by compiling the five best ways to prevent your shed floor from rotting.
Table of Contents
1. Choose Durable Flooring Material
To ensure the longevity of your shed, its flooring should be made of high-quality, durable materials. The most common types of shed flooring are OSB, concrete, and pressure-treated plywood.
OSB Shed Flooring
OSB is cheap flooring material, but it is not the best option if you are worried about your shed’s floor rotting. OSB has a lot of exposed end grain, which readily absorbs water. There are options to buy waterproof OSB flooring, but even with that, you will have to treat the edges of the boards.
Concrete Shed Flooring
Concrete is one of the most expensive shed flooring materials, but it is strong, durable, and resistant to rot and moisture. Concrete shed floor will not rot, but if your shed has wooden joists, and skids, concrete flooring can cause water to puddle around them, increasing the chance of rot and deterioration in the rest of the shed.
Pressure-Treated Plywood Shed Flooring
Pressure-treated plywood is another popular shed flooring option. Although it’s slightly more expensive than OSB, it holds up better against rot and mold and is much cheaper than a concrete pad. One of the main benefits of using pressure-treated wood for the base of your shed is that the wood surfaces are sealed, preventing water from seeping into the wood and causing rot or decay. In addition, the wood is treated with a chemical preservative to protect it against insects and pests that can cause damage to the wood.
2. Install a Proper Foundation
Installing a proper foundation is essential for preventing your shed floor from rotting. A good foundation will provide a well-draining base for your shed, which is one of the most effective ways to reduce the chances of your shed floor rotting.
There are several options for shed foundations that can keep your shed’s base from rotting. As we mentioned above, concrete foundations offer a solid and durable foundation for your shed, but there is still a danger of your shed’s floor rotting if not installed correctly.
Another popular solution for a shed foundation, and one we highly recommend, is a gravel shed foundation. Gravel foundations are versatile, economical, and durable, and, most importantly, they offer excellent drainage.
For a detailed comparison of concrete and gravel foundations, read this article.
3. Redirect Water Away From Your Shed
Diverting water away from your shed is critical to prevent rot in the floor. By ensuring that water does not come into contact with the shed, you can keep the shed base dry and avoid rot. Here are several ways to redirect water from your shed.
Ensure proper grading:
Ensure that the ground slopes away from your shed so water drains away from it.
Install gutters and downspouts:
Install gutters and downspouts on your shed to collect and divert rainwater from the shed’s floor. Make sure the downspouts extend away from the shed and direct water to a safe location, such as a rain barrel or a drain.
Install a gravel or crushed stone foundation:
A gravel foundation under your shed lets water seep into the ground and avoids coming into contact with your shed’s base.
4. Maintain Proper Ventilation
Make sure your shed is adequately ventilated to keep your shed’s floor rot-free. Without proper ventilation, moisture can build up from the damp air, which can cause rot and mold. Here are several ways to keep your shed well-ventilated.
Vents installed in the roof or walls of your shed create airflow allowing damp air to escape and preventing moisture buildup.
Windows, like vents, provide your shed with airflow. By providing a way for air to circulate, windows can help to reduce the chances of moisture buildup, which will, in turn, help to prevent the shed’s base from rotting.
Use a dehumidifier
If the moisture in your shed is becoming extreme, using a dehumidifier is an option to rid your shed of damp air quickly.
Like windows and vents, fans can increase airflow and reduce the risk of moisture buildup. Place fans near vents or roof openings to increase airflow.
5. Keep Your Shed Floor Dry
Since rot is caused by moisture, here are several ways to ensure the least amount of moisture is on your shed’s floor.
Keep the floor clean
Sweep the floor of your shed regularly to remove any dirt or debris that could hold moisture.
Seal your floor
Seal the floor of your shed with a moisture-resistant sealant to prevent water from penetrating the surface.
Store items off the floor
Store items on shelves or pallets to keep them off the floor and reduce the risk of moisture buildup.
Avoid moisture-producing activities
Avoid activities that produce moisture inside your shed, such as washing or cleaning. If you do need to do these activities, make sure that you have adequate ventilation to allow moisture to escape.