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How to build the perfect Garden Shed

The humble garden shed is a quintessential part of Kiwi life. It enables our obsession with the outdoors – giving us a place to store our toys and tools, or take time out (especially if the better half is on our back). Sheds are simply a part of our life as NZers. That’s why a shed needs to be just right for you, serving your needs. Whether it is your woodworking gear, or your gardening tools, the shed is a place where our outdoor life begins.

Building a garden shed can seem daunting however, especially if you have little DIY experience. The process can seem especially off-putting when you consider the elements your shed will be up against – it should be strong, water and weatherproof and durable. It needs to keep your gear safe from the unpredictable New Zealand weather.

Yet there’s no need to be discouraged. Assembling a shed is a straightforward procedure well within the skill-set of any DIYer. Your man-cave or she-shack is a decent Sunday of work away – especially when you order a shed with pre-fabricated parts.

Read our blog below for the basics on building a garden shed from a kitset. However, do bear in mind that all sheds will be a little bit different. Thankfully we have a complete list of detailed assembly instructions for our full range of sheds.

Considerations before building the shed

Before we outline the build process, it is important to consider several things before purchasing a kitset garden shed.

Consider size

How big does your shed need to be? What sort of tools and equipment are going to be safely stored in the shed? And what do you anticipate storing in your shed in the near future? These considerations will help you determine the size of your shed. If you got engines to store – like leaf-blowers, mowers or chainsaws, a floor is a good idea, as it will keep out rising damp, helping keep your tools in good condition. This is your shed, your way. It should help you to live your best shed life!

Survey your property for a suitable site

It should be flat and large enough to fit the floor-plan of your chosen shed. It will need to be well-drained, in order to prevent water from pooling under your shed. If the site is sloped you may need to perform some groundwork in order to create a flat surface for your shed to stand on.

Steel vs. wood

There are merits to both steel and wood sheds. Our Duratuf sheds are all constructed from a stiff wooden frame, but our cladding differs. Wood cladding is durable and tends to look nicer than steel. But steel sheds tend to be cheaper, while being just as resistant to weather. However, over time rust can occur, especially if your shed is situated on a site that is not well-drained, or the cladding is installed incorrectly. The good thing about Duratuf sheds is that they have steel cladding warranties of up to 30 years to safeguard your investment.

Now on to building!

1. Marking your site

Step one is to mark your site. You may choose to lay out your shed on some foundations – this could be a full concrete slab, or a few concrete tiles. Alternatively, your shed may be suitable to free stand on the ground, or you could add a timber floor kit.

2. Assemble your walls

Building the frame is straightforward – and is best done with a helper. Begin by identifying each piece of the frame, and lay out the frame on the ground. Build each wall of the frame according to the supplied dimensions then attach the cladding to the frame.

With your helper, you will want to erect two sides of the frame at once. While your helper holds them in place, screw them together. Proceed to erect the rest of the walls, then the roof.

3. Fit the roof cladding and flooring (if using) 

Fit the roof cladding, according to the instructions supplied. Some sheds – particularly higher end, larger sheds, or occupied dwellings - may have you apply building paper first. This is to provide a backup waterproof layer.

When you're done with the roof you can install your floor, or attach your shed to the concrete pad. 

4. Install the door 

Begin by measuring out where your top and bottom door hinges need to go on your door. Screw your hinges into the door, and proceed to line your door up with the frame. The door needs several millimetres clearance from the top and bottom of your frame. Proceed to screw your door hinges into the frame, and check to see if the door closes properly. Adjust as necessary.

5. Have a beer 

You’ve earned it!

Considering a shed for your garden? Consider Duratuf


Whether you need a small shed, or a custom shed for your NZ home, check out Duratuf. We provide kitset sheds designed to deliver for New Zealanders’ diverse needs. Our sheds are high quality and easy to assemble, giving you a shed that can transform your garden in a weekend. Reaching your #shedgoals is just a call away.