With garden sheds becoming a staple in most homes nowadays, it’s just but right to discuss how to build one. And it’s not any other garden shed, but an environmentally-friendly one.
Building a garden shed has advantages, but this also means added expenses for maintenance and upkeep. Designing it the right way is the foundation for enjoying its benefits without making significant changes to your property’s energy consumption, among other facets.
Garden sheds come in all sizes with all sorts of features, usually depending on the homeowner’s preference. Whatever it turns out, the core of your effort should be to have an eco-friendly garden shed. Follow these six steps to build a shed that meets this goal.
1. Install Solar Panels
A structure, whether big or small, will always be eco-friendly when it uses renewable energy. Before building one, consider adding solar panels to your garden shed. Instead of relying on your local energy supply, your garden shed’s light source is self-sufficient.
Installing the best solar panel kit for shed is a significant advantage, especially when your shed location has abundant sunlight during the day. You’re essentially hitting two birds with one stone by being more environment-friendly while saving money on energy costs.
Because solar energy is prevalent among homeowners today, there are many companies in this business. But they don’t hold the same reputation and quality. With that said, choose a good solar panel supplier. A shed is relatively small, so adding solar panels may not be a significant investment, albeit having the best quality.
2. Choose A Builder Or Supplier With Green Expertise
There are so many garden shed builders and suppliers, but not all of them have the knowledge and skills necessary to build an eco-friendly greenhouse. Discuss this right from the outset when you’re still in those first few stages of looking for the right supplier. Doing so should give you enough confidence that the builder you choose is someone who knows the ins and outs of green construction.
Some standard sustainable building practices include:
- Using recycled materials whenever possible instead of sticking to purely brand-new ones;
- Choosing green roofs over traditional roofs;
- Reducing energy usage through features like solar panels.
There are so many more environment-friendly factors in construction that your chosen builder should be able to grant you.
3. Build With Sustainable Or Recycled Materials
Digging deeper into the discussion above, talk to your shed builder or supplier about the possibility of using recycled materials whenever possible. This takes a bit more creativity and ingenuity on the builder’s part, but it should be doable if they have adequate knowledge about the matter and is committed to giving you the best results.
Using recycled materials can help reduce the amount of construction waste sent to the landfill, so that in itself already satisfies the eco-friendly factor. Reclaimed wood, granite, or brick pavers are good options instead of buying new ones.
4. Select The Right Site
Yes, your garden shed will be in your garden, but where exactly will it be? If you have quite a big area, you’ll have to put much thought into the specific location where you’ll build your shed, as it’s another factor that can significantly affect its eco-friendliness.
Choosing the wrong location may entail unnecessary expenses. Once you’ve started the construction process and later realized it’s not what you’ve wanted, making the changes is a waste of materials. That’s not an eco-friendly practice at all.
Second, note that most of the energy supply going to garden sheds is heating, especially during winter. Build the shed in a location where your solar panels can ‘harvest’ the most light, which means the solar panels can be more equipped to run your shed’s power supply for a longer time.
5. Save Rainwater
Imagine all the water you could’ve collected if you designed a garden shed that can also store rainwater. All that rainwater collected can go to practical functions around your garden, like watering the plants and cleaning the greenhouse. And if there’s a lot more left, you can also use it to clean your garden equipment, vehicles, and even your cars.
And a gutter rainwater downpipe on your garden shed’s roof. Connect a water butt, so every time it rains, water flows right into the water butt, either directly for irrigation or to collect in a water tank. Just be sure to clean the water butt regularly, as this can also be a good breeding ground for insect eggs and algae at certain times of the year.
Keep The Size Realistic
Bigger isn’t always better, especially if you won’t use all that extra space anyway. It is imperative to put a lot of thought into the design before you start building. It’s more than just about having the practical features and design, but also meeting the size that’s just right for what you intend your garden shed to be.
Take note that big garden sheds also mean more energy consumption. Even if you were to use solar energy as your primary power source, it’ll still have to work extra hard to collect and power a big shed, as it would a home. Keeping the structure to a minimal size means less of everything: energy costs and usage, water, maintenance, and even construction expenses.
If you are a homeowner who decides to build a garden shed, it means you have taken your gardening up to the next level. You’re not just a casual gardener, but you’ve made this a lifestyle. This also means you are more conscious about your carbon footprint. You most likely aim to run a house as friendly towards the environment as possible, extending to other parts of the property like a garden shed. If you’ve long seriously considered exploring the possibility of an eco-friendlier garden shed, the tips above are worth learning from.