Frequently Asked Questions about Moving a Shed

by John Coupe
(Admin)

Moving a Shed FAQ – I get asked a lot of questions about Moving Sheds and so I have pulled together a lot of these onto one page for you to browse. Hopefully, you can find an answer to your question in amongst these.


If not please visit my Shed Questions page and ask away.

My only request before you do this is to take the time to submit several pictures and write a good summary your problem. I am keen to help but if I just get a one-liner saying - “I need some help with my shed roof!” it takes a lot longer to help you get to the root of the problem and find a solution.

I look forward to hearing from you if you don’t find an answer to your question below:

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Moving a Shed Using Trailer Jockey Wheels

by Dave
(Lancashire)

Trailer Jockey Wheel

Trailer Jockey Wheel

I moved my 12x8' heavy wooden shed some 10 yards using 4 jockey wheels with 6" tyres that cost GBP55.00 (USD83.00 including shipping on eBay).

I attached the jockey wheels in each corner using strong right angle plates. Together with friends we lifted all 4 corners of the shed at the same time turn by turn and simply wheeled the shed over a lawn and driveway to the new base.

It was so easy, one of my friends also used the jockey wheels and plates to move his workshop and re-sold the full kit on eBay for the same as it cost, so it only cost the eBay selling charges.

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Great Idea Dave
by: John

I really like this idea, using fairly easily available pieces of kit to do a task like this and at a very low cost.

This method would be good for moving a shed across a relatively hard surface so that the jockey wheels didn't dig in to the ground. If the ground was a little soft you could lay down some planks along the course of the route.

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Moving a Shed on Snow Skis

by Tireguy

I once moved a 12 x 16 Shed that had a wood floor in it. I was in Wasilla Alaska. I wanted the shed moved & thought in summer it would fall apart trying to move it. I jacked it up with a Handyman Jack little by little until it was about a foot off the ground.

I put two Large 4x6 post under it and used Lag bolts to hold the Post's to the floor and then bought old snow skis and screwed them to the bottom of the post. Waited for a good snow then my Buddy used his 4x4 truck pulling & I used my old plow truck to push.

We moved it a good distance to the other side of my property. Jacked it back up pulled the skis and post off then set it on cinder blocks. Worked well.

Good idea in Cold snowy areas.

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Moving a storage shed on a hardstanding

by mike
(san dimas ca)

10x12 Tuff Shed on hardstanding

10x12 Tuff Shed on hardstanding

10x12 Tuff Shed on hardstanding


Hi John, I have a 10x12 Tuff shed that is built on a level concrete hard-standing. The shed has a floor/base is made of metal joists with a plywood deck and the rest of the shed is built of timber with Smartside type siding.

I want to re-organise my garden area and to do this I need to rotate the shed through 90 degrees and move it over by about 3 feet. The shed will be on the hard-standing all the time.

My problem is how to initially lift the shed so that I can get something underneath. Or do you have any suggestions as to companies that could do this sort of work?


Johns Suggestions:

Hi Mike,

Thanks for the pictures. ;-)

I can think of a couple of ways of lifting the shed so that you can move it.

The least intrusive way would be to construct a timber collar around the base of the shed and beneath the shed walls (I assume that the shed base is positively fixed to the rest of the shed?). Then you could bolt something to this collar to enable you to lift the corner/end of the shed and get some rollers underneath it.
Alternatively fix a trailer jockey wheel to the upright at each corner as this reader describes.

An alternative way would be to remove some of the cladding/cut a hole in it at the corners so that a timber beam could be passed through from one side to the other and fixed to the frame (you would need to locate suitable fixing points). With this done at each end, the shed could then be lifted up on to rollers or trailer jockey wheels as the previous idea.

With regards to suitable companies who could do this. I would take these thoughts along to a local builder. They are experienced in doing the sort of work outlined above, though they might never have done one quite of this type!

I hope this helps and I look forward to your thoughts on these suggestions.

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Relocating a shed

by Mel
(Dover, AR)

I live at a rent house with no storage. I have at least 160 sq ft of stuff in a portable container at my house (costing me over $80 a month). I want at least the 160 sq ft (really need a bit more) If I build it I want to be able to move it or sell it to someone when I move, if I move etc. etc.

What is the largest size you would recommend for building and then being able to move it later to another location?

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shed size, considering moving
by: Len

In our state and cities (with some exceptions), sheds under 120 sq. ft. are not regulated under building code requirements, setbacks from property lines, etc..

This may be true in your state or where you may want to move. If so, I recommend building a shed that can be moved (perhaps even in panels), and keeping it to 120 sq. ft. maximum!

Hope this helps.

Shipping Container
by: Anonymous

If you can have 160 square feet, buy a used shipping container. When you want to move it, you can just put it on a truck

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Moving a Big Max shed

by Gail
(Westminster, MA)


Could anyone tell me if it is possible to transport an assembled (empty) Big Max Rubbermaid 7x7 shed from one property to another without taking it apart? I will be moving and do not want to part with the shed. Thanks in advance.

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Be very Careful!
by: John - Admin

Hi Gail,
Good question. I guess that you are unwilling to disassemble the shed as you may crack some of the panels or the fixings. Or perhaps some caulk was used on the panel joints during construction to ensure weather-tightness in service. I would guess the all up weight of the shed must be in the region of 350 pounds, so it could feasibly be lifted by 6 people (figuring 55 lbs/person) on to a flat bed trailer.

The main problem would be the risk of cracking the panels due to 'racking' in an uneven lift. When wooden sheds are moved they are braced internally at load points and openings, have a look for shed moving videos on YouTube they are quite robust.

I believe that Big Max sheds are no longer made. You could look at the sentinel shed 8'x7.5' by Lifetime Products as a similar sized alternative.

I hope that this helps. If you do try to move this shed would you let us know how you get on?

All the best

John

Planning is everything
by: GreenBoy

On top of all of Johns comments I would add that having the foundations set ready to receive the shed is a must - also plan what you will need to lift the shed - having to stop halfway through to get some more rope etc. is more likely to cause problems from putting down and picking up repeatedly. Also ensure there is nothing in the way to climb over!

My fathers friend had a home workshop - approx 16' x 20' long and by installing a series of scaffold poles through the shed so a dozen guys were able to lift the workshop complete, move it 50' to its new position and put it down on the new base - without even cracking the glass in the windows.

The best thing it was all on video (gone now alas) and not one person swore or cussed!


move like the Egyptians!
by: Anonymous

We just moved one across a large yard rolling over 2" PVC pipes. I would suggest using the same premise by setting 2X4's as your incline to the trailer (spaced every 2')and using a rope/pulley at the front of the trailer. Or roll the shed onto 2x4's & have the 6 large men pick up the ends of the wood to carry.

If it breaks...
by: Anonymous

We tried it (actually some not-terribly-bright mover types) and it broke all apart. But the shed is so tough that very little was damaged. I really had no problem re-assembling it at the new location. I did add a few extra stainless steel bolts and anchored the whole shed with over-the-top cables because we live in hurricane country. I know it won't withstand "the big one", but it will do fine in a high wind.

Don't worry if it does fall apart. Re-assembly is very doable.

moving my rubbermaid shed
by: Doug

I have just started to move my rubbermaid shed. The new foundation is ready,(patio slabs).
My problem is I don't have the man power available where I am. I am trying to figure out how little I have to take apart to move it myself. Looks like I might have to go right down to square one. Hope I can find assembly instructions here somewhere.
Good luck Gail.

Three 2x4's 12ft long
by: Anonymous

Yes, we just moved the shed about 40 feet around a big tree.

Take three 2x4 12ft long and lift one end of shed and slide under one 2x4 at each end and one in the middel. Take 6 average size adults and lift.

I would recommend 8 adults and four 2x4's if moving longer distance.

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Lifting a shed

by Jo
(Rock Island, IL)

Our shed was located by the previous owner in the drainage of our acre yard. It stands in water every spring or during rainy periods. Therefore, it is starting to rot away. It has a plywood skid floor and is about 15 X 12 in size; wood frame (appears sound) covered by 4X8 siding panels (two of which are rotted and need to be replaced soon)

I would like to know if a heavy car jack can lift the shed so I can put concrete blocks underneath to remove it from the water. Any suggestions are welcome. THX!!

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Lifting a shed
by: John - Admin

Ho Jo,

Thanks for your question.

Before you go about this the first thing to do is to remove everything from inside the shed to make it as light as possible. If there are any glazed windows these should be either removed or braced as the frame may rack and crack the glass as you lift it.

I estimate the weight of the shed (assuming it to be 3/4" ply and 4x2 at 16" centres) to be a maximum of 1.8 tonnes. But you will only be lifting less than half this so a car jack (dependant upon the design) should be about right.

When it comes to lifting the shed do not put any body part underneath the shed as things supported on jacks and blocks etc can move unexpectedly - SAFETY FIRST AT ALL TIMES.

I don't know the layout of the foundation at the moment but I would think that it could be 9 pads on a 3x3 grid? I am also assuming that the floor is something like 4x2 timbers at 16" centres supported on say 3 6x2 timbers running the length of the shed.

I would excavate under the corners and lift each corner with the jack sequentially about 25mm packing each as you go. By doing this in small increments you will decrease the risk of the shed 'racking'. As the process goes on you may feel more comfortable increasing these increments.

There is likely to be at least one internal pad, this should be accessed from above through a hole cut in the floor, do not crawl underneath.

Let me know if this was helpful and how you get on with this project. Some pictures would be great!

All the best

John

Lifting a shed (reply)
by: Anonymous

I recently raised a 12' x 20' shed with a automotive bottle jack approx. 4". If you've dug beneath the shed corner to set your jack, be very careful to first place the jack on a flat and hard surface prior to raising the shed. The jack can become unstable on the ground very quickly without proper support. Even with support, plan to have something readily available to slip under the shed to prevent it from falling down in the event the jack becomes unstable.

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Moving a big shed a few feet

by Brian J Landsberger
(Las Vegas, NV)

We have a 13 x 28 ft wood frame shed on a flat slab that we need to move three to four feet to comply with code setback rules. The direction of move is parallel to the short side. Is it possible to pour a slab extension and slide the structure onto the new slab? I understand that the old hold down bolts must be cut off at slab level.

If it is possible what tips do you have to keep the structure from warping, cracking or bending and what machine or tool to use to move the shed. Also any techniques to make the sliding as easy as possible such as slipping lubricated strips of metal under the bottom 2x4s. Who would you call to do the work?

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My shed moving tips
by: John - Admin

Hi Brian,
Thanks for your question. You must be a bit frustrated after having a built a shed of that size to have to move it just 3 feet! I've got a couple of tips and it would be great to hear how you get on.

Firstly, I would empty the shed (to make it as light as possible) and do my best to brace all openings so that as you move the shed it does not 'rack' and cause damage to the finish of the shed or cause the windows to crack or doors to distort.

As it only has to move 4 feet or so your proposal to cast a new concrete slab for it to move on to sounds a reasonable proposal.

For lifting the shed to insert plates or rollers( such as steel scaffold poles) I think that a series of car jacks at strong points around the perimeter which could be lifted a small amount in turn or with the help of others.

For the motive power it depends on how much space you have in the direction that you are moving. The ideal solution would be a truck with a winch, or even connecting the building to the tow bar of the truck and inching forward. Failing that some sort of manual winch such as a tirfor anchored in to the ground would give you a lot of control. I think that you need to be pulling from at least two separate points each of which need to be strong enough to resist the forces you are applying and the floor braced to that the building does not distort on plan.

As to who would be able to do this sort of project I would have thought most practical local builders or carpenters are experienced with the practicalities of moving large objects.

I hope that this was helpful and do let me know how you get on.

Best Regards

John

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Taking down a metal shed

by Angela
(Las Vegas)

I want to take down a built metal shed at one property and rebuild it at new house. Any certain steps to follow?




Answer By John-Admin:
Hi Angela,
Thank you for your question. Depending on how long the shed has been up you may have your work cut out! In my experience after metal shed have been up for a while the metal bolts and fixings that hold them together corrode and they become difficult to remove without cutting them which brings with it the possibility of damaging the metal skin which forms the shed.

Assuming that you can remove the bolts successfully I would find a copy of the manufacturers instructions and follow them in reverse. So normally this would be starting with the roof and working your way down.

Depending on how far you are to move it there is always the possibility of moving it without disassembling it. The best route for this is normally a strong man at each corner!

I just saw that you are from Las Vegas, given the dry atmosphere there due to altitude and desert location the corrosion may not be too bad.

let me know how you get on. A photo or two would help to see the problem more clearly.

All the best

John

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how i tackled it
by: angela

Thanks for your advice.

I had an inexperienced carpenter help me take it down, a good friend who means well but working with tools is foreign. I marked off panels before removing them going clockwise, keep a hand drawing of what you mean by the letters, every cross bar and support metal bars were also indicated on chart.

As I attacked the shed in the UNDRESSING point of view, well aware that I must not remove certain pieces for it will make it unstable,my friend did not and few metal overhead support beams came down way to soon. Verbal communication here out...so may screws, and the body was in good shape.

I do want to find a manual to which will help me assemble it.

Metal shed assembly instructions
by: John - Admin

Hi Angela,
This page at the Arrow website has instructions for assembly of all the metal sheds in their range. You will find some useful information there that may help.

Let me know how you get on, some pictures would be great.

Cheers

John


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