Frequently Asked Shed Door Questions

by John Coupe
(Admin)

Shed Door FAQ – I get asked a lot of questions about building shed doors 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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Sliding shed door hardware

by Susan
(United States)

I am looking for the shed door hardware that slides the door along the outside of the building. I found a picture of a wrought iron one for an interior door that slides the door along the wall instead of a pocket door or a swing door.

Would like to use an old shed door I have found to close a room in this manner. Haven't found any sliding door hardware like you show in your blue door example on the web site.

Help??

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Hardware for sliding shed door
by: John - Admin

Hi Susan,

Thankyou for your question.

I take it these are the blue sliding doors that you were talking about.

In the UK a couple of sliding shed door manufacturers to watch out for would be Henderson and Helaform (their UK distributor is Barrier Components Ltd).

In the US, Better barns and Rockler have architectural style sliding door gear. The best value place to find this equipment though would be a farm supply store. This type of door is used extensively on farm buildings, as farmers are pretty cost conscious folk so you should find them at a good price too.

Hope this helps.

Cheers

John

Sliding Shed door Hardware
by: GreenBoy

Just a comment - as i had originaly thought of doing this as well - there is a security issue with sliding doors as they can be sprung off of their rail, therefore you may want ot consider some additional iron work to make the door secure.

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Placement of shed door

by Jim
(Hildenborough, Kent)

On the long wall of a 10' x 20' shed, where is the best place to place the door? Either end or the middle of 20' wall for best use of interior space?

Answer:

Hi Jim,

The best spot to locate your shed door will depend upon the use that you have for your shed. Probably the best thing I can do is to sketch out some of the possible uses and how I would see potential door locations. Then using similar reasoning you will be able to work out which one will work out best for you:

i) If the shed is to be used as a workshop for working on a classic car then, of course, it should be a double door in the end wall. Here you can drive the car in and have space to work all around it. (Though 10’ wide is a bit tight for this car!)

shed door location
Door location for car workshop

ii) For general purpose storage then I would say that for a shed of this size a double door in the centre of the long wall would work best. This way you have a large opening for getting items into and out of the shed. The distance from the door to anywhere in the shed is short and this means that you don’t have to walk from one end of the shed/climb over stuff to reach items at the back.

shed door location
Door location for Storage Shed

iii) For a garden office then a single door in one corner (either long or short side) would work well. With desks on the wall space or a central meeting table the small circulation space required for the entrance maximises the internal work area.

shed door location
Door location for Garden Office

I hope that these sketches and reasoning give you some pointers as to how best to place the door for your project.

Regards

John

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Changing door location on Duramax shed.

by Ron
(Wilkes Barre Pa USA)

I'm looking at buying a Duramax Woodbridge 10X13 vinyl shed. The doors are on the 10 foot side but in there any reason I couldn't put them on the 13 foot side?

It looks possible since the doors aren't any higher than the walls on all sides. It looks like just a simple matter of sliding in the side panels with the door jambs on any side I want.

Since you have experience building one of these sheds what do you think?

Thanks,
Ron

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Review the instructions?
by: John

Hi Ron,
Thank you for your question. The shed that I built was the 8x5 Duramate, so it was a lot smaller than the 10x13 Woodbridge shed that you are building.

I looked for instructions for the 10x13 Woodbridge shed online (http://www.duramaxbp.com/installation-instructions.php) and the largest Woodbridge model that they had was the 10x8 foot.

Looking at the instructions for that model it does not look as though the door and side panels are interchangeable as they are on a different dimensional module.

Although, as you say the walls are the same height all the way around, the panels and doors are made to a fixed dimension and are only made to fit in one combination. So I think that you may be out of luck. Though if this feature is really important to you it would be worth contacting Duramax Consumer support 800-483-4674 to get it from the horses mouth.

It would be a great idea to be able to have the door locatable in any position but I think that it is made to go in one position only.

Let me know how you get on and send in some pictures of your build.

All the best

John

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Rotting Shed Doors

by Elaine
(Conover, NC, USA)

My Rotten Shed Door

My Rotten Shed Door

I have a Gambrel Roof 12x20 building with a double-door on the long side. The shed is about 8 years old and the left door as you are facing the building is rotting from the bottom up. I built a ramp to go up to the doors and there is a 1/4" to 1/2" gap between the ramp and the building to allow rainwater to drip. The building is on blocks. The doors face to the south.

The angled 2" x 6" above the centre door has turned up and out for the first 9 - 12 ".

I thought perhaps building a porch cover would help stop the door from rotting but don't know where to hook the rafters.

Do I run a board across the angle above the wall and start rafters from there?

I can easily build a door such as you show or I can attempt to copy the one that is already on the shed. I thought this was something special to my shed until I went to my cousin's up North and he is having the same problem with the same door location. My cousin said he has to replace his about every 5 years or so. He did put a small jut out over the doors which did not stop the rotting problem.

How do I stop the door from rotting in the future?

Thanks!
Elaine

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Apply Epoxy to the Shed Doors
by: Ron Young

Epoxy the doors, use a 2 part marine epoxy, use it on both sides, inside and out. This will basically encase and seal the new doors in plastic.

Hope this helps,

Ron Young

Atlantic Shed
1443 Middleboro Ave.
East Taunton, Ma. 02718

Tel: 1-888-397-3335
Fax: 1-888-397-3259

www.AtlanticShed.com

Thanks
by: Anonymous

Thank you Mr Young! I will try this as soon as the weather allows. I'll also tell my cousin.

Now for the other question, does anyone know where to put the joists for the porch?

Elaine (who is waiting for the nights to get in the 50's)

Rotting shed doors
by: Anonymous

Hi Elaine,
A couple more thoughts on the shed door. The reason the timber is rotting is that it is getting wet due to being close to the ground.

There are two ways to deal with this problem, one way as Ron identified is to seal the timber very effectively with a marine epoxy. This will keep out the water and so prevent rotting occurring.

The other method is to consider the timber that is used for the door construction. Pressure treated lumber or a more naturally durable timber such as Oak or Douglas fir would not rot in the time scale that you mentioned.

The first option would give a very smooth finished appearance, the second could be left to weather naturally or be treated with a wood stain or oil. The only problem I can see with the epoxy coating is if/when it gets damage and water gets in and cannot escape. However a lot will depend on the current appearance/style of the shed.

If you could send in a couple of picture of the shed and a bit more detail on the size and style of porch you intend we may be able to offer some more advice there.

Cheers

John

Thank You
by: Elaine

Thank You for your insight.
Yes John, I can figure out how to send pictures. The door is quite high from the ground due to the slope of the ground. I will try to send pictures when I get off work tonight.
I've never seen treated oak or douglas fir in NC. We do have treated pine.

a wood treatment to consider
by: Len in Colorado

Another wood treatment to consider is copper napthenate. This is a commonly used post and wet area treatment for wood -- it is available in the USA at Home Depot in two versions: a bright green color, and a brown color. Both are in a paint thinner base, and with multiple applications by brush or sprayer, will soak into the wood to prevent rot.

In addition to treatment, I recommend (as you are doing) looking at ways to keep the wood dry, because that is where the problem is originating.

sealing the doors
by: Elaine

Ron,

Sorry this has taken so long, but when you say seal the doors inside and out - which I had done with exterior latex paint, I didn't seal the top and bottom. I've been told that by not painting the tops and bottoms of doors, it allows for the wood expansion. Is this true? Should I seal all four sides?

Thanks,
Elaine

Sealing doors
by: Anonymous

Hi Elaine,

Yes, we seal both sides and all four edges.

hope this helps,
Ron young

all 6 sides
by: Elaine

Thanks Ron!

Elaine

Cover up the end grain
by: Anonymous

I had the same problem with my shed.

Prior owners who had the shed built primed and painted most of the shed, but totally missed the end grain (where boards are cut) on the doors.

Lack of primer and paint will quickly lead to rot.

The end grain will suck up water (capillary action).

No need to encase the building in epoxy, hazardous chemicals, etc. Just take five minutes when you build it in the first place to seal the end grain.


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How to secure double doors on a shed

by Shirley
(Tifton, GA)

I have a large outside storage building with 2 doors which meet in the center. I need a lock which cannot be opened by crooks.


Answer:

Hi Shirley,

The locking arrangement for a double door is as in the sketch below.

shed double doors
Locking arrangement for double doors




One of the two doors has a pad bolt top and bottom. This secures the door into the threshold at the bottom and the lintel at the top. These can only be opened from inside the shed. The other door then has an outside lock which can be anyone of these solutions :

1. Rim lock
2. Pad Bolt
3. Hasp and staple
4. Door bars

Each of these options are discussed further on this page about shed door locks.

Regards

John

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Shed sliding door hardware

by John
(Virginia Beach, VA)

I am building a 12' x 12' storage shed with a door opening 5'w x 7'h and would like to install a barn style sliding door. Where is the best place to find some sturdy hardware for a sliding wooden door at a reasonable price? The only quality sliding door hardware I have been able to find is extremely expensive.

I would like a quality exterior use product that can stand the test of time since the shed that I am building is of very good quality and construction. Most would probably say overbuilt.

Any recommendations or feedback you could offer would be appreciated.

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Sliding Barn Door hardware
by: Anonymous

Hi John,

When I re-did an old barn years back, I bought some sliding barn door hardware at a lumber supply company called Furrows. I don't believe they are around anymore, but check out tractor supply if you have one or even quality farm and fleet. They usually have everything farmers need to fix up their barns.

John

Thanks for the feedback - it was perfect advise
by: Anonymous

John,

Excellent feedback, thanks! I went to Southern Supply (farm & feed type store) and they had the perfect hardware at 1/5 the price. It is sturdy, functional and attractive. I installed it and it works (and looks great) on my home made wooden doors.

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Hanging a Shed Door

by Joe
(Cork, Ireland)


My father has asked me to build and replace his shed door as it is falling apart and not fit for purpose. The current door is inward opening and therefore does not keep water out. I want to change it to an outward opening door.

The shed is built out of cavity block and I'm looking for advice on hanging the door. If I attach a 4X2 frame will that suffice to hold the door? And is it ok to bolt the 4X2 frame into the block?

Any advice would be very much appreciated. The dimensions of the opening are 33" X 71".

Answer:

Hi Joe,
I have sketched out a typical detail through a door jamb in cavity masonry (this goes a bit beyond my normal remit of just dealing with timber sheds. ;-)).

shed door jamb
General arrangment of shed door frame and section through door jamb showing fixing

Traditionally door frames were fixed in place using built-in frame cramps. However, with modern fixings, you can secure a timber frame with ‘frame anchors’ comprising a plug and screw. The zinc passivated screw is typically 150mm long. Anchors are fixed at a maximum of 600mm centres and within 150mm of the top and bottom of the door.

I don’t know the detail of your cavity wall at the door jamb. But you should at least have a vertical DPC to stop damp penetrating. Preferably a properly insulated cavity closer would prevent a cold-bridge forming, but probably a bit too much to hope for with a shed.

I also don’t know what strength of block you are using but have a look. The type of frame anchor you use might have specified edge distances. Also, a hollow block would require a different type of anchor.

I know that there are a few more questions here but it should give you something to get your teeth into.

Cheers!
John

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Replacement shed doors

by Jennifer Hunter
(Weaver, Alabama USA)

I have a beautiful Heartland shed that needs the doors replaced. Is there any such thing as a door kit I could buy? If so, where would I be able to do that?

Thanks for your help.

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New shed doors
by: John - Admin

Hi Jennifer,
Thank you for your question.

I don't know of any replacement shed door supplier. I would suggest that using the instructions on this site for building shed doors you would be able to make something that would match. If you are not into doing it yourself you could find a local tradesman who would do it for you.

If you cannot re-use the door hinges and lock then I would take a look at some of the shed hardware suppliers on e-bay that may be able to help.

Let us know how you get on.

All the best

John

Improving a shed at a lake home
by: Bob Mayne

I purchased a second Lake home a year ago which has a 12x20 two story shed . I had the shed exterior painted & had new dimensional shingles installed . Still need work to front doors . Can I buy double doors to fit . I have seen some sheds with a higher grade hinge system .

Replacement Doors for Heartland Shed
by: Anonymous

I just got off the phone with Heartland. A set of doors for my shed (64" X 72" opening) were only $175 plus tax (including shipping).

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Gate bracing

I've just finished a standard timber side gate - 3 horizontals with 2 parallel 45 deg braces. A builder came round to quote for a job and said I had my braces the wrong way relative to the hinges - they should be at the other 45. With my reasonable grasp of mechanics I can't see how it would make a difference which way the braces lie relative to the hinges - any comments?

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Correct slope for gate bracing
by: John

The correct direction for the braces is for them to slope upwards from the hinges. The reason for this is so that the braces are in compression and you have the self weight of the gate closing up the joint between the horizontal and diagonal member.

If you have the braces going in the wrong direction they will be in tension and over time they will tend to open up and gradually the gate will weaken.

Take a look at the following page on gate construction, look closely as it highlights examples of braces sloping the right way and also the wrong way.

I hope that you find this useful. Correcting this error is fairly straightforward and should help your new gate to last a long time.

All the best

John

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Shed door repair

by Henry Moss
(Grayslake, IL)

I purchased a 8 X 10 shed some years ago. I was told after it was put up to make sure I seal doors and paint. My question is can a person purchase a shed door? Even though I sealed and painted the doors, one of the door frames is starting to rot. Do I need to replace the 2 x 4's if I cannot get a door?

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SHED DOOR REPAIR
by: John @ sheddoorsnmore.com

Hi Mr Moss,

I'm sorry to hear about the door problem, It's not uncommon. I think what happened as when you painted and sealed the door you could not paint behind the 2x4's and missed a small spot when you sealed painted and water got into that area and sat and rotted that door. Just a hunch, anyway I have a website that offers replacement shed doors it's called sheddoorsnmore.com. These doors are quality built, we use a Dura-temp plywood siding that has a pre-primed face and we use cedar trim. This really helps the longevity of the door. Please visit our site.

Thanks John

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