Foundations

 

The Foundation of Perfect Spaces

The first step of a successful home project? Being prepared. Some of our outdoor sheds require concrete or wood foundations for proper assembly, and this quick reference has everything you’ll need to know to start off on the right foot.

 

Concrete Foundations  

Use these standard steps—and helpful tips—to set up your concrete foundation.

 

  1. Verify the base measurements of your shed or storage unit. Layout the foundation by using a mallet to drive wooden stakes into the ground at each of the four corners.
    • Tip: The concrete foundation should extend a minimum of 3 inches past the base in all directions. Position the stakes to be just outside the length of the foundation and even with the width.
  2. Clear the area within the stakes using a shovel. Be sure to excavate the entire area 6 inches deep and level the site. Some terrain may require more depth to create a level surface at the bottom of the excavation.
    • Tip: Be sure to check local building codes and comply with the designated depth. Where possible, slope the surrounding terrain away from the foundation to allow for improved water drainage.
  3. Measure the stakes and reposition them as necessary, taking care to include the 3-inch overhang per side. Drive the stakes into the ground so that they are level with the top of the excavation. Position plywood strips to be flush with the tops of the stakes. Use nails to attach plywood strips to the stakes. Add additional stakes along the outer perimeter of the plywood frame to prevent the frame from bowing when pouring concrete
    • Tip: If excavation is 6 inches deep, the top of the stake should be 6 inches up from the bottom surface of the site. For additional stakes, we recommend one every 8 to 10 inches.
  4. Add crushed gravel until it fills approximately half of the excavation depth. Lay plastic sheeting over the gravel. If the excavation depth is 6 inches, add 3 inches of crushed gravel evenly across the entire site.
    • Tip: The plastic sheet will create a vapor barrier that will protect the concrete foundation from moisture damage. If building codes require, or if a heavy-duty application is desired, wire mesh should be placed on the plastic sheeting. Be careful not to pierce the plastic with any sharp edges.
  5. Mix the concrete and water in a wheelbarrow according to manufacturer’s instructions. Pour over the surface of the gravel.
  6. Use a 2 x 4 to level the foundation by bridging the plywood frame and sweeping it across the entire foundation. Level the concrete until it is completely smooth
    • Tip: Use a trowel to finish the concrete if desired.

 Note: Allow the concrete to cure for at least one week before placing any load on it.

 Materials Needed

  1. Shovel
  2. Metal Rake
  3. Wheelbarrow
  4. Wooden Stakes
  5. Nails
  6. Mallet
  7. Measuring Tape
  8. Crushed Gravel
  9. Hammer
  10. Concrete
  11. Water Supply (garden hose)
  12. Plywood (pressure treated or lumber suitable for ground contact and cut to the length/width of the excavation)
  13. Plastic Sheeting
  14. 2 x 4 Board
  15. Wire Mesh (recommended for heavy duty applications or if codes require)

Before You Begin

  • Check local building codes and required permits.
  • Locate buried utility lines prior to any digging and avoid disrupting or damaging any buried utility lines.

 Note: Refer to the instruction manual for detailed drawings, overall dimensions, and assembly instructions of the concrete foundation specific to your Suncast Shed model.

 

 

Wood Foundations 

 

Use these standard steps—and helpful tips—to set up your wood foundation.

 

  1. Assemble the wood foundation on a flat surface and set aside until the next steps are complete.
    • Tip: Use a driveway or a garage floor as a flat surface for assembly. Verify the overall size is correct and the foundation is square and level.
  2. Use a mallet to lay out the foundation by driving stakes into the ground at each of the four corners. Once installed, tie a string from one stake to the other to create a border around the excavation site. 
    • Tip: Extend the excavation site a minimum of 12 inches past the foundation in all directions.
  3. Use a shovel to clear the area within the stakes 4-6 inches deep and level. Some terrain may require greater depth to create a level surface at the bottom of the excavation.
    • Tip: Be sure to check with local building codes and comply with the designated depth. Where possible, slope the surrounding terrain away from the foundation to allow for improved water drainage.
  4. Line the entire bottom of the excavation with plastic sheeting and add crushed gravel until it fills the entire excavation. Be sure to spread gravel evenly across the entire site, using a 2 x 4 to help level.
    • Tip: Leveling the top layer is very important as it helps bear the heavy loads placed on the wood foundation.
  5. Place and anchor the wood foundation on the gravel and be sure it is centered and level. 
    • Tip: Rearrange gravel as need be to make sure the foundation is level, and anchor according to local building codes.

 

Note: You can add a ramp to the entrance side (door side) of the shed foundation to allow for easy entry and exit.

Materials Needed

  1. Shovel
  2. Metal Rake
  3. Wooden Stakes
  4. Mallet
  5. String
  6. Measuring Tape
  7. Crushed Gravel
  8. Plywood (pressure treated or lumber suitable for ground contact and cut to the length/width of the excavation)
  9. Plastic Sheeting
  10. 2 x 4 Board
  11. Anchors (consult local building codes for suitable anchoring options)
  12. Level

 

Before You Begin

▪       Check local building codes and required permits.

▪       Locate buried utility lines prior to any digging and avoid disrupting or damaging any buried utility lines.

 

Note: Refer to the instruction manual for detailed drawings, overall dimensions, and assembly instructions of the wood foundation specific to your Suncast Shed model.