Which base is right for my bespoke garden building?

bases for timber garden buildings

The ultimate guide to bases for timber garden buildings

Stepped concrete base for a garageAs the song goes, “it’s all about that base,” and that’s certainly the case when it comes to timber garden buildings.

A garden building is only ever as strong as its base. That’s why it’s absolutely critical to get the base right. If you don’t, it really won’t matter which walls or roof you opt for; they’re not going to stand the test of time.

And with that in mind, we thought we’d give you some useful pointers on how to choose the right bases for timber garden buildings! Here goes…

How level is your site?

Answer: almost certainly less level than you’d think.

It’s very easy to look at a garden and assume that it’s completely flat. The truth is that it’s pretty much impossible to spot undulations and ups and downs on a lawn. Most gardens are far less flat and level than you might imagine.

How can you counteract a site that isn’t level?

Having a level site is key for getting the best base for timber garden buildings. There are several ways to get a site more level. The one we favour is using 100mm concrete blocks.

These allow you to ensure that your garden building is entirely level, without the cost and time implications of significant landscaping.

Not only that! It also allows you to choose a site that’s on a slight slope, without worrying that it simply won’t be level. The concrete blocks, when installed by an expert team, will ensure that the bubble is slap bang in the middle of the spirit level.

Learn about the installation process of garden buildings
What else is good about concrete blocks?

Another key benefit of using concrete blocks as bases for timber garden buildings is that they provide ventilation. It’s absolutely critical to allow ventilation under a garden building floor. 

Ventilation will ensure that the wood is able to breathe and dry out. Whereas if the building is set directly on the ground, you will suffer from rising dampness.

What if I’ve already got a concrete pad for my garden building?

If you’ve already got a concrete base there, then that’s fine too! As long as it’s level enough, you’re unlikely to need many (or any) concrete blocks.

However, the ventilation point still stands. In that situation, we’d recommend using pressure-treated timber floor bearers to elevate the wooden floor and provide airflow.

These timber floor bearers should be set out at a maximum spacing of 800mm. With floor joists set out at maximum spacings of 400mm.

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Will I get everything I need from an ‘off the shelf’ DIY garden building?

It’s highly unlikely.  Generally speaking, ‘off the shelf’ garden buildings that get delivered in bits don’t come with a proper base. While that makes it easier to install, in the long term, you’re likely to have issues with dampness and mould.

And ultimately, your building won’t last as long. Your cheaper investment will end up having to be replaced.

Our recommendation is to get it right the first time by installing proper bases for timber garden buildings. Having the work done by a team that knows what they’re doing and has done it many times before goes a long way.

How to look after your timber garden building
You’re right – bespoke garden buildings sound better

If you’d like to talk to a timber garden building company that ticks all of those boxes, as well as providing a complete service from beginning to end, Shields Buildings can help. Just give us a call on 01837 82442, or email us at sales@shieldsbuildings.co.uk and we will be happy to talk your project through.

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