What To Put Around Bottom of Shed? (10 Skirting Options)
To extend your shed’s lifetime, following an involved maintenance routine that includes preventive measures is the best route. One of the preventive maintenance tasks you should do is put some material around the bottom of the shed’s exterior. This is referred to as shed skirting, and there are many material options to choose from.
Shed skirting is a functional and visually appealing method of protecting your shed from pests using your choice of material. Low-cost options include concrete or cinder blocks, lattice, and gravel; mid-range choices are bricks, chicken wire, and mobile home skirting panels. Pressure-treated lumber, faux stone, vinyl, and DuraSkirt panels tend to be more expensive as well as more aesthetically pleasing.
What Is Shed Skirting?
As you may have guessed, shed skirting is essentially putting a “skirt” around the bottom of your shed. The main purpose of shed skirting is to keep critters and pests out, and it can be done with many different materials.
No matter which material you choose, the skirting will cover the gap between the ground and the shed floor. This offers protection and can also add visual interest.
The Importance Of Shed Skirting
You may be debating whether or not you actually need to install anything around the bottom of your shed’s exterior. The short answer is that you probably should, especially if you live in an area with lots of critters living outdoors.
Protection From Pests
Many types of sheds have natural gaps that animals like gophers, groundhogs, and mice can get into. Once in your shed, these animals can wreak havoc. They might chew through wires on your lawn tools, scratch their way into your walls, and leave their droppings scattered throughout the shed.
In order to protect your shed from this, you need to find some way to keep the animals out of it. This is exactly why many people choose to place something around the bottom of their shed’s exterior. Doing so will keep your shed protected from wild animals and ensure that the gear you have inside of it remains intact.
On another note, some people also put something around their shed because they think it looks better. This is a matter of personal preference. However, it is something that’s worth considering when you decide whether adding this feature to your shed is a good option for you.
There are many different types of materials that will get this job done. You have plenty of options to customize your shed’s look.
10 Shed Skirting Material Options
Below, find the top ten shed skirting material options, along with their pros and cons.
1. Lattice Shed Skirting
This type of skirting can be made out of either vinyl or wood. The major benefit of lattice shed skirting is increased ventilation, since there are numerous holes throughout the material. However, some homeowners doubt that lattice will keep out all of the pests they’ve been seeing.
If that’s you, then you may still be able to use lattice shed skirting. You can simply attach hardware cloth behind the lattice to create a uniform surface that pests will find impenetrable.
2. Cinder And Concrete Blocks
This is the sturdiest type of shed skirting that you’ll find. Cinder and concrete blocks provide unsurpassable durability and resiliency. They’ll last through just about any type of weather and won’t have to be replaced or repaired for years.
However, these materials can also be difficult to install. They may not be a good option for you if that’s something that you’re worried about. However, cinder and concrete blocks cost less than other shed skirting options, so they’re viable options for a cost-conscious DIYer.
Bricks offer very similar benefits to cinder and concrete blocks. When you install bricks, you’ll have a durable shed skirting system that can keep just about any pest out of your shed. Many homeowners also choose bricks for their shed skirting because they prefer the way they look to every other option.
However, bricks can also be somewhat costly and difficult to install. To get around these issues, some DIYers use faux brick. Faux brick looks real, but is made out of a plastic material that’s easier to install. If you decide to go with faux brick, just keep in mind that it’s not going to be as durable as the real thing.
4. Vinyl Shed Skirting
Vinyl shed skirting is a favorite of many homeowners. It’s cheap, easy to install, and available in many different styles. For example, you can find faux brick, stone, and many other styles in vinyl shed skirting.
While vinyl shed skirtings are completely rot-resistant, they aren’t necessarily as durable as options like cinder blocks and bricks. That being said, this trade-off may be worth it to you. This is because vinyl shed skirting is usually much cheaper than the market’s more durable options.
5. Chicken Wire
If your main goal is to keep out animals while maintaining plenty of ventilation, chicken wire is a great choice. One thing to remember is that mice can get into any space their heads fit through. Therefore, you’ll need to look for chicken wire with an extremely small mesh.
Another option is to install a double row of chicken wire around the shed using a staple gun. This will keep out the pests. Installation of chicken wire is simple, but the result isn’t necessarily as attractive as some other materials.
Looking for even more protection? Bend the wire at a 90-degree angle so that half of the skirting sits flat against the ground. This creates a border that prevents critters from being able to dig underneath it.
6. Faux Stone
In search of a shed skirting material that improves the appearance of your yard? Faux stone is perfect for adding visual interest. You’ll often see faux stone used on home exteriors for the same purpose.
The main downside of using faux stone is that it comes at a higher price than most other skirting materials. Still, it comes in many different designs and colors that can make the price tag worth it. And most importantly, it can do the job of keeping pests from making their way into the shed.
Gravel provides an easy and inexpensive skirting solution for sheds that have smaller gaps. All you need to do is create a thick bed of gravel around the base of the shed.
If your shed has a large gap between its base and the ground, you can still use gravel as skirting material. However, you’ll need to complete an extra step during installation. Install landscaping timbers to contain the gravel, and you’re all set.
A similar, but more attractive, solution is to do the same with landscaping stone. Larger landscaping stones ensure that pests won’t be able to make their way in.
8. Pressure-Treated Lumber
Pressure-treated lumber is wood that’s been treated with preservative chemicals. These chemicals are applied under pressure so that they make their way inside the wood cells. This provides enhanced prevention in comparison to the chemicals just sitting on the wood’s surface.
This option is both simple to install and aesthetically pleasing. You can simply use 2x6s or decking boards to line the gap on each side of the shed.
However, a common misconception is that pressure-treated lumber is waterproof; it is not. While it does have some protection against moisture damage, it should not come into contact with the soil. If it does, it’ll deteriorate more quickly and have a shorter lifespan overall, resulting in the need for new skirting.
9. Mobile Home Skirting Panels
Another great option is to repurpose mobile home skirting panels for your shed skirting purposes. The main advantage of selecting mobile home skirting panels is that they come in a huge range of styles.
Plus, they’re typically 40 millimeters thick, which makes them more tough and durable. They’ll be able to stand up to impact from gardening tools, lawnmowers, and other items better than your average sheet of vinyl.
One downside is that the majority of these panels are 16 inches by 35 inches, so you’ll need to cut them to fit. This adds an extra step to the installation process. However, mobile home skirting panels are generally affordable, so it may be worth it to take more time on installation.
If a high price and difficult installation aren’t dealbreakers for you, then DuraSkirt shed skirting material is an excellent choice. DuraSkirt consists of strong, durable, custom-cut concrete boards that perfectly cover the gaps under your shed. It looks similar to a typical house’s foundation and is often used for mobile home skirting.
There are a couple of drawbacks to using DuraSkirt. First, it can be very pricey, especially compared to some of the more affordable options on this list. Second, it requires a very precise installation technique.
To install DuraSkirt, you’ll have to use a diamond-tipped circular saw blade to cut each sheet to the needed length. This saw blade is included with the panels, though, so it’s not an added expense (as long as you have a circular saw).
Are There Any Downsides to Installing Shed Skirting?
Shed skirting is an overwhelmingly beneficial project to undertake. It helps to keep unwanted visitors away and can add to the aesthetic appeal of your shed.
However, it’s important that you also familiarize yourself with some of the downsides of installing shed skirting. Understanding these will ensure that you’re making the best possible decision for the maintenance of your shed.
Shed Skirting May Attract More Pests
This may seem counterintuitive since shed skirting is meant to keep pests away. However, it may also make your shed look like a more attractive place to be for some pests. This is because it creates an enclosed and protected space underneath your shed. That can look very inviting for some species of animals.
Thankfully, this is something that you can work around pretty easily. Just make sure that your shed skirting covers the area as thoroughly as possible. If you do, animals who want to get underneath your shed simply won’t be able to do it.
Shed Skirting Can Cause Excessive Moisture
You probably already know all about the importance of airflow from your shed installation process. If you don’t, the principle is fairly straightforward. Your shed needs to have good airflow throughout it to prevent excess moisture accumulation. This moisture can cause mold and increase the rate at which your wood rots.
Shed skirting can limit the amount of air that can flow underneath your shed. This is especially common when cinder blocks and bricks are used as shed skirting. That’s why it’s so important that you create a proper ventilation system for your shed skirting during the installation process.
Doing so will ensure a steady flow of air is able to move throughout your shed. It will also keep the area below your shed dry and the wood that’s down there from rotting.
If you don’t want to worry about ventilation while installing your shed skirting, then lattice is probably your best option. The way that it’s constructed essentially guarantees that your shed will have enough airflow around its skirting.
Can I Install Shed Skirting On My Own?
Generally speaking, shed skirting isn’t very difficult to install. The process usually just entails placing whatever material you chose around the base of the shed and then securing it into place. All you really need for this project is a hammer, some stakes, and maybe some zip ties.
Your specific installation process will vary based on the kind of material that you’ve chosen for your shed skirting. The only thing that may give you trouble is creating proper ventilation in the skirting. If you’re unsure how to do this, you may want to do additional research. Another option is to call a professional out to ensure you get it right.
Is Dirt A Good Shed Skirting Option?
You may think that using dirt to fill the space under the shed is an easy and low-cost alternative to skirting. In reality, it’s not recommended to use dirt to fill the gap between your shed and the ground.
Potential For Wood Rot
When you use dirt as a skirting material, it can lead to wood rot. This is because the dirt you place under the shed may be wet.
Because of its placement, it’ll be in contact with the shed’s frame and sheathing. This can actually shorten your shed’s lifespan and lead to other problems with moisture, such as mold and mildew.
Possible Water Buildup
Another potential problem is that the dirt can cause rain runoff to run toward (rather than away from) the shed. As a result, water may flow into the shed and damage it, as well as the tools and supplies inside it.
Overall, it’s just not a good idea to use dirt to fill the gap under your shed. However, there are other easy-to-install, low-cost options available. You may want to consider using gravel or vinyl instead.
What Is The Lifespan Of Shed Skirting?
The answer to this question depends heavily on which type of material you use. Faux stone, vinyl, and lattice shed skirting last about five years. After this point, it’ll be necessary to repair or replace your shed skirting.
Meanwhile, concrete, bricks, and gravel tend to last much longer, usually around five to 15 years. Pressure-treated lumber can also last up to 15 years, although it will need to be replaced sooner if water damage occurs.
Chicken wire can last ten years or more, and mobile home skirting panels last five to 15 years. DuraSkirt materials typically come with a 30-year unconditional warranty, so they’re the most long-lasting shed skirting option.
How Much Does Shed Skirting Cost?
Again, your answer depends on which material you choose to use for your shed skirting.
Lattice Shed Skirting
You can typically purchase lattice shed skirting for $2 per square foot.
Cinder And Concrete Blocks
Concrete blocks usually cost between $1 and $4 each, while cinder blocks cost $1 to $3 each. The cost depends on the size of block you prefer.
Bricks cost $2 to $6.25 per square foot on average. The cost varies by brick type.
Vinyl Shed Skirting
Vinyl skirting panels range from $10 to $20 each and come in varying sizes.
Chicken wire costs between $2 and $4.50 per linear foot.
Faux stone usually comes at a price of $5 to $10 per square foot.
Gravel costs $1 to $3 per square foot.
Depending on the type of wood, pressure-treated lumber ranges from $15 to $30 per square foot.
Mobile Home Skirting Panel
Panels run anywhere from $10 to over $100, depending on the brand and quality.
For shed skirting, DuraSkirt charges $16 to $20 per linear foot. It should also be noted that DuraSkirt charges $300 for shipping within the continental United States.
If you want to protect your shed with skirting, there are plenty of materials to choose from; some of the most popular include lattice, bricks, and concrete or cinder blocks. Other choices are gravel, vinyl, faux stone, and pressure-treated lumber.
Shed skirting is an excellent way to extend your shed’s lifespan, protect it from unwanted pests, and improve its appearance. And with so many material choices, there’s really something for everyone!
Regardless of the material you select, it’ll serve its purpose in keeping pests out while maintaining your shed’s quality. Just be sure to keep up with regular maintenance and ensure good ventilation under your shed for best results.
Kellan is a content writer who specializes in everything DIY. When he's not behind the keyboard, he enjoys spending time with his pets, playing music, and geeking out about basketball. He hopes to make your home improvement projects a little bit easier to accomplish.
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