Storage Shed Site prep. – Crushed Stone Base
A firm, level base is important to the longevity of your storage shed. In our storage shed buyers guide we discuss site preparation but I am going to go a little more in depth here.
If you don’t feel you can tackle the site preparation you can opt to hire a local landscape contractor.
Crushed Stone Base
The crushed stone base is now the most widely accepted site preparation for sheds under 400 square feet. For over 18 years we have been recommending this type of site preparation and within the past 2 years more and more towns and municipalities have begun to catch on and recommend this type of base to those applying for shed permits.
What you’ll need(for do it yourselfers)
- Roll of string
- Tape measure
- Spade shovel
- Grading rake or iron rake
- Line level
- 4 stakes
- Eight foot long 2″x4″
- Four foot level
- Crushed stone (amount based on size of shed – chart below)
- Optional – Landscape fabric/weed cloth
Add 2 feet to the length of the shed as well as the width.
Next measure the area and place a stake in each corner. Remember to add the 2 feet to the length and width.
To be sure that your layout is square measure diagonally from corner to corner and be sure these distances are equal.
First you must determine how deep you would like your base. I recommend at least 4 inches. With that said,starting at the highest corner wrap the string around the bottom of the stake and run it to the lowest stake. Place a line level on the string and pull the string taut. Move the string up and down until the string is level. Wrap the string around the stake at this height. At the lowest point measure from the string to the ground and add 4″ to this distance. Since this is the lowest area of the site this is where you will be excavating the least digging down only 4 inches. At the highest point of the site you will be digging down until you have excavated enough to create a flat surface to receive the stone.
Once the grass and topsoil are removed rake out the area.
Back fill the area with the crushed stone then rake it out so it is level. use the 2″x4″ to check for level. Be sure to check it from front to back as well as side to side. Check for level in several different spots as you rake out the crushed stone.
Completed stone site prep.
This is an optional step but watering the stone can help it to compact a little better. The water will wash the finer particles through the stone allowing the crushed rock to settle.
Crushed Stone Base w/Timber frame
What you’ll Need
- Circular saw, chain saw or cutoff saw
- TimbersÂ – I recommend 6″ x 6″ timbers however 4″ x 6″Â will work as well. Make sure they are ground contact rated pressure treated. The timbers must be equal to the sum of the four s >
Follow steps 1-3 used for the “Crushed Stone base”
Place the landscape timbers around the perimeter of the site. Be sure the timbers are level. Drill holes through the timbers every 4 feet and rebar the timbers into place using the 4′ lengths of rebar. For larger bases you may want to add “dead men” which are timbers which run perpendicular to the outer timbers to help keep the from moving however since the outer timbers are set in the ground the dead men are not entirely necessary.
With the timbers in place you can now backfill your site with the crushed stone.