Don’t Take a Chance as Experience Shows OSB & Chipboard No Good for Garden Buildings
It’s not hard to believe that the garden, the garden shed and other garden buildings have been home to many creative ideas which have evolved into businesses and helped to sustain their owner’s lifestyle. Because in the garden away from the day to day pressures of the world the mind can wander a little, unrestricted about what is going on in the world and totally unexpected ideas can pop up.
The garden shed, summerhouse or garden office are key to this because even on a wet day the peace and quiet can help that little germ of inspiration to flourish. Clearly, the value of the garden building is of great value to the UK and even more so during this period of negative feeling and struggling economy.
I started my garden shed business in 1979, before Margaret Thatcher came to power, in my garden. I was looking for ideas on what to do with my life and decided to see what was required to build a garden shed. After doing a great deal of homework I scraped together the money to buy the materials and set about building my shed. It took me a little while to build the sides nailing them together by hand and the floor and roof I made using chipboard, which SEEMED like a good idea at the time.
I then try to put my shed together. I put the floor down and then built the shed walls on top of the floor. Everything seemed to be going well. I then put my roof sections onto the shed. These consisted of flat pieces of chipboard cut to size. I put one section up and tacked into place before offering the second section into place. I could not believe it the roof sections would not line up. I pushed and pulled but no ways were the roof sections going to line up.
My master plan to rule the garden shed world had come to a halt. I checked that the roof sections were squarer by measuring diagonally from corner to corner to ensure they were square and they were. What could the problem be? I spent quite a look of time that Saturday trying to solve the problem but – no joy! I always think it’s a good idea to walk away from the problem if you are not getting away so I did.
On Sunday morning I was sat eating my breakfast looking out at my part built garden shed and my wife said is the base level. I said (words to the effect) don’t be silly it can’t be that. However when I went out in the garden and put a spirit level on the shed and found that one corner was lower than the other. Aha!. I then proceeded to lift one corner and the garden shed roof slipped into place. Eureka! My wife was right AGAIN and she never lets me forget that her stupid ideas are not always stupid.
I did have a stupid idea that day and that was to use chipboard for the roof. It seemed a good idea as it was cheap, it was easy to cut to size to make the shed roof. However, I found quite quickly that chipboard does not like damp and after a short while the chipboard had got wet and started to fall apart. With that experience I moved on to OSB (oriental strand board) roofs which I was assured would not have these problems as it was made differently with a waterproof adhesive. Again this failed after getting wet so I stopped using OSB for roofs AND floors altogether.
You will find companies, unbelievably, using chipboard and OSB boards for garden sheds even today. My experience gained using these unsuitable materials had proved to me they were no good for more than a couple of years. I also feel that these companies making these cheap sheds also know this as they do not describe their floors and roofs as chipboard or OSB boards but ‘SHEET MATERIAL’.
Why don’t they tell you what their floor and roofs are made from? Well to me there is only one reason – they DON’T want you to know!. Whatever you do do not be taken into by this – always ask whether the shed floor and shed roof is made from chipboard, OSB board (which is sometimes known as wafer board or sterling board) or made from proper T&G timber boards.
At least if you know the shed floors and roofs are made from these cheap unsuitable materials you will not have very high expectations of the sheds lasting more than a few years. You will also know one of the reasons why the garden shed is much cheaper. So don’t be fooled into buying something not as good as you thought. The key to buying a garden shed is to buy from a company, such as 1st Choice Leisure Buildings who make their garden sheds and workshops to a standard and not DOWN to a price. Very good advice in all aspects of life.
Hi, I'm Robin Antill, founder of 1st Choice Leisure Buildings, and I use my expertise gained over 42 years in the garden buildings industry to understand that each customer is different. With my manufacturing, retailing and customer service experience my articles help people choose their ideal shed, garden workshop, summerhouse, log cabin or garden office needs to suit their requirement and that is key to satisfaction. And what do I do when I'm not writing? You may find me following Grimsby Town Football Club or riding roller coasters - so plenty of 'ups and downs' in my life.