How To Treat Our Garden Shed

One of the most frequently asked questions is “how and with what should I treat my Garden Shed?”


Well there are lots of products that you can use ranging widely in price and effectiveness.


One of the best products is Creosote substitute. This is often branded under different names such as Creotech or Creotreat. In my experience mixing 5 parts Creosote substitute with 1 part clean engine oil, makes an excellent preservative. The oil helps stop the wood from becoming brittle and cracking and imparts waterproofing qualities to the timber. This is also very easy to apply via a sprayer. It may require a little thinning with turpentine or the like to make it pass through the sprayer readily. Avoid getting the mix onto your roofing felt. This is probably one of the cheapest and effective methods around. The only downside is colour choice is limited brown, brown or brown!

If you are going to paint your garden shed you should treat it first with a clear preservative, personally I would go for a spirit based preservative as these seem to soak into the timber much better than the water based preservatives. Make sure that the product is over-paintable if not when you come to apply the paint it will simply slide off onto the floor. You can use the preservative on all surfaces of the shed, however don’t paint the inside of the shed as this will trap moisture in the wood and it will cause it to rot from the inside out.


You may prefer to go for an all in one treatment that combines preservative, colour and water proofer, again I would go for a spirit based product. If you have to go for a water based treatment try going for the best you can afford, some of the cheaper products really aren’t worth the time and effort of applying. Check if you are using on planed timber that the product is suitable, a lot of the poorer quality treatments are designed for rough sawn timber. If you apply it to a planed timber surface it will tend to peel off in no time at all.


You should apply whatever product you choose on a regular basis. If you choose to use the creosote/oil mix or one of the spirit based product you will find they will generally go through a garden sprayer. This makes a laborious task quick and simple. It’s quite easy this way to apply a couple of coats to an 8x6 shed in not much more than 15 minutes.


As with all treatments you should follow the manufacturer’s instructions safety precautions.

Dont forget to check our guide on what to consider when buying a garden shed.