What’s the Best Material for an Outdoor Storage Shed?

March 16, 2024

An outdoor storage shed will provide you with ample storage space and allow you to de-clutter your home with extra stuff while giving you enough space to keep important things within easy access. With an outdoor storage shed, practicality and utility become the byword; no more rummaging through the house if you want to find something. Alternatively, an outdoor storage shed can also be used as a spot for your pool equipment or for gardening equipment that you might have, including some nifty pots and plants. The possibilities with an outdoor storage shed are limitless; however, some factors need special attention. One of them is longevity, which is primarily determined by what kind of material the shed is made out of. 

In this blog, we will examine the most common materials used to make best outdoor storage sheds and which material is best for them in general. While different materials specialize in various aspects of outdoor storage sheds, only one is best for longevity. Let’s get started. 

The many different shed-building materials

There are many materials that outdoor sheds are made of, but four are the most popular: wood, aluminum, metal, and other composite materials like fiberglass etc. We will discuss each of these materials and their merits and demerits before deciding which material is best for an outdoor storage shed, as well as the factors that make said material the best one. 


The first and most popular material for outdoor storage sheds is wood. Now, wood is particularly a favorite for shed buildings; whether it's storage sheds, whether lean-to sheds or home offices in the backyard, many service providers use wood as their primary material for making sheds. Why? It has got a lot to do with the fact that wood has some amazing benefits when it comes to shed building. For example, wood is the most versatile and the most aesthetically pleasing material to work with when building sheds. While it may not be inexpensive, wooden sheds boast a lot of merits; they last long (around 10-15 years if taken care of), can be made to fit some styles and designs, and several wood types are more durable than some prefabricated materials. Some types of wood naturally repel insects, so backyard storage sheds don’t attract the creepy crawlies all that often. However, when compared to metal and aluminum, wooden sheds are not as long-lasting, and excessive exposure to humidity and cold weather might affect the structural integrity of the shed, making wood not the best material to construct a shed out of if weather conditions stay damp. Lastly, wood can be a bit expensive, and certain types of wood need more maintenance than average, which can be a bit troublesome. 


Metallic sheds or outdoor storage sheds made out of metal, stainless steel, or other materials come second in the list of the most popular materials for making a shed. Metallic sheds have a lot of benefits; the first, obviously, is longevity. Out of all the shed materials that are popularly and commonly used, metallic sheds last the longest; even with minimal maintenance, a metallic shed with high-quality structural parts will last for more than 25 years. That is quite a lot, and it gets better. With treatment and other solutions, the problem of rusting can be addressed. Furthermore, the structural integrity of the shed is exceptional, meaning that it will be able to sustain any structural damage, weather, or other factors thrown at it. However, there are some drawbacks to using metal as the primary building material for an outdoor storage shed. The first one is obviously rusting; untreated sheds can rust quite easily, and this affects structural integrity and longevity. Similarly, weatherproofing these sheds can be a bit difficult, and metallic sheds tend to get unbearably hot during summer. 

Composite materials

There are numerous composite materials, but the most common one is fiberglass. These sheds are assembled out of many fiberglass panels, and while this gives them much-needed versatility to be assembled into any shape and design, fiberglass and other composite materials can get a little expensive, especially if we’re talking about some exotic materials (which are rare but possible). Now, composite materials may last longer than wooden sheds. However, the real benefit is that since they are composite materials and synthetic, there are no issues related to weatherproofing, insect-proofing, or rust-proofing the shed. All of these problems might not be present in a shed made out of composite materials, but the fact is that given their cost and their durability, their longevity is not at par with, say, metallic outdoor storage sheds. 


Aluminum sheds are not readily available and usually have to be ordered beforehand with all the specifications in hand. Given that aluminum sheds are uncommon, the one drawback that is obvious and readily apparent is their pricing; aluminum sheds can be costly and, as such, are not available with most retailers and shed building services. On the other hand, the rest of the merits of an aluminum shed are good: they are long-lasting (although slightly less than metallic sheds), they can be weatherproofed, don’t have any issues with insects, and best of all, they do not rust (unless the material being used is of low quality and is comprised of oxides or ores). Aluminium sheds, therefore, are the most uncommon shed building material, and they are a really good alternative to the other three, albeit at a steep cost. 

What factors determine the best material for an outdoor storage shed?

Several factors determine which material is best suited for an outdoor storage shed. Let's examine these factors quickly. 


The first factor is obviously longevity, as that is the goal of an outdoor storage shed. Investing a large number of resources into a shed and not being able to utilize it for an extended time is not a good thing, and for that reason alone, people prefer materials that extend the life of the outdoor storage shed. In this regard, metals usually take the top spot as they are very durable and allow the sheds to be functional for over 25 years. 


Outdoor storage sheds also need to be sturdy, given that they are required to store all kinds of things. In this case, the best material is one that sustains any dings or impacts and does not let that affect the sturdiness of the shed. Again, metallic sheds are more sturdy and reliable than the rest of the materials, which is why they are the best materials for sheds out there. 

Structural integrity

Similar to sturdiness, structural integrity is also very important for outdoor storage sheds. An outdoor storage shed must be able to withstand all sorts of environmental factors, such as extreme weather and other natural conditions. Metallic sheds promise all that. Metals for outdoor storage sheds seem like the best possible material. 

Backyard Escape Studios: outdoor storage sheds done right!

Outdoor storage sheds can be complex to build. If you want the best possible quality for sheds without paying an arm and leg, check out Backyard Escape Studios. We have the most comprehensive and extensive collection of backyard sheds: from simple, rustic storage sheds to ornately designed office sheds, our sheds are simply built to a higher standard. No more pulling out painful splinters from your fingers or toiling in the sun to build your storage shed: simply get yours built and delivered to your home and start enjoying the practicality Backyard Escape Studio’s sheds have to offer. 

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