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Sheds are such a wonderful complement to any yard. Adding a lean-to to your shed can be a great idea if you are looking to add more space around your storage building! While lean-tos are available as part of your original shed purchase, you can also add one on yourself with just a couple simple steps. Let’s learn together how to build a lean to shed roof.

What is a lean-to?

Before we get started, let’s discuss: what is a lean-to? A lean-to is a structure that is added to an existing building. It will be “leaning” against the previously existing structure, thus giving the name “lean-to”. Many lean-tos are found on wooden shelters for hikers and campers, which provide them a safe place to rest and recuperate.

Common Uses for a Lean-to

For residential use, a lean-to is a small structure with a pitch roof that is built adjacent to the larger structure it serves. Often times, lean-tos are made of logs or unfinished wood. A lean-to will have at least one side completely open, so it is important to remember that any items you put under here will be somewhat exposed to the elements as they occur.

Lean-tos can be a great place to store firewood, garbage cans, watering cans, and other outdoor tools!

How to Build a Lean-To off a Shed

Learning how to build a lean to off a shed doesn’t have to be so hard! Before you get started selecting materials and hammering away, check with your local zoning regulation to make sure you’re allowed to have the building you desire and can build it within your property without hitting any underground hazards.

Measure and plan out the area where you’d like your lean-to to be. Make sure that you don’t create a building that is too wide or too long to fit your existing shed. The roof for the lean-to should be angled to withstand weather, so be aware of your surroundings and if any area of your property is subject to pooling water.

Select Your Building Materials

The next step of learning how to build a lean to shed is choosing your building materials. Different materials are available, such as lumber and tin. Lumber is a strong and normally inexpensive material and tin would be a sustainable roof material. The price of lumber is fairly high now, so keep the market in mind for your budget in this project.

The materials you choose should be appropriate for your location. Consider the climate and any weather patterns that might contribute to the stability of your materials, such as hail, rain, and wind.

Purchase Materials and Begin Assembly

Pressure treated pine would be the ideal lumber you should use for an outdoor project such as this. Pine will support a lightweight roof. You’ll want to use this pine or poles to support the roof. Plan on evenly spacing out your posts so that the roof’s weight is evenly distributed. Even weight distribution will prevent sagging.

After laying out and measuring the area for your lean-to, you’ll need to dig holes for the supporting posts. Check the placement of the posts in your hole before, during, and after digging. Check with your local building codes for the exact distance the posts need to be together, as this can differ depending on snow loads and other weather in your area.

After setting your posts into place, you’ll fill the post holes with concrete. A mixable concrete is available at any kind of home improvement store, such as Lowe’s or Home Depot.

Building the Lean-To

Attach a wooden 1×4 or 2×4 piece to the top going horizontally connecting each post. Nail into place ensuring that this post stays level. Add more horizontal pieces going down the posts, as many as needed to keep your lean-to secure per its height.

Attach a wooden piece to use as your nailer to the shed. The nailer will be higher than the height of your vertical posts. Use a screw to keep that wooden nailer tightly secured onto the building. Lay out rafter spacing on both sides. Determine the roof pitch by stringing a line from the top rafter attaching point (shed side) to the bottom rafter (posts side). Hold a speed square (also known as rafter square) flush against the top nailer where your string is fastened. Then easily read the angle on the square’s angle scale.

Cut one end of the rafters at the angle given to you by the speed square. Test the one cut piece to make sure it is a flush fit. Then cut each of the rafters to match. Then nail these into the nailer pieces on the shed side. On the posts end, place the lower end of your rafter on the layout marks and nail them into place with at least two nails to keep the pieces structurally in place.

Attach wooden laths (thin, narrow wood strips) to go perpendicularly across the boards you just set up.  You will attach your roofing material to these. Nail these into place and then place your tin, metal, or wooden roofing on top of this.

Optionally you can add exterior walls and siding such as vinyl or T1-11. Exterior walls can be constructed from wide boards nailed to the existing studs. Although, if you were just looking for an overhang for storage or safety, at this point you are done!

For Pre-Built Lean-to’s, Come to Kloter Farms

Kloter Farms Elite buildings have a lean-to addition available! Your dream shed with lean-to can easily be built for you with the help of the craftsman from Kloter Farms. Bring the family and come to Kloter Farms, we’re worth the ride! Kloter Farms is open six days a week. Shop online, call, or visit us today.

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