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How to Move a Shed

If you are relocating but you have a quality shed in your yard, you might be thinking about taking it with you. This can be quite the undertaking, but depending on your shed (size, age, material, foundation), it may not be an impossible task. You don’t necessarily have to leave your shed behind when you move if you know how to move a shed safely.

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    Step 1: Be Sure the Shed is Structurally Sound

    How old is your shed? Is it an indoor model or have you been using it outside in the elements? Check it out to see if there has been any wear and tear to the walls or roof. If you have a wooden shed and there is any sign of weathering or termite damage, it’s probably best to leave it where it is. If your shed is made of metal, make sure there are no rusted-out spots, especially in the corners. And if it’s made of plastic or another material, check to see if there is any dry rot—this does not bode well for transport or your health. Any jolt or bump in the road could damage the shed.

    If you’ve checked all the walls and roof and corners of your shed and it seems solid and structurally sound, you’re ready for the next step. Remember: if your shed has a concrete foundation and is cemented into the ground, you will have to leave it behind.

    Step 2: Decide How to Move the Shed

    After you know that the shed is ok to move, you have to consider how you want to move your shed. If your shed can be easily dismantled, this is the best way to move it. Many sheds are made from easy-to-assemble interlocking pieces so that specialized tools are not even required when you take your shed home and set it up.

    This is an ideal shed for disassembling prior to moving—you can remove each smaller piece, such as windows and the door, and any interior shelves. You can then remove the roof and set each wall apart. Once everything is disassembled, you and your team of helpers can easily lift each piece onto a trailer. Make sure that there is some form of padding between the pieces if you’re worried about anything getting scratched.

    If your shed cannot be dismantled but it’s still pretty small, you should have no problem lifting it whole onto a truck bed. Smaller sheds can fit into most moving trucks and can be lifted by a team of four, one for each corner.

    You may also opt to use a moving trailer. Open trailers are ideal for larger sheds, especially if you cannot dismantle it. If you can, rent a tilt trailer so that you can use that temporary ramp to ease your shed onto the trailer. This is much safer than trying to lift a large shed several feet to load it onto a trailer.

    Finally, you may want to consider hiring professionals instead of moving the shed yourself. Yes, it can be a more expensive option, but depending on how attached you are to your shed and how much the shed cost itself, it may be worth it for professionals to handle the whole process. However, if the cost of hiring professionals outweighs the cost of purchasing a new shed at your destination and you are not very attached to the shed you have, then perhaps it’s best to leave your shed behind and consider purchasing a new one.

    Step 3: Get Your Shed Ready for the Moving Process

    Before you move your shed, make sure it’s completely empty. This might be a great opportunity to go through whatever items are in your shed to see if you really need to keep them or not and downsize what you don’t need. If you do decide to keep these items, have a bunch of boxes ready. Instead of tossing objects into moving boxes without any sort of system, you may thank yourself later if you label the boxes by what kind of items are inside and organize them that way (hand tools, gardening supplies, craft supplies, etc.).

    If your shed has dangling lighting fixtures, make sure you remove those if you can. If you can’t, you can secure the fixtures with some padding and tape for the move. Next, you should remove the door and take out the windows if these steps are possible. If you cannot remove the windows, these can also be padded and taped down to prevent damage during the moving process.

    If your shed is relatively flimsy and may warp and twist during the move, you can place bracers (such as 4×4 planks) in an X shape inside the shed. Cross the bracers over each other and then install planks in the openings (door and windows) so that the shed stays stable during the move.

    One of the most important steps in moving a shed is to make sure that your path is clear of obstacles. Are there any low-hanging branches that may snag the roof while you’re carrying the shed? Do you have any gravel between the shed and the trailer? If there is any lawn furniture or other things you can move before you lift and move the shed, do so. However, if you have a fence, this might prevent you from moving your shed in one piece. Disassembly is best in that situation.

    Finally, you need to have the new place set up for the shed, ready to go. Clear the path of obstructions and make sure you have a place that’s level and large enough for the shed to sit on. You can measure the dimensions of the shed so that you know exactly how large its new home should be.

    Step 4: Load the Shed

    Now comes the most difficult part of the move, actually loading your shed. The ideal method to complete the loading process will vary depending on the size of the shed.

    If you’re moving a small shed:

    You should be able to, with the help of three or four friends, lift and move the shed onto the moving trailer you’ll be using. Be sure to use proper lifting technique and synchronize your lift with your helpers in order to avoid injury. Overexerting yourself can lead to injuries like hernias and strained muscles, so know your limits and the signs that you might need to pass the task onto another person as you lift. Once that step is completed, secure the shed with straps and make sure it’s centered on the moving trailer.

    If you decide to move your shed in one piece because of its small size, make sure to tape down the doors and windows to prevent them from opening or rattling. Make sure any delicate moving pieces of your shed are protected during transport.

    If you’re moving a large shed:

    The safest and most effective way to move a larger shed is to dismantle it prior to moving. That way, you have several smaller pieces that you can pad and protect and load onto a trailer with minimum securing necessary. This also makes it easier to do without hiring professional movers—several smaller, lighter pieces can be easily lifted and loaded by you and your helpers.

    However, you may not always be able to dismantle a shed (for example, if it’s welded together or cast in one piece). In this case, you have a few options on how to move the shed. One is to hire a forklift. Unless you yourself are a licensed forklift operator, you will need to ask a heavy machinery moving company to come out with a forklift to load your large shed onto the trailer.

    Should you decide not to hire a forklift operator to assist you in your move, you can try what’s known as the rolling method. You will need plywood sheets, several PVC pipes, and a few helpers.

    How to use the rolling method

    • Know your tools and set them up: The plywood sheets are for setting up a path for the shed to move across smoothly. The PVC pipes will act as rollers, supporting and rolling the shed across the plywood path. Prepare to use these tools and set them up before you begin the loading process.
    • Lay your rollers: With at least one person (or two, depending on the size of the shed) on either side of the shed, the rest of your team needs to lay out the PVC pipes across the plywood path in such a way that the bottom of the shed will be on top of the pipes.
    • Load the shed onto the rollers: Tilt the shed upwards so that the front side can make it on top of the pipes. This will allow you to move the shed without risking a back injury lifting it multiple inches off the ground.
    • Move the shed: Once the shed is on top of the PVC pipes, you and your team can slowly roll the shed across the pipes, with a runner taking the last pipe and continuously placing it at the front. Eventually, you will make it to the moving trailer. Ideally, the trailer will have a winch or can tilt back for loading so that you and your team can simply continue to roll the shed right onto the trailer. If it does not tilt, you can use the trailer ramp to slide the shed onto the trailer bed.

    No matter what method you decide to use to move your larger shed, just like smaller sheds, you need to make sure that all moving parts are secured and that anything that would break during transport (windows, lighting fixtures) is removed or protected from vibrations. Secure the shed by using straps and even cinder blocks to keep it from sliding across the trailer while you’re on the road.

    Extra Tips for Moving a Shed

    How can you make moving a shed a little easier? These are some things you can remember whether you’re moving a small shed or a large one that you need to roll.

    Enlist Moving Help Early

    When moving a shed, you’re going to need help, no matter what size it is. It’s best to enlist at least three other people, one for each corner of the shed if you’re simply lifting up a small one. If you’re doing the rolling method, you will need at least one person for each side of the shed. Make sure you have people you can rely on and that they mark the moving date on their calendar. You don’t want to have any less help than you need.

    If You Can Disassemble Your Shed Before Moving, Do It

    This is by far the easiest way to move a shed, large or small. You may think that disassembly is too much of a hassle, especially for a smaller shed that you can simply lift and place onto a trailer. However, disassembly removes the possibility of the shed warping during transport and lessens the possibility of any type of damage at all. Plus, it’s definitely easier to move smaller, lighter pieces of a shed than an entire shed at once.

    Winch or Tilt Trailers Can Save Your Back

    If you’re moving your shed yourself, make sure that the trailer you’re using is a tilt trailer. If the trailer itself can be a ramp, you don’t have to worry about precariously balancing planks from the trailer to the ground and siding a shed onto the trailer that way. Alternatively, if you’re moving a smaller shed using a truck, use a truck that has a winch in the bed. That way you can use the truck’s muscle to help you load the shed onto the truck bed and save some elbow grease.

    Make Sure Your Shed Has a New Spot

    Measure the dimensions of your shed before this whole process and then decide where you will place it at its new location. The shed should have a level place to sit on, and if you so choose, you can even pour a foundation for the shed. Prior to moving day, make sure that the path you will be moving the shed across is clear of any obstacles so that you can move it as safely and efficiently as possible.

    For a Long-Distance Move, Hire Professionals

    If you’re moving long-distance, it’s better to hire professional movers to transport your shed. The biggest consideration is driving a moving trailer or a truck loaded up with a heavy, awkward object like a shed. If you have little to no experience doing this, then it’s best that you leave a long-distance drive with a wide/heavy load to the professionals.

    Our Recommended Shed Moving Services

    If you’re moving long-distance, we recommend using a professional moving company to get your shed to your new property. Not only will professionals ensure that your shed is loaded and strapped down in a way that limits the possibility of damage—but these professionals will also eliminate the possibility of injuries that come with amateur loading.

    Not sure where to begin your search for the right moving company? We recommend the following options when you need to move a shed.

    International Van Lines

    International Van Lines (IVL) is a nationwide moving company operating in all 50 states and in more than 150 countries around the world. IVL offers comprehensive moving and loading processes for heavy items like a shed, and they can handle all of the annoyances and small details that come with moving a bulky item. Additionally, IVL’s customer service team has been recognized by major publications like Newsweek for its attentiveness and proactivity in responding to customer concerns and complaints. If you’ve never moved a shed before and you’re looking for personal assistance on your moving date and beforehand, IVL can be a strong choice for you.

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    If you can disassemble your shed and you’re moving it alongside a household shipment, you might want to consider working with a moving container service like U-Pack. U-Pack is a unique shipping option that allows you to schedule a moving container to be delivered to your home, where you’ll load your shipment. U-Pack’s moving containers come in a variety of sizes and are resistant to weather, which helps your shed pieces avoid water damage when on the road.

    You can take multiple days to load your U-Pack container, which is also ideal for anyone looking for a more leisurely move. After you’re finished, U-Pack officials will return to your home, pick up your container, and transport it to your new property. U-Pack provides a more affordable way to move a shed that can be taken apart when compared to working with a moving company or moving broker, which can ensure that you stay on budget throughout your move.

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    If you’re only looking for assistance moving your shed, you can list the job for free using a moving marketplace like uShip. Through uShip’s platform, you can create a listing that details the specifics of the job that you need completed and the price that you’re willing to pay for transportation services. If you aren’t sure how much to offer for these services, you can also request that moving companies submit their best offers and choose the company that works best with your budget.

    After booking through the platform, the moving team that you’ve chosen will arrive at your home and move your shed, only receiving payment after the job is done. This escrow system helps customers avoid moving fraud and encourages your movers to get the job done without damaging your shed.

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    Moving a Shed Safely and Affordably

    The easiest way to move a shed is by hiring a professional moving team. Unfortunately, not everyone has the budget to hire movers to transport their shed. If you’re looking for moving assistance that doesn’t break the bank, we recommend getting a quote from each of our recommended services before booking your moving date. Knowing all of your options can ensure that you don’t end up overpaying for your move.

    Moving a Shed FAQ

    Is there an easy way to move a shed?

    The easiest way to move a shed is to take it apart first. That way, you have smaller, lighter pieces that are much more maneuverable than an assembled shed.

    Can you move a shed without dismantling it?

    Yes. You definitely need to recruit enough people to help you, but four people can lift and move a small shed effectively. To move a larger shed, you will need to use the aforementioned rolling method and then have friends support the sides and tilt the shed onto a trailer.

    How much does it cost to move a shed from one place to another?

    To hire someone to move a shed or simply rent a tilt trailer can cost $300 to $500, and that’s depending on the distance and the size of the shed. Moving companies charge by mile, and larger (and thus heavier) sheds will cost more.

    Can you move a shed with a forklift?

    If you have a forklift operator’s license, then yes, you yourself can do this. If not, you need to hire a forklift operator to move your shed. If you’re simply moving the shed across the yard, a forklift can accomplish this task. If you’re relocating and want to take your shed with you, you can use a forklift to load it onto the trailer or in a truck bed.