This post was last updated on March 9th, 2021 at 01:23 pm
If you are looking for a hard-wearing and low maintenance solution for your backyard storage needs, a small utility shed could be the answer. They are a useful and economical addition to any backyard and could be just right for tidying your smaller items in a readily accessible place.
The Convenience of Small Utility Sheds
These small sheds provide the convenience of keeping all your most regularly used gardening tools in one place, within easy reach of where you most often use them. You’ll save a lot of time from going back and forth between a bigger shed, the basement, or wherever you usually keep your gardening equipment.
And not just tools. You can use these small sheds to provide local storage for many items used in the backyard, where they are most needed - at the poolside, on the patio, in the kids’ play area, near the ornamental pond, for example.
You will find it convenient to store some items near to the point of use, where you can quickly retrieve them, then put them away again later.
They’re especially useful in small backyards where space is limited. You can locate them in narrow areas that would otherwise be under-utilized.
The smaller sizes mean they have limitations, of course. A lawn-mower or a wheelbarrow might not fit in some models, perhaps not even some patio chairs or sun loungers. But there are many other uses for these smaller sheds. We know of many being used to store trash cans, Mobility scooters, small folding garden chairs, pet and wild bird supplies, and pool chemicals.
Some small utility sheds are more like outdoor storage cabinets than sheds. Like deck boxes, they provide a useful way to tidy smaller items away quickly, near to where you will use them.
All the sheds here are made of plastic/resin and require no special tools to assemble. However, having a rubber mallet to help you fully press the molded panels together can be useful.
If you use a power drill/driver for the assembly screws, power them in gently to avoid stripping out the threads. Finally, be sure to read the manufacturers' instructions before assembling your shed.
Vertical Outdoor Sheds
Suncast Small Vertical Shed 20 Cubic Feet
This vertical utility shed from Suncast looks good in a garden or patio area, and is ideal for keeping regularly used gardening tools all in one place.
The sturdy 1.5-inch thick double wall construction has a pleasant wood grain texture on the outside surfaces, and a reinforced floor makes it suitable for storing weighty items.
There are no storage shelves, but the included shelving template shows how shelves can be made from three-quarter inch thick lumber, and fitted with drywall screws.
The shed has no vents but is not airtight, so pool chemicals, for example, could easily be stored in it.
Once assembled, the utility shed is lockable with a 5/16 inch padlock, which you will need to buy separately.
When the shed is empty, keep it weighted on the floor to prevent tipping over in high winds.
The Suncast vertical shed assembles fast, requires little maintenance, and it looks good, whether freestanding or located against a wall or fence. It is a useful storage shed with a small footprint.
Rubbermaid Small Vertical Shed 18 Cubic Feet
The Rubbermaid vertical utility shed is an easy-to-assemble plastic shed kit that is both pleasing to the eye and maintenance-free. No special assembly skills are needed.
The subtle colors will blend into your yard or patio setting and help keep your smaller garden equipment out of sight.
It can store your long-handled tools and other smaller garden-related items, in a tall storage unit.
The High-Density Polyethylene used is the same as in larger Rubbermaid units. It is leak, dent, and weather-resistant, and requires little to no maintenance.
The double-walled construction, together with a heavy-duty impact-resistant floor, provides added strength and proper protection for your vertical shed contents.
The shed kit comprises eight easily assembled pieces. These are the roof, floor, back, left and right side panels, left and right doors, and a lock hasp, which is already attached to the right-hand door.
A rubber mallet is useful in assembling the parts.
There are no shelves supplied, but to fit some yourself, you need to purchase 1.9cm thick lumber, cut it to size and locate in any of the four molded-in shelf brackets.
These are recessed areas in the back panel, which you can drill through to secure the shed to any immovable object, like the side of a house, for example. Another way to anchor the shed is to drill the floor locations and insert stakes into the ground.
Cleaning the shed is straightforward - use a cloth, detergent, and water. Don’t use any abrasive cleaners as these will damage the plastic surfaces.
The shed is for storing smaller gardening items and not the likes of bicycles, lawnmower, or wheelbarrow. It’s just right for keeping your long-handled tools in one place, and for storing hand tools, seeds, garden chemicals, pool supplies, and sundries.
This Rubbermaid vertical shed is an ideal tall storage unit for where outdoor storage space is limited. Its plastic construction makes for a sturdy and durable shed. It looks good, and you can quickly assemble it with regular household tools.
All in all, this is a practical, well made, and sturdy small utility shed.
Rubbermaid Large Vertical Shed 52 Cubic Feet
Also from Rubbermaid and similar to the small vertical shed above, this provides nearly three times the capacity.
Horizontal Outdoor Sheds
Suncast Horizontal Shed 34 Cubic Feet
The Suncast Horizontal shed is a low profile, backyard storage unit designed for locating at the side of a house, below a fence line or on a patio. It's more of a storage box than a shed.
It can accommodate smaller garbage cans and various garden supplies and sundries, with easy access from the lid and the double opening doors.
Made of a durable resin design, it is easy to maintain, and has an attractive finish. The reinforced floor allows for tools and equipment to be stored.
Rubbermaid Outdoor Horizontal Shed 32 Cubic Feet
This horizontal resin shed from Rubbermaid is a durable and weather-resistant storage unit, designed to give long service. It is of double-walled construction and includes a heavy-duty impact-resistant floor. Access is by full-width front doors and a hinged roof.
It is ideal for storing small items from the garden, poolside, or kid's' play area, such as - pool chemicals, towels, and sunscreens, small tools, outdoor toys, garbage cans, lawn equipment, even a generator. Next-to-no maintenance is required. Just a wipe over with a soapy cloth when needed.
It is equally at home used out in the open, on the patio or decking, or indoors in a garage or basement area.
You can quickly assemble it with regular home handyman tools - but do read the instructions carefully first.
It is leak, dent, and rot-resistant and designed for long life. There is the provision to fit a single shelf, which you will have to make yourself. That should be easy enough, though, for anyone with basic DIY skills.
This Rubbermaid horizontal shed is a useful small storage unit that assembles smoothly and looks good when assembled. For those wanting an average amount of storage space for small items with minimum assembly time, this is ideal as everything snaps together without the need for special tools - just a rubber mallet.