How to build a shed on blocks

Written by keith allen
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Sheds and other small buildings can be built on cement slabs, concrete piers or blocks. Buildings constructed on blocks can be temporary or permanent. Constructing a shed on blocks reduces the cost and effort required for the foundation of the building; however, building stability in inclement weather is sacrificed.

Skill level:
Moderately Challenging

Things you need

  • Cement blocks
  • Wood shed lumber
  • Plywood
  • Circular saw
  • Hammer
  • Box nails
  • Common nails
  • Penny nails

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  1. 1

    Stake out the corner points of the shed. Confirm the measurements and the square of the building layout. Place cement blocks at the four corner points and support blocks at the midpoint of each side of the building if the side is more than eight feet. Level the blocks using a string level so that top of each block is exactly level with the other blocks.

  2. 2

    Build the floor frame out of two inch by six inch lumber formed into a perimeter frame of the building with 16 box nails at each corner. Mark out locations for floor joists every 16 inches on centre within the frame. Nail the two inch by six inch joists in place, flush with the top of the frame, with 16 common nails on each end.

  3. 3

    Cover the floor joists with 1/2 inch plywood to create the floor of the shed. Nail the plywood in place with eight penny nails. Construct wall frames out of two inch by four inch studs nailed to horizontal sills, also two inch by four inch lumber, at the top and bottom with 16 box nails. The sills are the horizontal pieces on each end of the wall studs. Nail the bottom sill to the floor around the perimeter of the shed with 16 common nails spaced about 16 inches apart.

  4. 4

    Place rafters on the top sill, toe nailing them in place with box nails. Toe nailing involves nails driven at an angle through the side of the rafter into the top sill. Cover the roof with plywood roof sheathing, nailing in place with penny nails. Cover the walls with siding or plywood, depending on the design of the building. Add any doors and windows. Shingle the roof and add any exterior trim necessary for the design.

Tips and warnings

  • Excavating the sod from below the blocks will reduce the settling of the shed from decomposition of the sod as the grass and roots die from a lack of light.
  • A shed on concrete blocks is only held in place by gravity. Wind damage to these type of buildings is possible. According to Danny Lipford, smaller sheds, usually less than 200 square feet, are built on blocks.

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