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Granddaughter and grandpa running around a backyard storage shed

How Different Shed Types Fare in Colder Weather

When it comes to battling the biting cold of winter or the chilly winds of frigid autumn, your choice of a storage shed can be the unsung hero in keeping your stored belongings safe and secure. As the seasons change and temperatures plummet, understanding how different shed types fare in colder weather becomes essential. 

Whether you're stashing garden tools, protecting your outdoor furniture, or simply looking for extra storage space for the long winter months, the right shed can make all the difference. In this blog, we'll explore the fascinating world of outdoor storage and how it intersects with the challenges of cold weather. We'll delve into three of the most common shed materials – wood, metal, and resin – to determine how each of them performs when the mercury drops. 

Understanding the Key Factors for Cold-Weather Sheds

The cold can be a formidable adversary for the durability of your shed. Before we delve into the specific characteristics of wood, metal, and resin sheds in colder weather, it's crucial to grasp the fundamental challenges these structures face. First and foremost, the primary challenge lies in temperature fluctuations and moisture. In colder climates, the freeze-thaw cycle can take a toll on shed materials, causing them to expand and contract, potentially leading to cracks, warping, or other structural issues. Additionally, the relentless moisture that often accompanies cold weather can be a nemesis, promoting rot and rust in susceptible materials.

Insulation and weather resistance can help keep your shed and its contents safer. These factors serve as the pillars that determine a shed's performance in winter. Effective insulation is like a warm blanket for your shed, helping maintain a stable internal temperature and preventing temperature-related damages. You’ll probably need to add insulation to most sheds, and there are several different options when it comes to the best type of insulation for your situation.

Material strength, on the other hand, dictates how well a shed can withstand the physical stressors of cold weather, such as heavy snow loads or gusty winds. Weather resistance is the final frontier, as it shields your shed from rain, sleet, and snow, preventing the elements from infiltrating the structure and causing harm. By understanding and considering these factors, you'll know how to prepare better to buy the ideal cold-weather shed for your situation.

Shed types in cold weather infographic

Wood Sheds: The Classic Option

Wood sheds have long been a beloved fixture in the world of outdoor storage, known for their timeless charm and the unmistakable scent of timber. These sheds exude a traditional appeal that resonates with many homeowners.


In colder climates, wood sheds offer some noteworthy advantages. Their natural insulation properties are a standout feature, providing a level of thermal protection that keeps stored items shielded from harsh external temperatures. This natural insulation can keep your belongings safe from frosty weather. Additionally, wood sheds contribute to the overall aesthetics of your outdoor space, enhancing the visual appeal of your property. The quaint and inviting look of wood lends a sense of coziness, making it a favorite choice for those who appreciate the blend of functionality and beauty. 


However, wood sheds in colder climates do come with their fair share of challenges. Their vulnerability to moisture and pests is a notable drawback. The very moisture that often accompanies cold weather can infiltrate wood sheds, potentially causing rot or mold, and attracting wood-destroying pests like termites. Furthermore, wood sheds require diligent maintenance. Over time, they can be susceptible to rot, rust, and peeling, which necessitates regular upkeep to ensure their longevity and structural integrity. In regions with severe winters, this can be a demanding task, making wood sheds a choice that calls for commitment and dedication to their care.

Metal Sheds: The Durable, Yet Chilly Option

Metal sheds bring an air of modernity and industrial strength to the world of outdoor storage. These structures are typically constructed from steel or aluminum, offering a sharp contrast to the natural aesthetics of wood. Metal sheds are often appreciated for their durability and toughness, capable of withstanding the test of time and weathering the harshest elements. Their sleek, utilitarian appearance makes them a popular choice for those who prioritize function over form in their outdoor storage solutions.


In colder climates, metal sheds have their share of advantages. The foremost of these is their exceptional durability and resistance to pests. Metal sheds are impervious to wood-destroying insects and rodents, providing a secure sanctuary for your stored items even in the most frigid conditions. Another notable advantage is their minimal maintenance requirements. Unlike wood, metal doesn't rot, peel, or require frequent repainting. This makes metal sheds an attractive option for those who want a low-maintenance storage solution that can endure the rigors of cold weather. 


However, metal sheds have their drawbacks when the mercury drops. One of the most significant issues is their poor insulation and temperature control. Metal is an excellent conductor of heat, meaning that in cold weather, the interior of a metal shed can become frigid. Without additional insulation measures, the stored items may be subject to temperature fluctuations. Furthermore, metal sheds are susceptible to rust and corrosion, especially in regions with high humidity or heavy snowfall. Without proper protection and maintenance, the metal's integrity may deteriorate over time, compromising the shed's structural soundness.

How to Insulate a DIY Shed

Resin Sheds: The Ideal Choice for Cold Climates

Resin sheds represent a modern and innovative approach to outdoor storage, harnessing the power of contemporary materials to address the unique challenges posed by colder climates. These sheds are constructed using high-quality, weather-resistant plastic materials, often reinforced with steel or other structural components. Resin sheds embrace functionality and efficiency, offering a sleek and clean appearance that complements a variety of outdoor environments. They are emblematic of a design ethos that marries form and function, making them an ideal choice for homeowners who value both aesthetics and practicality in their outdoor storage solutions.


In colder climates, resin sheds shine in several key areas. Their excellent insulation and temperature control properties set them apart, ensuring that your stored items remain shielded from harsh external temperatures. With the addition of added insulation, a resin shed can provide a safer place for your stored items. 

The structural integrity of resin sheds is also not compromised by rot, mold, or termite infestations, making them a reliable choice for cold-weather storage. Furthermore, resin sheds boast low maintenance requirements and impressive longevity. They require minimal upkeep, even in the face of winter's worst, and are built to withstand years of use, making them a wise investment for homeowners in colder regions. 

Other features, such as reinforced floors, skylights, and built-in ventilation systems, contribute to the functionality and resilience of resin sheds, making them the preferred option for those seeking a cold-weather storage solution that excels on all fronts.


There really aren’t many cons when it comes to resin sheds. While they don’t have the exact look of wood, they do have a sleek wood-like look without the maintenance of wood.

If you’d like to read more about the pros and cons of each shed material type, check out our blog about resin vs. wood vs. metal, where we do a deeper dive. 

Comparison and Final Verdict

Mom and daughter outside storage shed

After examining the attributes of wood, metal, and resin sheds in cold weather, it's clear that each option has its merits and drawbacks. Wood sheds, with their classic charm and natural insulation, offer appeal but come with challenges of moisture vulnerability and high maintenance. Metal sheds, while durable and low-maintenance, struggle with temperature control and rust susceptibility in cold climates. On the other hand, resin sheds emerge as the preferred option for their excellent insulation, resistance to moisture and pests, low maintenance and longevity.

No matter the shed type, regular upkeep is paramount. In colder climates, the rigors of winter can take a toll, and proactive maintenance can mean the difference between a shed that endures the elements and one that succumbs to the challenges. By heeding these maintenance tips, your shed will remain a reliable shelter for your belongings through even the harshest of winters.

If you’re looking for a low-maintenance option that is weather-resistant and has little to no maintenance needs, vinyl resin sheds from Keter are the way to go. The sheds come in a wide variety of sizes and colors to fit any aesthetic.


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