Having a shed is excellent for storing extra decor or lawn equipment, especially if your shed has a loft! Whether you keep your pool floaties or additional planting equipment in the loft, it’s crucial to know how much weight it can hold so you know exactly what you can store there. So, how much weight can a shed loft hold?
A shed loft can hold a large amount of weight, depending on the size of the shed and how well-built it is. An average-sized shed loft can typically hold 40 lbs per square ft (195.3 kg per square m). However, the area of the loft, support structure, and type of wood are all crucial factors.
The rest of this article will discuss the factors that determine how much weight a shed loft can hold, and how to tell if your shed loft is well-built.
What Determines How Much Weight a Shed Loft Can Hold?
Whether you’re building a loft in your shed or your shed already has one, you’ll need to know how much weight it can hold.
Not all sheds are made the same, and some are older than others, so putting heavy machinery in the loft might not be ideal.
So, what determines how much weight a shed loft can hold?
The area of the loft, the support structure, and the type of wood used are all factors that determine how much weight a shed loft can hold. For storing extremely heavy amounts of weight, you must ensure the center beams, crossbeams, and posts are all installed correctly.
These factors are all essential to how much weight you can put in your loft.
I’ll get more into detail about each aspect below.
The Area of the Loft
The loft area determines what support beams you need or don’t need. The bigger the area, the more beams and support you will need.
So, if your shed loft is 12 feet by 16 feet (3.66 m by 4.88 m) and can typically hold an average of 40 pounds per square foot (195.3 kilograms per square meter), it should be able to hold over 7,000 pounds (3,175 kilograms).
However, this is only if the support structure is built correctly – meaning the right amount of joists and support beams are present.
I’ll discuss the importance of the support structure next.
The Support Structure
The support structure of your loft shed is probably the most critical factor when determining how much weight it can hold.
If you’re building a loft and want to store extra heavy items, you’ll need some additional support.
A loft floor needs to support both live and dead loads.
Meaning it needs to be able to support the weight of the structure itself (dead load), as well as whatever you put on the loft (live load).
Therefore, the joists need to be installed accurately, and depending on the area of the shed, you may need extra beams.
You also need to ensure the beams holding the loft don’t bend too much while holding weight, called the deflection limit.
However, it’s best to consult a structural engineer for any questions about building a shed loft or inspecting your shed loft.
Related article: Can A Shed Be Attached To The House?
The Type of Wood
The type of wood used is also a vital factor in how much weight a shed loft can hold.
While most people wouldn’t use flexible pine wood or softwood to build, it is possible.
These woods are not strong enough to hold a large amount of weight.
Therefore, if the shed is made with a pressure treated-type of lumber, it will most likely hold a more significant amount of weight.
How Do I Know if My Shed Is Well-Built?
Whether you just moved into a house or bought a shed online and want to store equipment in the loft, knowing the details of its structure is essential.
Most of the time, you’ll be able to tell if your shed is well-built by looking at its framework.
You can know if your shed is well-built by looking at its foundation. A well-built shed will have a strong, sturdy framework and should not sit directly on the ground. The best way to determine if a shed is well-built is to observe the framing setup and wood quality.
If you’re ever unsure about the quality of your shed, it’s best to get a professional to come out and look at it before adding a loft to it or storing heavy objects in the loft that’s already there.
If you already have a shed and want to add a loft, several videos show how.
I recommend checking out this ten-minute YouTube video by DIY Homestead Projects:
A shed loft can hold a large amount of weight as long as the proper structural support is there.
Not all sheds are built the same, so they won’t hold the same amount of weight.
However, a quality shed will likely hold around 40 pounds per square foot (195.3 kilograms per square meter).
The area of the loft, support structure, and type of wood are all factors to consider when figuring out how much weight a shed loft can hold.
However, if you have a well-built shed, the loft should support a large amount of weight.
Cheers, tools owners!