How to Improve Your Life with a Bike Shed
Why You Should Own a Bike
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity affected about 93 million Americans in 2015-2016 (that’s just under 40% of the population). There’s a good chance that you (or someone you know) have suffered from obesity in one form or another.
One of the primary causes of obesity is lack of exercise. There is a strong link between obesity and a lifestyle that doesn’t make much room for exercise.
While there are many forms of exercise, bicycling is especially useful in helping to maintain overall health (and it has become an enjoyable hobby for many).
(And just in case you thought you were left off the hook, exercise is good for everyone, not just those who deal with obesity.)
Bike Storage Spaces
If you’re like many Americans, you own a bike but only dust it off twice a year during the spring and fall when the gorgeous weather persuades you to hit the trails.
Whether you use your bike daily or yearly, finding the right storage space is an important part of caring for your bike and managing your space.
Most Americans store their bikes in one of three places: the garage, basement, or shed. What are the pros and cons of bike storage in these spaces?
Storing your bike in your garage is a good option if it still leaves you with plenty of room to park your car. You don’t want to fill your garage with so much stuff that you have no room to park your car. And you don’t want to be tripping over your bike or knocking it over against your car.
Storing your bike in your basement is rarely a good option unless you have a “daylight” basement with easy access to the outside. Anyone who’s tried it knows that you don’t want to be dragging your bike up a flight of steps every time you want to use it. Storing your bike in the basement might discourage you from getting the exercise you need.
Storing your bike in a shed is the best option if the shed is conveniently placed to allow you to access your bike quickly and easily when you need it. With a bike storage shed, you don’t need to worry about scratching your vehicles or taking up too much space in the garage.
Bike Storage Options and Configurations
Whether you choose to store your bike in your portable garage, basement or shed, you have a wide range of solutions available for dealing with bike storage problems. Here are a few of them. The solution that works best for you will depend on your situation and available storage space.
Furniture (floor mount)
You can modify existing furniture or have it custom-made to accommodate the storage of your bike. This is a good option if you have plenty of floor space and want to use your piece of furniture to store other things like shoes and helmets.
Stand (floor mount)
A bike stand also takes up floor space but is better suited for a minimalist when compared to furniture. A bike stand helps to keep your bikes organized and standing upright. Tall bike stands can also be utilized to make better use of the space near the ceiling.
Hook (wall or ceiling mount)
A bicycle hook is ideal if you don’t have much floor space. It’s also the cheapest option while still being easy to install. The downside to a hook is that it might be difficult to quickly access your bike when you need it. This option requires a strong arm and back to lift the bike in place.
Pulley (ceiling mount)
A ceiling mounted pulley is an ideal solution if you need to free up floor space. Many pulley systems are designed to significantly reduce the effort needed to raise the bike into the storage position.
A bike shed has many advantages including making your bike more easily accessible, freeing up garage space, and protecting it from theft and the weather. What are the advantages of a bike storage shed?
4 Reasons to Get a Bike Storage Shed
Reason #1 Keep your bike accessible
In order to make bicycling a part of your lifestyle, your bicycle needs to be easily accessible. There are few things that discourage making exercise a habit like the pain of digging your bicycle out of the garage or basement every time you want to use it. You should be able to step outside your door and jump on your bike within seconds (without needing to move other stuff out of the way, drag it up the steps, open and close a garage door, etc.)
Reason #2 Clean out your garage
Everyone knows how much space a bicycle can take up in a garage or basement. Bicycles are notoriously difficult to store and work around. Protrusions like pedals and handlebars can quickly rub you the wrong way. Getting your bicycle out of the garage can be one step to decluttering and making sure you have enough room to park your vehicles without scratching the paint or tripping when you get out.
Reason #3 Protect your bike from theft
If you decide that your garage is no place for your bike, you might be tempted to leave it outside. Depending on your neighborhood, you run the risk of having it disappear before you know it. An unsecured bike is an easy target for theft. Even if you lock it up with a cable, many cables can easily be cut with a hand held cable cutter. Leaving your bike outside on display makes it a tempting target.
Reason #4 Protect your bike from the weather
Even if your bike is made from high quality components, mother nature will take a toll on the paint and other parts if you let it outside. Rust can set in the gears, making it difficult to shift. The sun can fade the paint and plastic. Your bike can quickly decline in value if it’s left outside without protection on a regular basis. Just like your car, a bike that’s stored in a shelter will better maintain it’s value and will operate more smoothly in the long run.
Types of Bike Storage Sheds
“Bicycle Only” Sheds
If you do an online search for “bike sheds” you’ll probably find tiny sheds that are designed for bicycles only with little room left to spare for anything else. This may be your best option if you have limited space available on your property. But if you have the room, you’ll probably be better off buying full-sized storage shed that you can use for other projects or storage needs in addition to bike storage.
Storage Shed Turned Bike Shed
Any storage shed can be turned into a bike shed. With a little planning and interior configuration, you’ll have the perfect storage shed turned bike shed.
How to Turn Your Shed into a Bike Storage Shed
Make sure your shed is readily accessible
Accessibility to your bike should be one of your foremost considerations. How far do you need to walk to get to the shed? Are the doors easy to unlock and operate? Should you install a ramp to make moving your bike in an out of the shed easier. Anything you can do to make access easier will give you fewer excuses not to use your bike and get more exercise.
Designate a bike storage area
Inside your shed, you’ll want to designate an area that’s dedicated to bike storage. Avoid placing other items that might obstruct access to your bike within this area. Ideally, the area should be near the door of your shed.
Identify the best storage configuration
You’ll want to identify a way to keep your bike from falling over or being pushed out of place while in storage. The configuration you choose (floor, wall, or ceiling) depends largely on the available space within your shed along with the wall and ceiling height.
Owning a bicycle is a good idea, but riding it regularly is even better. Including bike riding in your weekly routine will keep you in shape and improve your overall health. Make sure your bike is easy to access and store with a bike shed.