Safety 101: Here's What You Should Know Before Wiring Your Shed

Wiring your shed can be a great idea if you're not anticipating using a flashlight when it's dark outside or would like some source of electricity for your power tools. It may seem like wiring your shed is a breeze, but there are a few do's and don'ts you should be aware of before wiring your storage building. 

6 Tips Every Homeowner Should Know Before Wiring Their Shed 

1. Where to Start 

iStock-539100908.jpg

Finding a safe starting point is the first step in wiring your outdoor shed. For the best results, hire a certified class A licensed electrician. If you plan on wiring your shed yourself, finding your starting point and mapping out your electrical route is your first step. Knowing the size of your shed is also very important in mapping out your electrical blueprint. 

2. Decide the Purpose of Your Shed 

The amount of electricity and where it will be located will depend on how you plan to use your storage shed. For example, if it's used as an office, ample lighting and outlets will be mandatory. However, if you're using it for the occasional DIY project, minimal lighting is required. 

3. How Much Power Is Needed for Your Equipment or Tools 

Each tool or equipment will require a specific number of electrical amps. A table saw and dust collector will require a lot of electricity while a ceiling fan will not. You'll need enough circuits to handle each load. Most tools require 100v power, but others will mandate at least 220v of power. 

Tools & Equipment That Require More Power: 

·  compressors 

·  welders

·  air conditioners 

·  electric drill 

4. Can I Use My Household Electricity 

Most houses are equipped to handle the extra electrical load, but if you plan to have a cooling and heating system, an electrical sub panel may be required. Using your household amps for extra lights in your storage shed should be fine, but tools and equipment that require more juice must be calculated to avoid an overload. A quick overview with your local electrician will help you estimate what you'll need. 

5. How Do I Transfer the Electricity from My House to My Shed 

An exterior rated extension cord should be enough to route a single circuit to your shed. You're simply turning your shed into another appliance. However, homeowners are cautioned to unplug their extension cord when it's not in use. In fact, if you always want to keep it connected, a cord that is strictly used for outdoors is best. 

Creating a workshop requires multiple circuits or a sub panel that should be buried underground. It's important to figure out if there are other lines buried in your extended path. Figuring out if you must cross concrete or a hardtop is important to your electrical project. Answering these questions will help you decide how much your project will cost or how long it will take. 

6. Figure Out How Long Your Project Will Take  

Estimate how long your project will take is based on the amount of electricity you plan to put in your shed. A simple exterior extension cord won't take no time at all but wiring electricity will take longer. The experts suggest, a simple cord-and-plug should take no longer than an afternoon. The more receptacles you use, the more time it will take. Wiring your shed can take two weekends or more hands-on. A professional electrician can help you can estimate the amount of time it will take to wire your storage shed. 

Final Thoughts 

Before you attempt any wiring project, you should always check your local building codes, county, or state regulations. You'll want to make sure you have all the permits necessary to avoid a delay in your project. If you're confident about your wiring project, but need a little guidance the Homeowner's DIY Guide to Electrical Wiring is a great resource tool. It's important to always put safety first!

If you need advice on wiring your storage shed, you're invited to contact us at Cumberland Buildings for assistance today!