You may think of that shed in your backyard as a modern structure, but did you know that sheds have been around for centuries?
The word “shed” itself has a history going back to at least the fifteenth century, when the word “shadde” first appeared in a sentence: “A yearde in whiche was a shadde where in were six grete dogges.” Experts in word origins agree that the word likely comes from the Old English “sceadu,” which means “shade, shadow, darkness” and a root word from Anglo-Saxon that means “separation” or “division.”
Today, sheds indeed are separate structures that shelter or “shade” our stuff from the elements. We put any and everything in them—sometimes we have junk all the way to the ceiling. Then we shut the door, lock it, and sometimes forget about the items inside until, maybe years (or decades?) later, we pry open the door to see what time has done to rusty bicycles, upholstered furniture, old lawn equipment, and whatever else we stored there. Sometimes, it’s a lot more stuff than we recall piling in there. And it’s also coated in dust, strewn with cobwebs, and maybe harboring a critter or two.
If you’ve decided it’s time to declutter your shed and spiff it up so you can use it for some other purpose, then we’ve got some tips for you on how to go about it. After all, we clear out a lot of sheds in the San Antonio area. We’re definitely experts in shed cleanouts near you!
How To Clear Out and Clean Your Shed
CLEAR OUT ITEMS INSIDE
Pick a day when you know it’s not going to rain, or find another place to move items to protect them from the weather as you take them out. Be sure to wear gloves—and maybe a mask, if you have allergies—to protect from yourself from dust, possible insects, and scrapes.
MAKE FOUR PILES
Instead of haphazardly removing items from your shed, organize them as you take them out. Designate one pile for items you plan to keep. Set up a second pile for items you want to sell, perhaps in a garage sale or on Facebook Marketplace. Make a third pile for those things you wish to donate, like clothes or toys or furniture. Then set up a fourth pile for stuff that you plan to throw away.
INSPECT INTERIOR FOR PROBLEMS
Once everything is out, you can get a good look at the interior of your shed. Check for signs of pests like mice and insects or even squirrels and other critters. Clear out spider webs, set out traps, or call an exterminator. Next, check the interior for signs of mold or mildew, which can damage wood, and clean up those areas thoroughly. Finally, inspect the floor, ceiling, windows, and corners for holes or wood rot. Patch up any holes or cracks that might let weather or pests inside.
CLEAN FROM TOP TO BOTTOM
Grab a broom and sweep out the dirt, swipe any shelves with a dust cloth, and mop the floor, if needed. Shine the windows, too. Be sure to get any cobwebs out of corners and off the ceiling.
WASH THE EXTERIOR
Tackle built-up dirt and grime on shed walls with a pressure washer, but be careful not to use a setting that will harm wood surfaces or ruin paint. You can also use a garden hose and sprayer for a gentler clean.
INSPECT THE ROOF
Clear off any tree limbs and leaves that have collected on the roof. Keep an eye out for moss, because the moisture in moss can damage roofs. Patch up loose shingles or holes and cracks in wood that might allow pests or water inside your shed.
PAINT YOUR SHED
If it’s been awhile since your shed had a coat of paint, now is the perfect time to put on a fresh coat of weatherproof paint or a stain that will protect your shed from the searing Hill Country sun, winter rain, and cold temperatures for another year or two.
Once you’ve completed your shed cleanout, you’re ready to turn that space into whatever you want, whether it’s a she-shed, a workshop, or simply a better organized storage space. Reimagining your shed is the fun part, after all.
And if you just don’t want to face removing junk from your shed, we’ve got you covered. Our expert crew can haul off your junk—and sometimes the shed itself, too—and leave you with a swept-out space ready for whatever you want it to become.
All you have to do is call 210-405-1410 and POOF! all your clutter is history. We service the San Antonio area, including Boerne, Helotes, New Braunfels, Spring Branch, and more.
Speaking of history, did you know that some early forms of sheds included cave alcoves, underground silos lined with reeds, and branches or wood structures draped with animal skins? We’ve come a long way from those. So next time you go out to your shed, give it some respect. It has a long history!