5 Essential tips for maintaining your garden office
So your new garden office is sitting proudly in place. What a beauty! There’s nothing quite like brand new, is there? The forest fresh smell of the timber, the immaculate finish. Clean, tidy and solid. Inside and out.
If only this state of newness could last forever.
Our short guide on how to keep your garden office in good nick will take away your maintenance worries, fill the gaps in your knowledge and help give your building a long and healthy life.
- Not sure if a timber building will last?
- Don’t know what tools and equipment you need to maintain your building?
- Don’t want the hassle of regular maintenance?
Read on to find out how you can get the best out of your garden room by doing a few simple things to take care of it.
1. Get yourself in a maintenance mindset
In a recent blog, we asked: how long will your garden office last? The answer is simple: look after it, and it could last you more than 25 years. Quality garden buildings from a reputable manufacturer are made to last.
- If your building is built with the correct grade and thickness of timber…
- If the timber is treated appropriately…
- If there’s the right amount of insulation…
- If your building is carefully assembled…
…then you should get many years enjoyment from it!
But timber is a natural material, and your building is exposed to the elements 24/7, 365 days a year. So its chances of surviving and thriving aren’t just down to the quality of the timber – you’ll need to play your part too!
You need to get into a maintenance mindset. Get ready to roll up your sleeves and put in a few hours of regular bodywork. And learn to love it. That way you’ll dramatically improve your garden building’s lifespan. And you’ll enjoy yourself along the way.
2. Start with a thorough first treatment
Most of our buildings come factory-painted: we treat the timber against insect and fungal decay, then apply two or three coats of your selected paint colour.
Garden Affairs Mini Office One
You may choose to finish the building yourself. If so, be sure to use one of these applications in the first three months so you don’t lose your manufacturer’s guarantee:
- A good anti-rot wood preserver to repel water and allow the natural timber to breathe. Try Sadolin quick-drying wood preserver. Allow the preserver to dry for 24 hours before the next finish is applied. Apply two coats of anti-rot wood preserver for best results.
- Now your building is ready for a paint or stain finish. Apply with gloss rollers and synthetic brushes to give the best finish. Our recommended brands for paint and stains include:
If you’ve chosen a timber floor, think about a hard-wearing finish like
3. Keep on showing your timber some love.
Keep a careful eye on your garden office to see how the timber’s faring. After three years, you may need to apply another maintenance coat. It depends how exposed to the elements the building is.
It’s best to use the same brand and colour of paint/stain you used for the first coat. Usually, a single coat over the whole building will do.
Don’t skimp on regularly recoating the outside of your garden office. Every three to five years should do it. It’s the key to a long life.
4. Perform annual checks
Sedum roofs - an alternative flat roof option
It’s not just the finish of the timber you need to check regularly:
- Expansion and contraction. All timber moves. You’ll almost certainly notice swelling and shrinking from season to season, because of changes in atmospheric temperature and humidity. It’s natural for wood to do this, regardless of how well you look after it. But you should monitor it when you’re checking the building.
- Door & window adjustment. Expansion and contraction of the building means you may need to adjust your doors and windows from time to time. This simple process involves tightening or loosening the hinges to ensure the fixtures are securely in place within the building apertures. Check out our handy adjustment video.
- Sedum Roof health. If you’ve chosen a sedum roof, you’ll need to check the health of the plant during a heatwave, or very hot month, when your living roof may require some extra water.
- Guttering & downpipe. Ensure there are no blockages in the guttering or downpipes to stop water pooling on the roof.
- Condensation. If you often find condensation inside your timber room, it’s a sure sign that there isn’t clear ventilation. Open the windows to stop this happening further, and to prevent the build-up of mould.
5. Go hassle-free with a low maintenance building material
If you don’t want the effort of regular maintenance, look around for a building made from a wood substitute. There are plenty of low- or no-maintenance materials available, which are also usually rot-free.
Our low-maintenance Proline garden rooms are built with Tricoya cladding, an innovative wood composite, which is incredibly stable. It deals effortlessly with the elements and variations in moisture. The material is resistant to fungal attack, so it won’t rot, and it doesn’t warp.