Tag Archives: DIY

Builder or DIY? In ground or Brackets? and Remodel or Rebuild?

Today’s Pole Barn Guru discusses finding a builder or DIY, posts in the ground or use wet set brackets, and whether or not to remodel or to rebuild a new structure.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Thank you for this great website.
I have learned so much reviewing the blog articles.
I will definitely buy one of your kits (I have submitted an initial request today)
My only concern is finding a qualified builder to put it up.
Thank you again for sharing all your knowledge
Looking forward to working with you all :). TODD in MONERA

DEAR TODD: Thank you for your very kind words.

Keep in mind, all of our buildings are designed for the average person who can and will read English to successfully erect their own beautiful building. Most of our clients do build their own and frankly do beautiful work – better than what they can pay for in most instances. Your Hansen Pole Buildings’ Designer can assist you in finding one or more possible builders, should you not have the time or inclination to assemble yourself. You will want to properly vet them out and follow this guide: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2018/04/vetting-building-contractor/.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Posts in the ground versus above grade or on the slab – After inquiring about mortgages for a “Pole Barn” house I was informed that if I put the posts in the ground the interest rate would be higher (approx 2%) versus having the posts on top of the slab or above grade by using something like the Perma Columns with Sturdi-Wall Brackets or using the Sturdi-Wall Brackets (wet set or placed after the concrete is poured). My question is — If I pour a 24″ column say 4 foot deep(of course engineer designed) and Wet Set the Sturdi-Wall brackets into the concrete column – How do I install 2″ styrofoam insulation vertically 2 foot down the side of the slab? STEVE in WHEATFIELD

DEAR STEVE: It is unfortunate lenders just do not understand longevity of properly pressure preservative treated wood. Moving forward, most economical solution for above ground is poured piers with wet set brackets. This is a regularly used option we offer. You can install insulation boards on exterior of splash plank, from below base trim down. Your foam insulation does not have to be in direct contact with your slab on grade – you just need to create an adequate thermal break.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Just bought a property with an old pole barn and I want a workshop and storage and assume restoring the barn is my best bet, partially because I am not sure of what I would be getting into if I built a new barn dealing with the local planning people who seem not to be able to give straight answers. The existing building seems to have good structure and the poles seem to be similar to telephone poles. The siding is old metal that was nailed on. There are sliding doors that are in bad shape, one half gone, and they seem stuck. I would like to make a second floor inside the barn and assume I could do something like an interior deck. Also want to concrete the floor. Any suggestions? DOUG in LOUISVILLE

DEAR DOUG: Before making a decision, I would ask to meet face-to-face with your Planning Department Director and get some clear answers (and in writing). My guess is worst case will be you can replace your old pole barn with a comparably sized new post frame building.

In regards to what you have – rarely will an old pole barn be adequate in design to meet current Building Code standards. If you do decide (or have no other option) to restore the barn, you should invest in a Registered Professional Engineer to do a thorough inspection of what you have and provide any structural modifications needing to be done to insure you are not throwing good money after bad.

Having been involved in several remodels, unless work to be done is minor, you are normally best to dig a big hole and push your old barn into it.

 

 

DIY Savings, Moving an Existing Building, and the Ideal Building Size

Today the Pole Barn Guru discusses potential DIY savings, moving an existing building, and the ideal building size.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am out of the area of which I can order a premade kit and have it shipped to me. If I wanted to still build it myself and buy the parts local how much savings would you say I could expect to save by doing that and still subbing out most of the work? PRESTON in IDAHO FALLS

DEAR PRESTON: Hansen Pole Buildings delivers post frame building kits into your area of Southern Idaho frequently, so we could certainly meet your needs. Hiring your own engineer to design the building and purchasing materials locally on your own will probably add 15-20% to the cost of investing in a complete kit package which includes the engineered plans. Acting as your own General Contractor and subbing out most of the work should save you around 25% as opposed to hiring a general to do everything for you.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have a Morton pole barn 35 x 62 that I would like to relocate .The location is 91 xxxxxxxxx rd Hackettstown NJ If you google the location you will see the green Morton building. I would like it to go behind the small white pole barn which will be removed.

Thank you, WAYNE in HACKETTSTOWN

DEAR WAYNE: You might be able to contract with a house mover in your area to relocate your building. Here is a link to a previous article on this very subject: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2013/07/shop/.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Does it make more economic and structural sense to build a 40’ deep x 56’ wide or 32’ deep x 56’ wide pole barn to house tractors and farm equipment and why? BRENDA in FENELTON

DEAR BRENDA: For starters – always construct the largest building you can economically justify and which will fit on your property. In the almost 20,000 post frame building projects I have personally been involved with, I have yet to have a client contact me after they were using their building and tell me it was just too big.

Economics – As a general rule of thumb, with identical features the price per square foot will most generally decrease as the footprint gets larger. Buildings closer to square are normally more affordable than ones the same size which are long and narrow (this is the structural issue, as properly designed the diaphragm strength of the more square building is more effectively utilized.

Buildings which are even numbers for width and length, width and length divisible by three, and length a multiple of 12 feet are most normally the most cost effective for utilization of materials. Lumber comes in multiples of two feet long, steel roofing and siding is three feet wide, the 12 foot length multiple is generally the “sweet spot” for requiring the least number of columns, trusses and pieces to handle.

 

 

 

 

Considering a Pole Barn, Roof Loads, and Proper Ventilation

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Good morning.

I am considering building a pole barn on our land in northwest Georgia and wanted to know the following:

1) On your website, you list links for residential, agricultural, and commercial buildings.  What is the difference between a those three types of buildings?  Are they different because of design or do they each involve different construction materials?  Do the commercial buildings use a lower gauge (thicker) sheet of metal for siding than a residential building?

2) Do you have any product comparison documentation between your kits and the other pole barn kits on the market (DIY, Menards, etc.)?  Interested specifically in design, material, and construction comparisons.

3) Would your pole barn kits be able to accommodate a chimney/stove pipe if I wanted to use a wood burning stove for heat?

Thanks! CHRIS in RISING FAWN

About Hansen BuildingsDEAR CHRIS: The differences for residential, agricultural and commercial buildings shown on our website are for the convenience of those who are looking for a particular end use, it keeps from having to browse through a plethora of photos of buildings which may not be what one is looking for. The construction materials and methods used are going to be individually tailored to the ultimate end needs of each client, as well as the climactic conditions of a particular site.

Our goal is to custom design for you a building which best meets your wants, needs and budget. We are so confident in our ability to provide the best possible value for your post frame building investment, once this is done, we would happily shop this building for you with any other provider or providers you so desire. How easy is this?

(BTW – Menards might be a bit geographically challenging as their nearest location to you is in Owensboro, KY)

Actually any post frame building (not just a Hansen Pole Building) can accommodate a chimney/stove pipe with the use of a Dektite® (read more here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2012/09/dektite/).

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have a 30 year old pole barn that is 30’ x 40’ x 9’ tall. It has a metal roof, trusses are 4’ on center. Can I tear off the metal on the roof and put down OSB and shingles? JIM in LAWTON

DEAR JIM: Chances are excellent your existing roof system is not designed to support the weight of OSB and shingles, as most pole barn (post frame) trusses are designed for a dead load of only 3 to 5 psf (pounds per square foot) which includes the weight of the trusses themselves plus the roof purlins. Steel roofing weighs in at under one pound per square foot. 7/16″ OSB comes in at roughly 1.5 psf, 15# felt and shingles 2.5 psf making the weight combination more than four times greater than the steel.

The big question is – why? Even “lifetime” shingles will usually last only about 15 years and you know the steel roofing you have had made it twice as long. Steel is far more impervious to weather (especially hail) and readily sheds snow, unlike shingles. For my money, if I had to re-roof I would invest in steel roofing with a high quality paint system like Kynar. Read more about Kynar here: https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/2014/05/kynar/.

 

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I have a pole building with all metal sheeting. The interior walls are framed and insulated R13 batt. The ceiling is insulated with 1/2 foam a 3/4″ air gap then R19 on top. The underside of the roof is not insulated. I have eave ridge vent. Building is heated in winter. Can I exhaust fumes (paint,lawnmower,etc.) into the attic space and let it vent out the ridge or will I be causing a condensation problem? I will use a standard box fan to blow exhaust into the attic space. I’m also hoping to do this to help melt snow off the roof.
Thanks. RICH in LEHIGHTON

crash-test-dummy-symbolDEAR RICH: I’ve seriously struggled with your question for several weeks now. It lead me to spend hours researching the International Mechanical Code (I am proficient in the IRC and IBC, but not the IMC), looking for backup as to your scenario. In the end it all comes down to this – WHY would you want to dump toxic fumes and their waste into your attic? At some point this has got to be just plain unhealthy.

Whether you do or do not blow exhausts into your attic, your building has the strong potential for a condensation problem because there is no thermal break below the roof steel. You should look at having closed cell spray foam installed on the underside of the roof steel.

As to the heat from the exhaust helping to melt snow off the roof – do not count on it, by the time it gets into your attic, the heat generated will be minimal at best.

DIY Kits? Fiberglass Insulation, and Free Quotes

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: Are these DIY kits or do you guys do labor too? PATRICK in LOCKPORT

DEAR PATRICK: Hansen Pole Buildings provides complete custom designed and engineered post frame building kit packages which are aimed towards the average individual who can and will read instructions in English to successfully erect themselves.

In the event you are not so inclined, we can assist you in finding several builders in your area who have the interest in assembly of the building for you.

 

Insulating WallsDEAR POLE BARN GURU: Can I use fiberglass insulation in the walls of a pole barn? BOB in DUNBAR

DEAR BOB: Certainly you can use fiberglass wall insulation for post frame buildings. The question is, how?

To do so, you should have building wrap (think Tyvek) between the siding and any wall framing. If your building was not engineered in this fashion, closed cell spray foam insulation can be applied to the inside of the siding, then unfaced fiberglass insulation can be installed with a clear visqueen vapor barrier on the inside.

DEAR POLE BARN GURU: I am looking for a metal pole storage for our pool plumbing pipe. We are just starting to gather information and prices. We want a building to be 25′ deep x 75′ long x 12′ high. We want the doors on it to be sliding doors. CARMICHAEL in WOODSTOCK

About Hansen BuildingsDEAR CARMICHAEL: Thank you for your interest in a new Hansen Pole Building. In most cases, the quickest way to get the information you are looking for is to call (866)200-9657 and ask to speak to a Building Designer. You can get a relative price by visiting https://www.hansenpolebuildings.com/pole-barn-prices/ where you can further customize a building based upon some standard and cost effective dimensions.

In most cases, buildings with widths which are multiples of six and lengths which are multiples of 12 will result in the best value for your investment.

If either security or convenience are at question, you may wish to consider sectional steel overhead doors, rather than sliding doors.