When we bought our home one of the selling points (at the time) was that it already had an in-ground swimming pool. However, as I had never owned a home with a pool before I had no idea just how much effort goes into maintaining it or how many different tools and supplies are required to be kept on hand.
Recommend this product?
At first we would keep these items in the garage but since the pool is located in the back of the property and the garage in the front this necessitated quite a bit of extra effort in transporting the equipment back and forth. After a year or two of this I finally became fed up with the situation enough to go out and look for alternatives (ones that didn't involve my simply filling in the pool with dirt and calling it quits).
Ultimately we decided to go with the Suncast Vertical Garden shed, model GS4000 in order to provide us with a place to store the needed supplies next to the pool.
What is it?
The Suncast Vertical Shed is a plastic (resin) garden shed which when assembled measures 55"(w) x 37" (d) x 72 "(h) and provides roughly 60 cubic feet of interior storage. The shed comes unassembled in a box weighing about 140 pounds and requires roughly one hour to assemble. Due to the weight of the package I had a friend help me in transporting and assembling the shed. The assembly process was fairly straightforward and we encountered no real difficulty in following the instructions. Once assembled, the shed has an interior space of 49" (w) x 31" (d) by 67" (h) and has proven sufficient in size for storing all of our pool chemicals, hoses, brushes and other supplies. The shed has a double door system which can be secured by either the sliding bolt at the base of the outer door or by using a padlock with the clasps built into the doors.
How well has it worked for us?
Honestly, we have had no complaints at all with this shed. In the five years that we have owned it, the Suncast shed has managed to stand up to two hurricanes (Rita and Ike) and several tropical storms without incident. The resin material it is made from has proven resistant to both the south Texas sun as well as exposure to the chlorinated water carried into it from the pool equipment and so far shows no sign of cracking or becoming brittle.
What you should know before buying one.
~ The Suncast GS4000 is a fairly small shed designed primarily to store gardening tools and supplies. It is really too small to consider using for the storage of larger items such as a lawn mower, patio chairs, propane grill or the like. If you are looking for something to store items like these then you should consider looking into the Suncast GS8000 or GS9000 models as they are considerably larger and designed with items such as those in mind.
~ Due to the location I wanted to use this in, we assembled the shed on a patch of open ground near the swimming pool and not on the patio itself and so the ground needed to be as level as possible before installation. To do this we used a 5 foot long 2x4 with a level attached to the top in order to get an idea of where the ground needed to be built up or smoothed out. Using a shovel, five pound rubber mallet and a 12"x12"x1" piece of wood we manage to get the location prepared and reasonably level in about 15 minutes. There is also the option of using four 12" galvanized steel nails (purchased separately) to help secure the unit by nailing it to the ground at the four corners as spelled out in the assembly instructions. Since we were installing the shed on open ground we went ahead and performed this optional step as well. I would advise anyone planning on placing their shed in a similar location to also take the time to do the same as the more level the surface you assemble the shed upon the more stable it will be.
~ Be very careful to read the instructions completely and to lay out all of the various pieces prior to assembling the shed to insure that everything is assembled in the correct order. The different sections of the shed snap together and lock in place and once assembled it is difficult to pull them apart if you need to correct some mistake due to misplacement or having assembled them out of order.
~ While I mention above that our shed has survived several bouts of severe weather I should note that I generally keep two-three hundred pounds of pool supplies (buckets of chlorine, pool shock, etc.) inside of it on the floor of the shed which I am certain help to weigh it down and along with the nails we used to secure it to the ground provide additional stability. If you are planning to use the shed just for storing lightweight items such as rakes, shovels and the like then I would not be surprised at all if a strong wind was capable of blowing the shed over onto its side especially if the shed is not assembled on completely level ground.
~ While the doors of the GS4000 come with a built in latch for attaching a padlock since the latch is made of plastic I would by no means consider the shed to be secure from burglary with such an arrangement. As such I do not recommend that you use the shed to store expensive items.
Here in lies the warning and really the only complaint that I have regarding the Suncast shed. The warranty as written in the owner's manual reads:
Suncast Corporation warrants the original purchaser only that the enclosed product is free from material and workmanship defects under normal, household use at the time of purchase.
Basically this means that the product is only guaranteed up to the point of its assembly and that once you have the shed built any problems which occur after that, are not covered.
So essentially you are on your own if anything happens to it after the first day that you own it which is pretty poor coverage.
That having been said, the fact that our shed has stood up to sun, wind and weather for five years without a single problem does indicate that these products are fairly solid.
Overall I have to say that the GS4000 has performed exactly as described and has frankly managed to exceed my expectations as regards to its durability. For us it was the perfect solution to the problem of where to store the supplies needed to take care of our pool and has managed to reduce the inconvenience associated with my weekly pool care chores considerably.
If you need a relatively small space for storage and can live with the virtually non-existent warranty then you should consider the Suncast Garden shed.
You may also be interested in reading my review of the
Suncast GS8000 garden shed