Bike sheds are basic structures designed to house bicycles and protect them from damage from the elements or from theft. The styles of bike sheds vary, and the materials used to construct the sheds can vary significantly as well depending on the location and application of the shed. Some large cities, for example, feature bike sheds that not only protect rental bikes from the elements, but also lock them in place to prevent theft until a renter has purchased a rental and unlocked the bike. At home, small wooden sheds can do the job, or for a more inexpensive and quicker solution, plastic sheds are available.
If a bike owner plans on storing only one or two bikes, small, plastic bike sheds work well. These units are lightweight and therefore easy to move around a yard, and they are resistant to weather damage from rain, snow, and direct sunlight. The bikes fit in the shed easily, and the shed can often be locked for added security. This is not the most secure option for bike sheds, however, and some plastic sheds tend to be somewhat flimsy. For a more secure and solid choice, a homeowner may consider building or purchasing wooden bike sheds.
Some wooden sheds can fit several bikes easily, and hooks can be drilled into the wall beams to hang bikes vertically, thereby freeing up even more room for more bikes. The size of the shed depends entirely on the user's needs, and some prefabricated sheds will work perfectly for the number of bikes a homeowner may be storing. Wooden sheds can be fitted with a lock system fairly easily, making it a secure choice for locking up expensive bicycles.
Some college campuses and other public areas feature bike sheds made from glass and aluminum frames. These are stylish, attractive, and secure, but they can cost more than other types of sheds. Such sheds often feature bike racks inside to allow users to stand the bikes up vertically, or to lock the bikes with personal cable or U-locks. Any sort of shed or covering can usually be fitted with some sort of bike rack to keep the bikes in order and securely locked.
An open air shed is a sturdy, inexpensive way to protect bikes from the elements. The bikes can simply be wheeled into the shed, or they can be hung from hooks to maximize space. Hanging the bikes allows for more bikes to be stored beneath those that are hanging.