how to dispose of old shed in garden

How to dispose of an old shed

23 August 2021

Looking for advice on shed disposal? When you’ve decided you no longer want your shed, you might be wondering how best to get rid of it and maybe even what to do with the paving slabs underneath.  Here is our guide, covering the following questions:

  1. What are my shed disposal options?
  2. Can I repair my old shed?
  3. Can I donate/sell my shed?
  4. Will a Man & Van dismantle and dispose of my shed?
  5. Can the council collect my old shed?
  6. Can I take a shed to the tip?
  7. What shall I do if my old shed contains asbestos?
  8. Can I burn my shed?


1. What are my shed disposal options?

The main options for shed disposal are resale, donation, council collection, hiring a waste contractor, using your local HWRC or, if the wood hasn't been painted/treated, using it for firewood.


2. Can I repair my old shed?

If you have a shed that hasn’t received much love recently and you’d rather keep it than dispose of it, there are a few ways you can give it a new lease of life.  The first step would be to repair any issues your shed might have such as a leaky roof, wood rot, treating rust or repairing the shed walls.

After fixing structural problems, you can then begin transforming the inside.  To revamp your shed you could consider painting the walls, adding some electricity or emptying the junk you might have been storing for years.


3. Can I donate/sell my old shed?

If your shed is in good condition, you can definitely donate or sell it.  In fact, you might be surprised to find out some people may even want to take it off your hands even if it’s seen better days.  Many people would be happy to take away your shed just to get at the paving slabs underneath.

If you want to go down the reuse and donation route, you could ask local allotment groups if they’d like it, or you could offer it for free on online sites such as Freegle or Freecycle.  Likewise, you could offer your shed for free on Facebook Marketplace, Nextdoor, eBay and Gumtree, but you could also sell it on those sites and make some extra cash.


sheds for sale and reuse on facebook marketplace

Sheds for sale on Facebook Marketplace


4. Will a Man & Van dismantle and dispose of my shed?

If you need your shed gone quickly, one of the fastest ways is to use a man and van contractor.  They have the best response times in comparison to council collection services.

Make sure you use a fully licensed man & van contractor though as you're responsible for where the waste ends up and cowboys in the waste industry are renowned for flytipping. If you use the LoveJunk marketplace, you can specify in the listing description that you would like it dismantled and you'll be matched with a collector who is happy to do the dismantling.

Want to know how much it should cost to get rid of your shed? Sheds are considered DIY waste - check out our price guide for DIY waste disposal with example man & van collections, or check out our rubbish removal prices gallery for real, example jobs.


5. Can the council collect my old shed?

You can use the council's bulky waste collection to collect your shed, but keep in mind it might be classed as DIY waste and is therefore sometimes charged differently.  You can check your local council’s website to find out if they accept sheds and how much it costs. 


6. Can I take a shed to the tip?

If you can dismantle and take the shed to the tip yourself, it’s a great option especially if you’re looking to save money.  Household Waste Recycling Centres are usually free to use, however as sheds are considered timber and often classed as DIY waste, it is sometimes charged depending on how much you have and if you use a van.  Please remember to check your local HWRC’s website before visiting, or contact them to find out if they charge.

If you live in London, we’ve created a guide to everything London HWRC’s.

smugglers way hwrc charges for shed disposal

Example: Smuggler's Way HWRC (Wandsworth) listing sheds as chargeable DIY waste


7. What should I do if my old shed contains asbestos?

Asbestos removal should be left to the professionals.  If your shed contains asbestos, your safest option is to hire an asbestos disposal contractor.  According to Checkatrade, the average asbestos shed removal costs £350.

You can however remove the asbestos yourself, but you need to be safe and at the very least wear gloves, safety goggles, disposable coveralls and a dust mask.  You’ll also need to double bag the waste.  Once you have the asbestos in bags, you can either use your local council’s asbestos service, take it to the tip (although not all tips accept asbestos) or hire an asbestos disposal contractor.


8. Can I burn my shed?

You can only use your shed as firewood if the wood hasn’t been painted or treated.  Treated wood releases harmful chemicals when burnt.  Painted wood also releases toxic fumes, particularly if the wood is old as it may have been painted with lead-based paint which is highly toxic (it’s now banned in the UK).



Thanks for reading. We hope you found our how to dispose of an old shed guide helpful! Got more rubbish to clear? Check out:


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