A Maintained Modular Horse Barn Equals a Healthy Horse

A Maintained Modular Horse Barn Equals a Healthy Horse

Chances are you paid good money for your modular horse barn so naturally you would want it to last for as long as possible and with some basic maintenance practices it will. We talk mostly here about barns but these same tips will hold true with any wooden storage building or shed.

First there are some seasonal tasks that should be done every spring and fall. For the spring these jobs would begin with a good sweep out and hosing. Do everything walls, floors, stalls, all the little cobwebs in the corners, windows and tack room.

While you are cleaning look for things like mold, that could indicate a water leak. Mold is not good for you or the health of your horse. Check the stalls for splintered wood and sharp objects that could harm your horse.  If you have a loft now is a good time to sweep it out and check the underside of the roof.

Moving outside walk around your barn or storage building look for lose boards, broken windows, sharp objects and hardware. Clear the ground around the barn of tall grass, brush or anything that is touching against the side of the barn or shed. Check the windows and doors and their hardware and replace anything broken.  Take a ladder and check any gutters and down spouts for lose fit or leaking.  While you are up there give the roof a good visual looking for loose or broken shingles.

While walking around look at the ground around the barn or shed.  Check for drainage issues or places that water can puddle. Nothing will ruin horse’s feet faster than standing continuously in water or on muddy ground.

Staining or painting the outside of your barn or shed protects the building from the elements and bugs. A good quality stain will protect the wood from harsh UV light which will weaken the wood siding and greatly reduces its lifespan. It will also help prevent damage to the wood caused by rapid changes in the moisture within the wood by shedding the rain.  Moisture in the siding can lead to, warping, splitting and of course rot.

What you use depends on what is already on it.  Should you use oil base, water base or latex? You can put water base over oil base but you can’t put oil over water base. Latex will go over water based but not over oil.  For health and environmental reasons most are moving toward the newer water based stains. For best results no matter which you choose it is a good idea to use a sprayer and to do two coats. The first will be absorbed by the siding and the second coat will seal the wood. If you use good quality products you can get away with re-staining every 3 years or so depending on climate.

With a little effort a few times a year will ensure that your barn or shed will last for a long time. And, more importantly it will make life safer and healthy for you and your horses.