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How Big Should a Motorcycle Storage Shed Be?

You might not need a storage shed if you have a small yard. After all, you can hang a push mower from hooks in your garage. There’s that odd corner that’s perfect for standing up your rake and shovel, and you’ve got shelves for the smaller stuff.

But you’ve got a motorcycle. You don’t want anything to happen to it, especially theft. Let’s face it, the size makes it take up a little too much space in the garage, and you cringe every time your kids run through for fear one will knock it down.

Or maybe you have been looking at bikes for a long time. You’ve finally saved up enough pennies to make at least a hefty down payment. Once you get that baby home, you really want to take care of it, and woe to the person who puts the first scratch on it. How do you protect it?

If you have a carport rather than a garage, that really isn’t secure. Leaving it outside, even with a lock and chain to secure it won’t really keep it away from humidity and the damage that causes.

Shed Plans

What you need is a storage shed or at least some kind of protection for that prized possession. Someplace to keep it nice and dry and safe. Let’s face it, the fewer people who see it when your garage door is open, the better. Thieves won’t drool over something they never see. But what kind of storage can you get for it? What size should it be?

A motorcycle storage shed should be at least 5′ x 10′ in size to allow room to park it and room to get on and off. If your wanting to store other things as well a 10′ x 12′ will be enough room.

Types of Outdoor Motorcycle Storage Shed Options

Portable covers: These covers go over the motorcycle and usually can be gathered around the base. They can cost anywhere from $20 to over $100.

  • Pros: They are lightweight and easy to remove and fold away when you’re going to ride. They are easy to use and do a good job of protecting your bike from the rain. Some are made to be packed into their own carry bag for taking on long road trips. They are good for people living in a rental property.
  • Cons: They don’t provide any protection from theft. They also don’t protect your bike from any moisture seeping up from the ground or humidity in the air.

Storage tents: These are usually made with a framework made just for motorcycles, just like a tent. They are more costly than covers, running anywhere from $200 to over $700.

  • Pros: They are fairly lightweight and easy to assemble and take down. In fact, many riders on a long trip will take them along to protect their bikes while camping. Since they are made just for motorcycles, they are shaped to protect the bike. Many come with a floor to protect the bike from ground moisture.
  • Cons: These tents are bulkier than a plain cover, even though many are made to be packed and taken along for the ride. Care must be taken to make sure yours has sturdy poles that can stand up to being put up and taken down many times without wearing out, and that can also withstand wind. They also don’t provide security from theft. If you live in an apartment building, you may not be allowed to have one, as it will be larger than a cover.

Motorcycle shed: A shed can be one made just for motorcycles, or a small, regular storage shed. There is even one that features a large, lift-up section that allows you to drive your bike right in.

This type costs around $4,000. Of course, there are many other types of small sheds that won’t cost that much but will protect your bike. There are even narrow sheds that fit alongside your house. Although they are meant for people who need a shed but are on a budget, they will fit a bike just fine.

  • Pros: Sheds provide everything you need, including protection from all weather. They are also able to be locked, providing security. When you’re ready to ride, you just open the shed, hop on and go.
  • Cons: Cost is one big concern, especially if you don’t really need a shed for other purposes. However, you may find it very easy to unclutter your carport or garage a bit once you have a shed for your bike.

Another consideration is whether your area will allow you to have a shed. You’ll have to follow the local building and zoning codes, which may include the type of foundation required for the shed and whether it needs to be tied down. You may even need a building permit. If you live in an HOA, you’ll have to check with them as well.

Ryans Shed Plans

What Size Motorcycle Storage Shed Do I Need?

Sources differ on this matter. Some state that a 5 x 10 or 6 x 6-foot shed is enough, while others urge up to a 10 x 12. Much depends on whether you plan to store other things besides your motorcycle in the shed, such as a riding lawnmower or ATV. Of course, the size of your bike plays into this decision.

Basically, you want a shed large enough to fit your bike with plenty of room to walk around it comfortably. Remember that you may want to store other things in the future. Shelving for any extra parts will take up some space. Be generous in your estimate. Chances are that shed will see more things come in, not fewer, in the future. Check out my article How to Choose the Best Bike Storage Shed for ideas on storing bikes.

Building a Motorcycle Storage Shed

You may be handy with tools and have decided that you can build your own shed for your bike. You can build just what you want and not pay for extra space or features you don’t need. There are some things to consider first.

  • Pros: You may be able to save some money building your own shed, especially if you know somebody who’s tearing down an old building and you can score some reclaimed lumber. You’ll have a shed just the size and shape you want, and you’ll know how it’s built. You may well be able to build a sturdier structure than you’d have in a pre-built model.
  • Cons: Building anything on your property entails a trip to the local building code office to see if you need a permit and what restrictions there may be as far as building and placement. You may have to put in a more costly foundation than you had planned or invest in a tie-down system. If you live in an HOA, you may be forced to place the shed out of sight behind your house instead of conveniently beside the driveway.

What to Consider When Building a Motorcycle Shed

You need to find out what building and zoning restrictions there are and whether you will need a permit. You may be required to provide a foundation, even for a small resin shed. Lighter weight or smaller sheds may require some sort of system to tie them down to keep them from blowing apart or away.

You may need a building code inspector to come to see your prospective location. You also need to consider whether you may want to store other things in the shed during the coming years and allow for extra space. Building a shed is a rather large undertaking, whether it’s for one bike or for several vehicles and yard equipment.

What is the Best Material for a Motorcycle Storage Shed?

Many people choose plastic or resin sheds for motorcycle storage. They are light enough to be moved, if necessary, yet are made to be sturdy. They also tend to come in narrower sizes than most pre-built sheds, so you can find one perfect to store your bike. They don’t require much if any, maintenance.

Most come with places molded into the doors to allow for a lock. Many come with floors, which will keep ground moisture out, and they are attractive enough that even a picky HOA will probably be satisfied. They don’t require much skill to assemble, either.

Wooden sheds are often the next best choice. They are cheaper than a metal shed, but they are hard to break into. They offer more security than a resin shed. If you live in a neighborhood that is less than secure, a wooden shed may be your best choice. A determined thief can break into a resin shed if he wants to risk taking the time.

How to Pick a Motorcycle Storage Shed if You’re on a Budget

Sheds come in a variety of shapes and sizes. You may be surprised at the number of narrower shapes that are available. There are some as small as a 4 x 6 resin model that has many good reviews from bike owners. If you’re sure that you won’t need any extra room, it’s worth investigating this type of shed.

Buy a Shed or Build

They are impervious to termites and corrosion. The smaller shapes also may put you out of the range of needing a permit for the shed, although this varies with the area code.

Of course, a lot depends on the weather in your area. If you live in an area subject to thunderstorms and/or high winds, you may want a sturdier wood or metal model. At the very least, a resin shed should be tied down.

What’s the Best Motorcycle Storage Option for a Harley?

You definitely want to keep your prized Harley out of sight and out of the range of thieves. While Harley-Davidson itself offers several models of bike covers and security locks, a sturdy shed is still the best option.

You want to make sure that the shed you pick has enough room not just for the bike, but for you to walk around it without bumping it. In addition, unless you have a garage, you may want something large enough to store extra parts and tools to keep at the ready.

A shed will not only keep the weather off your bike but keep moisture from it as well. Even moisture in the air or evaporating from the ground can affect your bike’s metal parts. Weather can also affect any plastic parts and prematurely rot the tires. You want something you can lock firmly. Let’s face it, a motorcycle is much easier to steal than a car, and a Harley is like candy to some thieves. Keeping it secure and out of sight is important.

One available resin model recommended by a biker site is 8 x 10 and features built-in shelving. It includes a floor, air vents, and a shatter-proof window. The door is high enough to enable you to ride in and out, and it’s lockable.

Another, less expensive model is 8 x 6, also featuring vents and shelving. It has high double doors to enable you to get in and out easily, and is, of course, lockable.

You do need to be aware that while a shed is definitely the best, most secure option for keeping your prized Harley safe and dry, you may need to plan for a foundation in the budget. Many localities require some sort of foundation for the placement of any type of shed.

Zoning restrictions may also apply, even if your shed is too small to need a building permit. These consist of keeping the shed a certain distance from the property line, other buildings, and utility lines. Many localities also require a tie-down system for resin sheds or sheds under a certain size.


A motorcycle itself is quite a big investment. These days, many models cost almost as much as a car. You want to keep it protected from the elements and from thieves. If you’ve invested what it takes to get your bike, you also want to invest in a way to keep it safe and dry. Just as owning a car does, owning a motorcycle means added responsibility.

If you do what it takes to keep your bike in good shape and protected, you’ll not only add years of riding pleasure to your life but will also preserve the bike’s trade-in value if you should decide to move up in later years. Take care of your baby.