How to Create an Airconditioned Shed Cheaply & Efficiently

She shed with heating and cooling

If your she shed is more of a literal definition of the word, and not an indoor lady lair, then you know that whatever the temperature is outside, you feel it inside. In the summertime, when you want to spend lazy days in your she shed, you can’t because it’s so sweltering hot. And, when winter comes, you then need to wear five layers of clothes just to “enjoy” your solitude. So, there’s only one thing for it – you need some heating and cooling.

5 cool and hot ideas for creating an airconditioned shed

For those she-sheders who do not have the luxury of HVAC in their personal One reason why many women who live in polarized climate regions will are turn to a lady lair rather than a she shed.

Here are five awesome and easy to implement ideas for heating and cooling your she shed:

  1. Portable air conditioner.
  2. Space heater.
  3. Window air conditioner.
  4. Ductless mini-split system.
  5. Insulation.

Assuming that your she shed is in your backyard and you have no options for connecting your central heating or electrical cooling system to the shed, the above options for better climate control can be incredibly effective.

Keep reading for more information on the as well as product suggestions to get you started!

How to cool down a shed

It’s summer and the heat is intense. Your she shed feels like an oven but doesn’t have a HVAC, what can you do about?

Below are some cheap ways to cool your she shed regardless of how big or small it is.

A portable AC may be the solution to heating a shed in winter

To beat the summer heat, our first recommendation is a portable air conditioner.

A portable AC, which includes a handle or wheels for moving is a great idea for a she shed because it can be easily removed to free up space when it is not needed. A portable AC is perfect for putting in the main space area of your she shed. Though if you have a large she shed, being portable you can move the AC about to different areas or even take it with to a back-room, or home office, or bedroom when you need it.

Bigger portable ACs are usually more powerful, which means they offer you much greater cooling potential. One such example is the Black + Decker BPACT12WT for around $400. This Amazon’s Choice product can produce cool air at a rate of 12,000 British thermal units or BTUs. According to Black + Decker, it can cool spaces that are up to 150 square feet, which sounds about right for the average she shed. If you have a larger she shed and need a little more cooling power then for about an extra 30 bucks you can upgrade to the more powerful Airo Comfort Portable Air Conditioner.

What if a portable AC, like the Black + Decker or Airo Comfort, is simply too large for your tiny she shed? No problem! You can downsize and save a ton of money while you do it.

Brands Republic’s mini air cooler plugs in via USB connection to your computer and runs off the computer battery. You fill it with water and can then enjoy about eight subsequent hours of cooling.

Note that the colder the water you use, the better this little AC works. So, cool some water in the fridge first and you will get the most out of this powerful little AC.

One of the downsides of a portable air conditioner is that you need to have a place for the water to exit that builds up from all that condensation. To deal with this problem some AC units come with a drip tray. Others, like the Black + Decker, have a hose you put out your window to send the water to the yard which some she-sheders may consider unsightly.

A window AC unit works great if your shed has at least one window

Does your she shed have at least one window? Then a simple window mounted ac unit for shed use will work really well for you.

Does your she shed window open in the traditional way, such as raising it open or closing it shut? If so, then you have another cool (excuse the pun) cooling option at your disposal, a window air conditioner.

The biggest upside to using window cooling is that you don’t have to worry about your floor space being taken up by an AC unit. Where both the options I gave above require you to dedicate floor space to the AC, a window air conditioner leaves floor space alone which is a big plus for smaller she sheds and leaves more room for those she shed essentials.

You will also spend a lot less money on a standard window AC than you would for a portable AC of about the same size. For instance, this Frigidaire ac window unit can be picked up online for about 200 bucks and is cheap to run. It runs on 115 volts or 420 watts and can cool 150 square feet, the same as the Black + Decker portable AC.

An included remote control means you can set the temperature from across the room, which is nice if you tend to spend time at the other end of your she shed. Many features of the Frigidaire are programmable, from the temperature to when the unit turns on and off. The included power cord is three-pronged so you won’t need an extension cord.

Since it is Energy Star approved, this window unit should do less damage to your monthly energy bills if plugged directly into a household outlet.

The unit is quite quiet for an AC.

We have to mention the cons to using a window air conditioner, as there are several.

Firstly, installation of a window AC unit is a real pain! Because the aforementioned Frigidaire window air conditioner weighs 44 pounds (standard for that size), it is heavy. So just lifting it from the box can be a struggle not to mention hoisting it up and into your window. Installing a window AC will probably make you break a sweat unless you can talk someone else into doing it for you (always my first choice).

On top of that, some women feel that it is a bit gaudy to have an air conditioner protruding from your window, even if it’s only in a shed. But hey, sometimes freeing up space is more important than aesthetics. Plus you can always disguise it with a window box filled with flowers or hide it with potted porch flowers.

When you’re ready to heat things up

Summer’s gone and winter is coming, or is already here (I just couldn’t resist the Game of Thrones shoutout). So, that AC unit is redundant and you need to get things heated up fast. Where do you turn.

Below are some cheap ways to heat any she shed regardless of its size.

Space heater

By the time autumn comes, you’ll want to retire that portable AC until next year (another great reason for choosing portable). A few fluffy blankets might keep you warm until about October, but soon you’ll need a much more adequate, and warming, heating option. This is where a space heater is especially handy!

This Lasko 751320 ceramic tower, an Amazon’s Choice product, measures 7.25 inches by 7.4 inches by 23 inches. It’s tall and skinny so you can tuck it into a corner without the space heater taking up too much room and without compromising heat distribution.

Using convection heating, the Lasko ceramic tower heater can warm spaces up to 300 square feet so it should fit most she sheds perfectly. Its cord is six feet so you can plug it in anywhere in your she shed, and it even has a convenient carry handle.

You can select the temperature by adjusting the simple thermostat. Low heat generates at 900 watts and high heat at 1,500 watts. You can even oscillate the heat if you want to.

An auto on-off timer powers the heater down after a while, and it also features auto overheat knock-off for extra protection.

For the woman who’s even shorter on space in her she shed, try the Lasko CD09250, a ceramic adjustable tabletop heater that too is an Amazon’s Choice product. At a little over $30 per heater, you could even buy several!

This heater can warm spaces at 1,500 watts, so you get the same heating power as the Lasko heating tower but without the bulk.

You can adjust the quiet settings in three different ways or set the thermostat to your preferred temperature, selecting among the convenient 11 options. You can switch from one setting to another conveniently via a simple dial.

Lasko’s space heater also has a carrying handle and overheating protection so you can nap in peace without worrying about your she shed getting too toasty or burning out your heater.

When you want it both ways without the fuss

Sometimes it is simpler to have a device that can do two things rather than just one.

When you want an all-encompassing solution to your heating and cooling challenges, and Hvac is not an option, we have a simple and cheap solution for you.

Ductless mini-split system

You may have built your own shed from the ground up, and you’re very proud of the work you’ve put into it and don’t intent to replace it any time soon. So, if you plan on having the shed over the long haul, you’d probably like a more permanent solution than portable heating and cooling.

One such recommendation is a ductless mini-split system. A ductless what now, you’re asking?

A ductless mini-split system is ideal for both your heating and cooling needs.

Ductless mini-split systems include two components: the outdoor condenser or compressor and an indoor air-handling unit. Depending on how much heating or cooling you need, several air-handling units can be installed, but we think one would be fine for your she-shed.

A ductless mini-split system is especially convenient for she sheds since your space typically doesn’t have ductwork. That’s true whether you built a literal shed or you’re camping out in the basement or even up in the attic.

Here’s how it works. The indoor air-handling unit sends room temperature air to the condenser outside. If the air is hot, then refrigerant-containing coils within the system turn the liquid into gas. The gas passes through the condenser and becomes a liquid once more. The liquid reaches the air-handling unit and comes out as cold air.

Yet mini-split units can do more than work as an air conditioner. They provide heating as well. This versatility is why ductless mini-splits have grown hugely in popularity over the years.

The one downside to a ductless mini-split system is that the cost of the units themselves, in addition to the installation, is between $2,000 and $14,500. This can be expensive and is only really a good option if you spend a lot of time in your she shed.

An example of a typical she shed ductless mini-split system would require about 12,000 BTUs of heating and cooling. This equates to about $3,000. You also have to pay for regular maintenance of the outdoor unit to keep everything working well.

While you do spend more money upfront, ductless mini-split systems are renowned for their energy efficiency. You wouldn’t contribute much to your home’s energy bill with the mini-splits installed in your she-shed and would be helping keep emissions low thus helping lower your own environmental impact.

When you want a more permanent building solution

Sometimes it is a good idea to take steps to insulate your she shed from the extremes of both and cold and heat.

Below is the best low-cost, and fairly easy to implement, permanent solution to help keep the cold at bay and the heat at a comfortable level.

Insulating a shed for air conditioning

Our last recommendation is also a permanent solution, and that’s to get your she shed insulated. Ideally, you should have installed the insulation when you were first assembling the shed, but if you bought your shed prefab or someone else built it for you, they could have skipped this step.

The most inexpensive way to insulate your she shed is to use bubble wrap, but that would still require you to rip off the outermost layer of your shed. Well, unless you want to cover the whole she-shed in bubble wrap.

Here are your other options:

  • Spray foam: This polyurethane foam is intended for all sorts of spaces, including workshops and garages as well as she-sheds. You aim the spray gun where you want the insulation and out comes the foam. Installation is about as easy as it gets. You can pick up fairly cheap spray foam insulation kit online.
  • Blow-in cellulose: With layers of paper or wood, blow-in cellulose is another option for insulation. Its texture resembles that of down feathers and it can clump. Use it for enclosed areas only.
  • Reflective insulation: Also known as sisalation paper, reflective insulation uses foil paper with a reflective sheen. It may sound simple, but sisalation paper can make your she shed quieter while also safeguarding the space from dust, moisture, and temperature extremes.
  • Wool insulation: Your choices for wool insulation are mineral or fiberglass rolls and batts. You must use the right protective equipment when handling wool insulation, as it can be quite painful on unprotected skin and it’s not a great idea to expose your face to. First, add a membrane surface like Tyvek wrap to your she shed walls, then the wool. Finally, cover the entire thing with wood.

With insulation, the costs of building your she shed might climb as high as $24,000. Yes, that’s a lot of money, but insulation has long-lasting benefits and provides the type of comfort that would, over the long-term, cost you a lot more in electrical expenses from heating and cooling via appliances alone. Because insulation means you need to use less energy to heat and cool your she shed this helps lower your personal carbon footprint thus helping save the planet for future generations.

You’ll experience fewer temperature extremes either way, which can reduce your reliance on portable air conditioning and heating, making temperatures more comfortable overall. That will result in greater energy bill savings as well.

Insulation has another added perk, and that’s reducing outside noise. At current, we bet you hear every chirping bird, passing car, and whistling cricket from your she shed, right? Trying to relax with that kind of noise going on around you can be annoying to some women and defeats the purpose of a she shed. With insulation, these noises don’t disappear entirely, but they’re a lot harder to hear. You may want to add sound proofing while your at it though if background noise is particularly bothersome to you in your she shed.


There you have it, five awesomely effective she shed heating and cooling options that won’t cost an arm and a leg.

Whether you need only a temporary temperature control solution or something that will last you for the next several years, or decades, the ideas given above can help you get started! You don’t have to rely on Hvac or high-tech, expensive, choices in order to enjoy your she shed all year round.

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