A garden storage bench is both a practical, yet stylish addition to any garden. It can be so difficult trying to create enough storage space in your garden, especially if you need somewhere dry and clean that is separate from all the usual gardening tools. We found that a garden storage bench is a perfect solution for this, offering somewhere to sit in your garden but also perfect storage for children’s toys, garden cushions, outdoor shoes, or even sometimes used to store tools!
Best Pick Storage Bench
- Ideal outdoor storage bench for garden tools and equipment, furniture cushions, garden games and accessories
- Decorative wood paneled style with 265 L capacity keeping all ventilated and dry
- Comfortably seats two adults and has lockable option for added security
- Made of durable, weather-resistant and maintenance fade-free plastic
- Ideal outdoor storage solution for garden tools and equipment, BBQ and accessories and x2 120L wheelie bins
The fact that garden storage benches are so practical and versatile for almost any garden, means that they have become incredibly popular in recent years! This does mean, however, that there are now hundreds to choose from on the market, and it can be difficult to know which one is going to be best for your garden. Our article aims to help make this decision-making process a little bit easier!
Only Got 5 Minutes?
If your garden is in a mess and you need extra storage (and fast!) or maybe you need a practical seating solution for a space in your garden before a social gathering – either way, this part of the article is where you need to be! We have detailed the main points that you should consider before making your purchase.
There are two main styles of garden storage bench – traditional bench shapes or ones that look more like long boxes. The bench design will offer more of an actual secure seat for when you are wanting to use it for this function, so is more suitable if you have children that are going to want to get comfy on your bench or if it is going to be in the middle of the garden and you need that back support from the back of the bench. However the box designs (in our opinion) offer a more modern, sleek design, but still with the strength to be able to sit on the lid of the box and add cushions for some extra comfort if you are entertaining – although admittedly they won’t be as comfortable to sit on as the traditional storage benches.
You then need to consider the actual style of the garden storage bench that you choose. Some will be more modern and simple in design, whereas others will have more of a pattern and detail.
The size of garden storage benches are quite varied so this really depends on the space that you have, the amount of storage that you need, and what you are planning on using your bench for the most. If you have a lot of tools that you are wanting to store then you will probably need to opt for a bigger bench (some of the larger ones are around 180cm x 80cm x 90cm). However, if you are in a smaller garden, without much room to spare, then it may be worth looking for one of the smaller, two-seater benches that are under 130cm in length.
The weight of your garden storage bench shouldn’t really matter too much – as it is likely that once it is in place you won’t be moving it any time soon! However, it will have an impact on how easy it is to get into position in the first place! Most garden storage benches aren’t too heavy (due to them being hollow inside) and you will find those plastic models are lighter than wooden models. While this does mean that they will be easier to move around if the bench is freestanding and is in a less sheltered place of the garden, then you may want to opt for a heavier model, so there is less risk of it being blown over in the wind!
The models that we looked at ranged from between 10kg to 20kg.
The capacity of your garden storage bench is one of the most important features that you need to consider. It is important to think not just about what you are going to be using your garden storage bench for now, but what else you might need it for in the future so that you don’t end up having to go out and just purchase more storage at a later date!
The capacity will be measured in litres (which we appreciate can make it a little difficult when trying to judge this against the number of tools, toys, shoes or other garden items you have that need storing). They range from around 240 litres to 600 litres worth of storage.
We would recommend, if you are struggling to judge the size and the amount of storage, measuring out the garden storage bench in your garden where you are hoping to position it. This will not only help you judge if it is going to look right in the garden and not take up too much space. But also will help you to work out if it is going to have a big enough storage capacity!
Most garden storage benches will come in neutral, outdoor colours so that they will fit in with almost any garden. They can often be found in shades of brown and cream or greys and blacks, whereas wooden models will usually just be varnished. It’s important to remember that a wooden storage bench can very easily be painted (if you are looking for a piece of furniture that will stand out more), but this will be harder to achieve with plastic garden storage benches.
There are two main materials that you will find used for garden storage benches – plastic resin and wood. Plastic models will be a lot less maintenance than wooden models, as they will not be as affected by the weather. However, you will find that they could start to discolour if they are in direct sunlight. More expensive, plastic garden storage benches will be treated so that they are protected from the sun to stop them fading. In general, you will find these models to be cheaper and usually lighter.
Wooden garden storage benches have a much more traditional look that blends in better with gardens and other garden furniture. Plus they will be very sturdy and hard-wearing (providing you are willing to complete the necessary maintenance, such as staining and varnishing). Look for sustainable wood that has been treated and will be able to last for a number of years if you are wanting good value for money when making your purchase!
They are rare, but you will occasionally find wicker storage chairs now, that have seats that lift up to provide storage underneath. These tend to be more expensive but have the benefit of matching a lot of garden furniture that homeowners already have in place, and they also tend to be comfier.
We would recommend having cushions for your garden storage bench if you are wanting it to be more comfortable and to be regularly used as a seat – instead of just a fancy storage box! Some garden storage benches will come with cushions already, whereas others will need you to go out and purchase these (so make sure to consider this when you are looking at the price of the benches).
Always make sure to look for cushions that are waterproof and are going to be hard-wearing. Also, consider the style of the cushions that you want, some will have long flat cushions that “sit” in a groove on the seat of the bench, whereas others will have loose cushions that can be rearranged.
TOP TIP: If you garden storage bench does not come with cushions then make sure to look over the design to check that a flat cushion is going to fit comfortably on the bench and be secure in place! There is nothing more frustrating than a cushion that you are having to move back into place constantly!
Garden storage benches vary quite massively in price, depending on size, quality and the material that you choose! We would always recommend paying slightly more for a model of good quality that will then need less maintenance and last so much longer!
For a decent quality garden storage bench, you are going to be looking between £100 and £200, but there will always be models on the market that are more expensive and cheaper depending on exactly what you are looking for!
Best Budget Storage Bench
- Durable and strong bearing;
- Large storage area under the seat for cushions, toys or other garden items;
- Pre-oiled timber for weather resistance;
- Ideal For gardens, patio, terrace, home, picnic ETC;
- Overall Dimension: 114(L) x 58(D) x 88(H) cm;
There are some additional features that may be of interest to you when considering garden storage benches to purchase.
- If you are looking to put tools or anything of any value in your garden storage bench then it is definitely worth choosing a model that is lockable. This simple, extra feature could save you a lot of hassle from having your most important tools stolen! Few garden storage benches actually come with the lock itself so this is something that you would likely need to purchase, but they will come with the bolt required to add a lock!
- Building and installing – Some garden storage benches will require some assembly before you can use them. It is rare that this is any great task, but it does usually need two people and some tools so consider whether this is going to be possible for you to do. Also, consider securing your garden storage bench to the floor to stop any damage in adverse weather. Some garden storage benches will come with brackets allowing you to do this, but if not any standard brackets from DIY stores will work.
- Wheels and handles – Admittedly this is a rare feature in garden storage benches but we did find a couple of models that have stylish wheels and handles, enabling them to be moved around the garden as and when to suit you and what function you are wanting to use it for. Although this does detract from the “bench” look slightly, they are still perfectly comfortable to sit on and are just more practical in terms of storage and manoeuvrability.
- Piston-assisted lids – This is a very simple design but that makes the process of taking things out of your bench a lot easier! The lid will be easier to lift and then stay open while you are looking for whatever you need, they can be simply pushed close again! Much easier than having to balance the lid open with your head while you root around for your garden tools!
How to Keep Your Storage Bench Looking Like New
If you are wanting your garden storage bench to last then there are some important steps that you can take to make sure that it is going to look sparkling and new for years to come.
- Make sure to wipe down your bench regularly to avoid a build-up of dirt and moss that could stain your bench.
- Although storage benches are waterproof we would recommend putting it somewhere with shelter or covering it in winter to protect it from the worst of the winter weather.
- Consider placing your garden storage bench on hard standing so that it cannot be affected by damp ground underneath.
- Choose durable, strong materials that will be long-lasting.
- Think about the position of your furniture – if it is in direct sunlight for most of the day then it is likely to become discoloured over time.
Best of the Rest
- Keter Storage Bench.
- The fully weather-resistant Garden Bench is ideal for use outdoors, provides space to sit for two adults.
- Also this item has storage space for 265L worth of patio accessories, lounge cushions or anything else that needs to be kept dry and ventilated.
- This bench is also lockable (lock not included).
- Dimensions: Length 140cm Depth 60cm Height 84cm
- Large resin storage box / bench in a dark brown wood grain effect finish.
- Strong enough to also be used as garden seating. Huge 570 litre capacity which is fully waterproof.
- The lid has piston hinges for ease of use and the bench is fully lockable (padlock not supplied).
- Also kinder to the environment as 100% recyclable materials are used.
- Dimensions: Width 152cm, Height 62cm, Depth 63cm, Capacity 570 Litres.
Frequently Asked Questions
This really comes down to personal preference and what will look best in your garden. A plastic garden storage bench will need a lot less maintenance but a wooden garden storage bench will have a more natural and traditional look.
Most garden storage benches will come with warranties of 12 months (or sometimes 2 years). However, a number of makes and models have been criticised for their warranties not being comprehensive enough so make sure to check the details of these before purchasing.