How to Install Plumbing in Your Work Shed

Having running water in a workspace comes with multiple benefits. It might be simply for hand washing, to supply water for a potting shed or for a craft workshop.

Thus, you can enhance the functionality and value of your work shed by installing plumbing. 

If plumbing installation is done the right way, it’ll be a successful and relatively easy process. However, the difficulty level of the entire process will also depend on the role of plumbing and its installation location in the shed.

Here’re tips that will assist you in installing plumbing based on pipe placement and other factors.

Photo by Harry Grout on Unsplash

Zoning and Planning

Before going ahead with the installation process, check whether your local council has guidelines that should be followed when plumbing.

There are several issues related to plumbing in outdoor structures. One of the main things you need to know is that adding plumbing into your shed will make it an inhabitable space. Thus, there’re building regulations that the plumbing should meet.

One of the most common building codes you should know is how deep you’ll burry the supply line running from the main house to your outdoor workspace. There might be a certain depth you have to dig to reach and clear the underground frost line depending on your location.

Also, the kind of pipe you’ll use will have a huge impact on water pressure. In case you face compliance issues related to zoning laws, then hire an experienced plumbing contractor for professional assistance.


If you reside in a cold region, or annual temperatures in your area drop below the freezing point, then you should insulate exposed pipes properly. By burying pipes under the right depth, you’ll protect them from freezing. However, what will you do about the supply pipes within the shed? In this case, you need to insulate the exposed pipes to protect them from freezing and bursting.

If you insulate the shed properly, the interior plumbing will be more protected. Regardless, you still need to insulate the exposed supply pipes running from the ground into the work shed. You can cover them in thick pipe insulation foam. The foam comes in the form of tape for tight insulation. 

You should also install a shutoff valve at the point where the supply line exits the main house. Doing so will allow you to shut off the shed supply line and drain it during cold winter nights.


Running a supply line to your work shed will most likely demand some digging. The extent of digging will depend on the kind of plumbing line you’re installing, bet it a sewer line, water line, or both.

You can simplify the entire process by renting a trencher or ditch digger. Ditch diggers tend to be user-friendly. They’re also affordable to rent. Besides, they’ll reduce the time it’ll take to dig by half.

Before doing any digging, have the area inspected by a local inspector for any buried electrical conduits and pipes.

Thus, if you’re planning to add plumbing lines to your workspace or shed, use the aforementioned tips to avoid mistakes or unnecessary delays. Also, remember to consider insulation requirements, digging factors, and zoning laws when running pipes from one point to another. 

If you find the entire process challenging, hire a qualified contractor or professional plumber to do the work for you.

A rainy day alternative

An eco-friendly alternative to mains water could be to have water collection from the roof of your shed to a tank or storage but. Un-treated water is not suitable for drinking or personal use but is great for plants as it will contain nutrients from the rain. Used water or greywater can also be treated for watering plants too. And both rain and greywater can be used for cooling and cleaning solar panels to maximise their efficiency.

About the author

Joe Gillard is a DIY home and garden enthusiast. He is a Senior Mechanical Design Engineer by profession, and has a Bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Sydney. He loves to work and implement DIY home improvement ideas in his spare time. He lives in Sydney, Australia with his beautiful wife Kim, and daughter Molly.

7 thoughts on “How to Install Plumbing in Your Work Shed

  1. Richard WheatCroft says:

    Good article. Worth noting trace heaters for pipes if you cant fully insulate for cold, or want to use water when it is cold.
    Couple years ago, it suddenly dropped to -15C here I had forgotten to drain down, pipework was ok. But the tap had a icicle growing out the side! Ooops.

  2. Joseph says:

    Very nice article, thanks for sharing.

  3. Rouselle Sutton II says:

    I need to get a shed that will convert to bathroom with vanity with sink, toilet and shower, going to septic tank

  4. Jackie says:

    Hi I need a faucet for a garden shed, want one that looks like a kitchen faucet but does not have all the filters attached to it. It does not need it. Do you know of one?

  5. OffPOD Luxury Garden Rooms says:

    I’m happy to read your excellent piece, which is full of fascinating information and, of course, is really valuable; I look forward to following your next post.

    Adding a Luxury garden room to your house, whether for personal or corporate usage, is a fantastic investment for any homeowner. It’s a versatile room that may be used for a variety of functions and will increase the value of your home.

  6. Carolina Arey says:

    Thanks for sharing

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