Mezzanine and Storage Options for Your Post Frame Building


As you enter a newly completed post frame building, whether it is a barn, workshop, storage facility, or other unique building, you will recognize the massive volume of unobstructed space. Consider storage options for your post frame building. Unlike other types of building, post frame structures utilize no load-bearing interior columns within that can obstruct movement. This aspect happens to be one of the differentiating elements of a post-frame building, one that allows large vehicles and equipment to maneuver easily.

You will also note there is ample space above as well. Space that often goes unused. However, some building owners will choose to use the area above as a second floor or a mezzanine for additional storage, office, workspace, or even as a mancave.

Storage Options for Your Post Frame Building

The second level of your post frame building will likely complement the general purpose of your building. As we know, space can fill up fast. And storage always seems to be at a premium. A barn or equestrian center will require extra storage space for seasonal tools and accessories, feed, tack, and other supplies. In contrast, workshops and mechanical repair structures demand extra space for tools, parts, tires, oil, and more.

Additionally, an office or comfortable climate-controlled room can be a practical asset in any post frame building.

Adding a Mezzanine

Building an upper-level mezzanine space can be an excellent choice. With this, you achieve the objective of adding floor space without having to use up the entire upper volume of the building. Taller equipment can still be stored on the side opposite the mezzanine.  The space below the new mezzanine floor can still be used for storing smaller, lower profile items.

Your mezzanine area can be customized to suit your needs and can be left open or kept enclosed to provide a climate-controlled room. Adding some windows to the outside or the inside, if you prefer it, can help add light and air. You can also add windows looking out from an enclosed room to be able to view your building’s interior from a higher vantage point.

Always Consult a Design Engineer First

When you are in the process of designing a new post frame building, it is recommended that you plan for an upper level. Even if you do not intend to finish it at the outset. As we frequently find, the need for additional space inevitably pops up. The support systems can be built to accommodate the extra weight while specially designed trusses can optimize the upstairs headroom.

If you are thinking of adding a second level to an existing post frame building, consult a qualified design engineer first. Therefore ensuring that the structure will support the additional burden. The weight of another level and its contents could create too much stress to the vertical support system and footers. Thus can make the overall structure unstable.

Also, to comply with local building codes, you may need to plan an additional point of egress. Always check your local building codes before proceeding.

Contact Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings

Adding a second floor, mezzanine or storage option to your post frame building or barn can be a great addition. Done right, you will soon wonder how you ever managed without it.

Serving Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan for over four decades, the experts at Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings will help you with your second-floor addition or any other post frame construction.  Pacemaker is a premium supplier, designer, and builder of versatile and long-lasting post frame structures. Ideally used for agricultural, commercial, civic, institutional, and equestrian buildings.

To learn more about adding an upper level to your post frame building, contact the experts at Pacemaker at 888.835.4448.


Energy Efficient Pole Barn Tips

Energy-Efficient-Pole-Barn-Tips--315Many are aware of the practical and versatile advantages of a modern pole barn structure. However, energy-saving superiority is equally significant. Consider these energy efficient pole barn tips during the construction of a pole barn structure.

The fundamental construction of post-frame buildings with their widely spaced vertical support columns, allow walls and ceilings of the structure to be more uniformly insulated. Beyond the superior insulation advantages, there are plenty of other ways to make sure your building is energy-efficient.

Energy Efficient Pole Barn Tips

Start with the Insulation

Since much of the energy loss in a pole barn is through the high ceilings and roof, pay particular attention to this area during the construction phase. You will gain significant energy efficiency by installing a reflective radiant barrier beneath the roof surface. This material is composed of tiny air pockets that help insulate between the aluminum of the outer roof and the vinyl coating of the barrier material.

Consider the Color and Reflectivity of the Roof Material

In warmer climates, a lighter color roof will reflect a higher percentage of the sun’s rays. This reflective roofing will save substantially on the energy necessary to keep the interior cool. In cooler climates, you may want to consider a darker color that will attract heat and warm the interior.

Low-E Glass Windows Keep Energy In

Low-E windows are designed to keep infrared light from coming into the building. As well as holding heating and cooling energy inside. The Low-E windows are coated with a transparent metallic oxide layer, which restricts the volume of energy that can pass in either direction.

Use Fluorescent Lighting

Fluorescent lighting uses far less energy than other types of lighting. If you need additional lighting specific areas, you should turn them on only when necessary. Today’s LED lights are somewhat more expensive to purchase, but are highly efficient and will last far longer than the older incandescent lighting.

Landscaping Tips

When possible, position the building in the shade if your lot and the building footprint will allow. Try to orient the building for maximum shade during midday and afternoon hours. In warmer seasons, the shade can help to reduce energy bills substantially.

For long-term benefit, consider planting several deciduous trees that will eventually provide more shade. Besides saving money, your building will look more permanent and more aesthetically pleasing.

Properly placed trees will also help to act as barricades to the Midwest’s severe winds. Evergreens and pine trees offer a substantial windbreak that will mitigate those icy gales that blow across the flatlands. Those forces can create wind chill factors that are well below the prevailing temperatures.

Use Energy Star® Appliances

Energy Star-rated appliances use less energy than standard appliances. The initial cost will soon be offset by the substantial savings in your monthly utility cost. Look closely at the projected pole energy usage data on all new appliances to determine what you will save. Think long term, not short term.

Consult an Energy Expert

During construction and even periodically after, consult an energy specialist to conduct a survey to identify any issues and provide feedback regarding your building efficiency. Audits will help you develop the discipline and awareness to be ever conscious of your energy usage.

Contact Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings

To learn more about the energy-saving and practical benefits of post-frame or pole barn buildings, contact the experts at Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings. Located in North Webster, Indiana and serving Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan Region. Pacemaker offers decades of experience in perfecting the materials and techniques used for modern, high-quality pole barn structures.

Visit the Pacemaker website to view all kinds of outstanding buildings. For more information, contact Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings at 574-834-4448.

How to Select the Right Doors for Your Post Frame Farm Shop

How-to-Select-the-Right-Doors-for-Your-Post-Frame-Farm-ShopIn many instances, the principal reason home, farm, municipal, and business owners choose post frame construction over other building types is because there are no load-bearing pillars and walls within. Vehicles and machinery can be easily maneuvered without obstruction while large objects may be placed, serviced, and stored easily. As a result, post frame structures often require larger doorways than conventional structures. What are the right doors for your post frame farm shop?

Post frame farm shops demand even broader access. Whether working on tractors or other farm equipment, woodworking, storing farm equipment, and more, having ease of access is critical.

Calculating the size and type of doors for your post frame farm shop will begin with how you plan to use the structure. Remember that sometimes your priorities for the building may change over time, so you may later wish you had installed larger doorways.

One notable advantage of post frame structures is that the doorways can be widened more easily than with “stick” frame or masonry structures. The vertical supports are spaced at least eight feet apart, so modifications become much easier to accomplish even after building.

Planning and Selecting doors for Your Post Frame Farm Shop

If your farm shop is intended to accommodate tractors and other large equipment such as harvesters, you will need to ensure that the access is wide and tall enough to allow for easy entry. The dimensions should be sufficiently sized to admit the largest vehicle you expect to store.

For example, a full-sized combine may require an entry that is well over 20’ wide and perhaps 16’ high. Knowing you will prefer to service and store these larger pieces of equipment away from the winter elements, you will need to design your shop accordingly.

Types of Doors

Determining the type of doors to install is a matter of style and functionality. The three most common types for an agricultural post frame structure are:

Overhead Doors

Much like the typical garage door, overhead doors open upward either manually or with an electric door opener. These doors can be up to 30’ in width and are perfect for large equipment and frequent access. These can be the most practical option for most purposes.

Sliding doors

Sliding doors are usually the least expensive of all options. These can consist of one or two pieces. The single slider will move right or left, as needed. Two-piece options will open at a center point, and the halves slide away from each other. These can be mounted on the outside. Alternatively, in cold climates, on the inside of the structure to prevent blockage from snow or ice.

Hydraulic Doors

Hydraulic doors are heavy-duty and can be extremely wide. Aircraft hangers frequently use this type of door. As well they are also popular choice for access by large farm machinery and equipment. Outfitted with hydraulic lifts to swing the door outward and up, these also create a rain-protected area for working outside.

Level the Approach

During the design phase, care should be taken to ensure that the area of approach is sufficient to accommodate large vehicles and equipment where appropriate. Also, terrain need to be smooth and slightly angled downward and away from entry. This practice allows water to flow away and minimize potential flooding risk.

Adding Man Doors

Strategically place a man door or two, so you will not have to raise or slide a massive door every time you enter or leave with smaller objects. Doing so also helps to preserve energy and keep warm or cool air inside the building.

Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings

Post-frame buildings are ideal for many applications. Whether for a farm shop, storage building, equestrian center, fire station, or even a school annex or personal residence, post frame buildings are versatile, practical, stylish, and affordable.

For information regarding post-frame applications, contact the experts at Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings. While on the Pacemaker website, you can view many of our remarkable projects and see how many ways modern post frame buildings can work.

For more information, phone the experts at Pacemaker Post Frame Buildings in North Webster, Indiana, at +1-574-834-4448.