How to Move a Pole Barn
Pole barns are inexpensive to construct and in some cases, it may be more cost-effective to build a new than attempt to relocate an existing one on a new site. If the pole barn is in good shape, however, moving it is a much faster process. Careful planning is critical to the task because if the barn is damaged during the move, expenses will multiply and you may have to build a new structure after you've already spent money renting equipment and invested time to move the building.
Assemble a skid beside the pole barn. The skid should be slightly larger than the pole barn dimensions. The skid can be made from spare lumber (old bridge timbers work well), or you can purchase strong plastic locking skid sections. Join them together to create a skid of the correct size.
Dig post holes five feet down for the corner posts on the new barn site. Install 4-by-4-foot posts or perma-columns vertically in the holes and fill the holes with concrete. The tops of the new corner posts should be even with the ground so that the corner posts on the existing structure can be sistered to the new posts without creating a gap between the floor and the walls.
Shear the barn corner posts at ground level with the metal saw.
Slide the barn onto the skid using the backhoe.
Attach a tow chain to the skid and tractor.
Drag the barn slowly from the old site to the new location. Position the skid beside the foundation and push the barn onto the site with the backhoe. Line up the old corner posts on the new posts.
Embed the old corner posts into the new ones by bolting the posts together with all-thread and washers.
- Brace the barn with trusses before moving to provide additional support.
- Practice using the backhoe controls several times before moving the barn.
- Check local regulations to see if permits are needed for relocating the barn, and use the tractor and backhoe during the appropriate time in accordance with noise ordinances.
- Always observe safety rules when using dangerous equpiment.
Adelaide Tresor has been a technical writer and book editor since 2006. Her work has been published by Thomson Reuters and Greenhaven Press, including several "At Issue" titles. Tresor holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and is also a certified teacher with experience in English, mathematics, chemistry, and environmental science. She currently teaches AP Physics.
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