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New concrete floor and hay storage?

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  • New concrete floor and hay storage?

    Hello, wise COTHers -

    We are in process of rebuilding a garage and will end up with more hay storage. We are pouring a floating slab cement floor this week, the reconstruction should be done a couple weeks after that. Plan on storing about 200 bales on wood pallets on this new floor. Is there a problem with that, assuming good ventilation in the building? Someone once told me that new cement can sour the bottom bales..... but will the pallets prevent that? Located in NH.
    TIA for the collective advice!!


  • #2
    we had no trouble and we have one acre plus of poured concrete barn floor

    moisture is drawn down by gravity and concrete resists moisture so you have to have an air gap (we use 8 inches) to allow the two parts of the equation some room apart

    Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
    I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.


    • Original Poster

      Thanks, Tamara!
      So... 8 inches space on the floor to the hay? That sounds like I should plan on double stacking the pallets we have.....what do you use for that? --nhhaflngr


      • #4
        I put a layer of sheet plastic on the pallets before I stacked my hay on it. It did OK for me. Air flow under it is the secret here. Sounds like you are on the right track.


        • #5
          Originally posted by nhhaflngr View Post
          Thanks, Tamara!
          So... 8 inches space on the floor to the hay? That sounds like I should plan on double stacking the pallets we have.....what do you use for that? --nhhaflngr
          double stacked pallets

          we found a great barn plan from CND that involved a raised wood slated floor on the entirety but our barn was far too big to do that

          Production Acres,Pro A Welsh Cobs
          I am one of the last 210,000 remaining full time farmers in America.We feed the others.


          • #6
            I had to put down plastic too, as a vapor barrier. Put the pallets on top. The bottom bales still got a little musty, but not as bad as before without the plastic. I think that a double layer of pallets over the plastic would be the ticket.


            • #7
              Concrete floored barn for me, too. I put down pallets, holey tarps on top (not by design, just the result of years of use), and then 5 tons of hay. Not one lost bale in 9 years. Of course, we aren't as humid as you might be, but air flow and protection from sun are the keys to effective hay storage.
              Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


              • #8
                The time it takes for concrete to "cure" can be up to several months...

                I would not put plastic or any vapor barrier on your concrete this year. It needs time to really cure and get all that excess moisture out, otherwise you're going to get brittle concrete that will start to crack in the next 2 years. The idea is to get all the moisture out, before the freezes start in the fall. Water expands and will create the hairline cracks. Multiply that over several years, and your husband is going to be cussing a blue streak in less than 5 years.

                I love Tamara's idea of double pallets for this season. We've used single pallets, but that was in a barn with stalls that open to runs on one side of the barn and 10x14 hay areas on the other side of the aisle (rough care board situation). We never had a problem with bad bales on the bottom on the pallets, but the barn was over 40 years old.

                Double pallets this season (with fans if it feels really humid sometimes this summer), and single from now on. You want your hay to be able to "breathe" all the time.

                Good luck!
                Steppin Not Dragon "Bella"
                Top Shelf "Charlie"
                Check out the Military + Horses fb page!


                • Original Poster

                  Thanks for your thoughts, all!

                  Now I need to find some more pallets.......


                  • #10
                    Can't you use some 4x4 pieces to support the pallets you do have? I would think that it would be a bit of an ankle breaker if you were trying to walk across a "floor" made of those- but if you take hay from one edge to the point that when you get to the bottom you can remove the pallet and the supports- I think you'd be fine.


                    • #11
                      We used double pallets for our new concrete floor and no problems with bottom bales. We got free pallets from our feed store. They loved us disposing of the pallets for them
                      Epona Farm
                      Irish Draughts and Irish Draught Sport horses

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