Style and Design
A modern, clip together modular base system, the ProBASE is a lightweight yet heavy duty foundation suitable for most garden buildings. Assembly is quick and easy and each grid features no less than 49 load spreading feet together with a vented design to improve airflow beneath your building. The design has undergone rigorous strength testing - just take a look at this video produced by the manufacturer (opens in a new window) and it can be either filled with gravel to consolidate its undoubted load bearing qualities or left unfilled for smaller buildings. All in all an ideal solution, whatever the size of your corner summerhouse. And it can easily be cut to shape using just a hand saw making it ideal for the five, six and eight sided designs usually utilised in corner buildings.
Installation is a relatively straighforward exercise. The manufacturers have produced a useful installation video which you can view here (opens in a new window) and which clearly illustrates the assembly process and the tools you will need. You can download the printed instructions here (opens in a new window).
The Probase system is formed in high quality, black, recycled plastic, reinforcing its eco-friendly credentials. The material includes UV filters to help prevent it becoming brittle on exposure to sunlight and the grids clip easily together, secured by locking pins. The system is supplied with a suitably sized weedproof membrane.
Each grid measures a full 500 mm square by 40mm deep and weighs 1.25 kg. The grids are generally available in packages to suit the size you require for your building.
See the details of sellers and prices given above.
We think the ProBASE system looks like a good buy, especially if you're looking for a base for a larger summerhouse. Statistically at least it has a great load bearing capacity and the whole setup looks to be designed with stability in mind, from the 49 load bearing feet on each lock together grid to the UV resistant black plastic construction. The video evidence produced by the manufacturer (see above) is certainly impressive and suggests suitablility for even the largest garden building.
The installation process seems to be genuinely straightforward and in particular we like the locking system which should ensure there's no drift while installing your summerhouse on the base. The manufacturers suggest that you can leave the grids unfilled for smaller buildings but we'd suggest that unless your summerhouse is very small you fill the system with pea gravel. Not only is this aesthetically pleasing, it helps to improve drainage and is, we'd suggest, good practice. If the base extends out beyond the building - and we'd recommend an extra clearance of the order of 300mm all round - filling the modules with gravel will also reduce water splashback on to the timbers of the summerhouse - something that can otherwise be one of the principal causes of deterioration.
There looks to be good versatility with the ProBASE system. The modules can be cut easily with a hand saw and thus shaped to fit the outline of your corner building. And it's available in a wide range of packs to meet your requirements, with a weed suppressing membrane included.
The ProBASE can be a little more expensive than some modular base systems but we think it looks like a good buy nevertheless, particularly if you have a larger, heavier building where you need the load supported over a wider area. It compares very well with the competition in terms of performance, versatility and ease of installation and when you look at it next to a more conventional paving or concrete installation we think there's no comparison whatsoever - the ProBASE wins hands (or should that be feet) down. Again, we'd certainly recommend it before even a pressure treated wooden base where the timbers will eventually decay in constant contact with ground moisture. No such issues with the recycled plastic constituents of the ProBASE. And in using 100% recycled plastic in its manufacture, the system is eco-friendly too.
We do like this type of modular system for a corner summerhouse and we can't see any flaws or problems arising with the ProBASE. You also have the advantage of being able to see the full installation instructions either written or on video (links open in a new window) so you can purchase the system with your eyes wide open and in the knowledge that you won't experience any nasty surprises. Taking everything into account we've awarded the ProBASE the full five stars.