Garages provide a safe place to park vehicles at night, however, they are also an excellent storage place for lawn equipment, tools, and anything else that cannot fit in the house.
After some time, garages can become unsightly and disorganized, making it difficult to move around and find tools. Therefore, it is a good idea for homeowners to focus on how they can declutter and make their garage more organized.
Before starting to declutter and organize their garage, homeowners should take a little time to plan and prepare which involves:
- Setting aside at least 2 days in a row to complete the project, usually, weekends are the best
- Hiring someone or asking family and friends to help
- Categorizing all of the items; some typical categories include camping gear, decorating supplies, gardening equipment, furniture, items to be recycled, sports gear, and tools
- Group items according to their category, ideally a driveway can be used to pile or box up items easily
- Donate or throw away any unwanted items, sometimes a skip bin may be required to get rid of a large amount of waste conveniently and safely
- Draw the desired layout showing where things should be stored
There are many things to consider when organizing the things in your garage and figuring out where every item can go, fortunately, there are many useful organization ideas and solutions.
Organization Ideas Overhead Storage
The ceiling of a garage is a great place to store away things that are not used very frequently. Many garages have open wooden eaves where items can be stored, alternatively, other garage storage systems can be attached to the ceiling. Some of these systems use pulleys so people can easily lower down the storage rack rather than having to awkwardly go up a ladder to get something.
When installing overhead storage, homeowners must ensure that it doesn’t interfere with the garage door mechanism or create a hazard on which people can bang their heads.
There are several empty spaces in a garage suitable for additional overhead storage including over entry doors, the main garage door, and windows.
Typically, homeowners fail to maximize the wall space in their garage by only focusing on horizontal storage solutions such as shelves and workbenches. However, due to their large empty wall spaces, it is also possible to take advantage of vertical storage solutions to make a garage tidier and more organized.
Some examples of how people can get the most out of their garage wall space include:
- Pegboards; used to neatly store lightweight tools and other smaller items near or above a workbench
- Track systems; long metal tracks can be installed higher up with slidable hooks ideal for hanging gardening tools
- Tall fitted cabinets; metal cabinets are useful for securely locking up expensive equipment and power tools
- Panelized systems; whole walls are fitted with slotted plastic where storage solutions can be built and customized in modules by using lock-in cabinets, hooks, and shelves
Installing cabinets and storage systems requires some planning and preparation.
Measurements and markings should be carefully made before starting a project, in addition to collecting equipment and supplies including a power drill and screws.
As well as being a place to park a car and store certain items, garages also make for excellent home workshops. To set one up, getting a solid workbench with plenty of space to work on is the first step.
Workbenches should provide a strong and sturdy structure, and ideally should also be foldable. However, in larger garages, it is possible to install bulkier workbenches with built-in drawers and attached pegboards for hanging tools and supplies. To make any workbench portable, add a set of wheels with brakes to conveniently move around and secure in place when necessary.
One of the most affordable storage solutions for a garage is shelving which is also relatively simple to install. Compared to cabinets they allow you to easily and quickly look for and pick up items. However, they can also become messy and unsightly when too many things get stacked on them. Additionally, shelving does not provide any protection against theft, so power tools are best locked away in a metal cabinet if you are worried about burglaries.
For people aiming for a clean, modern, and organized look in their garage, fitting wall-mounted cabinets is often the way to go. They come in a range of shapes and sizes that are great for storing everything from gardening equipment to sports gear out of sight.
Installing wall-mounted cabinets also allows homeowners to securely lock up all their valuable items that thieves usually have their eyes on. Metal cabinets also prevent pests such as mice and rats from chewing through electrical cables or eating supplies like grass seed and bird feed.
In disorganized garages it can be frustrating trying to find something and even simply locating a screwdriver can take hours. To avoid this headache many people choose to label all their boxes, containers, and storage areas. The only things needed to create a labeling system are labels, masking tape, clear packing tape, permanent markers, and scissors. Alternatively, you can use electronic labeling systems which automatically print or stick labels onto boxes and containers.
The amount of visible floor space in a room has a big impact on how spacious it feels. Also storing items on garage floors can make it difficult to move around and clean, in addition to creating trip hazards. Therefore it is recommended to store a few items as possible on a garage floor to fully optimize the space.
Occasionally, when the lighting in a garage is neglected it can lead to homeowners spending less time organizing things. Garages with poor lighting can quickly become a mess as family members dump things anywhere instead of taking time to put them away nicely. Well set-up garages have lighting systems that provide a steady ambient light throughout the room in addition to task lighting for workbenches.
It is important to keep a garage clean and organized to get the best use from it. Disorganized garages can be a nightmare for homeowners resulting in frustration and delays to new projects. There are however several smart storage solutions to improve the organization and storage in a garage.