The garage which was originally used as a home for vehicles tends to become a catch-all for family junk. Reclaim your garage before winter hits, and give your car back its cozy home! Believe me, you’ll appreciate it when the car is warmer on those morning commutes. Here are 4 garage organization tips to show you how to organize the garage so that you can truly enjoy the space instead feeling crowded and cluttered when you look at it.
How To Organize The Garage
Empty Your Garage and Sort
Yes, you read that correctly–take everything out of your garage. Organizing the garage is a big project, so make sure you’ll have the determination to follow it through to the end, or recruit some dependable friends to help you. Choose a dry weekend so that you can spread your belongings onto the driveway. Make four different piles: to throw away, to donate, to keep in the garage, and to store elsewhere. This is the time to be ruthless—if you haven’t used it in the past two years, get rid of it. If you already have four of something, you probably don’t need the fifth (or the four, for that matter).
Once you have sorted your things into piles, promptly take action with them according to their label starting with the rash and donations first. Then move on to storing elsewhere and the remaining garage items. For the items that you will be keeping in the garage, sort them again into uses and frequency of use. For example, you’ll want to put all of your gardening tools and supplies together and all of your power tools together. The Christmas decorations will also be stored together, but can be stored more remotely since they are used less often.
Clean Your Garage Up
Let’s face it—the garage is gross. Take the opportunity to deep clean your garage while it is empty. Sweep the floor and bring out the leaf blower to get all of the dirt and leaves out of the corners. If your floor is stained from car drips, try taking some oven cleaner and scrub the stains out. Make sure you use gloves and a mask for protection! If the floor is beyond a good scrub, you might want to consider applying an epoxy over the concrete floor to freshen it up and prevent future stains. And while you’ve got the paint brush out, give the walls a fresh coat of paint too. Go outside the white box and try out a fresh new color to brighten up the space and make it a part of your home. You should also do a garage door safety check while you are at it.
Plan Your New Garage
Now that you are prepared to start moving things back into the garage, there is one key question you should ask yourself so that you can figure out how to organize the garage to best suit your needs: “What is the purpose of my garage?” Maybe it’s to store your car, but maybe it is also a place for a wood workshop or craft area. Whatever your desire, now is the time to plan it out. Make a detailed blueprint (you can use an app like Room Sketcher to help) of your garage so you can map out where you want to place certain elements. Also mark the area where your car will go and enough clearance for the doors. Figure out what kind of storage you want to include and if you want to include a workstation. At this point, you can start looking at containers and shelving units.
Get Off the Garage Floor
This is the most important garage organization tip of all— stay away from the floor! Stick (literally) to the walls and ceilings for storage space. Keep your floor usage to only the area required for vertical shelving units, storage cabinets for garage, and your car. Here are some ideas for wall and ceiling storage:
Garage wall track systems
Now you can buy wall panels that have whole or grooves to install hooks, baskets, holders…you name it. The best part about these systems is that you can adjust them as many time as you want, according to your storage needs. Just move a hook over, insert a new basket, or take a holder off. Simple as that. Learn more about garage wall track systems here.
Industrial hooks in the ceiling are perfect for hanging up bikes and other heavier equipment. You can also use smaller hooks for tools, cords, keys, or jackets and coats.
Rope and pulley systems
If you want easy access to something high up, try out a simple rope and pulley system! Hang your bike with one of these systems for easy maneuvering.
Similar to the track system but on a smaller scale, peg boards offer the perfect solution for hanging lots of tools and what nots. This is a great idea for behind a workbench—just add some pegs, and your tools will have the perfect home.
Overhead Garage Storage
Use those odd nooks and crannies to your advantage by installing platforms hanging from the ceiling. Attach the platform to studs in the wall, and use ceiling joists to secure. Just make sure it’s high enough to clear the garage door or any tall family members!
Use PVC pipe attached to the wall to store long-handled tools, like rakes or shovels.
Storage Cabinets for Garage
Storage cabinets for the garage are a great way to make clutter disappear into organized spaces that nobody has to look at! They can make a busy space, look totally clean and organized!
Don’t let the project overwhelm you— you can do it! Following these steps for how to organize the garage will give you an organized garage haven you can actually enjoy- and park your car in!