Conquer Garage Clutter
The garage isn’t just a place to stow your vehicle. Whether you’re a woodworker or a gardener, it’s top tinkering territory and a blank slate for stashing tools, outdoor equipment, and household items you don’t need every day.
Still, if you don’t organize items properly, your garage can easily become a dumping ground. Don’t let your stuff crowd out your car or your creative inspiration. Use these tips to transform your garage/junk room into a functional hobby and storage area.
Choose shelves over cabinets: For cramped places like the garage, sturdy steel shelving units are the practical choice for your storage needs. “They don’t require any additional space for swinging doors and they give you a full view of the contents,” says J.B. Sassano, president of Mr. Handyman, a leading commercial and residential repair, maintenance, and improvement franchise.
Make use of negative space: Keep nuts, bolts, screws, and other small items in see-through glass jars. But instead of storing the jars on shelves, glue the jar lids underneath. Storing smaller items in attached jars keeps them within reach, while freeing up space on the top of the shelf for other items.
Load up on storage containers: Use stackable shelves, plastic baskets and bins. Be sure to label opaque bins, such as “light bulbs,” “bicycle pump,” or “extension cords” so everyone in your house can quickly grab what they need.
Get the Hang of It
Get objects off the floor: To get stuff out of your way, pegboards are a must. “Place one above your work bench to hold tools and create more space for projects,” Sassano says. “Place another in a more accessible area for storage of sports equipment and helmets.” If you’re thinking particleboard with holes, check out the Proslat Mini Bundle. This modern version of a pegboard uses interlocking wall panels and wall hooks to create clean and stylish vertical storage space.
Boost your bike: Rubber-coated hooks are the gold standard when it comes to bike storage. To ensure that the hooks are safely secured, make sure to pre-drill a starter hole before installation and secure them into ceiling beams for added support. If you’re short on ceiling space, consider a space-saving bike stand. Rubber hooks aren’t just for bikes, either According to Sassano, they can also be used to hang ladders, shovels, and brooms as well.
Aim high: Turn the rafters in the ceiling of your garage into storage scaffolding. Sassano suggests laying a piece of plywood across the exposed beams to create a make-shift shelving unit. Use this elevated space as alternate storage for your summer items, such as patio furniture cushions, or for decorations between the holiday seasons.
Overall, no matter what type of organization aids you use—whether they be stackable bins, shelving, or pegboards—group like items together so you will always know just where to look for something. Make sure to position items you reach for frequently, such as work boots and coats, in an area that’s easy to access, such as near the garage door.
Follow these organization tactics and you will keep your garage running smoothly.