Is your current garage gradually becoming a room of chaos? When was the last time you’ve cleaned it? I know – it’s a place for creating an impenetrable mess. And with tools, boxes and whatnot piled up, garage essentials are harder to find. Worse, parasites can thrive in its dark, dusty corners, while active kids can get into accidents. A little decluttering and some storage solutions are all you need to spruce up and organise your garage. Time to transform an eyesore into something more!
How to Organise a Garage
If you have not cleaned up your garage space for quite some time, then organising it may take a while. In this case, organise your garage in stages. Treat it like a set of mini-projects to achieve one goal. It helps if you create a schedule for it, too, for direction (and progress celebration!). Here are some ideas that you can add to your garage organising project.
Conquer the clutter
There may be a lot of ways to organise your garage, but it should always start with cleaning up the place. Sort the items and throw out what you don’t need. Check if the equipment or tools you have are still in good condition or need repair.
Group similar items in labelled boxes (e.g. sports equipment, gardening essentials, power tools, chemicals). That way, you’ll know where to place them later and if you need to buy more storage boxes. Also, apply the 12-month rule when you can. If you haven’t used certain items for a year, then throw or give them away. Better yet, sell them through a garage sale for extra money! Making this a habit will help control clutter and make your next clean-up quicker.
Designate your garage zones
Plan your garage layout. Update it into a more functional space based on your needs. Should I put the items I often use by the entryway or garage door? Which one can stay at the back? Where’s the best place for car care products? Assigning correct zones or category areas ensure easy access to the things you need. Prioritise large, heavy items when planning as they take up the most space.
Maximise your walls
A useful tip when you organise your garage is to think vertically. Most garages have limited wiggle room once the car’s parked inside. So, use your wall for more storage space. Here are some ideas you can use:
- Pegboard panels. Pegboards are great for holding small items like paintbrushes, electric or masking tape and rulers. Hardware stores also have magnetic strips or peg clips for hand metal tools such as screwdrivers and wrenches.
- Hanging rails. Like pegboard panels, these have multiple adjustable storage hooks to maximise space. They work best for garage tools with handles, shovels, lawn chairs and wire bins.
- Bike rack. If you own a bicycle, a wall-mounted bike hanger or hook should prevent it from toppling.
- Hose or ladder hooks. These storage hooks are great for hanging power tools, too. Make sure to choose heavy-duty hooks that are thick and wide enough for the item you’re hanging. Use screw-in storage hooks for lighter items.
- Spring grip bars. Brooms, rakes and other long garden tools stay organised with these mounted on your wall.
- Mounted shelves. The available space close to your ceiling is perfect for installing garage shelves or overhead cabinets. Use these sections for things that you don’t need often.
Utilise your ceiling
Not enough wall space? The next option is to go up – up to your ceiling, that is. Even with your car inside, you can still use the gap above it for smart garage storage solutions. You can install wooden shelves or metal racks to hold plastic bins. Use them for storing bulky items like camping gear and seasonal home décor. Aside from getting them off the floor, ceiling storage protects them from moisture and pest attack. Ceiling hooks and a bicycle hoist, in place of a bike rack, should give you more wall space, too.
Invest in smart storage
Even if your garage space is small, you can still use tall cabinets or wire racks to utilise your floor space. Options to include to your storage system are:
- Lockable cabinets. These are ideal for keeping chemicals and hazardous items out of little ones’ reach.
- Corner shelves. These are specially angled so you can flush them against wall corners. They’re available in stores, or you can have them custom-made. You can use these to store small items together like polishes, oils, spray paints or glue. You can even step it up with rotating corner shelves.
- Stackable containers. Organise your garage using moisture-resistant plastic boxes with flat tops to save space. Clear plastic tubs make the content easy to identify, but you can always label colourful ones if you want. Alternatively, you can also use cube shelves or make a DIY garage storage tower.
- Canvas storage bags. For items that you don’t use often, store them in zippered canvas bags to avoid dust. Also, choose bags with handles for hanging or pulling out.
Add a workbench
Having a mini garage workshop helps channel your inner DIY-er. When you organise your garage, strategically position your workbench near your power tool zone. If you move around a lot while finishing a DIY project, a rolling workbench is an excellent idea. This way, you can keep your tools together and take them wherever your worksite is. But if your garage is tight on space, a wall-mounted folding workbench is a smarter choice. This one should give you a creative space only when you need it.
Build an extra room
It’s optional but a great project for a spacious garage. Having a multipurpose space adds value to your home, too. So, when you can, convert a part of it into a playroom, home gym or office space. Just make sure to get all the necessary permits. Also, consider getting help from accredited builders, plumbers or electricians to ensure proper ventilation, pest control and other essentials.