The humble garage can be one of the most likely candidates for chaos in the home. It’s easy to ignore a difunctional or downright disastrous garage because you can shut the door every night and try to forget about it.
That said, a messy or unorganized garage is probably weighing on you more than you realize. Just like your daily struggle to find a matching shoe in an overworked closet will start your day off on the wrong foot, so will winding your way through a garage maze of bikes and yard games, the lawnmower, and miscellaneous junk to get to the car.
The best garages have one thing in common: they work for the people who use them. How do you want your garage to function? Keep reading for some ideas.
Before you can get that cleared-up daily walk to the driver’s seat, you need to get a handle on storage and organization in your garage.
Be honest: do you need to cull the clutter? Things have a way of getting out of hand in the garage. Before you start organizing, get rid of everything you no longer need that has been hanging around.
Donate, repair, give away or toss anything you don’t need: outgrown sporting equipment and bikes, duplicate tools, the old lawnmower, old paint, and hazardous waste. Make sure to dispose of chemicals and anything dangerous according to your local ordinances.
Once you’ve figured out what can stay and what should go, you can begin to organize your garage. The goal should be to get everything within reason up off the floor. No one likes to see stacks of paint cans leaning against the wall or hockey sticks precariously balanced in a corner waiting to fall on the hood of the car.
Large items like kayaks, bikes out of season, and rooftop storage boxes can be stored in the rafters via a pulley or on a high shelf. Consider hooks and hanging bins on the walls for sporting equipment and yard tools.
Custom shelving can go sky-high if it’s properly installed and anchored to the walls. Put seasonal items up high and free up floor space.
Laminate shelving and cabinets can add locking and tucked-away storage for tools or things that need to stay out of little hands, plus a work surface for projects as intensive as working on a custom car or as mundane as untangling strings of holiday lights before you hang them.
Take advantage of custom storage and organizational solutions by keeping up with the mess before it gets out of hand. Encourage family members to put sports and recreational equipment where it belongs.
Keep ahead of the dirt and debris that is inevitable when you pull your car into the garage on a rainy or slushy day by sealing the garage floor and doing a regular sweep or squeegee toward the drain. Keep the right tools on hand and spend a little time managing the mess before it becomes a big job. Cover the floor if you’ve got a car that is leaking oil while you wait for a repair. Clean up spills and dirt right away.
The best garages have something that makes the space a little bit special. Sealing the floor with epoxy can add durability and help keep the area clean, plus it helps make things look a little more polished.
Adding insulation and finishing the walls look good and will allow you to heat or cool the garage as needed to extend the season where you can do projects or hang out in the garage.
You may even be able to turn found garage space into a flexible space that can serve another purpose.
Along with custom shelving and organization solutions like wire shelving and cabinet systems, think about adding a workbench to turn an underused spot in the garage into a workshop for projects. Include ventilation to expand the possibilities to woodworking or whatever you’re interested in.
Turn part of the garage into a hang-out space for teenagers or adults by making room for a beverage fridge, a wall-mounted TV for game day, and flexible seating.
Keep the weight bench or bulky treadmill in the newly upgraded garage for early morning or late-night workouts that won’t disturb the family.
The design and installation experts at Harkraft know a lot about storage and organization because we specialize in helping homeowners find ideal storage solutions. Contact us today to find out more or talk about how we can take your garage to the next level.