Organizing the Garage

By Meredith Whye,

Have you been out in your garage lately? Chances are that it’s probably a big mess. With bikes, scooters, basketballs, soccer balls, shoes, yard waste bags, containers, trash cans, and whatever else you’ve stashed out there, your garage often turns into a giant junk room. But there’s no need to fear the clutter. All you have to do is dedicate a day on the weekend (when the weather is nice) to tackle cleaning and organizing.

Here are some tips for organizing the garage.

Pull Everything Out

The best place to begin when starting this massive project is pulling everything out of your garage. This not only helps you get a feel for how much stuff you have, but it also shows you how much space your garage has when it’s not crowded.

Take some time to go through all of the items from your garage and determine whether or not you need them. Most likely, you’ll keep the majority of your stuff, but there will probably be things you never realized you had that can easily be thrown away or donated (Seriously, who needs three pairs of the same pliers? And why did you never think about combining those two half-empty containers of engine oil?).

Head to the Walls

So many people overlook the walls in their garage, even though it has the most potential for hanging items up and out of the way.

Storing your bike or children’s bikes is effortless after installing a bike storage rack. This one from Lowe’s lets you hang bikes vertically against the wall or from a ceiling, which clears up a large amount of space in the garage.

Buying heavy-duty hooks lets you be creative with organizing your garage. Let this re-organization of a family of 10’s garage inspire your wall space. The company that re-worked the family’s garage utilized every space available to hang items.

Purchasing a fast track is also a great way to store items like shovels, brooms, or extension cords. Fast tracks keep common garage items out of the way by attaching them to the wall. This one from Rubbermaid is a staple of good garage organization. Each hook can hold up to 50 pounds.

Invest in Shelves & Cabinets

Shelves go hand-in-hand with garage storage. With shelves, you can store smaller items, such as hardware and garden tools. Freestanding shelving, like this one, is versatile, can hold up to 5,000lbs, and can be moved around your garage.

When looking at buying cabinets, consider mobile cabinets with wheels. This way, you can move the cabinet around when you need to (This is perfect for people who like working on cars). This cabinet from Seville Classics is great for storing tools and drills.

Utilize Ceiling Space

Yes, the ceiling is an option. Savvy garage organizers use overhead space to make the most of their space. Organize your garage by using ceiling storage to keep items you don’t frequently use, such as coolers, tents, kayaks, etc. These options for ceiling storage, here and here, are both affordable and seemingly easy to install.

Using these ideas can turn your garage from an area of shame to something you’ll want to show off. Of course, there are always options for items you never use but don’t want to throw away or donate, in which case you may want to look into renting storage space.