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How to Organise a Home Garage.

Garage organisation is a mammoth task. Often garages are home to years and years of built-up mess, including boxes of old but important clutter. They gather in layers and the more you have, the less of it you use. When a garage is disorganised, it is usually because this is the place things are stored “out of sight, out of mind”. Eventually, there isn’t room for your car, which ends up left out in the elements.

Organising a garage is best done in stages. This step-by-step guide will help you break down this task into manageable stages and offer some ideas to create more space for your vehicles. Whether you have a single or double garage, you can have an organised, spacious storage space.

1. Declutter:

We’re saying it: you have to get rid of all the things you don’t need. This is difficult for some people and easy for others, but if you’re looking for an organised garage, you need to bite the bullet and get rid of what doesn’t need to be there. Go through everything systematically, starting at one side and working until you’ve seen every item in the space. This will go faster and be more fun if you enlist help from friends and family.

  • Rubbish. Get a bin bag and fill it with any packaging. Break down boxes, remove empty paint tins, etc. You’ll find this makes a huge difference already.
  • Donate. Fill a box with items that still work but don’t have a place in your life anymore. Find a new home for the BBQ you’ve not used in 5 years, the breadmaker you bought in 2005, records, unused sports equipment, those ugly plates.Charity shops will take unsorted boxes of smaller items, and sometimes furniture. Churches and other community groups can often help rehome larger items.
    If it makes you more motivated, sell some items and earn some money for your efforts.
  • Move. Ask yourself if something is better stored somewhere else, such as in the garden shed or under a bed. Think about where you usually use the item, and whether there is potential for storage space in that area.
  • Reduce. For items with sentimental value, such as baby clothes, photo albums, etc. try reducing the space they take up. Consolidate all your photos into one album, vacuum pack soft items or take a picture of something you want to remember but don’t have space for anymore.

2. Sort:

Everything that is left should be sorted into broad categories. You can make piles for now or you can put them into boxes and label them. Categories could be:

  • Garden tools
  • DIY
  • Sports equipment
  • Camping
  • Outdoor toys
  • Footwear (Hiking boots etc.)
  • Ladders
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Bins

Once you know the types of items you have, you can plan your garage storage solutions!

2.5 Bonus: Clean

By this point, it’s likely you’ll have all of your stuff away from the walls, surfaces clear and a bit more space to manoeuvre. Take the opportunity to sweep the floors, tackle any damp or mouldy areas and wipe down surfaces such as shelves, plastic boxes or workbenches. Is something nesting in the corner? Get rid of it now, not later! This is also a good time to seal up any gaps in adjoining walls that may be allowing cold air or damp into the house. Use caulk to seal small gaps, or use expanding foam for larger spaces.

3. Plan and prepare:

Once you know what categories of items you are keeping, decide which part of the garage to keep them in.

  • Draw a floor plan of the garage so you get the dimensions right. Include windows, doors, steps, switches and other furnishings.
  • Note down how much space you need to comfortably park in the garage (including opening the car doors).
  • Now assign spaces to each category. Keep things in zones: your gardening tools should all be together, and so should your DIY tools.
  • Put bulky equipment in corners to avoid it being knocked over.
  • Put items you use outside often, such as bikes, near the garage door.
  • Items you need to move into the house easily should go near the inside door, if you have one.
  • Put items you don’t use often, such as Christmas decorations, in the hardest places to reach.

When this plan is developed and everything has a home, you can start deciding what the best storage solution for each type of item will be.

Items to invest in:

  • Shelves: choose the right depth for the size of your garage, leaving room to be able to open the car doors when parked. Shelves work well along the sides and back of the garage. Wall-mounted shelves are great for heavier items like paint tins; they also don’t take up as much floor space.
  • A Pegboard or Track system: these allow you to hang different types of items. These systems offer different types of hooks and hanging baskets to suit all kinds of objects. Smaller or lighter items can hang from a pegboard, such as brooms or hand tools. Track systems are perfect for hanging larger, heavier items: ladders, shovels, strimmers, hoses, etc.
  • Containers: Keep small, similar items such as screws, hose attachments, or paint brushes together in containers on shelves.
  • Storage Boxes: durable, stackable, sealable containers are great for keeping irregularly shaped items together on a shelf. Footballs, ski gear, fishing tackle or anything else that doesn’t neatly sit on a shelf can go in a box. Make sure you label it clearly.
  • Cabinets: if you have items that need to be protected from dust or dirt in the air, such as sensitive machinery, a cabinet can be helpful. Be wary, however, as these can simply hide the mess behind closed doors.
  • Wall Hooks: Even if you opt for a track system or peg board, you will likely find items you want to hang somewhere that you didn’t install track, such as bike helmets or gardening gloves.
  • Ceiling Hooks: make use of the overhead space on your garage ceiling for large, rarely-used items, such as seasonal sports equipment.

Consider a Car Storage Lift

 

Enquire here for pricing and stock availability

If you want to keep two cars in your garage, but leave some floor space clear for quick projects, a car storage lift is a great investment. Elevate the biggest object in your garage into overhead space with hydraulic lifts and a secure locking system. A car lift is perfect for storing project cars too: your kit car may be the love of your life, but it takes up space. With a car storage lift, you can keep your kit or classic car and fit your regular car in the garage.

Items you Need to Keep in Your Home Garage

When you’re decluttering, you might face some decision fatigue as to what to keep and what to send away. These are some of the things you should definitely keep around.

Tools

Even if you don’t care about DIY, tools are expensive, so keep hold of a basic set in a toolbox. You’ll certainly need to tighten a screw or hang a picture at some point. If you have bicycles, a lawnmower or anything that needs tools to maintain, make sure you have the required tools.

  • Hammer: A claw hammer will handle most household jobs.
  • Screwdrivers: You need both a Phillips (cross-head) and a flat-head screwdriver to handle any screw situation.
  • Pliers: Both needle-nose and groove-joint pliers are useful to have, for fixing anything with wire or holding things still while using a wrench.
  • Alan keys (multiple sizes): Most furniture today requires an alan key to assemble and disassemble.
  • Tape measure: A 10m tape measure is usually enough to take room dimensions. You’ll even use one to make a plan of your garage.
  • Utility knives and extra blades: Useful in craft and household jobs, utility knives make precise cuts quickly.
  • Spirit level: Never hang anything askew again. Use this to hang your pegboards and track systems.
  • Pallet knife/scraper: For filling holes, gaps or cracks in your plaster, or for scraping old paint or paper when redecorating,
  • File: deal with any splinters or rough edges with a file.
  • Sandpaper: Sandpaper is great for removing rough surfaces or paint drips.
  • Power Drill: To put up shelves on brick or concrete walls, you’ll need to drill a hole and fit a raw plug.
  • Adjustable Wrench: for plumbing emergencies or turning stiff fastenings, a wrench is a must-have.

Car Care Necessities

Your car is likely a five-figure investment, so it’s important to store it well and look after it. Once you have space in your organised garage, you’ll be able to work on your car whatever the weather. Don’t ditch these car care items in your declutter.

  • Air compressor: pump up your tyres at home with a portable air compressor and keep your car working at optimum efficiency.
  • Car care products: interior cleaning sprays, wax or polish, and tyre cleaning fluid keep your vehicle looking sharp.
  • Spare parts: don’t give these up for scrap if they’re compatible with your car. Parts make up a significant portion of repair costs, so you could save money if it needs replacing.
  • Pressure washers: the fastest way to clean a car and your driveway, a pressure washer is a key tool to keep around.

Gardening Tools

Lawn care and gardening require some serious tools, and while they take up space, they are easy to store with a track system and appropriate shelving.

  • Lawnmower: Even if you’re taking part in No Mow May every year, your lawn needs to be cut before the wet weather in autumn. Lawns that don’t get cut become patchy and muddy. Choose a folding model to save space.
  • Shovels, forks, spades, trowels, loppers, and rakes: these can all be stored on a track system with strong hooks.
  • Wheelbarrow: wall hooks can solve the problem of wheelbarrow storage, especially with a lightweight model.
  • Gardening hose: washing the car and watering the garden are quicker and easier with a hose. Store the hose on a wheel with a handle for ease, especially if this can be wall-mounted.
  • Watering cans: another essential, and again, the answer is hooks.
  • Spare flowerpots: pots can be stacked on shelves to save space, but get rid of any cracked or broken items. Break them up and use as drainage in the bottom of other pots. Store broken pieces in a container with the pots.
  • Compost: to avoid this getting damp or spreading around the space, store in a plastic bin with a lid.

Outdoor Gear

Please provide a sentence per point, how it can help and the best area to place them.

  • Tents
  • Airbeds
  • Flashlights and lanterns
  • Multitools
  • Coolers
  • Camping chairs
  • Outdoor furniture
  • Hi-vis safety vests and hard hats
  • Work gloves and work boots
  • Helmets, elbow pads, and knee pads
  • Exercise equipment and workout accessories

Get your Garage Organisation System in Place

While it might be hard work, once you have a solid organisation system for your home garage, you will never have to declutter again. Simply put things back after use and tidy up regularly, and you’ll always be able to find what you’re looking for easily. More importantly, you’ll have space to park your cars and protect them from the elements. You can double your parking space by using a car storage lift to elevate your car into the ceiling area.