Who loves garage organization and storage? I’m not sure what it is about having a tidy, organized garage, but it’s so satisfying! I don’t know about you, but with a family of five, we have a ton of stuff that gets crammed in the garage. I feel like I have to re-organize it at least a couple times a year. Here are five tips to follow to clean and organize your garage.
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The main problems with keeping a garage organized are usually too much stuff and multiple family members not putting things back in the proper place. Of course, that’s usually the case with any organization troubles!
TIPS FOR GARAGE ORGANIZATION
Start by making separate piles for the following categories: donate, sell, trash, keep, and possibly attic (if you have one). If you don’t want to hold a garage sale or sell individual items on an online platform, you could just donate anything in good condition. Once you pull everything out and separate it, it will make finding places for the things in the keep pile that much easier.
Go ahead and load up the donate pile in the back of your vehicle so it’s out of the way and you don’t procrastinate on actually dropping it off at your favorite place like Goodwill or The Salvation Army.
If you have a couple boxes, load them up with the items to sell and tuck them off to the side for now. Make it a priority to have a garage sale the next weekend or to get the items posted online within the next week. Go ahead and put the trash pile in the trash and recycle bins so it’s out of your way. The only pile left should be your keep pile (piles if you have an attic pile).
Install any sort of storage solutions that will help you with organization…you can get shelving, bins, cabinets or all of the above. Even if you are working with a small budget, you can buy plastic tote bins from the dollar store. Amazon has some garage/utility shelving that can be used as another inexpensive solution.
If there is a Habitat restore or overstock store nearby, check to see if they have some excess cabinets or used cabinets that you can purchase for cheap and mount to your garage wall. I know of some people who have saved their old kitchen cabinets during a remodel and put them in the garage for storage.
With our garage, we use an old dresser my dad built me when I was younger to store certain items. We also have a couple Ikea shelves that the kids no longer wanted that we use near the door to store shoes.
For our main garage cabinet solution, we went middle of the road and bought some nice Kobalt steel garage cabinets. They weren’t the cheapest they sell, but they also weren’t the most expensive either. If your budget allows, you can even go all-out and hire a company that specializes in garage storage solutions and have them design a custom system for your space (I used to design these systems)!
I prefer cabinets because they have doors/drawers which are great for hiding everything away and giving an even cleaner appearance. Inside the cabinets, I like to use bins and small plastic tubs to store like-items together.
For example, we always have random screws leftover from projects and I just throw all the screws together in one plastic tub and tuck them in a cabinet…then when I need a few screws for something, I can pull out the tub and rifle through it to find what I need. I do this with wrenches, screwdrivers, drill bits, and anything else I have several of.
I also like to group things together within the cabinets; I have anything paint/stain related on a couple shelves, handheld power tools on another couple shelves, gardening supplies on another…so on and so forth. We have a toolbox that we keep an assortment of often-used tools in so that it’s easy to grab and carry wherever we need it.
4) Think Up High
Most people tend to line the lower half of walls in the garage with all their belongings that they don’t want stored inside the house. It’s normal since it’s the area that’s easiest to reach. But don’t forget about the higher, harder to reach areas. Find garage organization gadgets that work with your space and make use of the higher wall space or even the ceiling.
Put things you don’t need to access every day in the higher/harder to reach spaces. If you have an attic, use it to store seasonal items, holiday decorations, and anything else that you don’t need to access often.
For things that don’t fit in cabinets well…think garage storage accessories! If you don’t have an attic, these ceiling racks can hold a surprising amount of weight and are adjustable in height. I don’t have them in my new garage because I have ample attic storage, but I had two of them in my garage in CA and they were awesome!
Besides cabinets, you can hang other items on the wall. There are a number of accessories made to mount to the garage wall for storage. Slatwalls are a visually appealing option, but the attachment accessories can be a budget killer.
There are more simplistic track systems that can vary widely in cost. I found a Work Choice Snap Rail Kit in the home section of my local Wal-Mart for about $17 and it came with 4 hook attachments. I would link to it, but the link states it’s no longer available. You may check your local Wal-Mart though. I bought two of them. This Wall Control Tool Organizer Rail Kit looks like it’s pretty comparable for accomplishing the same job. Pegboard is another good, affordable wall mount option for above workbenches.
I also like simple Racor mounts like this bike hanger or this ladder/wheelbarrow mount. Their ceiling hoist is great for bikes too if you have higher ceilings or space where it wouldn’t be in the way. The ceiling hoist is also good for ladders or kayaks.
Little by little, place the things you are keeping onto hooks and shelves…in drawers or cabinets until everything has a place. You can even make labels for your bins/tubs if you like. After finishing up, give your garage a good dusting off and sweep all the dirt and debris up. Then stand back and admire your organized garage space.
Now, your goal is to train yourself and your household to put things back after each use. Unfortunately, you can have all the cute organizational accessories on the market but without a routine, you won’t stay organized!
What are some of your favorite garage organization accessories?
Until next time,
P.S. – If you like organization tips…check out how to organize your closet!