Is your garage in need of a tune-up? If you’re finding it difficult to store that single most important item in your garage — your car — it’s time to get organized! Follow these simple steps and you’ll be on the road to garage organization.
Sort and purge
When cleaning out the garage, decide which items should be kept and which can be discarded or donated to charity. A good rule of thumb is to discard items that haven’t been used within two years. Properly dispose of old paint and oil cans and empty cleaning supply bottles.
Think visibility and accessibility
Always place items where they are easy to see and reach. Items used most often should be stored at eye level or below. Seasonal items should be kept on higher shelves. Choose ventilated shelves and drawers which allow visibility to what you’re storing — they also prevent dust and dirt from collecting.
If necessary, store items in boxes or bags to keep them clean — clear containers will let you see immediately what’s inside.
Put everything in its place
Typically, 80% of items stored in a garage can be kept on shelving — the other 20% (such as handled tools and gardening helpers) is generally stored on a hook. You’ll need a combination of shelving, drawers and hooks to keep everything organized.
Designate an area to store like items together and be conscientious about returning the items to their proper place. For example, tools should be stored in one area and Christmas ornaments in another. Creating “zones” within your garage will help all family members know where to locate items.
Look for hidden storage areas
If your storage space is limited, consider storing items under a workbench, behind the door, and on vertical wall space. There are a wide variety of door and wall hooks and racks to maximize every inch of space in your garage.
Put it at your fingertips
Assemble a quick fix kit, consisting of a hammer, screwdriver, nails and screws and keep it near the door to the house so you can access it easily for quick fixes.
Store small hardware such as screws, nails, nuts and bolts in small, open-ended storage compartments that are stackable. Label the bins to correspond with its contents. This will provide easy access to those often used, but sometimes hard to find items.