Your garage can often become a catchall for everything you don’t have a place for in your home. Sports equipment, bikes, gardening tools, brooms, and even trash might end up all over your workbench and throughout your garage space. If your garage resembles an oversized junk drawer with lots of clutter, it’s time to declutter and get organized.
DIY or Professional Garage Organizer?
Unless you’re really strapped for time, or just think your garage disorder is beyond a DIY decluttering project, hiring a professional to tackle the project is going to be costly. In fact, the national average to have a professional organize your garage space is a whopping $1,500!
Save some money by using these DIY garage organization tips to get your garage whipped into shape.
Plan to Spend a Full Weekend to Tackle Garage Organization
One of the reasons why people often put off decluttering and organizing their garage for storage space is they worry about how long it will take to organize it. Depending on the number of items you need to organize, it may take a day or a couple of days, but when it feels overwhelming, think about tackling one section at a time.
Make plan or a clean-out checklist ahead of time to help keep you focused and on-task. Plan on dedicating a whole weekend to organize your garage — setting expectations ahead of time can make things feel less daunting.
Clean Out Your Garage Before Organizing
When going the DIY route, decluttering is one of the first things you should tackle. Start by getting rid of any trash that has accumulated. Next, you’ll want to remove any items you no longer want or need. Items in good condition can be donated, and anything else can be put out with your trash as long as it’s not a prohibited item. (Here’s a handy guide for what items can’t be thrown in the trash.)
Not sure what to throw away or keep? A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself if it’s been used in the last year (this tip also applies to cleaning out your closet). Anything you haven’t touched in awhile is probably not worth hanging onto. Removing the unnecessary clutter means you’ll only organize what you still want to keep and make it easier to move everything around.
Maximize Garage Space with Shelves
Shelves are a great way to organize your garage walls since they can store everything from sporting goods to tools, and help keep things off the garage floor. Plus, they prevent items from getting water damage that might occur if they were sitting on the floor and make it easier to clean your garage in the future. The sheer variety of shelving available can help you personalize your storage options based on your storage needs.
What Type of Shelves Should You Use?
Wall Mounted Shelving
If you really want to eliminate floor clutter, opt for shelves that mount to your garage’s walls. Make sure you mount the shelves to wall studs to offer the best support for heavy items.
Free Standing Shelves
These shelving units offer more flexibility since you can move them around, but they do take up more floor space. Solid metal or wood shelving units can be quite heavy and difficult to move, so opt for wire metal or heavy-duty plastic shelves. If you’re not planning to move the shelves around, it can be a good idea to anchor them to a wall to prevent them from toppling over.
Ceiling Mounted Shelves
This option is exactly as it sounds — the shelves are mounted overhead to the garage ceiling. While this option does eliminate floor space, this option may not work if your car has a tall roof height.
Organizing Garden Tools in a Garage
If you don’t have a shed, your garage space can be the perfect place for garden tools. Smaller hand tools, like spades or garden shears, can be kept in storage bins or hung on a pegboard.
Larger tools with long handles, like rakes and backhoes, can be stored in organization towers or wall-mounted racks.
Organization towers store items standing up, almost like an umbrella stand, while wall-mounted racks have hooks to hang things vertically.
Choose storage for garden tools based on how much wall and floor space you have.
How to Organize Bikes and Sports Equipment
Bikes and sports equipment are also probably a big culprit of garage clutter. Just like smaller garden tools, shelving, storage bins, and pegboards are great for smaller sports equipment. Bike helmets can be hung on hooks, while basketballs, frisbees or baseball mitts can be kept in storage bins.
Installing hooks to the garage ceiling or mounting them on the garage walls is great for bikes that aren’t used often, but for bikes used regularly, designate a specific spot as parking for them.
Other Tips to Maximize Garage Storage Space
Maximizing your garage storage space means finding the best ways to maximize the space you have. Some of your options include:
- Storage Bins
- Even ceiling hooks for hanging bikes, other sporting goods, and tools
These ideas are just some ways to store more items in the same space in your garage. Remember that your garage walls and floor aren’t the only options when you include available ceiling space.
What Should Not Be Stored in a Garage?
Keep in mind that some things shouldn’t be stored in your garage. Items such as hazardous materials, propane tanks, paint, and temperature-sensitive items. These items can become a problem if exposed to too much sunlight or heat in an enclosed space and endanger your family.
These organizational tips can help you turn your messy garage into a great storage area. Need more storage space? Renting a storage unit for seasonal items is a surefire way to eliminate garage clutter. A 10’x15′ storage unit is about the size of a small garage, and is perfect for bulkier items like grills, bikes, and outdoor furniture. If you just need to store seasonal items like holiday decor and sporting equipment, then a 5’x5′ storage unit will probably suffice. You can compare sizes and prices on SelfStorage.com to find the right unit for you.