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Storage area? Workshop? Play space? A parking spot? If your garage is serving double -- or even triple -- duty, then you've probably got A LOT of stuff in there. And it can get out of control fast. Fortunately, we've got the ways to cut that clutter, create a functional garage organization system, and reclaim wasted space.
No matter what you do in your garage, having a clean, organized space makes it more useful. You’ll want to go through all your stuff and sort it into groups of like items. Depending on how packed your garage is, this may take a while. But, it’s a critical step in creating an excellent garage organization system, so take your time and be thorough.
You’ll probably also need to make groups for items to sell, donate, or throw away. Old paint, oil, pesticides, or other chemicals may require special disposal. Contact your local waste disposal service for information about how to discard hazardous items.
It’s zone time! Take a look at your groups. Consider how often you use each group and how large that group is. You’ll want to create zones for each group and design a garage organization system that makes sense for each. Think about:
There are almost as many garage organization systems as there are garages. Here are some of the most widely used.
Wall racks are freestanding shelving systems that you can move around your garage when needed. They are great for storing things you use frequently. Some wall racks come with doors you can lock. They’re perfect for things you want to keep away from kids or pets. Check out our DIY project for heavy-duty wall racks, which look great and can hold heavy items!
A fantastic way to free up floor space is by installing shelving around the top of your garage. Install heavy-duty shelving two to three feet below the ceiling – that way you have enough room to stack totes and bulky items. Using totes on these shelves makes it easier to put things up and bring them down. Shelves are great for infrequently used items like holiday décor or keepsakes and help you take advantage of vertical space with your garage organization system.
Hangers allow you to attach items like tools, brooms, and rakes to your wall. Hangers are often screwed into the wall or applied with strong adhesive. Using these in your garage organization system keeps yard and cleaning tools from gathering in corners where they’re often forgotten.
Installing pegboard, also known as perforated hardboard, above your workstation helps keep the area clean and organized. You can purchase hooks and accessories to use with pegboard to hold things like screwdrivers and hammers. This system allows you to have all your tools within arm's reach while keeping them off your work surface.
When creating your garage organization system, it’s important to have a system you can maintain. It’s helpful to have a trash can available to make clean up easy. Remember to return any tools or supplies to their designated spot after use.
Once your garage organization system is established, don’t hesitate to rearrange as your needs change. The best garage organization systems are ones that keep what you need at hand, free up space to use as you like, and are easy to adapt.