How to Keep Your Garage Tidy

organized tools inside a garage

It may sound like a problem that is so simple to resolve, but it's one that so many property owners struggle with. More often than not, the garage becomes the graveyard of all that stuff that you no longer use, but for reasons that even you don't quite understand, you hold onto. And where there's clutter, there's often an untidy mess. As Loveland garage door repair and installation specialists, we’ve seen this issue time and time again.

In this article, we’re going to use our many years of experience and our knowledge of what makes a good garage to provide you with some tips to keep it tidy, so it can be a space that you enjoy rather than one that makes you feel anxious.

Most of this stuff is common sense. A bit like garage door repair and maintenance, but these things often end up being the things that most people overlook.

Follow the tips laid out below and you won’t go far wrong.

Have a Big Sort Out!

The first step if you want to whip your garage into shape is to have a thorough sort through everything that currently lives in it.

You have to be absolutely ruthless here. With each item ask yourself:

  • Does it serve a purpose?
  • Will my life be affected if I were to get rid of it?

You're trying to significantly cut down the number of things you need to store in your garage in this step. In many cases, folks find that they can almost half the number of things they are currently storing in the garage in this step.

You don’t have to simply throw out the items that you determine are no longer necessary either. You could donate them to a thrift store or a friend or family member. You could even hold a garage sale. The money you raise may fund other improvements you want to make to your garage such as adding insulation, storage solutions or maybe even a new garage door installation.

Map Out a Floorplan

Before you start buying a bunch of different storage solutions for your garage, take a step back, brew yourself a nice coffee and pull out some paper and a pen.

Sketch a rough outline of your garage, noting where certain features like doors, windows, power sockets and switches are located. The goal of this exercise is to think about what goes where.

Here are a few good pieces of advice to keep in mind:

  • Heavy pieces of machinery – such as a lawn mower and other yard tools – should be kept well out of the way of your car, in a place they’re unlikely to be bumped into.
  • Items that share a common use – such as yard tools and treatments – should ideally be stored in close proximity to each other.
  • Anything that is used daily, or very frequently, ideally wanted to be placed close to a door for easy access.
  • The opposite goes for stuff that you rarely use – it can have a home that’s a little bit more out of the way.

Install Shelving Rather Than Cabinets

This is a common query when homeowners are looking to install storage in their garage space. “Should I go for cabinets or shelving?”

In our opinion, there's only one winner: shelving. Every time! Why? There are a number of reasons, but the main ones are:

  • It’s considerably cheaper
  • It allows you to quickly and very easily scan the garage and see what you have and what you don’t
  • It takes up less space – when closed, they’re similar but cabinet doors need the clearance around them to be able to open.

Install Vertical Storage Systems

When in pursuit of a tidy garage, it’s all about using wall space and not floor space. The typical untidy garage that we often see when we’re called out for garage door repair has a ton of boxes scattered all over the floor, piled up as high as you can see. This is a big mistake.

Pegboard or track-based wall systems can allow you to store a wide range of tools and items on your walls and provide you with quick, easy access to them.

Make Use of the Ceiling Space

We frequently see the ceiling space completely ignored in a lot of garages. They’re a true hidden gem when it comes to keeping a garage tidy! But you do have to be clever about what you choose to store there. Some people install shelving or hand items that end up affecting the operation of the garage door opener or the door itself. This is a big no-no!

Ideally, the stuff you choose to store on the ceiling should be items that you use infrequently, since access to them will be harder/will require more effort. Things that store very well from the garage ceiling are long and flat – like a set of ladders or the pop-up gazebo that you only use in summer.

That’s All There Really Is To It!

I know you were probably hoping for some magic solution to your cluttered garage woes, but the truth is, all you need is a bit of planning and some good old-fashioned elbow grease. It's about getting rid of what you don't need and organizing what you do. Once that's done, don't revert to your old habits and don't let any "junk" be moved into your garage. Get rid of it before it crosses the threshold!

If you need help with anything garage-related in Loveland, whether it be garage door repair, a new garage door installation or some general garage advice, don’t hesitate to give us a call on 970 663-7335.

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