With the amount of people who own garages, you would think something as simple as organization would be commonly known. Unfortunately, this is not the case at all. Many people today are in a situation where their garages are used more like storage space instead of what the space was actually intended to be used for. Fortunately, you can easily organize your garage to make room for your stuff while maintaining enough room for your vehicle (in most cases).
Organization does not have to be a complicated thing. There are many devices you can purchase that will help you to hang things (like bikes) and store other smaller items. If you are a do-it-yourself type of person, you can easily build some of these devices yourself in order to ensure the proper fit. Store-bought organizers are fine, however, they may not use your space as efficiently as possible. You can make the most of your space by building your own organization methods or having a professional build one for you.
Start With the Floor
When you are looking around your garage in anticipation of what changes to make, you should consider the items on the floor. Getting items off the floor will help you to avoid stubbing your toes, or stepping on something resulting in a possible injury. If you have small children, having a clutter on the floor is a very risky situation. Children enjoy getting into things they should not be getting into, and a messy garage is an excellent place for a child to get themselves into a lot of trouble.
Consider the size of the items on your floor. The bigger items are going to need a different type of support system than a smaller item. Smaller items usually work well with storage bins where larger items would need to be stored in a corner or hung with hooks. You should always survey the area before buying or building any organizational device.
It is best to plan ahead. If you are a visual person, sketching out the way you wish to organize your room is an excellent place to start as it will tell you where to put what and which types of devices you will need. It is important to note that you may require more bins or larger devices than you originally plan, so it is a good idea to leave a bit of room for any extra bins or hooks you may require after you get the bulk of things off the ground.
Storage bins are actually quite useful. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes, which can be rather helpful, and they are also available in an assortment of colors. If you are one of those people who try to color-coordinate their rooms, storage bins can be selected to match the mood, color, or just the decor of your area.
When most people think about storage bins, the first thing that comes to mind is a big bin with a lid, or possibly multiple bins with lids stacked on top of each other. There are many ways to display organization bins. It is recommended that you remove the lids and use the open bin to clearly display what the bin contains. Alternately, you can label the top of the box with a sheet of paper that lists everything the storage bin contains.
Storage bins work best when they are put together in a specially designed space. A storage bin support structure can be built easily, or you can hire a professional to come in and build it for you. This task should take no longer than a couple days for a novice to complete depending on the size of the support you are attempting to create. If you build a large structure (normally out of wood) against one wall that has shelves that point downward. So, the back of the shelf is at a higher point than the front of the shelf. Doing this will allow you to see into the bins (or the paper on top of them) without too much difficulty. It will also help you to sift through the box without having to remove it from the support.
Lumber can be purchased from your local home renovation store. Again, if you do not feel comfortable doing this yourself, you can easily hire a professional. There are many videos and step by step tutorials on how to build your own shelving unit for storage bins in your garage. If you are unsure of anything, it is wise to have your design or support double checked by a professional.
Handling Larger Items
Obviously you are going to want to attempt to place your vehicle in your garage. Larger items can be a nuisance in this case. Large items take up a lot of room, they generally are difficult to get in and out of spaces, and they are potential scratch hazards to your vehicle. There is a very efficient solution to this predicament. Should you wish to remove the large items from your garage without actually removing them physically, you can create an organizational structure for this as well.
Creating a support structure for larger items is often quite different than creating the angled shelving for storage bins and smaller items. Larger items are likely heavy and clunky which makes them more difficult to work with. There are hooks and other devices you can install to hang things like bicycles, however, there are going to be items that you cannot hang quite so easily. When you are faced with this situation, it is best to survey the area and decide how much room you actually have to work with.
Sometimes, in these unfortunate situations, we do not have room for all of the items should we want to place our vehicle in there are well. If this is your situation, it is highly recommended that you get yourself a shed or another small area to place items that you cannot fit in the garage with your vehicle. Most large items will work well if they are hung on a specially designed device. Some large items, like lawn chairs for instance, may work better if you stack them in a corner, or on a larger shelving unit.
Organization at Its Best
There are three main walls in a garage that you will likely have room to set things up for organizational devices. If you wish to declutter your space, it will be helpful to get as much of the items off the floor as possible. Any space will feel a lot more spacious if the floor is free of clutter and debris. The garage is a dusty place. Keeping your floor as free of dust as possible will also help make the space look neater. This is a good practice to get into during your normal cleaning sessions.
Taking on an entire garage, in terms of organizing, can be quite the overwhelming experience. Take things one step at a time and you should be fine. Should you, at any point, feel that you are unsure of yourself, you can always call a professional to help you through the process. The most difficult part about organizing your garage has got to be the initial process. Once you have everything set up where you want it to be, it is easy to maintain the system. You should, however, check the support structure for any decay or debris on a regular basis to ensure there are no issues in the future.
Wood should be checked for signs of age, decay, or weather damage on a regular basis. Metal should be carefully checked for signs of rust or wear. Ensuring your support structure is always properly maintained and free of any deterioration is an excellent way to keep your garage looking its best for many years to come.