In the past, garages were only used to park cars. The US Department of Energy estimates only 33% of homeowners actually have a clean enough garage to fit a car inside. Instead, garages are used for storage and hobbies. But knowing how to store things in your garage can be a challenge. You need some garage storage ideas.
Read below for some great garage storage ideas that will make it easier to park and access your things.
How To Organize And Declutter Your Garage
Before organizing your garage, it needs to be decluttered. Your garage has probably become home to different odds and ends over the years. Cleaning out and sorting these items is a big task, and it doesn’t help much if things don’t stay tidy for long. Start with these three tips.
- Clean it out. Set aside a day or weekend to get your garage properly decluttered. Go through absolutely everything you have in your garage and sort your stuff into three piles: keep, donate/sell, and throw out. Organize your “keep” pile into categories like camping gear, sports equipment, etc.
- Plan out your space. Before you start putting anything back, plan for how to store your items. Take measurements of your garage and draft a floor plan. Plan to store items you don’t use very often like seasonal decorations in the hard-to-reach places and save space at the front for frequently used items.
- Invest in storage helps. The best way to keep your garage organized for good is to keep things off the floor. Install shelves, hooks, and overhead storage to keep your stuff safe and neat.
Garage Storage Ideas
Now that things are clean, you’re ready for some garage storage ideas. Finding a way to keep everything in your garage organized and accessible can be challenging. Read below for some innovative ideas to get as much function out of your space as possible.
- Overhead storage. Don’t waste precious garage storage space by not utilizing the ceiling. It’s the perfect place to store long flat items like ladders. You can also add hanging shelves to store camping gear or other seasonal items. This is a great way to keep items off the floor and out of the way. When hanging shelves from the ceiling, be sure the garage door has enough room to function properly, and your cars will still fit inside the space.
- Shelves instead of cabinets. Use wire or wooden shelves instead of cabinets. Declutter your garage with open shelves, you’ll be able to quickly see all the items you have stored and easily access them. Additionally, cabinets need clearance space for the doors to swing open, which seriously limits the amount of usable space in your garage. You’ll be more motivated to keep everything neat if you don’t have cabinet doors to hide your mess, so open shelving is a great long-term garage organization solution.
- Use a pegboard. Pegboards are perfect for hanging and organizing frequently used items in your garage. Attach hooks and pegs to a thick pegboard to create a display of things like hand tools, hardware, and gardening tools. A pegboard storage system is both sturdy and easy to rearrange. You can use as many pegboards as you want to get the most function out of the wall space in your garage, especially if you don’t have a lot of room for shelves.
- Install slatwall. A slatwall system is a series of grooved panels that attach to the wall. You can attach different kinds of baskets, hooks, brackets, and shelves to the grooves, making this system super versatile. Slatwall is usually more affordable and adaptable than cabinetry, and takes up less space.
- Group similar items together. Divide your shelves into sections and assign each section to a group of items like pet supplies, maintenance tools, etc. Keeping all your items grouped makes it easier to find things and promotes long-term organization.
Rent Out Storage Space In Your Garage
After you declutter your garage don’t let your unused garage stay empty! If you don’t need your garage for storage, you can make money every month by renting it out to someone in your neighborhood looking for extra storage. Sign up to host with Neighbor and list your empty garage, or any other space, for free. Renters can choose to rent your place, meaning you get extra money in your bank account every month.
Garage Storage Ideas for Specific Items
Almost anything can be stored in your garage if you do it correctly. Some things require climate control and other kinds of protection, so you might want to check your garage and make sure it’s suitable to keep your items safe from humidity and temperature before storing anything sensitive. Below is a list of items and garage storage ideas to keep them safely tucked away.
Storing bikes in the garage. Bikes can take up a lot of floor space and get easily blocked by other items. The best way to store your bikes is to hang them. This will keep the bikes accessible, protected, and out of the way, leaving more floor space for your car. Check out this tutorial from This Old House on how to hang bikes in your garage.
Sports equipment storage. The most important thing to do when storing sports equipment is to sort your gear by sport rather than storing it in a big group. This will save you time and cut down on clutter in your garage. Once your gear is sorted, use shelves to hold big items like helmets and skates, and use wire or plastic baskets to hold small equipment. Use mesh laundry bags to stash your sports balls to keep them corralled and ready for transport.
Keeping hand tools organized in the garage. Finding the right tools for a job can be impossible if your tools are all jumbled together in a box or drawer. Hanging tools on the wall is the best way to keep them organized and easy to find. Use the pegboard method or slatwall system mentioned earlier to create the perfect tool display. You can also mount tie/belt racks to hang wrenches and other small tools.
Storing kayaks. When storing your kayak, be sure to keep it away from sunlight and heat. You can buy a suspension system or create your own using wide webbing straps to suspend your kayak from the ceiling. Be sure to clean your kayak before storing, and keep the hull (bottom of the kayak) protected. The hull should always face the ceiling when you hang your kayak in the garage.
Garage storage for golf clubs. Make sure your clubs are clean and dry before storing them. If you want to store golf clubs in your garage long-term, be sure your garage is climate-controlled. Your clubs are susceptible to humidity and temperature, so a cold winter in an unheated garage could cause some damage. If your garage is climate-controlled, you’ll want to keep your clubs covered and put away in a corner where they won’t get knocked around.
Storing garden tools in the garage. An effective organization system will keep your lawn tools in good shape and ready to go when you are. To keep your tools in the best condition possible, a vertical storage system is best. Hang rakes, weed whackers, shovels, hoses, and other tools from the wall with hooks or racks. You can add a gardening workspace or potting bench to your garage by repurposing an old desk. Attach baskets and hooks to your workspace to hold small gardening tools and gloves.
Declutter your camping gear storage. Camping is a fun way to enjoy the great outdoors, but it can be difficult to pack for a trip if your gear is scattered all over shelves in your garage. A great way to keep your camping gear together and ready for your next adventure is to store it in totes. Fill small totes with items and label them, and then arrange the small totes inside bigger totes with wheels. When the time comes to head out, you can roll your totes into the truck and be on your way. Be sure to clean all your gear thoroughly after each trip to keep it in good shape and save you from having to replace it.
DIY Garage Storage Guide
While there are plenty of ready-made solutions to organize your garage, several garage storage ideas take on a more DIY angle. If you’re willing to get out the drill and saw, these garage storage ideas are for you.
Plastic totes are a great way to protect and organize items in your garage, but they can be difficult to access when stacked. This DIY garage storage tower guide from The Family Handyman will make it easy to store and access your totes. This project could cost as little as $100 and can easily be completed in a weekend. Think about it…you are one weekend away from a clean clutter free garage!
A finished tower will have five cubbies to store your totes or other boxes. You can easily slide totes in and out without having to move other boxes in the stack.
Another great way to utilize wall space in your garage is to build garage corner shelves. These simple shelves can be made cheaply and easily and are the perfect place to put bottles, tubes, and other small objects.
To make these simple shelves, cut plywood or other scrap wood to fit in the corner of your garage, nesting between two studs. Attach 1×1 cleats below the shelves to support them and keep them in place.
Declutter Your Garage
Don’t have enough storage room in your garage? No problem! Simply go to Neighbor’s website to browse storage spaces for rent in your neighborhood. For half the cost of traditional self storage, you can keep the clutter out of your garage and make room for your car.