A typical garage is like a dump yard where you park your car. There is sports equipment, paint cans, old newspapers, children’s projects, bikes, cartons of unused stuff, tool kits, garden tools, tires, spare parts and there is the car or the family vehicle. If this space is not organized properly it becomes an eye sore and a potential disaster waiting to happen.
It is prudent to spend some time to get your garage organized; make a place for everything that you want to store for future use or keep as memories. This will increase the aesthetic appeal of the garage and also save you precious time often spent in searching for stuff.
With the latest designs available in garage management you can in fact turn your garage into a multifunctional area – a hobby area, office space, and even a small gym (if you have a huge garage) alongside your parked vehicles. Correct planning will ensure you have a garage that is comfortable, looks tidy and organized and is safe to be in.
How to organize your garage?
Storage cabinets, shelves and hooks will help you store all your stuff neatly and in designated places. Often a combination of all the three works well to create that neat spacious and well-kept garage.
It is often difficult to decide the kind of storage cabinets you need for your space. There are so many of them! There are three major types of materials used for storage cabinets.
These are by far the most popular garage cabinets used by all. They are durable, inexpensive, can be installed fairly easily, are easy to maintain, do not corrode and are water resistant and don’t warp.
Their only drawback is their load bearing capacity is low. They can’t be used to store heavy and bulky material as they will sag and eventually crack.
These cabinets come in aluminum or steel with steel having more varieties. They are strong and have great tensile strength. Aluminium cabinets are lighter than steel though. It is easier to paint or powder coat these cabinets to match with your color scheme and also as a protective coating.
On the flipside, metal is more expensive and is susceptible to rust and corrosion.
Wood Based Cabinets
Wood too remains one of the more preferred material for garage cabinets because of the various options available in various price ranges. Cabinets can be made from plywood, high density particle board, medium density fiber board and solid wood. They can be laminated or left for maintaining the natural look.
The disadvantages with wood are that it is very heavy and is not resistant to moisture. As a result, warping sets in due course of time especially in the cabinets that sit on the floor.
Shelves are more DIY projects that are immensely useful to store a host of tiny and lightweight stuff. They can be wall mounted thereby saving precious floor space. They are available in solid wood, chipboard, metal and in plastic.
The drawback is that they are not aesthetically pleasing and they are open all the time leading to dust accumulation and damage to moisture prone goods.
Cheap DIY Wood Shelving
Hooks are an easy and simple way to organize a host of stuff especially garden tools. You get hooks strong enough to hold bicycles too. Where floor space is limited hooks help in maximizing the vertical space. The only drawback is that it is open and not suitable for bulky storage.
Types of Cabinets
Once you have finalized on the material for cabinets it’s time to focus on the types of cabinets that are best suited for your garage and your storage items.
- Off-The-Floor: In this style the cabinets often have pedestals or legs to keep them free of water or other liquid spills on the floor.
- Rolling Cabinets: These cabinets come with wheels at the bottom; this makes them portable.
- Wall mounted Cabinets: The wall mounted cabinets are the best way to utilize the floor space.
- Overhead cabinets: These cabinets are hung from wall studs and are recommended where space is limited.
- Corner Cabinets: Very useful to turn corners into storage spaces.
- Modular cabinets: These are customized sets which allow you to mix and match to need your specific needs.
A few other key points to keep in mind when you finalize your garage cabinet is the depth and height of each cabinet. A recommended depth is 12-16 inches to fit most stuff comfortably while not jutting out. Keep in mind that there should be sufficient space for you to open and close your car door comfortably. Go for back panels for the shelves and cabinets to prevent stuff falling off from behind and to keep roaches away.
Finally do not forget to pay attention to the garage flooring, ventilation and lighting.