5 Steps to Organize and Clean Your Garage

The longer, warmer days of summer are perfect for tackling organization projects that require being outside. If you have a garage now is the perfect time to spend the weekend cleaning it out and getting it organized.

Here are some essential tips to follow to get your garage clean and organized from start to finish:

  1. Empty Out Your Garage
    Believe it or not, emptying out a garage in its entirety is not the first thing that comes to mind when it’s time to get organized. While it may seem easier to simply clean up around the existing items, emptying the garage will help when you start organizing.Once you have taken everything out, sweep and dust the entire garage.When you are done with cleaning you have a blank slate to work with for creating an organization plan. This will make it easier to think of new ways to add storage, different configurations for shelving, hooks and more.

    You will also be able to see the items taking up most of the space in your garage. Take this opportunity to decide which items you need, and which items you may want to consider donating or throwing away. Take an inventory of the items you have and start with a simple list that categorizes things you use often and will need to access easily, things you rarely use or seasonal items and things you don’t use.

  2. Create Zones
    Once your garage is free of all clutter, make a map of the layout. If you plan on adding shelves or built in storage make sure to:

    • Measure the length of your walls making note of where your windows are.
    • Measure the height of your garage from floor to ceiling.

    Using your inventory of the items you store in your garage come up with zones to categorize related items for organization.

  3. Walls and Ceilings
    Adding shelves or hanging cabinets to an empty wall will help utilize your space and keep you organized.  Using the measurements discussed above will let you know the size of cabinets or the length of the shelves that can fit in a particular place. It’s also a good idea to use the height of your garage to create loft storage areas. By storing some of your items near the ceiling they will be far out of your way on most days but, easily accessible on days when you need them.
  4. Racks and Built in Storage
    Placing things like bikes and lawn equipment on racks are a simple way to keep those items from feeling like useless clutter. Racks can also be very helpful for organizing items since you can hang related items on the same rack. Built in cabinets can also be used secure items that you don’t want exposed.
  5. Sections and Labels
    Always label any boxes and containers with a clear description of the contents.  Make sure you store the items with the labels facing out and keep all related items in their respective zone. Not only are these labels useful for organizing your existing items but, they are also helpful for knowing where to put items in the future.

If you have more to put back into your garage for storage, but don’t want to add clutter- try a self-storage unit. EZ Storage has many sizes to fit as little as a few boxes of Christmas decorations or as big to fit a car. Find out what storage unit size is right for you.

Image by Rubbermaid Products and licensed through Creative Commons.