How to Organize and Clean Your Home Garage | Organization Tips
Clean and Organize Your Home Garage: Top Tips to Make This Space Shine
Your garage provides much-needed protection for your beloved vehicles and equipment. There's no denying the importance of this space — so why does it consistently feel cluttered and grimy?
Sometimes, the main issue is "out of sight, out of mind." If you only briefly enter or exit the garage on your way to work, you probably don't pay a lot of attention to the quickly accumulating dirt and debris. Beyond this, however, you might be reluctant to deal with your garage because the tools and techniques required for this space feel so foreign. The process seems overwhelming simply because it's different from tried-and-tested home cleaning methods.
The good news? With the right equipment and a positive mindset, you can transform your garage with surprising ease. To help, we've compiled the best garage cleaning tips to make this dreaded task easy or even fun.
Begin By Decluttering
Like any space, your garage is prone to accumulating clutter over time. While you occasionally get rid of unnecessary household items, however, you may go months or even years without addressing your garage. Before you implement any garage organizing tips, it's essential that you tackle all the junk.
For this key step, you'll need a familiar method that you've likely relied on in other areas of the home: creating separate piles for items you want to keep, donate, or toss. Donations may be a bit more complicated for lawn tools and recreational equipment, but you'd be amazed by all that members of your local Buy Nothing group will take off your hands. Consider adding a fourth pile to the mix: items you want to keep that happen to belong inside the house.
Once you've determined which items make the cut, find a safe space to store them until you're finished cleaning your garage. This could be your shed or basement, although you can temporarily keep less-fragile items on your driveway or even your lawn. The key is to get everything out of the way so you can focus on removing dirt and grease.
Make All Surfaces Sparkle
With junk out of the picture, you should be ready to clean all the surfaces in your garage. As with any interior room, you'll find the most success with a top-to-bottom approach. Dust and scrub any shelving units, as well as the wall and the windows. Use a high-quality vacuum to remove cobwebs or dirt from the walls. The right vacuum attachments and accessories will ensure that you reach every nook and cranny.
Next up: the floor. Skip your usual broom and use a high-powered vacuum such as the Kirby Avalir 2. If, once you've completed this key step, you notice stubborn stains, use specialized products to remove them. Depending on the product, you may need to let your garage floor dry overnight after you apply the stain or grease remover.
Create Organizational Zones
Now that your garage is spick-and-span, it's time to create an organizational system that will keep it that way far into the future. Instead of returning items haphazardly, create an optimized layout that incorporates three or four distinct zones for different types of items. Common examples include:
- Automotive essentials
- Yardwork and gardening supplies
- Children's toys
- Sporting equipment
- Trash and recycling
Now, determine where, exactly, these zones will exist. Consider who needs to access specific types of items and when. Outdoor toys or sports items, for example, may need to be placed close to the ground so that your children can reach them. Tools that you barely use can safely be stored out of reach, but daily or weekly essentials will need to be easily accessible.
Finally, label all garage zones. Remember: you shouldn't be the only person responsible for keeping this space organized. If other household members know where specific types of items are supposed to be kept, they're more likely to place them in the appropriate areas.
Make the Most of Vertical Space
Do the majority of your garage-based items tend to gather in a heap on the ground? Chances are, you've yet to implement accessories that help you place these out of tripping territory. A solid shelving system is a must, but you can also easily install hooks, racks, and other versatile solutions that will evolve alongside your ever-changing storage needs. Look to resources such as Pinterest or lifestyle magazines for garage cleaning ideas; you may be surprised by the creative solutions you encounter.
Keep Refreshing Your Garage
Even the best tips for cleaning your garage will prove ineffective if this is a strictly once-per-year initiative. A few minutes of decluttering and vacuuming can make a world of difference if you commit to cleaning at least once each week. Build this into your cleaning regimen, and you'll be amazed by how long you can go without needing to perform a second garage overhaul.