The longest days of the year are here and endless summer nights have just begun. Biking, lake trips, and camping are only a few among the adventures that await. However, they all come with a not-so-small load of bulky equipment.
There are various things to consider when using the garage for storage in the summer months. Most importantly, cars should still be able to fit comfortably in the space without fear of dents and scratches. UV rays can be extremely harmful to car paint and no one wants to sit in the sauna of a car that is permanently stored outside. If the car is indefinitely exiled to the driveway or street, it may be time to consider a new garage organization plan.
By utilizing garage wall space, heavy and light equipment alike can share space with cars. Here are a few simple tips to create the perfect summer storage space:
- De-Clutter the Garage
Two words: garage sale. The first step to any organization project is to get rid of items that are never used. ‘Keep what you know, and throw what you don’t’ is a great general guideline to follow. Popular items that don’t make the cut include boxes of old paperwork, paint, outdated clothing, old electronics, and broken cords and cables. Make sure to check if the items should be thrown away, recycled, or donated. Items that make the cut should be sorted into distinctive piles:
- Summer activity equipment
- Home maintenance and repair supplies
- Sports gear
- Gardening and yard tools
- Holiday decorations
Once the items are separated, it’s time to consolidate.
- Consolidate Items
Storing similar items together streamlines household routines and leaves extra time to enjoy the summer. During these summer months, make sure there are designated spaces in the garage for small and bulky items.
Small items can include office supplies, sports items like balls and gloves, tools like hammers and nails, and gardening supplies. Since summer months are a prime time for house renovations and outdoor play, consider keeping many of these items in an accessible location, such as by the house-facing door. They should be kept in plastic bins or small plastic, closable boxes. Never store garage items in cardboard boxes, as they are often exposed to damaging substances.
Bulky items include lawnmowers, snow blowers, bikes, and camping and beach equipment. During the summer months, snow blowers should be moved to the furthest corner of the garage to make room for more essential materials. Bikes and helmets should always hang on wall hooks for protection and to save space, but in a reachable location for everyday rides.
- Invest in a Storage System
Storage systems are essential to today’s residential communities. In garage spaces, heavy-duty wire and laminate systems tend to be the most durable for the demanding environment. Systems with stain-, scratch-, and impact-resistant powder-coated cabinetry are best for protecting smaller stored items.
Remember to also include a sufficient amount of hooks and ventilated wire shelving for those grab-and-go needs. Wire shelving allows for visibility of items and provides a minimal yet sturdy alternative to cabinetry. Certain shelving systems can even hold up to 100 pounds per linear foot—like ClosetMaid Heavy Duty Shelving. Here are a few deciding factors to consider when choosing a garage storage system:
- Realistic wall space available in the garage
- Possible depth of space available against the wall
- Wire, laminate, or a mixed system
- Open wire shelving or cabinetry
- Fixed or adjustable mounting systems for shelves and cabinets
- Hooks and ceiling-hangs
While having this great storage space sounds appealing, choosing a system and installing it can be the most frustrating task. Luckily, there are professional installers who evaluate the space, choose the correct system features, and install the system in just a short time.
To see how one Toll Brothers family utilizes their garage space for luxury cars, check out the “Luxury Life” episode on Toll Lifestyle TV.
Toll Brothers’ partner ClosetMaid contributed to this story. TLTVMaintenance