Start Cleaning and Organizing Your Garage Today
July 20th, 2022
Summer is one of the best times of year to do a deep-clean of your garage. Provided the weather cooperates and isn’t too hot, you can easily use the sunshine and warm weather to clear out some extra stuff from this valuable storage space. But if you’re not sure how to clean and organize your garage, you’ve probably got some questions about how to get started. Luckily, 10 Federal Storage can help. We’re pretty good at cleaning, moving, and organization. We can help give you some great clean garage organization ideas and help you with the process of decluttering from start to finish.
Deep Cleaning Tips for Your Garage
What’s the best way to clean a garage? Carefully. It’s probably been a while since you’ve given it a good cleaning, so it’s worth it to take things slow and make sure you’re focused—not to mention that there are probably plenty of sharp or heavy items in your garage that pose the potential for injury if improperly handled. Only after you give it a good clean can you start to organize and declutter. For starters, the right cleaning materials make all the difference. If you don’t have the following things handy, make a trip to the store to pick them up:
- Push broom
- Trash bags
- Wet/dry vacuum
Move everything out before you start cleaning.
The best way to clean a garage is to give yourself space to do it. If there are vehicles parked inside, move them out and park in your driveway or along the street. If your garage is the only place to park your lawnmower, move it out, too. Once your vehicles are out, start moving items away from the walls.
Sweep the floors and dispose of any trash.
Using a push broom and dustpan, sweep out the corners of your garage and move as much dirt and debris toward the center of the room as possible. You’d be amazed how many spider webs, leaves, and dust can collect along the walls of a garage, especially if you’re only spending a few minutes out there each day to get in and out of your car. The wet/dry vacuum you hopefully have will come in pretty handy once all that debris is moved away from the wall. Suck up as much as possible and empty it into your trash bags. For larger items that may clog the sweeper, you can pick them up and toss them in the trash.
Check for cracks or other issues while the floors are bare.
While you’ve got your floors exposed, consider looking carefully for any structural issues. If you notice large cracks or uneven floors, consider getting a concrete professional or structural engineer out to take a look at them. Uneven floors and cracks can be a sign of foundation problems, which may prove costly to your home if left unrepaired.
Empty drawers of items you don’t need.
Once your floors are clean, it’s time to go through any cabinets or shelves and pitch items you don’t need or use that often. If you haven’t thought about it in a year or longer, it might be time to toss it. Any packaging, cardboard boxes, or other trash that you’ve stashed away should be thrown out.
Schedule a bulk pickup for anything large.
Got something large that needs to be tossed out? Schedule a bulk pickup with your local trash company. This is often more cost-effective than buying a “dumpster in a box” from your local home store. In many cases these can be scheduled during your normal trash pickup day.
Tips for Organizing Your Garage
So, you’ve cleaned out your garage and are ready to move onto organization. Great! Just like cleaning, there are a few tools and purchases you should think about before you start organizing. Make a list of items you might need to buy to save trips, but common recommendations include:
- Pegboards and pegs for tool storage
- Cable reels for extension cords
- Easy-to-assemble shelving
- Clear plastic bins
- Markers and labels (or masking tape)
Once you’re home from the store, you’re ready to start tackling projects.
The number one rule when storing items is to think vertically. Buying shelves that can be quickly assembled or screwed to the walls above your vehicles can offer much needed storage space and free up room on the floor of your garage for heavy items that just can’t be put up high.
Use your walls as much as possible.
Speaking of walls, install a pegboard on as many surfaces as you can. Pegboards allow you to hang just about anything, from tools to extension cords to nails, screws, and other hardware.
Use clear bins to help find things faster.
For any items that live on shelves, put them in clear plastic bins and label what’s inside. Skip cardboard boxes that you’ll have to pull down to fish through.
Create a map for future reference.
Don’t want to get disorganized again? Make a map. It doesn’t have to be fancy. Label what kinds of items can be found on each wall or shelf and pin the map just inside the door of your garage. If you’re really enthusiastic, you can draw outlines of everything hanging on your walls, so you know exactly where it goes when it’s time to put it away.
Options for Items that Aren’t Needed Anymore
If you do decide that there are items you want to get rid of, don’t immediately reach for the trash bag. Properly dispose of any hazardous materials like old paint or chemicals. For everything else, you have a few options: Plan a yard sale or estate sale to try and make money on what you’re planning to pitch. Be sure to check with your HOA or neighborhood to follow all rules. Donate the goods to an organization that can put these items with people who may need them. Find offsite storage at a local storage facility that can meet your needs.
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