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17 Bright Ideas For Improving Your GaragePosted February 6, 2018 by Sue Prichard
The garage doesn’t get the treatment that other rooms do. Many of us lucky enough to own a garage let this space fall into disrepair, whilst others lets their garages become dumping grounds for household clutter. Here are just 17 ways that you could improve your garage and use it to its full potential.
- 1. Declutter. Before you can make any improvements, you’ll probably want to tidy your garage up. Whilst there may be some useful items stored here, there’s also likely to be a lot of useful items such as inherited belongings and remnants of forgotten hobbies. You might be able to sell some of this on second-hand sites or donate it to charities. Alternatively, you may find it more convenient to look into cheap bin hire and put as much of it into a skip as you can. Those with more organised garages may simply need to rearrange items.
- 2. Turn a wall into a pegboard. Pegboards are a cheap and easy way to hang items. This could help you to store garden accessories, DIY tools and other items in an organised manner. You can fit hooks and shelves into these holes, whilst other items can be simply hung on pegs.
- 3. Hang bikes vertically. You can even hang your bike on the wall. By hanging them on racks, two bikes can sit on top of each other, taking up less floor space.
- 4. Use other creative storage ideas. There are lots of other creative storage methods that could be worth trying out to keep you garage contents tidy. Magnetic racks can be useful for hanging metal tools like spanner and screwdrivers. Plastic tubs meanwhile can help to keep loose items separated – you can even buy a small chest of plastic drawers ideal for small items like screws and bolts.
- 5. Pest-proof your garage. Garages can often attract unwanted visitors such as mice, spiders and termites. It could be worth pest-proofing your garage by caulking up cracks. Anything large enough to fit a pencil is enough for a small mouse to crawl through, so bear this in mind. If your garage currently has a serious infestation problem, it could be worth calling in an exterminator.
- 6. Seal up the floor. If your garage floor is cracked or dirty, this might be the next issue worth addressing. A sealant can help to protect your garage floor from spillages, whilst also make it easier to clean. There are lots of waterproof sealant paints on the market. Concrete flooring that is in bad condition may need to be removed or covered over.
- 7. Improve your garage door. Garage doors need regular maintenance to keep them looking great and working effectively. Many can rust up or suffer broken cables after time. If this is the case, you could pay a professional to repair you garage door or install a new one. There are several garage door mechanisms to consider including traditional barnyard doors, swing-out garage doors and rolling garage doors. There are also different materials to consider such as wood, aluminium and fibreglass. It’s worth doing your research as each type of door comes with its own pros and cons. For example, rolling doors don’t require clearance space, so you can park another car right in front of them, but are more expensive than other mechanisms. When it comes to materials meanwhile, wood is a great insulator but not as secure as metal.
- 8. Use smart technology. Did you know that you can now install smart garage doors that can be operated using your smartphone? This could allow you to open the garage door whilst still in the car. Such apps can also tell you if your garage door is locked or unlocked.
- 9. Improve parking. Several DIY modifications to your garage could be made to improve parking. Hanging a ball on a string from a certain part of the garage roof could help you when reversing, allowing you to always leave the right amount of space. If your garage is narrow, you could also consider sticking foam rollers on the walls – this might prevent you and your passengers from damaging the car doors when opening them.
- 10. Wire in more lighting. Garages can often be gloomy places. If your garage doesn’t have any lighting, you could consider wiring some in. Motion-sensing lighting could be useful when pulling in late at night – both on the exterior and interior. Adding lighting is a job best left to a licensed electrician.
- 11. Bring in more natural light. You may be able to bring in some more natural light rather than wiring in extra lights. Adding windows on the side could be one way of doing this. Another option could be to add a skylight in your garage roof, which could allow sunlight to come in from above the light the space up.
- 12. Insulate. If your garage gets chilly in the winter, you may also want to add some insulation. You can buy lots of insulation materials to install yourself such as thermal wool and plastic insulation boards. If you want a more thorough form of insulation, it could be worth hiring a professional to insert some into the garage’s wall cavity. Certain garage doors such as fibreglass doors can also provide added insulation. If you don’t want to replace your garage doors, there are number of garage door insulation kits which you can try out instead.
- 13. Add heating. On top of insulation, you could also consider adding some heating to your garage. Adding some pipes and radiators could be a job best reserved to a plumber. Alternatively, you could install an electric heater. You could even place solar panels on your garage roof and use this energy for electric heating.
- 14. Divide it up into zones. If you’ve got a large garage, you might be able to keep it more organised by dividing up into zones. This could include a storage area, an area to park your vehicle and possibly a utility area. You could also create zones based on different themes such as car related items, DIY tools, gardening tools, bike-related item and camping gear.
- 15. Transform it into a workshop. Your garage doesn’t have to be used for your car or for general storage – in fact, it could be turned into a workshop for any DIY projects or creative hobbies. You’ll want to make a few modifications to make your garage worthy of a workshop. Your first step might be to build a workbench. If you plan to then add in some machinery, it could be worth wiring in some plug sockets. Other features such as an extractor fan could be worth also adding in, so that you don’t have to keep the garage door open all year round to ventilate the space. You’ll likely want to keep the floor made out of a rough material, although a decent sealant might make mopping and sweeping up debris easier.
- 16. Transform it into a home office. Your garage could also make a good home office. By being separate from the rest of the home, it might serve as a more private space to do your work without the distractions of the house. You may even be able to invite clients here without having to invite them into your home. A few modifications may be necessary to make this space more cosy including adding a more foot-friendly floor such as hardwood or carpet. Similar to a workshop, you might also want to wire in a few more sockets so that you have something to plug your PC into. You can keep a traditional garage door or build a more traditional door depending on personal preference.
- 17. Transform it into an extra bedroom. Your garage could even be turned into an extra bedroom. This could be a bedroom for an extra family member, a guest bedroom or even a room that you rent out to a lodger. By being separate from the rest of the home, it could give a guest or a lodger a little more privacy. Having an extra bedroom can also add value to your home. Bedrooms need to meet certain requirements such as having heating and electricity but adding all this shouldn’t be too costly. It’s cheaper than an extension and easier to pull off than a loft conversion in which you may need to raise the roof or add in a staircase to meet legal requirements.