How to Remodel Your Garage to Make It More Functional



Although it is often an overlooked space when it comes to remodeling, the truth is that there is a ton of unused space in the garage. Smart remodeling projects, however, can maximize the storage, and even make the garage look stylish. Also, if you are not using the garage for your car or workshop, you can transform it into a storage room, home office or anything else you normally lack space for in your home. So, if you are planning to overhaul your garage this year, here are some ideas that could help you.

Start with a clean slate

Regardless of which remodeling project you choose, you need to start with a clean canvas to get a good idea of what you are working with and how to accomplish what you want. This means you need to take everything out from the garage. This includes removing the shelves and old carpeting if you had one. It would be best to draw your plan, at least approximately.

Decide about the purpose

If you need a garage for your car and additionally to store a few items, you won’t have to do a lot of work in the remodeling. Possibly, you will need to update the shelving and flooring . Lighting changes are always welcome. If you want to create a workshop, you need to work on smart storage solutions that can help you remain organized. Finally, if you are planning to turn your garage into a room it wasn’t originally supposed to be, such as a man cave, a gym or a home office, you will need to work more on insulation, décor, flooring and other things.

Create zones

If you have a big garage, why limit it to just one purpose? After you have removed all the things from the garage, look closely at the space and consider where you could use hanging storage, workstation, cabinets, mudroom, gardening gear, sports equipment, office space or another purposeful zone you have in mind.

Start from the ground up

Your flooring solution speaks a lot about the purpose of your garage. If your garage will be a place for your car and excess items from your house, you can go for water-resistant epoxy floors. These are a great choice because they resist grease stains, chips and water, and are easy to clean. Home offices, gyms, man caves and other similar rooms will require carpeting for warmth and comfort. However, you should know that carpet installation in Sydney, Australia and carpet installation in Quebec, Canada are not the same. Because of the mild and often hot temperatures, Sydney doesn’t require lush wool carpets and you can get away with carpet tiles which are best suited for high-traffic zones.

Take care of the walls

If you want your garage to be cool in the summer months and warm in the winter months, you should insulate the walls. And if you’re at it, you can make your walls more convenient for storage by installing PVC slatwall. This will make it easy to hang shelves, tools, baskets and other equipment, making the wall a very flexible storage solution. If you leave some walls bare, you can paint them to create a better aesthetic appeal.

Never enough of storage

Now that you’ve got most of your garage in order, you should prevent any future clutter by providing enough storage. Your PVC wall will have you covered for a part of the equipment you have, but you should also provide more closed storage, such as slim drawers, wheeled cabinets that can be tucked away when you don’t need them, and tall cabinets that use the space to its full potential, taking advantage of the garage’s high ceilings.

Light up

Finally, lighting is another thing that depends on the purpose of your garage, but functionality should be your guide in any case. A ceiling fixture is never enough for the garage, and you will need a lot of task lights to cover the area of your workstation, office desk or any other zone where you will be working. Fluorescent light fixtures (8ft. long) can easily maximize the illumination of the garage.

Things you can reuse, repurpose and DIY

Garage storage and other organizational issues can be solved the traditional way: you buy and install a shelf; you put the trash bags in a drawer, etc. However, there are many more interesting and efficient ways to organize your garage, and they usually cost next to nothing, because you can do them on your own. Here are a few ideas:

  • Turn a filing cabinet horizontally, remove the drawers, repaint it if you wish, and use it to store shovels, rakes and more.

  • Color-code your circuit breaker box so that you are always sure which button to press.

  • Make a rack for trash bags which will make it easier for you to clean up your garage and make the space more functional.

  • Use chalkboard paint to label storage boxes, bins and drawers.

  • Install a hanging hook for cords and wires.

  • Use a magnetic strip to keep your tools organized.

  • Use plastic toy boxes to store things you are not using frequently.

  • Have a safeguarded place to collect old batteries and other potentially dangerous recyclables.

Make it safe

Safety should be your number one priority. That’s why you should keep a 5- to 10-pound UL listed extinguisher mounted on an easy-access spot. It should be effective against electrical, oil and wood fires. Installing a carbon-monoxide detector is the second step towards a safer garage. Finally, the garage door needs to have an auto-stop feature to prevent the door from closing in case a pet or a child tries to sneak under them.

Things you shouldn’t store in your garage

When you start bringing the things you removed while remodeling back into the garage, you should know that not all the things belong there. Leftover paint people often keep in their garage could be ruined by extreme cold or heat, which is frequent in garages. Propane tanks need to be kept outdoors. Paper goods, such as documents and old newspapers, are better left in the pantry, because they’re magnets for bugs and pests.

Garages have a lot of potential, and if you plan everything right, you can get the extra space or convenience you’ve always wanted your property to provide.

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