Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Spring Cleaning Your Garage

We understand that the idea of cleaning out your garage probably sounds as exciting as going to get a root canal.  However, after a winter of cold weather induced neglect, our garages can get pretty dirty and cluttered.  Items left over from home projects such as paint and wood scraps get shoved in a corner because it seems the easiest place to store them.  Random boxes end up stacked next to the garbage can because it is cold and we don't want to deal with them.  And on top of all of this are the lawn mower, snow blower, rakes, shovels, tools and bikes that most of us have stored in the garage.  It is no surprise that by spring, we can barely pull our car into our garage without running into something!

We ask our garages hold a lot.  A little bit of time invested in taking care of your garage and the items inside it will have you feeling more organized and give your vehicles some much needed space.  Here are some helpful tips to get you started.

1) Recycle hazardous materials -
Do you have old paint, oil or other hazardous materials stored in your garage that can't be thrown in the garbage?  There are many businesses and other facilities that will accept and recycle hazardous materials.  To find out the options in your community, go to  Simply input the item you want to dispose of and your zip code and the website will provide a list of nearby options.

2) Look up for storage -
Most garages have ample overhead space so why not utilize it?  Install suspended shelving from the ceiling or a high shelf along a back wall for extra storage that it out of the way yet still easy to access.

3) Garage door tune up -
Can you believe that along with getting up to change the television channel, you used to have to get out of your car and open your garage door?  Oh, the horror!  Along with the TV remote, the garage door opener has to be one of the most highly utilized and under appreciated household inventions.  To keep you garage door working on command, look to this article from Handyman Magazine that describes a handful of maintenance tasks, each requiring less than 10 minutes.

4) A good sweep -
Although it sounds like a big task, removing all the items from your garage and sweeping it out is a great way to force yourself to analyze its contents.  Don't worry, it will go faster than you think and the results will be amazing!  So drag everything out, give your garage a good sweeping and then analyze each item as you put it back in to decide if you still need or use it.  If you haven't touched it in a couple of years or if you can't even remember what it is for, you probably don't need it anymore.  You will be surprised at how many items you end up disposing of and, when you are finished, you will have gained back a lot of garage space. 

Looking for more?  Check out the Closets For Life website for garage organization solution ideas. Closets For Life is a custom closet company that works with residential clients as well as designers, builders and architects to create innovative storage solutions for all organizational needs including closets, offices, garages, pantries, laundry rooms, wine cellars and Murphy beds. Closets For Life is a family owned and operated business. 

For a free in-home consultation, contact Closets For Life by phone at 952-484-0416 or by email at You can also visit our website at

Shawnessy Schwartz
Closets for Life Aficionado

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