How to Organize Your Garage

You know something’s gotta give when the clutter trumps the car. Take your parking space—and your sanity—back with these organization products and DIY ideas. 


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Start With the Basics: Racks & Storage

combined racks and storage

Photos courtesy of Gladiator Garage Works (top) and The Container Store

Photos courtesy of Gladiator Garage Works (top) and The Container Store

Gladiator GearTrack Pack* storage system gives the garage an organization overhaul. Thanks to versatile accessory kits, GearTrack wall panels hold everything from bikes to weed trimmers and are easy to mount with screws. Start small with just a few, or outfit the entire space. GearTrack Packs, from $30; Accessory Starter Kit, from $60; gladiatorgarageworks.com 

SafeRacks* free up floor space by creating storage on the ceiling. The most popular option is the 4’ x 8’, which can support up to 600 pounds of gear. Add hooks to the bottom to hold beach chairs, golf bags and more with ease. 4’ x 8’ Heavy Duty Storage Rack, saferacks.com, $425 

*CAVEAT: If you’re not an experienced DIYer, consider hiring a pro to install any wall and ceiling units. Yes, that costs money. But a flawlessly organized garage? Worth every penny!

Clear Weathertight Totes Cases by The Container Store are the gold standard of storage bins. Super-strong latches keep valuables air- and watertight, the cases stack easily and they’re clear so you can easily find what you’re looking for. container
store.com
, from $60/6

White Collapsible Crates with Clear Lids help if you’re short on space. They open to store out-of-season gear and fold back up when not needed. containerstore.com, $20 each

Large Tint Stackable Storage Drawers brighten the garage while leaving often-used items accessible. containerstore.com, $18 each


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Garden Hoses

garden hoses

Photos courtesy of Wayfair

Photos courtesy of Wayfair

Keeping your hose off the ground extends its life, so it’s either store on the wall or wheels.

Wall
Loop a hose over a wall-mounted hook inside the garage. Yard Butler Wall Mount Hose Hanger, homedepot.com, $17.

Wheels
Wrap it in a cart that unrolls the hose with a hand crank and goes where you need it. Metal Hose Reel Cart, wayfair.com, $114.

The Right Way to Drain Your Hose

  • Remove any kinks—this also prevents the hose from cracking.
  • If you have a spray nozzle, spray out the remaining water.
  • Remove any attachments and let the water drain.
  • Disconnect your hose from the outdoor spigot so that the end of the hose doesn’t freeze.
  • Wind the hose in a circular shape to prevent kinks and cracks, then store in a warm place.

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Paintbrushes

hanging paintbrushes

Photo by Marty Baldwin

Photo by Marty Baldwin

Hang paintbrushes (for drying and easy access) on a thin metal or wood dowel straddling two teacup hooks.


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All Things Garden

use a room divider to hang and organize

Photo courtesy of Ikea

Photo courtesy of Ikea

The Veberöd room divider is a perfect storage solution for all things garden. Hang seed packets and tools from the mesh wall (hooks are included), store kneepads and gloves in the canvas pockets underneath and stack supplies on the shelf. The best part: Just roll it right out of the garage when you’re ready to get growing. Veberöd, ikea.com, $129

Related Gardening & Plant Tips:


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A Makeshift Mudroom in Four Easy Pieces

individual locker and wall hooks

Photos courtesy of The Container Store (left) and West Elm

Photos courtesy of The Container Store (left) and West Elm

Individual lockers are a cool, clever way to contain everyone’s random stuff—just shut the door and the mess disappears. 54” Tall White Locker, containerstore.com, $299

Install hooks for coats, hats or bags. Monroe Trades Rustic Hooks and Eric Trine Bent Metal Wall Hooks, westelm.com, $18 each

Storage cubbies are a no-brainer—head to IKEA for the tried-and-true Kallax line. The units are easy to assemble and compatible with lots of different drawers and baskets. Kallax Shelf Unit, IKEA stores, $50 for the classic 2 x 2-shelf model 

An entryway bench does double duty as a place to sit while taking off mucky shoes and boots, then as a place to store them. Threshold Open Storage Wood Bench, target.com, $170


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Tool Zone

garage tool zone with pegboard

Photo by A-1 Affordable Garage Door Services/KristineO'Connor

Photo by A-1 Affordable Garage Door Services/KristineO'Connor

Store screwdrivers, hammers, and more with two classic (but effective) methods:

Pegboard storage with accessory kits lets you hang tools at eye level. Hardboard Pegboard, $18, and Blue Hawk 43-Piece Steel Pegboard Kit, $11, lowes.com 

Rolling tool chests keep tools out of sight and organized. They also come in fun colors. Viper Tool Storage 16" W 4-Drawer Tool Chest, wayfair.com, $299

BONUS: Extension cords
Be gone, tangled extension cords! The Wonder Winder winds up to 150 feet of cord in 30 seconds, easy. Wonder Winder Extension Cord Winding System, northerntool.com, $30 


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Sports Management: Boards & Boats

skateboard storage

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Boards
Skate- and snowboards are suddenly “elevated,” with a place to hang helmets too. Store Your Board Trifecta Rack, containerstore.com, $20

Boats
Suspend up to three kayaks from the wall or ceiling. Hanging Kayak Storage Strap, storeyourboard.com, $30


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Sports Management: Balls & Wheels

ball claws

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Balls
Ball Claws keep rolling objects off the floor and out of the way. Who knew volleyballs could look so chic mounted on the wall? Round Ball Claw, containerstore.com, $10 each. (P.S. Tall wire trash bins also control ball chaos effectively.) 

Wheels
You can store bikes all sorts of ways: hung with hooks from ceiling racks, mounted on a wall, even stacked on freestanding racks. What’s best totally depends on your space. For ideas, visit containerstore.com. Stow your helmet, tire pump, padlock, bike chain and more in a clever cubby: Cycloc Loop Helmet & Accessory Rack, containerstore.com, $25


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Sports Management: Sticks

stick storage

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Photo courtesy of The Container Store

Store your teen athlete’s wares with a rack that accommodates bats as well as lacrosse, hockey and name-your-sport sticks. Multi-Sport Stick Rack, containerstore.com, $30 


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DIY Floor Options

floor diy

Photos courtesy of The Home Depot

Photos courtesy of The Home Depot

Calling a professional to finish the floor can cost you upwards of $1,000, but here are three solid DIY options for less than half that. 

Hi-Gloss Epoxy with Flecks (left)  Requires multiple steps but yields a professional-looking finish. Rust-Oleum EpoxyShield Gray 2-Part High-Gloss Epoxy Garage Floor Coating Kit, homedepot.com, $99/2 gallons (covers up to 500 sq. ft.).

Interlocking Foam Tiles (middle) Removable option; perfect under a workbench to cushion feet. Stalwart Ultimate Comfort 24” x 24” Black Foam Garage Flooring, homedepot.com, $24/4.

Floor Paint (right)
A one-step solution that resists chemicals, oil and gasoline. BEHR Premium 1-Part Epoxy Concrete and Garage Floor Paint, homedepot.com, $35/gallon (covers up to 500 sq. ft.).