For many Americans, the garage has become an extension of the home, morphing into a living area, home gym and even workspace. Given how multifaceted they’ve come to be, it’s really no wonder they’re a mess — especially since 53% of U.S. adults surveyed use their garage or workspaces in their home for DIY projects. Of those surveyed, millennials are the most frequent garage DIYers at 62%, followed by Gen X at 56% and Gen Z at 54%. In keeping with these DIY tendencies, 31% of adults surveyed report they store arts and crafts materials in the garage.
What’s more, nearly 80% reported power tools and hand tools as the top products in the space, while 76% keep outdoor tools and equipment inside. In fact, 61% of adults say they have so many tools, that keeping them organized is a must — even if many just don’t.
Given more than half of Americans with a garage (52%) are unsatisfied with how it’s organized, enough is enough, right? It’s time to take back your garage, turning the most misused area of your home to one of the most functional — and organized — parts of your abode. It starts with breaking decluttering into digestible bits.
Sort, evaluate and purgeCraftsman
While a big organizational undertaking can feel overwhelming at first, getting started is — as they say — the hardest part. Begin by sorting your belongings. Seeing what’s what better positions you to evaluate, and eliminate, unwanted goods.
Have unwanted power tools, hand tools and tool accessories — even those with lithium-ion batteries? Recycle them for free with the help of Stanley Black & Deck’s Recycling program with TerraCycle. Eligible brands include BLACK+DECKER®, DEWALT®, CRAFTSMAN®, STANLEY®, PORTER-CABLE®, IRWIN®, LENOX®, MAC TOOLS® and BOSTITCH®.
Start with a clean slate
Now that you’ve gotten rid of unwanted items, it’s time for a proper cleaning. Start by sweeping out the space to remove dirt, dust and grime. Then, use the CRAFTSMAN’S V20* Cordless Axial leaf blower to help further clean. Its handy integrated scraper helps loosen and whisk away stubborn remaining debris.
You might also consider enlisting a cordless vac for cleaning smaller areas or a wet/dry vac that’s made for demanding jobs. Next, power wash the space so it’s refreshed and clean.
Set yourself up for success
Given the most commonly performed tasks in U.S. garages surveyed were automotive maintenance and home renovation projects (each 46%), followed by woodworking (41%), leisure activities like socializing and hosting parties (33%) and furniture restoration or redesign (26%) proper storage is a must. When asked about storing outdoor equipment, 62% keep their leaf blower in their garage, followed by string trimmers (57%), walk-behind lawn mowers (51%), hedge trimmers (49%) and chainsaws (48%). In other words, it’s a lot of stuff and that stuff needs a place to go if you’re to avoid clutter from happening again.
The survey found 52% prefer that their tools and storage systems match in their garage. So, this is a great time to evaluate your tools and upgrade when appropriate. Consider buying into a cordless platform such as CRAFTSMAN’s V20* system.
Also, consider investing in organization systems designed for the task at hand. Take advantage of vertical space with a track wall system such as CRAFTSMAN’s VERSATRACK™ starter kit, which can be installed as individual strips or can support pegboard, with accessories like hooks that can be held on the track wall and end caps to create a finished look.
When it comes to shelving and hooks, remember to keep heavier gear stored on lower levels and lighter things placed higher up. Also, utilize the ceiling rafters and beams in your garage for storage — they’re ideal for long, skinny objects (think ladders and yard tools).
Next up is metal storage. A mobile, rolling tool cabinet and matching chest is just the ticket for frequently used hand tools, like hammers, screwdrivers and wrenches. Meanwhile, sturdy cabinets are ideal for storing heavy tools and equipment. On top of being functional, such systems are flexible and can grow with you.
Finally, it’s helpful to enlist portable storage – It’s great to also have a portable storage bag or rolling stacking system, such as CRAFTSMAN’s VERSASTACK™ tote and tower, to easily transport product from your garage to your project area easily.
Maintain the spaceCraftsman
The last, but certainly not least, is keeping your garage clean. Think of your garage in sections, designating areas for garden equipment, car care, outdoor equipment and the like.
A good rule of thumb for tidying any space is to ensure everything has a dedicated storage space. Accomplish this with the help of lidded plastic bins, cubbies and large, open baskets. They don’t need to be fancy — just functional. Then, don’t forget to label them.
Now that your garage is clean and organized and everything is accessible, it’s easier to stay organized. You just need to commit to the art of mise en place (“everything in its place”).
To learn more on ways CRAFTSMAN can help take your garage back visit https://www.craftsman.com/own-the-garage.