Forget what happened and how was your garage, now it’s time to give a stunning makeover to that busy space. It is always exciting what goes into this hard-working area. Where else could you search a set that consists of a spare coffeemaker, chipped but useful flowerpots, rolled-up rugs, old baseball gloves, and 2-cycle motor oil?
Give this multipurpose space an organized shape is definitely a challenge but this article is going to be an easy solution to arrange your garage. Not only the kitchen or home, but a garage also demands your attention.
Before moving to the makeover ideas, check out what is available in your garage and what you want to add. Also, sort out what you want to throw. The way is to check each item, save or throw, otherwise sell that. Did somebody say ‘garage sale’?
1. Repairing the Floor
Even the best-kept garage floors can acquire cracks and stains over time. While cracks rarely indicate structural problems, they’re magnets for dirt and debris, and they’ll probably grow larger if you don’t repair them. So let’s start this makeover with crack repair and finish it up with a durable, stain-resistant concrete finish.
Fill hairline cracks and any cracks up to 1/8 inch wide with caulk – either concrete crack filler or an all-purpose urethane caulk. Don’t use silicone; floor finishes won’t stick to it. Larger cracks need to be repaired with mortar patching compound.
Remove loose material from the crack you’re repairing, and check for oil or grease stains that can prevent your patching compound from bonding. You can scrub these areas with strong detergent and rinse them clean, but it’s easier to simply abrade any stains with a stiff wire brush.
Make sure to wear protective gloves. Then follow the preparation and application instructions on your container of patching compound. Most patching compounds adhere better if the cracked area is thoroughly moistened before application. Use a trowel to apply the patching material. Pack it in and level it out. Part One of the job is done.
The next step is to apply the finish. You’ll need a roller and roller pan, as well as a brush. Concrete sealer, masonry sealer, patio and porch enamel paint, and garage floor epoxy are all acceptable finishes for your floor. Any of these protective coatings will make it easier to keep the floor clean, whether you’re sweeping out leaves and sawdust or swabbing up spills.
The product you pick depends on the look you like and the budget you’re on. A clear sealer is the most affordable garage floor finish, and when it gets worn, it can be renewed easily, just like sealers used on wooden decking. Paints let you change the color of the floor, and epoxy formulations offer the most durability but they’re also two or three times more expensive than paints and epoxies made for less rugged surfaces.
No matter what preparation you pick, make sure to follow the manufacturer’s directions for surface preparation. Most concrete floor finishes including epoxies call for an etching treatment to clean the surface and give it a better ‘tooth’ for finish adhesion.
2. Improving Garage Storage
Once you’ve sorted through the stuff in your garage and got rid of anything that doesn’t belong, storage space becomes the key to garage organization. There are two main ways to solve garage storage problems: hooks and shelves.
Hang it up. The huge variety of hooks and hangers available makes it possible to get all kinds of things from small garden snips to mountain bikes and rotary trimmers up off the floor. Here’s how to get the most from this vast variety of hang-up hardware:
- Don’t let the name fool you. ‘Rafter hooks’ don’t need to be fastened into rafters, and ‘ladder hooks’ can hold more than ladders. To find the right hook, hanger or clip, pay attention to its size and shape, not just its name.
- Watch your weight. Hardware that has to support heavy items like a bicycle or a sledgehammer should be fastened into studs or other framing members.
- A wood rack makes the most of hang-up hardware. If you want more freedom in locating your hanger hardware, make a simple storage rack. Screw 1-by-1 or 1-by-2 cleats to the wall studs, and then add 1-by-4 crosspieces as shown. Use 1/4-inch by 3 1/2-inch lag bolts driven through pilot holes for the cleats, 1 1/4-inch drywall screws for the crosspieces. No pilot holes needed if you use your cordless drill or driver. The crosspieces provide plenty of space for attaching all types of hanger hardware, and you can rearrange hangers without worrying about stud locations.
- Leave room for the car. Make sure that your hang-up work doesn’t intrude on the space necessary to move the car in and out of the garage, or on the space that passengers need to enter and exit.
- Shelve it. Garage gear that can’t be stored on hooks and hangers needs shelf space. While there are all kinds of utility shelving available, few offer the flexibility you get with standard-and-bracket systems.
- Installation is easy, too: fasten the standards vertically to the wall by screwing into studs. Then fit the brackets into standard slots at the shelf heights you want, and finally install your shelves.
Standard-and-bracket systems come in several weights, and what you need in the garage are heavyweight standards the kind with paired slots, not single ones. For shelving material, try 3/4-inch thick AC plywood, which is strong and not too expensive. It has one good side and one flawed side, which you turn to the wall.
You can have full-size sheets ripped down to shelf widths at the lumberyard or home center. To improve the shelves’ appearance and strength, cover their plywood edges with solid wood edging strips, as shown in the drawing. Notching the back of the shelf to fit around the standard is another nice touch.
3. Wiring Garage Lights and Receptacles
Many garages have too little power and are poorly lit. There are several ways to solve these problems. If your garage already has at least one light and one receptacle, you can tap into an outlet box and run new wire to new box locations.
Make sure that garage receptacles have GFCI protection in the form of a GFCI breaker at the service panel, or a GFCI receptacle on the outlet box that’s wired most directly to the service panel. If you can’t tap into an outlet box located in the garage, try finding an existing interior outlet box located in a common wall.
If neither of these approaches will work, don’t worry. There’s probably room at your main service panel to add new circuits for garage lights and receptacles. The receptacle circuit should be 20 amps, with GFCI protection. The lighting circuit can be 15 amps. There’s a little more work involved in this strategy, but you’ll be able to install as many light fixtures and receptacles as you want.
4. Managing a Portable Workbench
With some sort of portable or mobile workbench, you can pull the car out of the garage and have instant workshop space. A mobile bench also enables you to work in the driveway outside the garage an advantage when you’re sanding wood or using spray-on finish.
If you need a more substantial bench, there are ready-made rolling models available, like the mobile five-drawer work center from Rubbermaid.
Garage makeover is quite tricky and it requires your expertise. It could be a successful DIY project when you apply a proper plan and work according to that. With the above-mentioned garage makeover ideas, you can turn your garage into a flexible, organized, and functional space. Overall, you will have a well-organized garage for an efficient and peaceful working environment.