One of the best (and possibly the most dreaded) summer projects of them all is cleaning out the garage. The garage can easily become a catch-all for things you and your family don’t quite know what to do with just yet. Boxes of items meant for donation, holiday decorations, lawn care items, garden supplies, tool boxes, a bucket of car washing items, sporting equipment, half completed projects – you get the picture. The garage is one of the few places in a home where you can simply shut the door, walk away and forget about the mess, but oftentimes it can be a huge source of stress. Use the nice weather of summer to your advantage and clean out the garage with these five steps.
STEP #1: Empty the Garage
Pick a day when the weather is on your side and pull everything out of the garage and place it in your driveway or yard. Avoid starting in one corner and just tackle the entire mess head-on by pulling out everything all at once. This will help you assess all you have, the level of dust and dirt and it will keep you motivated to finish the project. You can even recruit your family members to help.
STEP #2: Sort Items
Once everything is out of the garage, sort everything into piles like: keep, donate and/or sell, recycle and/or toss. Go through everything once then go through everything again. Each time, seriously consider whether or not you will use certain items again. Be realistic about it. Sporting goods sitting around that haven’t been used in over a year? It’s probably time to donate or sell. Garden supplies you use during the spring and summer months? Keep! Rusty tools? Repair or toss. Give yourself full permission to let go and stop holding onto things you think you will “one day” get around to using or repairing.
STEP #3: Clean
It’s time to put that outdoor broom to good use. Thoroughly clean out all garage corners and crevices then mop away the leftover mess. Wash down the walls and if you are feeling extra motivated you can even repaint them. Before moving on, make sure everything is dust free. This will prevent you and your family from tracking in garage dirt and dust later on.
STEP #4: Select Storage Bins
Is it just us or does everything in the garage seem to be oddly shaped? Big and bulky is a theme, so invest in shelving or storage bins that can help you easily store all of your items. A few storage tips:
- Keep tools off the floor so they stay away from moisture and instead store them in clearly labeled bins, on peg boards or organize them on a workbench/workstation.
- Sporting goods can be kept in bins, large totes or even repurposed trash cans. Just be sure you wash them out before using them for alternative storage!
- Hang large items like bicycles, kayaks, ladders, shovels and rakes so they are protected from any possible threat of damage. This will also keep the garage floor clear of clutter.
STEP #5: Reassemble
Now that you have a clean garage, it’s time to put everything back together. Put the necessities back in place and in organized areas. With a clean garage, you may even find yourself inspired and motivated to revisit old outdoor hobbies like gardening, bike riding or woodwork.
Deep cleaning your garage may seem like a daunting task, but in the end, the rewards are well worth the effort!
After cleaning the garage, you and the family may have worked up a sweat and an appetite. Cool off with this fun freezer bag idea cream activity that the kids will enjoy and the entire family will be sure love.