May 26, 2013 Updated: May 26, 2013 at 9:00 am
It might not be first on your to-do list, but give the garage a little TLC and you'll be surprised at how good it feels.
Whether it's a true garage that is attached to your house or a garden shed, the reality is that we use this space as a big storage bin that holds anything that doesn't fit indoors. As the years go by and the family grows, the accumulation can be scary.
Gav Givon from OnWall Solutions (onwallsolutions.com) makes it his business to transform the dreaded garage into a space that is not only organized to the last skateboard and screwdriver but is also easy to maintain. Just as you would do for an interior room, take the space one large surface at a time - ceiling, walls and floor, and then add storage solutions.
Empty the garage, sweep it clean and do a careful inspection. Any leaks, water damage or mold must be dealt with first. It might be time for a new roof; patch cracks in the walls and decide what you would like to do with the floor. It is just as important that the floor is waterproof.
Existing concrete slabs need to have cracks filled and the surface treated and sealed. Givon recommends Polyurea manufactured by Citadel. A concrete floor that has been prepared properly and sealed with Polyurea will last for years. Highly resistant to oil stains, deterioration from salts, gasoline and other contaminants, Polyurea "moves with the concrete," is eco-safe, low-odor, slip-resistant, durable and can be custom colored.
To organize tools and sports equipment for easy access, Givon recommends a combination of solutions. PVC Slatwall panels make up a modular wall system that comes in a range of sizes and colors to accommodate your wall size and design specifications. There are brackets for accessories, including a range of specialty hooks, baskets and bins, and apparatus for sports equipment. This is an invaluable solution for vertical storage that frees up floor space while keeping equipment in order.
Slatwall panels fit easily around utility cabinets. There are various cabinet components on the market that fulfill the need. CTech lightweight custom aluminum cabinets come in nine powder-coated colors or can be custom colored. The G-cart fits under the counter and can be rolled out and moved to be close to your work station.
Overhead storage is a useful final component with sturdy hanging shelves. See-through baskets help with the search for whatever you have stored. Givon also has motorized lifts to help with heavy loads. These ideas are good solutions for outdoor garden sheds, basements, indoor workshops, hobby and crafts rooms, laundry rooms and mud rooms. Properly designed panels and storage accessories give you the freedom to work, play and live a little easier.
House to Home is produced by Debbie Travis and Barbara Dingle. Email your questions to house2home@debbie travis.com.