The 10 Best Garage Storage Systems
This wiki has been updated 22 times since it was first published in July of 2017. Yes, you could spend hours combing Pinterest for creative organizational methods, but you probably have better things to do than fashioning bungee cord constructions. Thankfully, excellent garage storage systems are plentiful and made to cope with nearly anything you need to manage, whether that’s sports equipment, an out-of-season wardrobe, your children’s toys and bikes, or holiday decorations. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
May 23, 2019:
Removed the Fleximounts Overhead Rack due to safety concerns, as well as the fact that it's difficult to install, especially single-handedly. In its place, we added the NewAge Products Bold 3.0, which is one of the most comprehensive storage solutions available. The high price point might make it a daunting purchase for the average user, but anyone looking to seriously overhaul their garage (or professional shop) should give it a long, hard look.
We tried to represent a wide range of options with this list, so we've included options designed for wrangling specific items (like the Suncast Organizer or the Champ Grip Organizer) as well as those intended to house a wide assortment of gear (such as the Akro-Mils Hardware Cabinet). The aforementioned Bold 3.0 is the most complete possibility listed here, as many of the others would function best if combined with additional storage systems.
We also tried to respect various budgets and price points, so you'll find items that will make handsome, permanent additions to your garage as well as more inexpensive, means-to-an-end solutions. Both types will help you finally tame the mess, but the former tend to be more durable and will likely offer more bang for your buck.
Baldhead Cabinets If you want a custom-made solution, this manufacturer will take into consideration your existing space before submitting a detailed CAD drawing for your approval. Regardless of which design you choose, you'll enjoy a sleek, reliable storage solution that will truly make your garage shine. baldheadcabinets.com
Garage Living Premium This isn't something you just throw into your existing garage, but if you're planning to remodel, these cabinets should earn heavy consideration. Made of fully-welded, 18-gauge stainless steel, they're incredibly rugged and durable, yet they manage to be absolutely gorgeous as well. garageliving.com
Elfa Platinum This model combines many of the storage possibilities listed above, including a stainless steel pegboard, bin space underneath the table, and plenty of available work space. It's extremely easy to adjust to meet your changing needs. containerstore.com
Important Reasons Why You Need To Organize Your Garage
You can trip over things, leading to falls that could seriously injure you.
Black holes. Chernobyl. Your garage. All are places that any human would fear to tread, as certain death (and, in the case of the latter, mild disapproval) would surely result. That might be slightly hyperbolic — at least, we hope it is — but if your garage has been overcome with clutter and debris, it's important that you get a handle on it as soon as possible.
One of the biggest reasons why you should declutter your garage is simply because it will allow you to better enjoy your own home. You won't have to constantly step over a ton of junk, and you may even be able to (finally) fit that second car inside.
It will also eliminate a source of potential embarrassment for you. You won't have to worry about company accidentally seeing how messy the room has become, or neighbors gossiping every time you open the garage door.
And while we may have been joking about certain death earlier, the fact is that a disaster of a garage can be dangerous. You can trip over things, leading to falls that could seriously injure you. Also, if you're constantly shoving things aside to add to the pile, be aware that the pile may one day turn on you, and drop a few falling objects on your head.
Also, a lot of junk can instantly be transformed to kindling in the event of a spark, so think about how much you're piling up. Garage fires can spread faster and be more dangerous than other fires, largely because they're usually not noticed as quickly and because most garages are filled with chemicals that can create especially-dangerous flames.
In fact, those chemicals can be dangerous even if they never go up in smoke. Certain household products (like bleach and ammonia) can be deadly if they interact with one another, and if you're not well-organized, you could easily accidentally spill them and unleash potentially lethal chloramine vapors.
Finally, once you get a handle on the mess in your garage, it can help you clean up your home, as well. You'll suddenly have a lot more storage space, so you can move stuff that's in your way out of the house entirely.
And that means that you have good reason to buy more stuff.
A Sound Strategy For Winning The Clutter War
If you've let your garage get out of control, it may seem like you'll never be able to rein it in again. While we won't promise that it will be easy, there are a few ways to finally get the upper hand on the chaos.
The first — and most important — step is to reduce the amount of stuff you're storing inside. There's only so much a storage system can accomplish if it's overwhelmed with junk, so get rid of everything that's useless, broken, or little-used. You can have a garage sale if you like, or just give stuff away.
You can have a garage sale if you like, or just give stuff away.
This is a big project, so it should be all hands on deck for your family. Divide everything into four piles: keep, donate, sell, or toss. If you're struggling to decide what to do with an item, ask yourself if you've used it in the past year, and if not, ditch it. Expensive items can be difficult to part with, but if they're just gathering dust, you're better off without them — so don't commit yourself to the sunk cost fallacy.
Once you've whittled everything down to the bare necessities, it's time to organize it. A lot of how you organize it will be dictated by the storage system you use, but there are a few strategies that can help. Try to keep frequently-used items in a place where they're easy to get to and see, especially your tools, and any things that are often used together should be kept together.
An important thing to remember when you're finished is that you're only likely to keep the area clean if you make it easy to put things back where they belong. Make your organization efforts as intuitive and common-sense as possible.
Finally, be sure to reward yourself once you've accomplished your goal. We suggest a massive amount of chocolate — just be sure to throw the wrappers away when you're done.
Things You Should Definitely Toss
One of the hardest things to do when cleaning up your garage — or any part of your home, really — is deciding what to get rid of. We can't help with everything, but there are a few items you might have lying around that you have no reason to hold onto.
It's a little bit of a hassle, but it's better than leaving that stuff in your garage.
Old paint and cleaning supplies should be the first to go. Obviously, you can't just throw these in the trash, so you'll have to find someplace near you that handles hazardous materials. It's a little bit of a hassle, but it's better than leaving that stuff in your garage.
If your kids have any toys they've outgrown, those should be taken to Goodwill or someplace similar, unless they're too trashed to be of use to anyone (the toys, not the kids). Likewise, you should get rid of any athletic equipment you're not likely to use anymore, giving you even more space for a new set of golf clubs.
Generally speaking, anything that you forgot you owned can likely be thrown away without much thought; the only exceptions are any sentimental items you may come across. Remember, if you haven't needed it in a long time, chances are you won't need it for a long time, if ever.
Eliminating these items will likely go a long way towards decluttering your garage, and if you don't spend too much time agonizing over them, you can quickly make a sizable dent in the mess, giving you the motivation to continue.
Well, that and the stiff drink you promised yourself when you're done (preferably one that pairs well with chocolate).