How to Clean Your Garage and Your Garage Door
Owning a home in Cleveland, Ohio and the nearby Northeast Ohio area, you have your household seasonal chores. In the fall as well as in the Spring, it’s a good idea to put your garage on that list of chores. Action Door recommends you clean your garage every 6 months in order to get rid of the junk and dirt that’s collected over the previous seasons. This also gives you a chance to inspect your garage and your garage door for any repairs or needed upgrades.
A garage, like a shed or any building outside the house, can be difficult to keep clear of clutter. By their very nature they are a dumping ground for a host of items that obviously do not belong in the house, as well as many that should be. This doesn’t have to be true with your garage. With a few easy changes you can clean your garage and live a more stress free life.
Depending on your lifestyle, your hobbies and activities will make the contents of your garage a little different than anyone else’s. Garages also come in different sizes, some have doors into the house, some have storage space in the roof, and there are no two garages alike when you include the contents. But garages like any other place that contain clutter are not unconquerable with some effort, time and organization.
First off, you don’t want to do this in your best clothes. Grease, oil, or just plain dirt is most likely on the items in your garage and some of that dirt is bound to be on you as you clean.
If you park your car in the garage put it outside if you can while you clean your garage. This will give you a space to declutter your garage and save the bodywork on your car. Next, you’ll need to clear space to separate things. You’ll separate the things that belong in the garage, things that need to go inside the home and things that you need to get rid of.
Like any other room you need to pick a spot to start on. It doesn’t matter where you start to declutter, so long as you start. If you really are stuck and cannot decide just put your hand out and whatever is in reach start with that.
Work for 30 minutes, and then go do something else; you can always come back later and finish cleaning your garage.
Remember the garage contains many single items. They may be collected together in boxes, bags or piles, but they are all single items so deal with them as such. One item at a time.
You are going to need something to put trash in, a container to put the things in that should be in the house, a large plastic bag for things to put through the washing machine, a container to put stuff that can be donated, a bucket of hot soapy water and some old rags (for cleaning). You might want to take the vacuum cleaner to deal with the cobwebs and dust.
Look at your first item … you must now make some decisions
Should it live in the garage?
Should it be in the house?
Should it be in the trashcan?
If it should be in the garage then before giving it a wipe over with the hot soapy rag and putting it somewhere in the garage or in its home if it’s still without a home consider some more questions:
Are you likely to use it? An old can of paint in a color you dislike is past its best or just old should be thrown out. That item that will only take a little while to fix, but has spent the past six months in the garage, is it really going to be fixed? You have lived without it for six months!
Does it belong to someone else? Put it somewhere so that the owner can collect it or you can return it. If you are storing stuff for people outside your household, it might be an idea to let the owner know that you no longer have the space. Why clutter your garage with other people’s stuff?
If you haven’t used an item in ages and cannot foresee using it again in the future, do you really need it or is it just adding clutter to your garage?
If it should be in the house, put it in your container but don’t wipe it with that oily rag, it can be cleaned in the kitchen sink if necessary later. If it can be put in the washing machine put it in the plastic bag.
If its trash put it straight in the trash receptacle, if you no longer want it and it could be donated put it in your donation container.
Deal with each item one at a time. Be honest about each one and make your decision with confidence.
When you get down to a surface, clean it, even if it is only a square foot of surface. If you have now reclaimed a home for an object that you have dealt with but is sitting in your pile of things to put back, now would be a good time to put the object back where it belongs.
If your 30 minutes are up or you have finished for today throw that dirty rag away, empty your bucket of water, put your donate box in the trunk of your car, put the bag of soiled laundry in the washing machine, wash the things that belong elsewhere in the house and return them to the room where they belong, preferably right to its home.
Now reward yourself, feel good about what you have achieved. Tomorrow is another day and you can return and do some more. It will take a while before the garage is organized, but with each day you’re getting closer to a decluttered garage.
When you finish decluttering your messy garage, think about how to organize your stuff. This way you won’t need to clean your garage again in the next few months. Add shelving, drawers and wall hangers for different tools. Then inspect the garage door for routine maintenance. Do you need to replace lightbulbs or outlets? Do you need to seal your garage floor? Does your garage door motor need serviced or replaced? Does your garage door need to be insulated or replace the weatherstripping at the bottom? Call Action Door for any service calls or more tips on how to keep your garage and garage door in the best shape.