Whether you're moving into a new home, spring cleaning or looking to make your garage a safer place- it's important to know what belongs in the garage and what doesn’t. If you're looking to make more space inside your home, making the garage a home for any and all items can put your belongings at risk.
We've listed 5 items that should never be stored in your garage, and five items you might not know actually belong in the garage.
What not to Store:
If you’ve ever wondered if batteries can be stored in the garage, you're certainly not alone- this is a common garage storage question. Batteries have an average life expectancy that can be lengthened and shortened depending on how they're stored. You may have heard storing your batteries in the freezer helps them last longer, but professionals recommend 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Most garages are not climate controlled and change temperature along with the weather outside, because of this the garage doesn't make for a great battery storage area. Instead, store batteries in a cool dry place.
Take a look at this article from Pop Sugar Home, it details the best battery storage tips.
2.) Propane Tanks
One of the biggest mistakes we see made in garages is the storage of propane tanks, this is especially dangerous when paired with a cluttered, flame-prone garage. Propane Tanks are especially dangerous because the heat from your garage can cause the temperature of the tank to increase- resulting in a propane tank explosion.
Propane tanks are best stored outside on a flat surface. Uhaul has an excellent article on propane storage and stabilization.
3.) Temperature Sensitive Items
Unless your garage is climate controlled, it's important to pay attention to items that will be affected and possibly ruined by the swinging of temperatures. These items include:
- Canned Foods
4.) Pest Attractants
Pest attractants go beyond food and start with more simple items like paper products, clothing, and bedding. Paper products and cloth materials attract pests ranging from insects to mice and can be a headache for any homeowner. If you choose to store clothing in the garage, make sure it is stored in an airtight container to limit the chances of items being ruined.
5.) Anything with Emotional Value
Pictures of our loved ones and sentimental items are the last the items you should consider placing in your garage. Keeping these items indoors is the best way to ensure their safety. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, over 20% of property thefts occur in the garage. It's important to ensure your items of sentimental (and monetary) value are put in a secure place, away from any danger.
What to Store in your Garage:
1.) Light Bulbs
A common item that can be safely stored in the garage is light bulbs. Temperature does not affect the performance of the light bulb, making the garage a great place to store these.
If you choose to store light bulbs in a storage tote, make sure to label the items to ensure the tote is handled with care to keep the bulbs from breaking.
2.) Power Tools
Power tools can be safely stored in the garage so long as battery operated tools have their batteries removed. It is important, however, to make sure these tools are stored in a dry place to prevent rust from forming. If possible, try to create a consistent to store power tools. These expensive items are easier to take care of when properly organized.
3.) Garden Tools
Garden tools are an excellent item to keep in the garage and won't be harmed by temperature. These dirty items are best hosed off before storage if needed.
Make sure your garden tools are stored together in a group, not scattered all over the garage.
4.) Car Parts
Car parts and tools are best stored in the garage and won't be affected by temperature swings.
Motor oil can also be stored in the garage, for the most part. You can prolong the life of motor oil by keeping it in a temperature between 40 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
5.) Recreation Equipment
Any items you use for recreation are best to be stored in the garage for easy access and are safe to be there!
Any items you store inside the garage will be safest in a well-organized area, where you can clearly see where they are and if they belong. Check out our storage solutions here for the best ways to keep your items in top shape!