Ask a House Cleaner, Garage Cleaning, Savvy Cleaner

Garage Cleaning

Garage cleaning is necessary when you have lots of stuff in storage and there is no room for your vehicles.

But what do you do when your garage is full of crap and you don’t have a system in place to organize it? Garage cleaning doesn’t come naturally to most.

Today on Ask a House Cleaner we look at garage cleaning and choices about your stuff. Is your garage a storage unit? Do you have seasonal stuff you are storing? Holiday ornaments? Sporting goods? Food storage? Garden supplies, or household tools?

Angela Brown, The House Cleaning Guru says it may be time for a massive clean. Pull everything out and sort everything into piles. Get stuff up and off the floor. Get racks that hang on the garage wall that hold your garden tools. Plus more advice and best tips for 2017.

Today’s show sponsor is

HouseCleaning360 is a business referral network for house cleaners and maids and housekeepers.

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Hey there, I’m Angela Brown, and this is Ask a House Cleaner. This is a show where you get to ask a house cleaning question, and I get to help you find an answer.

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Question: Garage Cleaning

Garage Cleaning - bunch of crap and junkToday’s question comes from a homeowner who has a double garage. There’s no room for his cars because it’s full of stuff, and he wants to clean it out. He also has a storage unit that he’s paying for. And he wants to take all the stuff from his storage unit and store it in his garage so it will save him some money.

So, his question is “How do I go about organizing my garage? Because I’m not good at it and it’s just full of crap.”

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Answer: Garage Cleaning

Okay, that’s a great question. And and yes, you are correct. The purpose of a garage is to store your vehicles. Because that way they’re out of the elements. And it preserves the life of the paint, the tires and the vehicle itself. By not being out in the high heat of summer or the frigid winter temperatures. So, having your car in the garage is awesome.

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Create a System

You start by having a system. And once you create the system it’s easy to maintain. 

This is a system that I recommend. Do a great big massive clean one time.

Then throughout the year, you are just maintaining. 

Pick two months, say April and October that you will do clean out the garage. 

In your bi-annual cleanouts, you will only have to pick up a few things that are not in the correct place. Putting everything back where it goes, and making sure that it’s top notch.

Go From Clutter to Top Notch

How do you go from messy to clean and organized? Okay, so we all have stuff in our garage.  And we will argue that we need all that stuff. But do we need it? 

Garage Cleaning - Garden FertilizerHere’s what happens when we have a lot of stuff. When the stuff is out of sight it’s out of mind. And we forget that we have it.

For example, let’s say that you need a big bag of fertilizer for your yard this spring. And so, you go look in your garage and you can’t find any. So, you run down to the hardware store and you spend 50 or 80 bucks and you buy a bag.

Then when you clean out your garage you find out that you had two bags. But they were hiding under something and you didn’t know you had them.

That’s one of the risks and one of the cost of having a bunch of stuff in your garage that has no system, and no place. So, if you clean your garage twice a year that’s a system.

How Do You Clean The Garage?

Garage Cleaning - Seasonal stuffYou pull everything out. There’s no good way to do this. Just pull everything out, go through it and sort everything into piles. We’ll figure out a place for the piles later. 

As your sorting, start figuring out what you need and what you don’t. Ask yourself, “Do I need this stuff? Do I use it?”

Sometimes we feel that we need things that maybe we never use. So let’s be honest with ourselves.


To Keep or Not To Keep?

street signs read yes, no, maybe - house cleaner is late again

So, I was cleaning out my garage and I had a ceramic tile cutter. Because in one of the houses I lived in, I laid all the ceramic tile in most of the house. So I kept it, just in case I needed it in the future. 

I thought it was a pretty good investment. But the truth is it’s been hiding in a corner for my garage for about 10 years. And to be honest, I’ve never used it again. 

Chances are I’m never going to use it again. Most likely, I will never lay my own tile again. 

So, I decided to sell that. Because I’m never going to use it again. Why hang on to it? Why store it?

The truth of the matter is I was never going to use it again. Bye bye. Time for it to go.

Making Piles 

Garage Cleaning - Holiday Lawn OrnamentsWhat piles are we going to make? And what do I keep together? 

One pile could be seasonal stuff.

This could be like a Christmas tree or ornaments.  Or maybe lawn ornaments that you put out for Easter or Halloween.

Maybe it’s flags or tiki torches that you use on the Fourth of July. Now all this things can be in one spot in your garage that will be only for the seasonal stuff. 

Another thing that you might have a pile for are sporting goods or equipment. 

Garage Cleaning - Sporting goods pileThis could be skates, bicycles, golf clubs bats or gloves. Things like that should be together in one place. So that you’re not rumbling through everything, the next time you need it. 

You want to make sure you know where all the stuff is.

Food Storage 

Garage Cleaning - Food StorageAnother common thing stored in garages is food. Lots of people will have an extra refrigerator or freezer in their garage. If you have that, there needs to be a system.

How often do you go through and defrost those freezers?

How often are you rotating the food that’s in there? 

If you have shelves that with cans and bottled goods. How often are you rotating those and going through them so that you don’t max out the expiration dates? 

You need to have a rotation cycle. This way you get to update everything. 

So, if you do this twice a year you’ll be looking at all that stuff.  And defrosting the freezers, and upgrading the food, and eating the good stuff that you have. Instead of it going to waste. 

Garden Supplies and Tools

You might need to make an area in your garage for all your garden stuff. 

This may include fertilizer, Lime, ant killer, hornet spray.Garage Cleaning - garden tools

Whatever it is that you use in your yard or garden to maintain the outskirts of your home. That might be a spot you have so that every time you need fertilizer you’ll know where to look. 

You’ve taken care of the garden supplies, so what about the garden tools? The garden tools might be rakes, snow shovels, a blower, a hedge trimmer or a weed whacker, to name a few. 

A lot of big box stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s sell racks. These are racks designed to put inside your garage, so that you can hang all your tools on.

This way they are off the floor and out of the way. Plus it makes it much easier to clean the garage floor.  

Extra Space

So now there’s nothing on the floor! You have extra space and less clutter.  It looks nice and tidy.

You also have room to park your cars inside the garage. 

You have a space for everything and everything is in its space.

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It Takes Time, But It’s Worth It 

So, you’re thinking about upgrading your garage or organizing it. Yay!

Like I said it might take a week. It might take a weekend. It might take a couple of days. You may want to use a vacation day or two to pull everything out and go through it.

Remember, this is a one time deal (I hope!)

But once your garage is organized that’s an extension of your home.

And now you know where everything is. If you have a leaky pipe and need the toolbox you’ll know where to find it.  This makes things a whole lot easier.

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Toss, Donate or Sell?

And if you have stuff that’s in the storage unit, my guess is that you’re not using any of that stuff.

So, if you’re not using it, instead of bringing it to your garage, how much of that stuff can you sell?

Toss? Donate or get rid of? There’s a lot of stuff you’ll never use again. So, there’s no reason to clutter up your garage if you’re not going to use it.

Anyway, those are my tips and my pointers for today.

Until we meet again, leave the world a cleaner place then when you found it.

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About the Show

Learn how the show came to be, interesting facts about the show host, and other frequently asked questions about the show.

Resources For This Episode

Rubbermaid Deluxe Tool Tower, Garage Storage, Holds 40 Tools, Black –

Holeyrail, Garage Organizer, Metal Pegboard, Commercial Quality, Industrial Strength, Prefinished Steel Peg board –

Stanley Hardware 819841 Pegboard Hook Assortment, 51-Piece –

Nylon Cable Ties (Combo Pack) 300 Pieces –

Bungee Cord Garage Organizer Storage Tool –

Home- It Mop and Broom Holder, 5 position with 6 hooks garage storage Holds up to 11 Tools, storage solutions for broom holders, garage storage systems broom organizer for garage shelving ideas –

Monkey Bars Bike Storage Rack, Stores 4 Bikes –

Lynk Sports Rack with Adjustable Hooks – Sports Equipment Organizer – Sports Gear Storage –

Grayline 410187, Deluxe Garage Storage System Set, Grey –

Akro-Mils 10144REDBLK 44-Drawer Hardware & Craft Plastic Cabinet, Red & Black –

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