With the hustle and bustle of Christmas finally over, everyone’s routines are returning to normal and as such, things start to quieten down. As part of this, late-winter and spring cleaning is usually top of people’s agendas heading into the New Year. And more often than not, this means facing down the dreaded garage or shed, usually filled to the brim with clutter, tools and assorted items you once wanted, but now no longer need.

Thankfully, we’ve compiled our short guide of how to clean your garage, so you can make the most out of whatever space you have, successfully de-clutter your area and still make sure that you don’t throw out anything you need.

Step 1: Create a plan

Before you even start to dive into the clutter, you need to know exactly what you are going to do with the items you find. This can be categorised into three options:

Send to storage/store elsewhere
Sell/donate to an appropriate source

If you have a lot of large items, you might also want to consider hiring a skip, or employing a removal service.

Step 2: Work out your ‘Keep’ pile

The most important items in your list are the ones you actually intend to keep in the longer term. Rather than agonising about each item one-by-one, set a general set of rules. Some of the things you might want to consider are:

How often have I used this in the last six months?
Does this work? Does it need fixing? How long will that take and how much will it cost?
Do I need spares or just one set?
Can I borrow this from someone else?

Step 3: Remove everything!

Although it seems drastic, you want to start from a total ground-zero. Remove all your items into a clear, easily-accessible area. Measure how much space you have in your empty garage or shed to work out realistically what you can put back.

Step 4: Sort it all!

Make three areas. Your keep pile – designated by a string boundary, your ‘store elsewhere’ pile and a ‘throw-away/recycle/sell’ pile. Pick a small section of your garage or shed, and start organising your items by these rules and have spare plastic bags, cardboard boxes or black sacks ready to filter the rubbish and recycling out. If your keep pile starts getting too big, don’t worry, just pick some non-essential items and move them to your ‘storage’ pile. Once you’ve cleaned out one area, start on the next pile!

Clean out Garage

Step 5: Dispose, tidy and pack away

Now you’ve identified your ‘storage’ and ‘throw away/recycle/sell’ piles, it’s time to organise them. For storage items, try and pack them up carefully in sturdy cardboard boxes, with necessary support e.g. bubble wrap, if appropriate. Remember to mark them clearly so you know exactly what you are packing away if you need to get it out. Once you’ve finished with this, make sure you take your boxes to a location, like your local Beyond Storage site. If you are recycling any items, clean them out if necessary and place them in the appropriate waste bins. If you have to throw anything away, then use your waste bin, visit your local disposal tip site or if you’ve hired a skip, fill it to an appropriate manageable level.

Step 6: Re-order and repack

It’s finally time to repack your shed or garage with your new items. Make maximum use of your new-found space by compartmentalising items and use shelves, cabinets and closets to store frequently-used items. Try and group items together so you know where to look e.g. garden equipment all in one corner.

If you need storage solutions, choose Beyond Storage. We have a variety of sites across the UK and we’re ready to go above and beyond to help you fulfil your storage solutions.