7 Ways to Make Your Garage a More Functional Space
Most garages are built for one purpose: storage. They’re a great place to store cars and other things, like yard tools and seasonal decorations. If you want to get more out of your garage, you’ll have to prepare the space to make it more useful. By doing things like finishing the walls and installing climate control, you can make your garage a more functional and pleasant place to spend time. Here’s what you need to know.
Have a Plan
Before you make any changes to your garage, make a plan. What do you want to do in your garage? What kind of activities will take place in your garage? What will be stored there? Who will spend time in the garage, and how often will they go there? Once you have answers to these questions, you’ll be able to make smarter choices during your garage update.
Give It Power
Hopefully your garage already gets power, but if the space suffers from a lack of outlets, then you may find it hard to do anything useful with the space. Hire a licensed electrician to install outlets in key places where you plan to do work. If you’re going to be using power tools, talk to your electrician about which power tools.
Some tools require a dedicated circuit. Your electrician will need to determine whether or not your home’s electrical service is enough to support a dedicated circuit for your power tools. If you plan to install a heater or air conditioner (discussed below), talk to your electrician. You may need a dedicated circuit for that as well.
A lot of garages start out unfinished, which means the beams in the walls are exposed and there’s no insulation. The look is not attractive, and it makes temperature control very difficult.
To finish your garage, install batt insulation and dry wall over the insulation. Even if you plan to do this work yourself, consult with a construction contractor to find out what kind of venting will be necessary to ensure that your garage can still breathe.
Check your garage door for insulation. Some garage doors are hollow and others have an insulated core. If your garage door is not insulated, work with your garage door repair person to figure out your options regarding an insulated garage door.
A lot of garages are a draw for pests. Mice and insects are common invaders in garage spaces. If your garage is infested, eliminate those pests. Weatherstrip the sides and bottom of your garage door, windows, and doors. Lock away any food sources, like bird seed or grass seed, that might attract pests. Work with a pest control company to get the infestation under control.
Control the Temperature
Here in Plano, the average summer temperatures range between the mid-70’s and mid-90’s, and winter temperatures range between mid-30’s to mid-50’s. Without climate control in your garage, you could find your work space unsuitable for use for a substantial part of the year. You can make your garage more comfortable by installing a small portable heater and air conditioner.
If you want a more permanent solution, talk to an HVAC contractor about installing a mini-split ductless heat pump. A good heat pump can serve as an air conditioner or as a furnace, and requires no duct work.
Perfect the Lighting
No matter what you do in the garage, you’ll need to be able to see properly. Work with your electrician to install a variety of lights like task lighting, overhead lighting or track lighting. If you’re on a budget and trying to keep costs down, purchase a few inexpensive fluorescent lights, hang them from the ceiling yourself, and plug them into existing power outlets.
Keep whatever lights you install away from the garage door tracks. If you install lights around the path of the door, work with your garage door contractor and electrician to ensure that your door can still open and close without the lights getting in the way.
Once you’ve made your garage space more functional and have started to fill it up with items like power tools, hobby tools, and other important personal items, garage security will become more important than ever. Install motion-activated lights to keep away intruders who might be attracted to your garage.
Work with your garage door repair person to ensure that your garage door opener works properly, and your garage door is secure. Start bringing your garage door clicker inside at night if you don’t already, to avoid car and garage break-ins.
Work With Your Garage Door Repair Person
You’ll need help from a lot of professionals during this extensive project. Before getting started, consult with your garage door contractor to ensure that your garage door is fit for a fully finished garage. Your garage door repair person can give you suggestions for making your garage a better space to spend time.
For more information, contact Plano Overhead Garage Door for a free consultation.