How to Organize Tools in Your Garage or Storage Unit
Have you ever misplaced one of your tools, then spent the better part of two hours tearing apart your garage or storage unit looking for it? Then you don’t find it and spend money on a new one. Organizing your tools can save you money and get rid of the headache of lost tools.
At first, it seems like a lot of work — but when every tool has it’s own “home”, finding what you need when you need it becomes a lot easier. Here is some guidance on how best to organize your tools.
Before You Organize, Clean Off Your Tools
Before you put your tools into storage, make sure to clean them. Wipe the oil off your wrenches, clean the sawdust off your saws, etc. Let them dry completely before storing them. Consider applying lubricant to your tools as well to boost protection against damage.
Failure to clean off your tools before storing them can cause everything around the tools to get dirty. Plus, leaving oil/grease/dirt on your tools can shorten their usable lives.
Any tool that doesn’t require a battery or an outlet can be classified as a hand tool. These tools tend to vanish the easiest, so keeping them organized is of the utmost importance.
Many people don’t have that many hand tools — in this case, a toolbox will be enough. You can buy one online or at your local hardware store for anywhere from $20-$50 depending on size and brand.
Speaking of size, you’ll need a larger toolbox if you have more tools to organize. Additionally, make sure your toolbox has a solid handle if you plan on carrying it around in the future.
If you won’t need to move your tools around much, drawers may work — especially if you have a lot of tools. Pegboards are another great option for maximizing space while keeping your tools organized.
Power tools are larger and more complex than hand tools, so you’ll need a larger storage option to compensate. That being said, you have some options.
If you only have a couple of power tools — maybe you just have a drill and a circular saw — a toolbox will still work. The only thing is that it will have to be a larger toolbox.
Any more than a few, though, and you’ll want a more substantial storage solution — namely, storage bins and boxes. Shoot for bins that seal, as these will provide more protection from damage from external sources.
Organize your types of power tools by the container. For example, have separate containers for saws, drills, sanders, etc. Label each container as well. Doing this will make finding the tools you need a lot easier.
You likely have a workbench of some sort if you own power tools, so you could just store the bins underneath for maximal organization.
Need more access to your tools? Buy a shelf or storage cabinet, or build one if you want to save money. You can also hang some hooks on the wall if you don’t have enough space on your shelf or in your cabinet but still need to access the tools you’re hanging.
What is considered “seasonal” will depend on your location. For example, lawnmowers are seasonal for those in northern states where snowfall is common, but they’re year-round tools for those in warmer climates. Some tools — like snowblowers — are seasonal regardless of climate. There’re also tools like wheelbarrows, rakes, shears, and chainsaws.
Despite the size of many of the aforementioned items, they can all be hung up to minimize the space they take up. Head to a local hardware store and grab some heavy-duty hooks. Tools such as rakes can be store in buckets as well.
As for smaller tools, such as gardening supplies, you can keep them in a small container.
Organizing Your Tools Is Easier Than You Think
Organizing your tools sounds like a pain, but it doesn’t have to take more than a couple of hours. When you’re finally done putting everything in its proper spot, you’ll get to reap the benefits of your labor by never losing another tool.