Here’s a fact that might blow your mind: Only 30% of Americans who have garages at their homes actually keep their cars inside them. The 70% who keep their cars outside mostly do so because their garages are full of other stuff. Having a clean, safe, well-organized garage is an essential part of keeping your ATX home clean, so follow this important advice from It’s Cleaning Time and learn how to tackle your messy garage!
Garages often turn out to be resting places for dirt, dust, dead leaves, dead bugs, and sometimes even animal droppings, so it’s important to give your garage a good cleaning at leat once a year, even if the space isn’t cluttered and disorganized. This article will focus on physically cleaning and maintaining your space, while the next article on our blog will help with paring down and organizing your stuff.
Choose a warm, sunny day to clean your garage, because you’ll need to start by taking everything out of it. It’s better to handle the whole space at once, instead of working on small sections one at a time, because the latter method is more likely to spread dirt and debris around instead of just eliminating it.
Once everything is out of the garage and stacked up in your yard and/or driveway, start cleaning at the top. Use a broom or long-handled duster to get rid of any cobwebs and dust that have collected on the ceiling (if you have a sensitive respiratory system, don’t hesitate to wear a mask, especially if you discover any animal droppings). Check out any light fixtures, windows, and garage door hardware to make sure they’re operating properly, then wipe them down with a damp cloth or sponge. Next, use a large sponge, water, and old towels to wash and dry the walls of your garage. Starting from the back of your garage, use a push-broom to sweep out any and all dirt and debris that has gathered on the floor, then wash the floor of your garage with a dry granular detergent, water, and a stiff-bristled brush or push-broom (don’t use metal bristles!). Use bleach to get rid of oil stains and kitty litter to get rid of grease stains.
Next, seal any cracks on the floor and consider applying a sealant or coat of paint across the entire surface of the floor. Consider applying a coat of latex paint to the walls to prevent mildew and keep the space looking fresh (which will help motivate you to keep it clean in the future). Put down an inexpensive floor cover or a section of indoor/outdoor carpet if you’re worried about possible stains from vehicles, lawn mowers, or stored automotive fluids. Look around to make sure none of your garage’s wiring is exposed, and check for signs of water damage or leaks around the ceiling and windows. Make sure door locks and exterior lights are working properly, and check the batteries in your garage’s smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector (or install these devices if they’re not already present!).
You are now an Austin homeowner with a clean garage! Once everything is dry, move your (possibly greatly pared-down) stuff back in and fix any organizational issues. (Remember to check out our next post for some great advice!). Sit back, relax, and enjoy your freshly clean garage, and remember that if the inside of your home needs some extra attention, whether occasional or regular, It’s Cleaning Time is the best choice to give you a helping hand!