A garage is important in Southern Nevada because homes here don’t have basements like in other parts of the country. Therefore, a garage becomes more than just a place to park cars; it becomes a place for storing tools, sports equipment, keepsakes, holiday decorations and maybe even the kitchen sink.
Josh Finn, co-owner of Custom Garage Storage Solutions in North Las Vegas, has seen a little bit of everything when potential customers invite him to reconfigure their garage to create additional space.
“We see all different spectrums of items to be stored,” he said. “Most garages have a lot of clutter and it becomes my job to get all that stuff off the ground. I assess storage needs and recommend solutions that free up floor space. That means installing garage shelving, cabinets, overhead storage and maybe even garage flooring.
“One of the newer products we offer is a heavy-duty shelving system that is mounted about six feet off the floor. This allows boxes and bulky items to be placed on top shelves, and below are hangers, hooks and bars for bikes, garden tools, camping equipment, luggage, ladders or golf bags. Now everything is off the floor.”
Finn is staying busy this summer as more and more homeowners are realizing how nice it is to park a car in the garage rather than leaving it outside in the blistering heat.
“Right now, by the time I give a bid, it may take three weeks to return and complete the project,” he said. “Most jobs take one full day to complete and others may take an extra day or two. Spring is our busiest time and then again in fall.
“Many customers who are new to Las Vegas don’t realize how hot our summers can be. They come to realize the garage is really important for their cars. Most (people) with a two-car garage are already parking one car inside but now want the space to park a second vehicle.”
When consulting with a potential customer, Finn asks two main questions: Do you want your garage to have a clean look or do you want to maximize storage space? He does not tell them what is or isn’t clutter but does suggest that their most important items are probably already in their home.
“People don’t understand that when they leave the home, the garage is the last place they go through and see before going to work or school,” he said. “It later becomes the first place they see when returning home, and seeing it clean and organized presents a positive mood and mental image.”
Do-it-yourselfers know that the four walls of a garage are actually four more floors, and using the right shelves and hooks can quadruple storage space. Before starting, sweep the garage floor and address any spills that may have occurred going in and out of the space. Check on light bulbs or any other mechanical check-ups the garage may need.
Gather trash bags and empty boxes for collecting items for donations. Gather up some plastic containers in different sizes for storage.
Ladders can be a hazard leaning up against a wall. That may seem like the logical way to store one, but it can tip over very easily. Lean it against the wall horizontally at floor level, or, even better, store it on hooks.
Doors and windows in garages usually don’t get the same attention as those in the house. However, the door should have a professionally installed deadbolt and should be kept locked.
Shelving units can be easily assembled and can hold up to 50 pounds. Kids’ toys should be kept well away from chemical clutter and should be up off the floor. Not too high, though; you don’t want the kids trying to reach them by standing on wobbly boxes. Use bins for small toys and balls.
For those wanting to include the garage floor in the makeover, interlocking floor tiles have rollover strength and are able to support heavy vehicles. They are not damaged or stained by most chemicals and fight off mold and mildew.
Polypropylene tiles require no adhesives or tools and can be laid over cracks or uneven surfaces. They are strong enough to support cars and small trucks on jack stands and are available in a variety of colors and designs.
Another method is an epoxy sealer. A hard epoxy paint film is so dense that oils and fluids cannot penetrate its surface.