When was the last time you cleaned up your garage? If you were hunkered down all winter you may have created quite the cozy workspace in your garage, but that space tends to get cluttered quickly. Now that the weather has turned warmer here are a few easy garage spring cleaning projects we think will make the rest of your wrenching year a lot happier.
Find your tools
Over time tools have a tendency to wander when projects come one after another or if they are spread out around the house. You may have tools piled on your work bench, on your rolling cart, or sitting in your trunk from that last wrenching session at your buddy’s house. Gather up all your wayward tools and put them back where they belong. You may find that you’ve acquired more tools than you thought you had, so it might be time to re-think where they are stored. If that’s the case then follow our tool organization guide found here.
Organize your supplies
Do you have a shelf full of spray cans that take a few minutes of digging just to find the brake parts cleaner? Is that roll of electrical tape in the toolbox…somewhere? Now is the time to take stock of what you have and organize it by type. Start by gathering all your shop supplies into a central area (you may need to venture into the driveway for more space). Now start putting similar things together. When everything is organized, put it all back in its place but give access priority to the things that you use most often. if you are running low on supplies, take note so you restock at your local NAPA AUTO PARTS store when you have time.
Sweep/vacuum the floor
This one may sound silly, but a clean garage floor makes a world of difference in how it feels to work on a project. Get as much stuff off the floor as possible so you can give it a good cleaning. Start by sweeping to get all the dirt and crusty bits off the floor. Sweeping also helps identify any stray hardware or tools that may have bounced away during a work session. After sweeping bust out the shop vac and give the floor a good once-over to remove fine dust and dirt. Notice we didn’t say get out the leaf blower. While a blower is great outdoors, using one inside your garage just spreads the dust around where it settles later leaving things dirty again.
Clean your tools
Tools can get nasty over time. Hand tools such as screwdrivers, wrenches, sockets, hammers and other solid metal tools are easy to clean with a spritz of degreaser and a rag. Ratchet handles can also be cleaned, but be careful to not get any cleaner into the ratchet head as there are lubricated components inside. Rusted tools can also be cleaned, but will need a few extra steps to restore. Power tools can be wiped down with a rag dampened (but not soaked) with degreaser.
A good garage spring cleaning can make a big difference in your productivity the rest of the year. Spending a little time now can save you time later, so clear a few hours off your schedule and dive right in.
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Photo courtesy of Flickr.
With an automotive writing career spanning over two decades, Brian has a passion for sharing the automotive lifestyle. An avid DIYer he can usually be found working on one of his many project cars. His current collection includes a 1969 Olds Delta 88 convertible, BMW E46 sedan, and a slant-6 powered 1975 Plymouth Duster.