The garage isn’t usually the first thing people consider when choosing a home or making upgrades to existing digs, but garages serve important functions for people who have them, and some of us spend more time in them than others. Sound familiar? If you find yourself working in a setup that’s become stale or boring, here’s an overview of the abundance of available garage technology to spruce up your space and help you have the best possible experience in your home workshop.
Saving the Planet
The construction and energy industries have come a long way in the past 20 years. As a result, you can now install specially developed materials for insulation in places that lack HVAC accessibility, like your garage, to cut down on heating and cooling costs in extreme temperatures.
You can also get energy-saving lightbulbs that last longer, burn brighter and require less power to run. And let’s not forget the advent of alternative energies like solar power. With a little commitment, you can install a solar photovoltaic panel on your roof to run your garage appliances — and, in some cases, even sell power back to your local grid.
The garage is the first line of defense in home protection. To help keep your home secure, consider installing live-access surveillance systems that you can view from your smartphone or computer. Some of these systems can also send real-time alerts to you if the garage door is opened unexpectedly. If you’re doing work with running engines or other potential hazards, there are smart alarms for fire and carbon monoxide levels.
Certain apps allow you to manipulate the temperature in your space from afar or schedule times for the heat or A/C to turn on and off. Do you hate stepping into the cold garage from your house? Warm it up before you get there. You can also install radiant heat floors, which both melt snow and ice on winter days and effectively heat the space.
When planning the layout of a modern workspace, don’t forget to account for your technology needs. Incorporate charging stations complete with USB outlets and mounts for tablets or other DIY video sources. Set up some Bluetooth speakers to keep the tunes coming all day long — and don’t forget to mount them close enough to an outlet to plug in when the battery dies.
If you run a business out of your garage, make the big investments. If you have the space and it’s engineer/zoning-approved, why not put in a service lift to make your job easier? There are also a number of high-tech diagnostic tools to consider. Tailor the space with creative touches like retractable storage shelves and install oil-resistant, easy-to-clean flooring.
Your garage is connected to your home, so technology can bring them together. Check out smartphone-accessible geo-fencing applications that sense when you’re on your way home or headed out, triggering a cascade of events that starts with lighting your garage and ends with a perfectly heated living room already playing the evening news.
Some things are beyond what most of us can afford, but dreaming is free. Imagine the Bat Cave: There are actually garages in the world with all manner of elevator or underground systems housing full fleets of luxury vehicles and other crime-fighting lair necessities. For the rest of us, though, there’s an app for that.
Check out all the ignition & electrical parts
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.
Blair Lampe is a New York-based professional mechanic, blogger, theater technician, and speechwriter. In her downtime she enjoys backpacking wherever her boots will carry her, rock climbing, experimental theatre, a crisp rosé , and showering love on her 2001 Sierra truck.