9 Things to Look for When Choosing Garage Wall Panels

Excess garage clutter creates all sorts of problems. It restricts you from parking inside, makes it difficult to find items, and simply limits the functionality a garage is supposed to provide.

Considering a 2-car garage in the average home can comprise 13-15% of your home’s overall square footage, that’s a lot of wasted real estate you could be making better use of.

Adding garage storage solutions like overhead racking and cabinetry can be a big help in restoring your garage to an organized state once again. So can adding garage wall panels to keep your floor clutter-free.

Two of the most popular options when it comes to garage wall panels are slatwall and pegboard. So what’s the smarter choice?

What should you be considering when buying garage wall panels?

When choosing what type of garage wall panels to go with, consider how important these nine factors are to you:

  • quality
  • durability
  • storage space needed
  • aesthetics
  • load capacity required
  • ease of installation
  • variety of hanging accessories
  • convenience of use
  • price

Let’s break down each consideration individually.

1. What kind of quality are you looking for in your garage wall panels?

Pegboard is perforated hardboard that’s most commonly found in 1/4″ thick 4′ x 8′ panels. If you’ve ever handled a sheet of pegboard this size, you probably noticed how much flexibility it had.

One word that possibly came to mind after seeing this was “flimsy”. That’s not exactly a quality one wants in their new garage wall panels, is it? Pegboard, which is similar to particle board, also tends to chip  and split quite easily.

When it comes to slatwall panels, there’s a couple of different types that offer more sturdiness. MDF (medium-density fibreboard) slatwall panels are quite heavy and come with horizontal rows for hanging accessories.

A more modern, improved version of MDF slatwall panels are slatwall panels made with a cellular foam PVC construction. They offer several benefits over traditional MDF slatwall panels, including durability, moisture resistance, weight, and looks.

One additional concern related to quality is the stability of the wall panels’ hanging accessories. Pegboard hooks commonly get knocked off when an item stored on them is removed. Slatwall accessories, however, provide more stability.

2. How important is durability in your garage wall panels?

As mentioned, pegboard can’t measure up to either type of slatwall panel when it comes to durability. Some homeowners setting up garage wall panels even make the mistake of going with a 1/8″ panel thickness when buying pegboard.

That’s an invitation for all sorts of potential problems. Even buying a harder-to-find tempered pegboard won’t give the same durability as slatwall garage wall panels.

Why? Because garage wall panels need to be able to handle a couple of specific challenges:

  • the wear and tear of tools stored on the panels being frequently picked up and stored again (especially in workshop-oriented garages)
  • the changing temperatures and moisture levels that a garage environment is subjected to (PVC slatwall panels are more resilient when it comes to these two factors)

“Heavy-duty” (as opposed to “flimsy”) is most definitely a quality you should be looking for in your garage wall panels. And slatwall panels certainly fulfill that requirement.

3. How much garage wall storage space will you need?

Your garage walls offer plenty of underutilized storage space just waiting to be used. But how much space will you need to store everything currently cluttering up your garage floor?

Do you have lots of yard tools and a big family that requires the storage of numerous bikes and lots of sports equipment? All of these items can be stored on slatwall panels.

Factor in everything you currently own, along with how much extra space you might need to store future tool and equipment purchases. As with anything storage-related, it’s always wiser to add extra storage space if possible, just to give you some flexibility later on.

The number of garage wall panels you’ll need might very well be a determining factor in which type you choose, because prices will vary. More on that shortly.

4. How important are garage aesthetics to you?

Pegboard offers few choices when it comes to panel colors. Ugly white and brown pegboard panels are what you’re most likely to find, which can leave you with a garage interior that looks partially like this:

garage wall panels

Dull brown pegboard doesn’t exactly enhance your garage’s interior look.

Yes, pegboard can be painted, but then you have to worry about dried paint clogging the holes. That can make it difficult to insert hooks and other hanging attachments, which leads to further work drilling holes through the dried paint.

And after all that, you’ll still be left with something that detracts from your garage’s interior appearance instead of adding to it (particularly if you’re adding several wall panels).

PVC slatwall panels offer 6 colors to choose from and provide protection and a finished, high-end look for your garage walls.

More color choices also means more design flexibility if you’re looking to complement the rest of your garage’s décor. That can be helpful if you’re adding other upgrades like a floor coating or cabinetry.

garage wall panels

The clean, finished look and superior level of organization that PVC slatwall panels add to a garage space.

5. What load capacities do you need from your garage wall panels?

An important deciding factor when buying an organization system for your garage walls is weight capacities. If you’re going to the trouble of adding wall panels in your garage, you should want them to handle the weight of just about anything that’s hangable.

Pegboard shows its limitations in this particular area. Smaller hand tools and lighter yard tools won’t pose much of a problem, but a heavier bicycle or push lawn mower? Not likely.

Garage Living’s PVC wall panels have a load capacity of 40 lbs/sq in and can safely hold items weighing up to 50 lbs with our heavy-duty slatwall brackets. That gives you more hanging storage flexibility.

6. Are you planning on installing your own garage wall panels?

When garage wall panels are installed, you’ll need to account for various wall obstructions. This can include things like receptacles, conduit pipe, and light switches.

Our workers are skilled at making sure this tricky process is done correctly so your wall panels perfectly fit within your garage space. Garage floor sloping and ceiling unevenness are also accounted for.

Extra finishing touches that includes trim for ends, corners, and any gaps, along with color-matching screws, leaves your garage wall panels with a clean, cohesive look.

One major drawback with MDF slatwall panels is their weight (as much as 100 lbs per panel). That makes them quite difficult to work with.

7. Are you looking for a wide variety of hanging accessories?

You can find enough basic hanging accessories for pegboard panels, but probably not more than the 40+ types of hanging accessories available for PVC slatwall panels.

The wide range of hanging accessories is what really separates this storage system from the other types of garage wall panels available.

The numerous sizes of hooks can be used to hang items like bikes, small or large tools, power cords, ladders, sports equipment, and more. Magnetic tool bars and a screwdriver holder can also be used for small tool storage.

When it comes to rack storage, PVC slatwall panels can accommodate fishing rod racks, racks for golf equipment and other sports equipment, and even a paper towel rack.

Baskets, shelving, and small storage bins can also be added to your garage slatwall panels to hold everything from easy-to-lose small hardware pieces, to cleaning supplies, to your gardening supplies and tools.

garage wall panels

Just a few of the 40+ slatwall hanging accessories available for PVC slatwall panels.

8. Which garage wall panels offer the best convenience of use?

Once you’ve installed a pegboard wall panel and set up all the hanging attachments, it can be a big headache when it comes time to shift items around or make space for a newly purchased item. That’s one of the limitations that comes with the individual holes that make up the pegboard’s design.

It’s more convenient making changes to the storage setup of PVC wall panels because you can easily shift items horizontally to make more room.

9. What’s your budget when buying garage wall panels?

Pretty much the only area where pegboard panels are a more attractive garage wall panel option than slatwall is when it comes to price. But as the saying goes, “you get what you pay for”.

If aesthetics, storage flexibility, and durability rank low on your list of concerns, budget-conscious pegboard panels might be enough to satisfy your needs.

If you’re setting your sights a little higher for what you want your garage wall panels to provide, you’ll be better off with PVC slatwall panels hanging on your garage walls.

Find out more about the benefits of PVC slatwall panels for your garage

Superior looks and construction and a premium level of storage flexibility make PVC slatwall panels the clear best choice when it comes to choosing garage wall panels.

With the enhanced ability to keep your garage organized that slatwall panels provide, you’ll get much more functionality out of this important extension of your home.

Schedule a free in-home consultation to discuss your wall storage and other garage makeover plans with a member of our design team.

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5 Garage Storage Systems That Will Make Your Life Easier

As the weather warms up, you’ll find that you’re spending more time in the garage working on projects and getting tools for yard maintenance. You may come to the realization that your garage storage systems are in need of improvement.

Upgrade your garage storage systems instead of making your garage bigger

If your current garage storage systems just aren’t giving you the storage space and degree of organization you need, there’s a wiser solution than undergoing a costly renovation to make your garage bigger. We have five garage storage systems that maximize your existing storage space and allow you to maintain a peak level of organization and efficiency in the garage.

1. Overhead garage storage systems

The space above your head in the garage is commonly underutilized. You’ll free up lots of garage floor space by putting this unused space to work with overhead storage racks.  Our heavy-duty overhead storage racks can hold up to 600 lbs, are adjustable to accommodate your changing storage needs, and come in six different sizes.

Store bulky items like patio furniture, storage bins, and your out-of-season vehicle tires in our overhead storage racks that feature a powder coated finish to ensure a long life. Or you can store your tires in one of our other practical garage storage systems – a heavy-duty wall-mounted tire rack.

Woman moving storage bin onto overhead storage rack in garage.

 

2. Specialty storage racks

Our specialty storage racks offer additional garage storage systems that can be used for specific needs. They include:

  • heavy-duty industrial shelving featuring industrial strength steel construction that’s powder coated and built to last
  • firewood racks made with heavy-duty 16-gauge stainless steel that come with a cover to keep your firewood dry
  • rust-resistant grid bike racks constructed from sturdy 14-gauge galvanized steel

3. Slatwall storage

Another storage area in garages that isn’t taken full advantage of are the walls. One of the most effective garage storage systems you can choose is slatwall storage. This system uses durable PVC wall panels that can be installed securely on studs, drywall, and concrete. The panels come in five different colours, are easy to clean, and give your garage a much more finished look.

More than 40 types of slatwall accessories are available for hanging items that can weigh up to 50 lbs. For example, our slatwall-mounted golf rack is perfect for storing your golf equipment. With so many accessories and a limitless number of possible storage configurations, you’ll love the flexibility and storage space that a slatwall system provides.

garage storage systems slatwall

4. Garage storage cabinets

As much as slatwall panels can improve your garage’s interior aesthetics and functionality, garage storage cabinets can take these two areas to the next level. The wide varieties of garage cabinet colours and custom options available can be used in conjunction with your slatwall panels to complement your garage’s existing décor or even match the colour of your vehicles.

Garage cabinets can be used for storing items both large and small. Keep your small tools in locked drawers, bottles of car cleaning products in the upper or lower cabinets, and jackets or larger items in the locker-sized cabinets. We also have garage storage cabinets (like our GL Hayley and GL NEOS Elite systems) that can enhance the functionality of a more task-oriented garage space.

5. Car lifts

All of these garage storage systems will provide more room for parking in your garage. If you have a one car garage, however, even a completely cleared garage floor won’t allow you to park two vehicles inside…unless you have a 4 post car lift installed that is.

4 post car lifts also make use of your garage’s underutilized vertical space, allowing you to double your parking space. We have three models available that can hold vehicles weighing up to 9,000 lbs.

Let our garage storage systems make your life easier

To find out how these useful garage storage systems can make your life easier, schedule your free in-home consultation with one of our design experts today.

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Q & A: Find out Why Jay Loves His One Car Garage Makeover

Toronto resident Jay Kerr, recently had a one car garage makeover by Garage Living that left him quite impressed. This Q & A finds out why Jay needed the one car garage makeover, what he had done, and why he absolutely loves it.

jays-garage-makeover

What made you decide to get this one car garage makeover?

For over a year, I kept thinking about how nice it would be to have a clean and organized garage. I was tired of the unfinished look of the garage and the overall lack of organization, which made it difficult to park my car in there. The garage floor needed to be finished. The concrete floor was cracked in a few place and just didn’t look very appealing.

one car garage makeover

Jay’s garage prior to the makeover.

Was it difficult keeping your one car garage floor clean?

The garage floor was always dusty and dirty and it wasn’t particularly easy to clean. I would often need to sweep it out, which was a messy job. In the springtime, it was especially messy with the dirt and salt that accumulated over the winter.

Were you aware of the high quality garage floor coatings available?

Garage Living’s Floortex™ polyaspartic floor coating completely opened my eyes to the fact that a high quality floor coating can add undeniable visual appeal to your garage space, as well as be easy to maintain. I did my homework and learned that polyaspartic garage floor coatings have several advantages over epoxy coatings.

What type of garage organization system were you using?

I had a metal shelving unit from a big box store that was falling apart. That seems to be a common thing with many of their products – they have a very short shelf life, no pun intended. The cheap particle board shelves were warped, sagging, and popping out of place.

Hockey sticks were piled in the corner and I had a few cheap hooks and nails to hang brooms and lighter items. I wanted to get things off the floor and organized onto the wall, something that could support items such as a ladder, garden hose, or a work bench. I’m the type of person that likes to have things neat and organized, but the DIY storage system I had wasn’t working.

Tell us about the slatwall garage storage system you had installed

The grey slatwall panel system is a great storage solution. It was installed along the length of the side walls, which I now realize is underutilized storage space in most garages. Now I have a place for everything. The slatwall system allows me to get nearly everything off the garage floor and onto the wall. That gives me space to park my car. It also makes it much easier to clean the floor because the only thing I have to move out are the garage bins.

Before photo of garage

Before – unfinished garage.

After the garage renovation

After – new slatwall panel system and Floortex™ floor coating in Nightfall color.

How about the slatwall accessories you chose?

I’m still figuring out new ways to utilize and arrange the different hooks and shelves that are available. One of my favourite slatwall accessories is the 8″ double hook I use to store my hockey sticks. I also use these hooks to store other items like brooms and shovels. My ladders are now on the wall and the hanging wire bins are perfect for car cleaning products.

one car garage makeover slatwall accessories

Hanging slatwall accessories for all of your garage belongings.

What type of Floortex™ floor coating was applied in your one car garage makeover?

There are a bunch of floor coating colors to choose from and I chose the Nightfall color. The new Floortex™ floor coating is a huge improvement compared to my old concrete garage floor and I look forward to enjoying it for many years to come. I had the work done in November and it was convenient that the colder weather wasn’t an obstacle to having the Floortex™ floor coating applied.

How much easier is it to clean your garage floor now?

The floor is much, much easier to clean now. I can sweep out the dirt and hose it down to keep everything looking new. Garage Living also has a great squeegee that I can use to make the cleaning process quick and efficient. The Nightfall’s dark grey colour also hides the dirt well in between cleanings.

Did your one car garage makeover include anything else?

Yes, one of the biggest improvements was simply upgrading to an LED garage light. I’m sure many homeowners just live with a single light bulb in the garage, as I was doing. It’s a simple upgrade but it makes such a huge difference. I can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner.

one car garage makeover light

A new LED garage light makes a huge difference.

Did your one car garage makeover have any challenges to deal with?

I had a few issues with one wall. We renovated the house eight years ago and the contractor left an electrical conduit and a wood post on what used to be the outside of the house, now the inside wall of the garage. I was concerned about the Garage Living installers being able to remove everything but it was gone within an hour. I also had some concerns about the natural gas line on the inside wall. They put the slatwall behind it and everything looked neat and tidy when they were done.

Any challenges with the garage floor?

The front corner of the garage was unfinished and there was a gap between the concrete floor and the drywall. There was also a cinder block in the corner that jutted out a bit. Garage Living suggested two options. They could fill the gap in the floor with cement and finish the drywall in the corner. That would take longer and add more to the cost than I anticipated. A cheaper and easier solution was to box in the awkward corner and seal it with the Floortex™ coating, which is the solution I chose.

The outside wall of the garage had a cinder block foundation that was two blocks high. Garage Living applied their Floortex™ floor coating up and over the cinder block for a finished look that also seals the floor and acts like a baseboard. Now when I hose out the garage to remove the dirt and salt from the winter, I don’t have to worry about the water damaging the drywall.

one car garage makeover corner before

A problematic corner with a cinder block jutting out and gap between the garage floor and wall.

one car garage makeover corner after

The problem is solved by boxing in the corner and adding Floortex™ coating.

How long did the one car garage makeover take?

The flooring took a full day to clean and prepare. By the end of the day, the floor coating was done and had to dry overnight. I couldn’t walk on it for a day. After that, my car and garbage bins were back in the garage. The slatwall and new light was installed in less than a day after that. Everything was completed on time and to my complete satisfaction.  

How easy was Garage Living to work with?

Everybody was courteous and happy to answer any questions I had throughout the entire process. I especially appreciated the advice and options that were presented to me in regards to the issues with the garage wall and corner. That’s what great customer service is all about.

How satisfied were you and your wife with the garage makeover?

I was extremely happy with the end result. Everything looked brand new and finished and I look forward to keeping the garage much more organized now. My wife was amazed when she saw the final results.

What are your neighbours’ impressions of your one car garage makeover?

Many neighbours have come by to look at the end result and everyone has been more than impressed. I think most people aren’t used to seeing a clutter-free garage with a finished floor and a car parked inside. One neighbour even said that my garage looked nicer than some of the rooms in his house!

So you find yourself parking your car in the garage more now?

I park my car in the garage all the time now. We have a large maple tree that shades our driveway and the birds love sit on the branches and bomb our cars. My car stays cleaner now and I love that I never have to brush the snow off in the winter. I also have the peace of mind knowing that my car is protected and secure. Our other car was left unlocked in the driveway one night and somebody broke in.

Are you planning on using Garage Living for future garage upgrades?

Yes. My next upgrade will be a better garage door and garage door opener. I’m a tech geek and I love that today’s garage door openers have modern features that allow you to control the door from anywhere with a smartphone. I sometimes forget to close the garage door and would like something that does this automatically or that alerts me when it is left open for a long period of time.

Find out more about garage makeovers with your free in-home consultation

Jay loves what his one car garage makeover has done to improve his garage space. His is just one among the thousands of transformative garage makeovers that Garage Living has done throughout North America, for garages of all sizes. Some of them can be viewed here. Schedule your free in-home consultation today with one of our design consultants to discuss your own garage makeover.

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Garage Living Calgary Donates SportScreen Garage Door Protector

Garage Living Calgary recently donated a SportScreen garage door protector to the Okotoks Minor Hockey Association for one of their Novice age group tournaments. Okotoks is a town located about 18 km south of Calgary.

What is the SportScreen garage door protector?

The SportScreen is a sports training tool that is essentially a tarp made of high-tenacity open mesh polyester fabric that can be mounted above a garage door. This made-in-Canada product also has a convenient remote control roll-up feature.

Kids (or anyone older who’s still clinging to that dream of an NHL career) can practice their hockey shooting skills using real pucks or balls and the SportScreen will protect their garage door from dents. It also cuts down on the racket that’s created from this activity. Lacrosse, baseball, and soccer shooting will additionally work with the product, which was featured on TV’s Dragon Den program.

SportScreen works outside or inside a garage

SportScreens can also be set up inside a garage, which is handy for shooting practice when the weather is particularly unpleasant. One of Garage Living Calgary’s recent garage makeovers included the addition of the SportScreen.

Complement the SportScreen with a slatwall sports equipment and accessory wall

The garage makeover also included the addition of slatwall panels with slatwall accessories. This creates a sports equipment and accessory storage wall that keeps your belongings and garage interior organized.

Add Floortex™ floor coating to complete your garage project

Rounding out the garage makeover is an application of Floortex™ floor coating. There are 15 floor coating colours available and the client chose Obsidian for this project. A Floortex™ floor coating is perfect for a garage where the SportScreen is being used – it’s extremely durable and provides a nice, smooth surface.

A shooting pad that simulates an ice surface can also be purchased separately from SportScreen, which will additionally protect the garage floor from scuffing.

A Floortex™ floor coating, slatwall storage with accessories, and the SportScreen create the perfect mini sports training facility, right in your own garage!

Our Calgary location is the only Garage Living franchise currently utilizing the SportScreen in their garage makeovers. Contact them for more details.

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Garden Tool Garage Storage Solutions That Work Best

green wheelbarrow, shovels, 3 small terracotta pots, shovels, assorted gardening tools

A survey commissioned by the National Association of Landscape Professionals last year found that 75% of Americans found it important to spend time in their yard. 90% of those surveyed with a yard also believed in the importance of keeping it well-maintained.

Lawn and yard care requires many kinds of tools and pieces of equipment to get the job done properly. You spend a significant amount of time every week grooming your lawn and the rest of your property. Why waste any of it looking for garden tools?

A sensible garage storage solution will help significantly in this area. It’ll also help keep your garage clutter-free, leaving ample space for parking your vehicles. Consider the following organizing solutions when it comes to your garden tool garage storage.

You have more garage wall space than floor space – make the most of it

Most garages have more wall space than floor space, so make the most of it. A versatile slatwall panel system is the most effective garden tool hanging system you can buy for the garage. Some of the benefits include:

  • maximizing your garage’s wall storage space by providing a wide range of storage options, in any configuration you choose with our slatwall accessories
  • keeping your garden tools organized and easy to find
  • more durable, versatile, and longer-lasting than pegboard and is easy to clean
  • adding an improved finished look to your garage and can be colour-coordinated to your garage’s decor
  • heavy-duty hooks and brackets can support up to 70 lbs. of weight

 

Garden Tool Garage Storage Solutions

Use garage cabinetry for your more valuable garden tools

Like slatwall panels, garage cabinetry also instantly improves the aesthetics of your garage. And garage cabinetry has more uses than for just storing your conventional carpentry tools and other hardware-related items.

Your more expensive electrical and gas yard equipment (such as leaf blowers, hedge trimmers, grass trimmers, and chainsaws) can be locked away safely. Garage cabinetry, along with hanging basket and bin accessories for slatwall, is also ideal for smaller items like gardening gloves, seed packages, and more.

Shelving and overhead storage increases your garage’s storage possibilities

Specialty storage racks give you even more garden tool garage storage options. Our standalone shelving rack is constructed with industrial strength steel to handle the heaviest weight loads. It’s also powder coated, which ensures a long life that’s rust-free.

Overhead racks let you make use of your garage’s underutilized ceiling space. These heavy-duty racks can hold items weighing up to 600 lbs. Store your snowblower in the overhead racks during the year’s warmer seasons and switch it out with your lawnmower during the winter months.

Eliminate garden hose messes with a quality hose reel

Keeping your garage and yard free from tangled up garden hoses is much easier with a quality hose reel. We carry mounted and portable garden hose reel storage solutions that will keep your hoses organized and much easier to use. Our hose reels and garden hoses are also much better quality than most types sold in stores. This means they’ll both work reliably and you won’t have to replace them as frequently.

portable-hose-reel-outside

Proper garden tool garage storage improves safety

By making use of proper garden tool storage solutions, you’ll also be keeping your home safer. That old-time comedy visual of someone getting clanked on the head after stepping on the end of a rake is an all-too-real possibility if your garden tools are just left leaning against a wall or on the garage floor.

Hazardous yard care materials like insecticides, pesticides, and fertilizer are also better off locked away if you have children. Garage cabinets outfitted with locks allow you to do that and also keep these materials close to where you’ll be using them.

Keeping your garage safe, organized, and clutter-free becomes much easier with these efficient garden tool garage storage solutions. Garage Living’s team of skilled designers can help you put together a plan for your unique space, so schedule your free consultation appointment today.

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