If you place a high priority on living a healthy lifestyle, you likely work out every day or several times a week.
For any fitness enthusiast, what could be more convenient than having a fully functional exercise space right inside your home?
The garage is an ideal area of the home to use for your regular workouts. Modern garage makeovers are capable of creating a multipurpose home space that looks stylish and is much more comfortable to spend time in.
Garage gym workouts and using the room as a workshop or for crafting projects are just a few ways garages can be utilized beyond their traditional usage as a storage and parking space.
We talked to Lisa Pineda, who owns and operates fitness studio Body Zone Fitness in Coquitlam, British Columbia. She recently had her garage remodeled into a space that could accommodate her fitness routine and family’s storage needs.
Lisa shares her thoughts on how the garage makeover has benefited her family, as well as four detailed garage gym workouts you can use to get your heart pumping.
This personal trainer loves using her garage gym
Garage Living Vancouver helped Lisa, a personal trainer and Health Coach who specializes in women’s and prenatal fitness, with her garage transformation.
“Having limited storage options in our home, three active children in competitive sports year-round, and myself wanting a space to work out in, I needed something created to solve all of those problems that were a pain point in our old home”, says Lisa.
Garage Living applied a Floortex™ floor coating to the basic concrete flooring. Lisa loves the aesthetic upgrade and clean surface the floor coating provides, as well as the fact the textured surface makes the floor less slippery during her garage gym workouts.
Slatwall was also installed, adding plenty of hanging storage space for tools, ladders, her kids’ backpacks and sports gear, and Lisa’s exercise equipment.
“I love being able to see what I have access to when working out. It allows my creative side to come alive when training clients and making programs for them. I have utilized my slatwall to display as much of my equipment as possible, including using hooks for my resistance bands and loops. I place my programs, water, and music on the shelf and my weights, yoga mat, and foam roller in the hanging baskets. The easier it is to find these items, the faster my workout flows”, says Lisa.
“Having my garage organized and designed to fit the needs of my family has reduced our stress and daily anxiety, simply knowing that our things have a proper storage place”, she continues. “We created a proper storage system for our recycling and garbage. And, of course, a little space for me to get my sweat on without stepping on toys, crayons, or dolls.”
Try these 4 garage gym workout routines
Lisa lent us her fitness expertise and created four garage gym workout videos that you can use when exercising at home.
These videos show that expensive exercise machines are not required to get a productive workout. Lisa (with some help from her daughter in the kickboxing video) is using nothing more than loop bands, light dumbbells, and a yoga mat.
Take things at a pace that is comfortable for you and let’s start burning some calories!
Overview: Lisa shares a variety of effective stretching exercises that can be used when warming up and cooling down for your garage gym workouts.
Overview: this kickboxing exercise combines cardiovascular drills and the use of martial arts techniques for a vigorous full-body workout. Light dumbbells can be used for more effective results but are not essential.
Loop band workout
Overview: this fitness routine involves three groups of exercises that utilize loop bands (also known as resistance bands) and light dumbbells.
Overview: Lisa’s AMRAP (as many reps/rounds as possible) routine involves a series of exercises that includes pike jumps, burpees, and lower ab lifts.
5 benefits of having a home garage gym
According to a Statistic Brain survey of 5,313 American gym members, 63% of gym memberships are never used. A third of gym members would not have gotten a membership if they had known how infrequently they would go to their gym. And 82% of gym members visit the gym less than once a week.
The time required to commute to the local gym is undoubtedly a big factor in why people rarely see a good return on investment with their gym membership.
Having an at-home fitness space eliminates the hassle of having to travel to a public gym for your workouts. Here are five other benefits of a garage gym:
You can work out anytime without being confined to a public gym’s operating hours.
A garage gym can be set up just the way you like, including how you want to store and organize things and how you want the décor to look.
There’s no waiting around to use any exercise equipment!
Because only you and your family are using the workout space, there are no health or hygiene concerns (such as other people’s sweat being left on equipment, having to use a public shower, and being exposed to any contagious and infectious viruses).
Create your own garage gym workout space
This garage gym is set up to keep the homeowner’s exercise equipment organized and easy to find.
Setting up a home gym in the garage is possible regardless of your garage’s size. One of Garage Living’s clients placed a higher priority on using his single-car garage as a fitness space than for parking a vehicle. We transformed the garage into an organized, well-equipped gym that he and his wife use for working out year-round (shown in the above photo).
Like this client, Lisa, and many others, Garage Living can remodel your garage so you can use it as a workout space, for parking, organized home storage, and so much more.
Starting a long-delayed garage junk cleaning project is the most meaningful step you can make towards reclaiming your garage’s functionality.
Cluttered garages severely limit the usefulness of this vital room in your home. Instead of using the garage for parking vehicles, efficient storage, and for things like working out or as a home workshop, stacked piles of unused junk rule the roost.
Essentially, a space that is capable of serving your family in many different ways becomes completely one-dimensional.
Why do we let junk take over our garages?
It’s a wonder that so many homeowners allow a collection of things that have little or no worth or significance (the literal definition of junk) dictate how they can use their garages.
There are millions of garages across the U.S. and Canada that are each clogged with junk that is maybe worth a few hundred dollars. Meanwhile, vehicles worth tens of thousands of dollars are left parked in driveways where they’re much less secure and exposed to the elements.
What’s wrong with this picture?
Messy garages make a quarter of homeowners embarrassed to leave their garage doors open, according to an Impulse Research survey. A Garage Living poll with 1,500 North American respondents found that 20% of homeowners were unable to park in their garage.
Maybe you’re considering a modestly budgeted makeover project that updates your garage’s décor and improves its storage efficiency. Perhaps a more elaborate remodel that results in a swanky luxury garage is what you’re planning.
In either case, the first step in transforming your space is to get that garage junk cleaning project in motion.
Follow this one rule with your garage junk cleaning project
When you start your garage junk cleaning project, figuring out what you need to get rid of should be obvious in many cases. That broken VCR, filthy old couch, and rusty garden tools, for example, are no-brainers.
But if you’re on the fence about whether or not to toss or donate anything, follow this one decluttering rule: have I used this item in the past one or two years?
Most organization professionals adhere to the “one year rule” with decluttering, as in get rid of anything that hasn’t been touched in the past year.
That may not work best for everything that gets stored in the garage, however. If you give yourself some leeway and stretch that out a bit to two years, the answer should be even clearer about what items actually get used and are truly worth keeping.
Finally dealing with your clutter and junk can pave the way towards creating a beautiful room in your home that goes well beyond what you ever thought was possible with a garage. Just look at the before and after garage makeover photos below for proof!
Prior to its makeover, this unfinished garage had floor clutter and lacked effective storage and organization systems.
After the makeover, this clean, stylish, and tidy garage looks like a completely different room.
Get “all hands on deck” with your garage cleaning project
Get the whole family involved with your junk cleaning project. After all, they surely helped contribute to the accumulation of clutter in the room. They’ll benefit when the garage is in better organizational shape, too.
If you have the space in your garage or if the weather allows for organizing things in your driveway, establish a junk and clutter staging area where you can group the things you’ll be throwing out or donating.
As you proceed, you should find that these 15 common types of garage junk and clutter will make up the bulk of what you’ll be getting rid of.
1. Old paint
Most garages that would be considered cluttered probably have some unused, partially used, or empty paint cans stored in them.
Unless your garage is climate-controlled, paint won’t keep very well when stored there over long periods. Temperature fluctuations will alter the consistency of stored paint, separate the colors, and cause the paint to dry out. Here’s how to tell if your stored paint is still usable.
Saving a can of leftover paint for touchups after a painting project is a good idea, but only if the paint is stored in optimal temperature conditions. Use your basement for storing any leftover paint you expect to use in the future.
Otherwise, take your old paint cans to your local hazardous waste disposal facility. Some municipalities will allow empty paint cans that only have residual dried paint to be included in curbside recycling collections.
If you have paint that is still usable, some schools, community organizations, and larger nonprofit organizations like Habitat for Humanity may accept it as a donation.
2. Worn out and outgrown sports equipment
Garages are filled with lots of worn-out sports equipment that may not have been touched in years. If you have kids who participate in organized sports (or used to), you also know quickly they can outgrow their athletic gear.
Like so many of the things you’ll come across during your garage junk cleaning project, that old sports equipment just never got dealt with and thrown out or donated. Now is the time to change that.
Donating used sports gear that is still in good shape is a win-win-win because:
a charity will benefit
it helps parents who can’t afford to buy expensive brand new athletic gear for their kids
a recycled piece of sports gear means one less item in your local landfill
For the sports equipment and other items your family uses for outdoor activities that you are keeping such as bikes, skateboards, and pool toys, consider a practical storage solution like slatwall.
Slatwall panels maximize your garage’s storage space by making better use of your garage walls for hanging storage. Instead of just having a few permanently anchored hooks, nails, or hangers, a slatwall system allows for a variety of hanging accessories to be moved around as your storage needs change.
3. Old cardboard
Another staple found in messy garages is old cardboard. Maybe it’s old boxes from Amazon orders or electronics purchases. Some people hold onto moving boxes for years.
The photo above shows a box from a recent TV purchase that was being kept in a garage. The homeowner was holding onto the box in case there were any issues with the TV and it needed to be repaired while still under warranty. While that is a good idea, the box would be better off stored in better conditions indoors for a year.
And if you’re not planning to move within the next few years, there is no reason to keep moving boxes. Even if the cardboard boxes being kept in your garage are all broken down and flattened, there are a few reasons to break this bad habit of keeping cardboard around:
the space taken up by cardboard that is being held onto “just in case” could be put to better use
pests are attracted to cardboard, particularly the glue used on the boxes
all of that cardboard collects dust and contributes to a dirtier garage with poor air quality
a stack of discarded cardboard is just one more thing you have to navigate around or move when cleaning the garage
4. Old books, magazines, and paper items
Like cardboard, any paper-based items being stored in the garage such as books, newspapers, magazines, photos, board games, and documents like old invoices and tax returns become a magnet for rodents and insects.
Keeping these things stored in airtight plastic storage bins to keep out pests and moisture will help, but it’s generally not a good idea to store any paper-related products in the garage for a long time. In addition to the aforementioned reasons, all of that paper becomes a potential fire hazard as well.
And how many of these things are you ever realistically going to read again? Old documents and tax returns have little use to you after a few years. Old newspapers and magazines will be filled with outdated news and information that you can find online anyway.
Let’s face it, those old books you never got around to reading will probably stay unread, especially if they have been sitting in a dusty, moisture-prone environment for years. Photos that are important to you should not be stored in the garage under any circumstances.
Do yourself a favor and lighten your garage’s storage load by donating the books and filling up your recycling bin every week until all of that paper clutter has vanished.
5. Old tires
Old car, truck, and bike tires usually end up in the corner of a garage on the floor. You can’t just toss them in the garbage anymore, as tires can be recycled into many different things. Here are some examples:
Your local waste recycling center should be able to take your old tires. Another option is to bring them to a tire retailer, who will charge you a small recycling fee.
If you’re keeping old tires stored in the garage for use later, be mindful that they do have a “best before” date. The rubber in tires degrades over time, which is known as tire dry rot or sidewall cracking.
In most cases, if the tires are more than 10 years old (which is about the maximum service life for most vehicle tires), get rid of them.
6. Broken and rusty tools
Broken power tools, rusty garden tools, rakes with missing tines, a rusty hammer or screwdriver…the list of old tools that exist only to take up space in your garage can go on and on.
By now, you’ve probably replaced most of your broken or well-worn tools with something newer. Keeping those old tools around only makes your garage more disorganized because they’re one more thing you have occupying space.
For example, take a rusty old shovel that has been hanging on your garage wall that is rarely or no longer used. Simply getting rid of it doesn’t just create more space for storing something in the future.
It makes it easier to rearrange your storage wall if necessary and also gives you one less thing to scan the wall for when looking for a specific item. The latter may sound like a minor thing, but instantly being able to find a tool in the garage when you need it can add up to hours saved over the course of a couple of years.
7. Exercise equipment that is never used
The garage is an ideal home fitness space if you’re working out regularly. However, if your garage is storing exercise equipment that hasn’t been used in years, that valuable floor space that could be put to better use.
Over a number of years, moisture in the garage can take a toll on different types of fitness machines and equipment. Weight benches, metal weights, and metal parts on exercise machines may rust.
Temperature fluctuations will put extra stress on the plastic and metal in exercise equipment, causing it to expand and contract. A simple lack of use often leads to performance issues with anything that has a lot of moving parts like a treadmill.
At the very least, all of these factors will contribute to any unused exercise equipment being stored in the garage having a shorter life.
If regular workouts just aren’t in your foreseeable future, clear out that equipment to create more useful garage storage space.
8. Leftover building materials
Keeping a few extra pieces of scrap wood around for a home repair or some extra paver stones to replaced damaged stones can come in handy and save you a trip to the home improvement store.
The problem with a lot of garages is that they end up becoming a storage space for far more leftover building material products than will ever get used. They are often stored haphazardly, such as the scrap wood pictured above.
Boxes of ceramic tiles that get moved or have items stored on top of them will end up with damaged tile pieces. The dampness and temperature changes in garages won’t treat any leftover hardwood flooring you have stored there kindly. And remember, cardboard packaging for building materials stored in the garage for lengthy periods is susceptible to the issues already mentioned.
Whether it’s leftovers from a remodel or a hobby project whose progress hit the proverbial brick wall, this garage junk cleaning time is a great opportunity to toss a lot of those old building material products you’ll never use.
In addition to old paint, the average garage houses all sorts of hazardous products that accumulate over time like stains, varnishes, caulking tubes, car cleaning and maintenance products, lawn and garden fertilizers, and general household cleaners.
Some of these items have expiry dates and those that don’t typically have a shelf life of only a few years. Keeping chemicals and hazardous products stored for long periods in environments where temperature conditions aren’t optimal shortens their shelf life and makes them less effective when used.
All of these things that have limited or no use aren’t just taking up space, they are also an ingestion and flammable hazard.
10. Old appliances, electronics, and outdated media
Outdated media and the devices to play them on may be stored in your garage. Now is the time to finally ditch all of those obsolete electronics and media that just can’t compete with today’s smart devices and streaming technology.
We hate to sound like a broken record (pun intended), but because vinyl records, CDs, cassettes, and VHS tapes all have paper packaging and liner notes, you know by now how they’ll fare with long-term garage storage.
Being kept in a storage space with moisture and changing temperatures will often cause playback issues with these different types of media, too.
Old VCRs, DVD players, CD players, cassette decks, computers and peripheral devices, turntables, receivers, TVs, and maybe even an ancient 8-track tape player should be brought to your local electronics recycling facility or donated if they still work.
Some charities may take donations of your old media, depending on the format. Well-preserved vinyl records, which have seen a revival in the past decade or so, will certainly generate the most interest.
Get rid of any old appliances like a fridge or window air conditioning unit that don’t work. Small appliances that never got used and ended up in the garage should also be joining your junk exodus.
Maybe you bought something like a juicer or slow cooker and simply never got around to using them (you wouldn’t be the first), or you received them as a gift. If they are still clean, in their original packaging, and actually work, a charity will certainly take them off your hands.
11. Old furniture
Deal with any discarded furniture you come across while garage junk cleaning. Things like an old sofa, bookcase, tables, and chairs are taking up more space than they should.
It could be that you planned to reupholster or restain one of your old furniture pieces and were unable to find the time to do so.
Unfortunately, soft furnishings that weren’t properly covered will have years of dust, dirt, grime, and absorbed car fumes for you to contend with if you wanted to salvage them.
Wood furniture (meaning most furniture) also attracts those darn pests and will warp in damp environments where there are significant temperature changes.
This is one reason repurposing old kitchen cabinets and bookcases for garage storage isn’t a good idea. Aside from the fact that were meant for a heated living space, these storage systems also look out of place in a garage and detract from the room’s appearance. A much better solution is to invest in a proper garage storage cabinet system.
Don’t forget to toss out any pieces of old patio furniture that have seen better days, especially if you have replaced the pieces with newer models.
12. Clothes that have been in long-term storage
Another way to create more space in the garage is to remove any boxes or plastic storage bins that contain clothes or any textile products.
Moisture and pests are the two main enemies of textiles that are stored in a garage space for long periods. Exhaust fumes and dust will cause additional problems if clothing hasn’t been stored in airtight containers.
In general, try to avoid storing any textiles in the garage. Keep your extra clothes and seasonal clothes stored somewhere in your home that is climate-controlled and safe from pests.
Some organizing professionals even recommend storing your more fragile fabric holiday decorations in a space other than the garage.
And if you have a bunch of boxes or storage bins filled with clothes in the garage, ask yourself – how much of this stuff does my family really need? Take this cleaning time to figure out which clothing items can be donated.
13. Old and broken lawn and garden supplies
Lawn and garden supplies that break, get worn out, or just don’t work very well anymore can likely be found scattered throughout any cluttered garage.
Round up that split or leaky garden hose, cracked hose reel, old sprinkler, ripped or orphaned gardening gloves, and those unreliable watering accessories and just toss them out.
Do the same with any ceramic, clay, and plastic pots that are damaged and no longer useful. Look for plastic planter trays and paper fiber pots you’ve accumulated over the years as well.
Depending on where you live, some of your old plastic gardening products can simply be added to your recycling bins.
14. Old kids toys
Sports equipment and clothes for kids have a fairly short life because they outgrow these things so quickly. They’ll outgrow their toys, too, or eventually lose interest in them as they age.
If you never got around to donating your kids’ old toys or passing them down to a family member, neighbor, or co-worker, it’s probably the basement or garage where they ended up.
Do what you can to give kids toys that are in still good shape and safe to play with another home.
Unfortunately, broken toys will have to end up in a landfill since most of the plastics used in them is too difficult to recycle.
15. Any remaining items
We have now covered most of what you will dealing with when undertaking a garage junk cleaning project. But because garages are so large and typically a home’s go-to spot for dumping things, there may be even more items you encounter while cleaning up.
Here are some additional things to look for when decluttering the garage:
items you never got around to fixing and likely never will
boxes or plastic storage bins with broken holiday decorations
old strollers, toddler car seats, and baby accessories
camping equipment that is damaged or never used
firewood (which should not be stored in the garage)
Take the next step after your garage junk cleaning project
Congratulations! By getting rid of this junk, you’ve taken that all-important first step towards reclaiming your garage’s functionality.
Now take the next step.
Garage Living can transform your unfinished, outdated garage into an attractive and modern extension of your living space.
We’ll also outfit your garage with durable, high-quality storage systems that make it easier to keep the garage organized and running efficiently on a daily basis.
This unprecedented time that has seen our way of life radically altered has been difficult for everybody.
In addition to the fear and uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic, having our daily routines turned upside down by having to self-isolate has been a major adjustment.
Many of us still have plenty of responsibilities like working full-time from home and having to temporarily home school the kids. Even with an active daily routine, chances are that being stuck indoors most of the time has given you more free time than you’ve had in years.
If you’re feeling burnt out from watching too much Netflix, why not make the best of a bad situation and put some time towards organizing the garage?
Organizing the garage is a productive use of your time
Tidying up the garage can be daunting, particularly if years of neglect has resulted in a garage that is bursting at the seams with clutter. Perhaps your vehicles have been forced to be parked outdoors permanently for more time than you’d care to admit.
How much does clutter affect our life? A report done by OfferUp (a digital selling marketplace similar to Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace) revealed some surprising stats. Their Buried: The State of Stress and Stuff survey of 1,000 Americans found that:
48% of the respondents said their homes were “at least somewhat cluttered” with things they didn’t use anymore
41% of those surveyed had not decluttered for more than a year
one in seven of the respondents admitted they had a room in their home that was unusable because it was filled with so much clutter
The garage is a logical area to prioritize for any home organization project. It is typically the most cluttered room in a house and often gets the “I’ll clean it up someday” treatment.
But as writer Gretchen Rubin eloquently put it, “Nothing is more exhausting than the task that is never started.”
Here are four reasons to dedicate some of your extra at-home time right now towards a productive task like organizing the garage.
1. It’s spring cleaning season and most garages need a cleanup
We’re a few weeks into spring now, but who says the yearly ritual of spring cleaning has to be done right when the season begins?
There is still plenty of time to start your spring cleaning projects. Getting them completed soon will mean you’ll have more time to enjoy the summer.
Get into spring cleaning mode and finally tackle that garage cleanup you’ve been avoiding for too long. With the weather warming up, homeowners in northern climates will find working in the garage a little more comfortable right now, too.
Focus more on eliminating clutter from your garage instead of just moving the clutter around so it’s more organized. Whenever someone takes on a big decluttering project, they usually find there’s a lot more junk they need to get rid of than they thought.
As with any cleanup project, seeing progress with what you’re working on is a great motivator, so start by emptying the bulkiest junk from your garage first.
This includes things like old tires, large appliances, broken patio furniture, old indoor furniture, broken exercise equipment, and building materials leftover from a previous renovation.
If you have kids, bikes and old sports equipment they’ve outgrown can go in your donation pile. Create another pile with old electronics that need to be recycled and another group for hazardous waste products to be disposed of like old paint cans.
Note that most locations that handle e-waste and hazardous material disposal are closed during the pandemic, as are most donation centers. Group together anything that you plan to get rid of and keep them in the garage until you’re able to haul things away.
As you can see from this photo he posted on Twitter, rock icon Rod Stewart certainly had plenty of old paint to get rid of when he was cleaning up his garage while in self-isolation. The all-white wardrobe he was wearing for the job probably wasn’t the best idea, however.
2. Organizing the garage gets you active and outside
In recent weeks, most of us have told someone at some point how restless we were being inside so much or how bored we were.
Getting out of the main living space you’ve been spending so much time in recently can involve spending some time organizing the garage, which gets you outside to a certain degree.
Cleaning up the garage gets you physically active. That helps to reduce stress and keeps your mind temporarily occupied with matters that aren’t as worrying as our current sobering reality.
3. Eliminating clutter is beneficial to your mental health
Just as physical activity can reduce stress, so can organizing the spaces you spend time in.
Too much clutter makes you feel like you’re not in control of your environment. This taxes your brain and makes it hard to focus on things, which naturally causes stress.
There are plenty of things that are out of our control causing stress for all of us right now. A messy garage is one part of your daily life that is more than capable of being fixed.
If you’re still struggling to find the motivation to get started, get some inspiration from our garage makeover galleries to see how organized any garage can become.
4. A tidier garage is more functional for your family
The physical and mental health benefits of organizing the garage or keeping active in any way right now are important.
But getting your garage organized allows you to reap the benefits of the full functionality a garage can provide for your family. When it’s filled with clutter, garages become little more than a junk storage room in the home.
Finding anything is a chore. Duplicate purchases get made because items go missing, which only fills your garage up more. A cluttered garage is also difficult to sweep and clean, which causes the room to smell musty.
Eliminating all of that will floor clutter will make regular cleaning easier, improve the airflow in the room and – most importantly – enable you to use your garage a lot more.
With more usable square footage and better organization, vehicles can be parked inside, where they belong. Your garage could also be outfitted to accommodate your hobbies and pastimes, such as working out or working with tools in a garage workshop.
Keep your garage organized and make it look nicer at the same time
Before long, life should return to normal and that means once again having less time to spend on tasks like decluttering the garage.
Now that your garage is hopefully tidier and easier to function in, why not keep it that way?
That uplifting feeling you get walking into your organized garage doesn’t have to disappear a few months from now when clutter starts accumulating again.
Garage Living’s storage and organization systems make it easier for you to maintain a tidy garage space. Our products and design expertise also give your garage a modern, high-end look you’ll appreciate for years to come.
The Garage Living Care Guide was created as a handy reference for Garage Living clients who have had their garage transformed with one of our makeovers.
Proper care and maintenance will ensure anyone who has had a garage makeover done will enjoy years of benefits from their upgrades. This guide will assist you with tips for taking care of your Garage Living Floortex® floor coating, cabinetry, and slatwall organizers.
Read this guide thoroughly and refer to the Levels Of Cleaning section towards the end of this blog post to gauge which cleaning products and methods will provide you with the best results.
Immediate Floortex™ floor coating care
After your Floortex® floor coating has been applied, this 3-step timeline will guide you through how to proceed in the following days:
1. 12-24 hours after coating*: Garage doors must remain open a minimum of three inches for the next 12-24 hours, ensuring the bottom of the garage door does not touch the wet/curing floor coating. Please do not walk on the garage floor for at least 12-24 hours after the coating has been applied.
2. 24-48 hours after coating*: Light objects such as garbage bins and recycling bins can be returned to the garage after 24-48 hours.
3. 4-7 days after coating*: For optimal curing time, allow 4-7 days for cars, SUVs, trucks, trailers, motorcycles, and heavier items such as toolboxes to return into the garage.
*Cure times will vary based on climate and weather conditions at the time of application. To confirm these times, please speak to your local design consultant or install technician.
Ongoing Floortex™ floor coating maintenance
Garage Living’s environmentally friendly Floortex® floor coating is incredibly easy to keep clean, regardless of where you live or the weather conditions you drive in each day.
From slush to mud, you can keep your beautiful floor looking like new year after year following these three simple steps:
1. Sweep to remove dirt and sand. Car tires and footwear typically track in debris, but you can easily remove the dirt and sand simply by sweeping or using a leaf blower. Over time, however, the dirt may accumulate and cause floor stains. When this occurs, move on to the next step.
2. Wash + rinse your floor using water or a gentle yet effective neutral cleaner, which is safe for a Floortex® floor coating and leaves a beautiful shine. A mild neutral cleaner won’t harm plants or grass and is both biodegradable and phosphate-free. After applying this effective cleaner, rinse with a garden hose and scrub with a Garage Living squeegee brush.
3. Squeegee to remove residue and dry the flooring surface. Just like with windows, squeegees are a great tool to dry and remove residue from garage floors.
Cabinetry and slatwall care
Cabinetry care: Garage Living cabinetry can be dusted and cleaned with a clean, dry soft cloth or a light duster. Use water on powder-coated cabinetry or a neutral cleaner for grease, grime, and dirt build-up. For stainless steel doors, use a stainless steel cleaner to remove fingerprints and dirt. Wipe in the direction of the natural metal grain using a clean, soft cloth and buff with a soft, clean cloth for a streak-free shine.
Countertop care: Refer to the Levels Of Cleaning section below to select the right product for the best results. For your butcher block countertop, do not soak the countertop with water or it may crack and warp over time. For your stainless steel countertop, clean, polish, and protect it with a stainless steel cleaner.
Slatwall care: Brush the slatwall crevices with a clean white cloth or light duster brush. Window cleaner can be used on your slatwall. For a wet spill, use a dry cloth. For a dry spill, use a damp cloth. Follow with a paper towel, which allows you to dry and buff the surface of the slatwall.
Levels Of Cleaning
Dust: Remove surface dust by wiping or brushing. Use a clean white cleaning rag or a duster with fibers that can trap and remove dust in any crevices. Ideal for Garage Living cabinetry, slatwall organizers, and countertops.
Squeegee: To clean the garage floor surface, use a broom, leaf blower, or a Garage Living squeegee. There are two Garage Living squeegees available, which both have a 60-inch long wooden handle. Ask about our 30-inch wide squeegee or the 22-inch wide squeegee with a brush edge.
Water: For dried spills, use water to dampen a white cleaning cloth to re-emulsify and remove spills. Ideal for Garage Living cabinetry, slatwall organizers, and countertops.
Mild soapy water: Fill a bucket with warm water and a few drops of mild dish detergent. Wet a clean white cloth, wring out the excess water, and wipe the surface. Dry immediately with a paper towel and buff the surface. Ideal for Garage Living cabinetry, slatwall organizers, and countertops.
Neutral cleaner: Neutral cleaners combine powerful cleaning performance with naturally derived biodegradable plant-based ingredients, no harsh chemical fumes, or residue. Read the manufacturer’s labels thoroughly. Test on small inconspicuous areas first. Repeat if necessary for desired results. Perfect for light stains such as grease, oil, grime, dirt, soil, and grass. Ideal for Garage Living cabinetry, slatwall organizers, countertops, and Floortex™ floor coating.
Stainless steel cleaner: Cleaners such as Weiman® Stainless Steel Cleaner and Polish cleans, polishes, and protects stainless steel surfaces like Garage Living cabinetry and stainless steel sinks. Wipe in the direction of the natural metal grain using a clean, soft cloth to remove watermarks and fingerprints. Buff with a soft, clean cloth to shine. Read the manufacturer’s labels thoroughly. Test on small inconspicuous areas first. Repeat if necessary for desired results.
Grease Magnet by CLR: A fast-acting powerful cleaner formulated to quickly clean stubborn stains such as tire marks, grease, stubborn oil, and tar. Read the manufacturer’s labels thoroughly. Test on small inconspicuous areas first. Repeat if necessary for desired results. Caution: Do not use the regular CLR product, which may damage surfaces. Ideal for Floortex™ floor coating.
Home garages have been around for about a century now. For most of that time, it was a room that looked boring and nondescript.
Then something happened towards the end of the last century. Homeowners began to view the garage as a part of the house that wasn’t merely utilitarian.
Beyond just using the garage for parking vehicles and storage, this was a room that deserved to have more attention paid to its décor and appearance.
As the room’s main focal point, the garage floor was an obvious area to look to as an upgrade opportunity. New garage floor products began to appear on the market, including sealers and paints that added a decorative touch to a surface that had stayed dull grey for so many years.
Epoxy floor coatings that had been widely used for commercial and industrial applications eventually became available for residential use as well.
We’ve come a long way since then. Nowadays, highly advanced garage floor products offer more and more color and design options that can truly transform a garage’s look from “meh” to “magnificent!”. They also do a much better job of protecting the floor.
Not all products for upgrading a garage floor are created equal, however. Let’s take a look at what your options are when it comes to getting a new garage floor and which ones work best.
What are your new garage floor options?
There are many options for upgrading a garage floor, but not all of them are ideal for decorative improvements. For example, floor patching products like crack filler and patching compounds are purely for repairs and not meant for decorative purposes.
Roll-on sealers are another option you’re probably aware of. Their primary function is for protecting the floor, not beautifying it. Clear sealers show floor blemishes and imperfections after being applied. While some types allow tints to be added for better aesthetics, in general you shouldn’t look to sealers for any appreciable upgrade to a floor’s appearance.
When it comes to decorative floor renewal products, these are the five most common options:
Epoxy coatings: this is the type of coating found in DIY floor coating kits and can also be professionally applied.
Floor paints: while they are cheap and easy to apply, floor paints do have some major limitations.
Interlocking floor tiles: most commonly available in PVC, rubber, vinyl, and porcelain styles, floor tiles install quickly and are a cost-effective flooring solution.
Floor stains: not as widely used as the above new garage floor options, stains add color or even a natural stone look to a floor surface.
Interlocking PVC floor tiles are one option for upgrading a garage floor’s appearance and protecting the floor surface.
What is the best product to upgrade a garage floor’s look?
Of the five flooring options mentioned above, the best overall choice for your garage is a polyaspartic floor coating. And it’s not even close, quite frankly.
We can instantly rule out floor paints and stains. They offer little to no protection for a flooring surface and only give your floor a modest cosmetic upgrade. If you’re going to the trouble of fixing an ugly garage floor, we’d advise using a product that’s not so one-dimensional.
After being applied, floor paints in particular don’t produce a high-end look. Floor paint is also notorious for chipping, flaking, and needing to be reapplied after only a year or two. Much of this has to do with the fact that roll-on paint applications only leave a very thin coat of paint on the garage’s concrete surface.
Epoxy coatings are a step up in terms of the look they produce on a garage floor. That’s because decorative flakes (also known as chips) are used during the application process to add color and visual appeal. Epoxy coatings also provide varying degrees of flooring protection.
The success homeowners have with epoxy floor coatings varies widely. Professional applications will naturally produce more satisfying results. DIY’ing your floors with an epoxy coating kit can end up with hit or miss results, however. There are four main reasons DIY epoxy coating applications fail:
Poor preparation of the floor prior to the coating application.
The application being done in the wrong range of temperatures.
The floor surface having too much moisture during the application.
A low-quality epoxy coating product being used.
Floor tiles are a viable and popular option for improving a garage floor’s look. Not only are they cost-effective, but tiles can also be installed quickly. Most types have an interlocking teeth design that allows the tiles to easily be snapped together. Tiles made from more durable materials also last longer and provide flooring protection. If a tile gets damaged, replacing it is very easy, too.
Which brings us to polyaspartic floor coatings. This type of coating does cost more than the other options, but is a much higher quality product. A polyaspartic coating is also more difficult to work with, so professional expertise and equipment is required to apply it.
Why Garage Living uses Floortex™ floor coatings
Garage Living only uses Floortex™ polyaspartic floor coatings for our flooring jobs. We believe that Floortex™ is the highest quality floor coating available on the market.
The benefits of a Floortex™ floor coating include:
a faster curing time that allows applications to be completed in as little as a day
can be applied year-round, regardless of temperatures (unlike epoxy coatings)
high resistance to household chemicals and leaky car fluids
a UV-stable topcoat that preserves the glossy finish and prevents yellowing over time
high resistance to abrasions, scratches, and general wear and tear
Decorative garage flooring transforms a room’s look
With the right product and a proper application, a new garage floor can dramatically transform the appearance of a garage. The before and after photos below prove that an expertly done makeover creates a garage that looks anything but boring.
Unlike a floor paint that just covers a cement surface in a single color, the flakes add a decorative flair that creates a whole new level of visual interest to the floor and, by extension, the entire garage.
The luxurious, modern aesthetic that is achievable with a product like a Floortex™ coating is similar to that of a high-end car showroom. Who wouldn’t want their garage to look that nice?
A great floor coating with a shiny topcoat will also reflect light better and brighten up the space. Using lighter colors for the wall and ceiling, as well as upgrading your lighting, will also help a garage feel less like a dungeon and more like a comfortable and inviting part of your home.
If you’re looking to install a new garage floor, it’s important to consider the rest of your garage’s décor and be able to customize your design choices.
You’ll want to use a flooring product that blends well with the rest of the room and reflects your design taste. The wide range of floor coating colors Garage Living offers makes this more achievable.
Because floor tiles are so easy to install and come in various patterns, styles, and colors, they also allow you to create a customized, one-of-a-kind garage floor look.
Before its makeover, this garage had the drab and unfinished look typically found in most garages.
The makeover transforms the garage’s look from drab to fab. The colors complement each other effectively and the Floortex™ floor coating adds a stylish showroom-quality aesthetic to the space.
Go “above and beyond” upgrading just the floor
Most floor resurfacing products and applications involve just covering the garage floor itself. Think beyond that – “above and beyond”, in fact.
One unique part of Garage Living’s proprietary floor application process is we give our clients the option of adding Floortex™ coating to the lower part of their garage’s walls. This adds an extra decorative touch to a floor makeover, not unlike adding baseboard to a room’s walls.
The baseboard coating and floor coating are identical, which creates a seamless look between the floor and the walls for a more cohesive garage aesthetic. The treatment also seals off any gaps that can allow cold air, pests, and water to enter the garage.
Any steps in the garage that lead into your main living space can have the coating applied as well.
It’s not just about looks – durability matters, too!
We briefly touched on why any product being used to rehabilitate your garage floor’s appearance should help protect it, too. Because it’s such an important topic, let’s explore it a little further.
Garage floors take a beating and need to be able to withstand the heavy demands of everyday use. After all, if a garage floor that has recently gotten a decorative refresh quickly starts wearing down and falling apart because it comes up short in the protection department, it kind of defeats the purpose of fixing the floor in the first place, right?
This is why you want to spend a little more to ensure that you’re getting a higher quality flooring product that has been expertly installed.
Cheap epoxy coatings don’t leave as thick a coat on the flooring surface as higher quality epoxies and polyaspartic coatings. This lower count of solid content (also known as solids by volume and volume solids) can be a major factor in the long-term durability of a floor coating.
The solid content in cheaper epoxy coatings can be as low as in the 30% range. Better quality epoxies typically won’t exceed about 70-75% solid content. Floortex™ floor coatings have a solid content of 85%. The higher the solid content number, the better. A higher number means less of the product that has been applied will be lost through evaporation during the coating’s drying process.
Another common complaint with DIY epoxy coating applications is that they don’t maintain that shiny “new floor look” for as long as expected. If a flooring topcoat loses its luster quickly, that’s a good indicator it’s also not doing an adequate job of saving your floor from damage caused by spills, leaks, and other types wear and tear.
Why a beautiful garage floor is a must if you own luxury vehicles
If you own luxury vehicles, they’ll look even more impressive with stunning showroom-quality flooring underneath their wheels.
The ultra-modern look of a high-quality floor coating and the beauty of a high-end car go hand in hand.
When you’re putting your garage design together, you can even use the color of a beloved luxury car as a decorative starting point and choose colors for the garage décor (including the flooring) that perfectly complement it.
Many of Garage Living’s clients have done just this, resulting in some truly amazing makeovers that beautifully showcase their vehicles.
Your beautiful new garage floor awaits!
Don’t settle for the status quo of a boring-looking garage interior. As a space you use every day, the garage deserves to look as nice as any other part of your home.
Getting a new garage floor is one of the most impactful ways to achieve the type of stylish, high-end look that will make your home stand out on your street.