Spring cleaning has become a tried and true ritual, the ideal time to gather up unwanted things for a garage sale or trash haul. Fall is also a great time of year to consider a sort and purge to transition into winter and ensure your garage is ready to do what it was built for – protect your car from the elements. But for many people, the idea of saying goodbye to summer and getting ready for winter is so off-putting they avoid it. At Garage Tailors Garage we call this common condition, Seasonal Anxiety Disorder. And the best way to alleviate symptoms is to have an organized garage.
For people with existing garage storage solution systems, the time that it takes to do the seasonal changeover is usually less than an hour. The changeover typically involves transferring the items you won’t need for a few months to the back of your garage and the ones you will be using to the front for quick access. Shovels replace rakes, the snow blower gets more prominent placement than the lawnmower and you can stash the pink, bug-eliminating windshield fluid in a cupboard and break out the blue antifreeze. Any sand or ice melting products that keep your stairs, pathways and front sidewalk slip-free get moved to a basket, which is suspended just off the floor near the front of the garage to grab when necessary. Snow tires are removed from overhead platforms or secure floor racks to be replaced with your all-weather tires until the spring. Typically people power-wash the garage in the spring to remove any salt stains from the floor, but a good soap, water and brush cleaning in the fall wouldn’t hurt.
If you’ve accumulated stuff that you no longer need, get rid of it. Give it away to a charity, have a garage sale or throw it out. Don’t put yourself in the position that led you to organize your garage in the first place. Purging should be an ongoing activity. It’s impossible to keep everything and keeping things you’ll never use again is a waste of space. For example, when kids get older, strollers get replaced by tricycles, which are replaced by scooters and bikes. Unless you’re planning on having more children, don’t keep the stroller. That’s what Craigslist and Kijiji, or the curb with a “free” sign, are for.
However, if the very idea of going into your garage to dig out winter items makes you feel queasy, you might be suffering unnecessarily from a bout of Seasonal Anxiety Disorder. Chaotic garages can be scary, but the problem is easily remedied. If you’ve never organized your garage, or the last time you did was during the past millennium, the best way to tackle it is to start in reverse. First, you decide what you need to keep, what to donate and what to throw away and then organize your garage to make space for your cars. The process takes planning, time and money, but ultimately will save you valuable time and aggravation each time you realize snow is on the way.
You can pretend the good weather will last forever and then cuss and fuss every time you find yourself scraping snow and ice from your windshield in minus 30 degrees. Or you can transform your garage with custom-designed storage solutions that address your personal needs and get into a warm, snow-free vehicle every winter morning.
At Garage Tailors Garage, we’re hoping to eradicate Seasonal Anxiety Disorder so everyone can feel good about getting the garage winter-ready. If you’re interested in knowing what could be done with your garage, we offer free in-home consultations.