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Garage Organization and Safety

By HHI Staff

One simple way to make your garage safer and healthier is to keep it both clean and well-organized. Doing this will lessen the accumulation of dust and debris, and therefore, potential pest habitats. It will also lower your risk of tripping accidents.


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The first step in doing this is to simply discard (or sell, or give away) all the “stuff” you don’t really need, or will likely never use again. Remember, however, you’ll want to dispose of properly any items considered “household hazardous waste” such as pesticides and solvent-based products. To learn what procedures to follow, contact your local sanitation department or board of health.


Another good idea is to replace gasoline-powered yard equipment with manual or electric models, if at all possible. Powerful equipment that runs on gasoline can be extremely odorous, and will require cans of gasoline (and oil) to be in your garage to operate it. The clothing worn by people who use these types of machines can quickly become saturated with combustion gases, which may be difficult or even impossible to remove. Naturally, the individual operating the equipment will have inhaled these dangerous pollutants, and their hair and skin will have absorbed their unpleasant odors just as their clothes did. If you decide to replace your gasoline-powered equipment, manual and electric alternatives should be available locally.


To conveniently store items you intend to keep, consider buying metal cabinets with doors. These cabinets work well at holding tools, hoses, sprinklers, car-cleaning products, etc. You’ll find that these are available at most office-supply and home improvement stores. Note: Metal storage cabinets with locking mechanisms, or ones that are designed to accept a padlock, are excellent choices if children are around your home.


In addition, heavy-duty, metal-mesh shelving units designed for mounting on walls can also provide good, solid storage sites. Sometimes these are stocked by local hardware stores and building centers. Also check larger office-supply stores. Then, too, you might consider using sturdy wall-mounted metal brackets to hang your rakes and other long-handled tools.


Finally, for proper fire safety, you’ll want to make sure your garage is equipped with a multipurpose fire extinguisher. You’ll want to keep this in a prominent place. And from time to time you’ll need to remember to check your extinguisher’s gauge to see if it’s properly charged.


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HHI is committed to accuracy of content and correcting information that is incomplete or inaccurate. With our broad scope of coverage of healthful indoor environments, and desire to rapidly publish info to benefit the community, mistakes are inevitable. HHI has established an error correction policy to welcome corrections or enhancements to our information. Please help us improve the quality of our content by contacting with corrections or suggestions for improvement. Each contact will receive a respectful reply.

The Healthy House Institute (HHI), a for-profit educational LLC, provides the information on as a free service to the public. The intent is to disseminate accurate, verified and science-based information on creating healthy home environments.


While an effort is made to ensure the quality of the content and credibility of sources listed on this site, HHI provides no warranty - expressed or implied - and assumes no legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, product or process disclosed on or in conjunction with the site. The views and opinions of the authors or originators expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of HHI: its principals, executives, Board members, advisors or affiliates.

Garage Organization and Safety:  Created on May 19th, 2011.  Last Modified on May 19th, 2011


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