Last October we blogged about winterizing your garage and offered a few expert tips on how to do that. Well, spring is officially here now. Although our friends in eastern Canada are still suffering the effects of a lingering winter, here in the Lower Mainland we are past the danger of frost and not likely to have to shovel snow again this season.
This is the time of year when tinkerers, do-it-yourselfers and amateur craftsmen begin to spend time in the garage again. Now that there is no danger of freezing to death out there, people are taking up spring projects in the garage that were neglected during the winter season. That’s why we thought it would be a good time to talk about DE-winterizing your garage. It’s just as important as winterizing (and slightly less dreary), but home owners sometimes forget about doing it until they go to use something in the garage and realize it’s still packed away in its cozy little winter nest of blankets or newspapers. Here are a few things you should do inside your garage this spring:
1) Remove plastic or other coverings from windows. This is discretionary and whether or not you do this depends on your situation. If you have garage windows and you covered them to insulate them for winter, you can remove these coverings if you plan to use the windows. By “use” we mean if you like to open them and let in a breeze while you’re working in the garage during the non-winter months. If you don’t necessarily need access to the windows during the spring/summer, it’s okay to leave them covered. However, it’s important to note that your window coverings will weather faster if left up year-round.
2) Check the state of any liquids and chemicals you have stored in the garage. In our garage winterizing blog we recommended insulating (or storing in a closed cupboard) things like motor oil, washer fluid, antifreeze and other chemicals. This spring, take a few minutes to make sure that all those chemicals and liquids you put away for the winter survived unscathed. Fortunately our winter here was pretty mild, but even a single freezing snap followed by a thaw can cause chemical containers to crack or burst. The last thing you want is chemical leakage in your garage. If by chance you do experience a chemical leak, it’s important to clean it up promptly and properly. Different chemicals require different clean up methods, so check online how best to clean up a specific substance and also how to properly dispose of those substances (they most likely cannot be thrown in with your regular household trash).
3) Pack away/organize seasonal items. Make sure you store snow shovels, your snowblower, de-icer and other winter items in a safe, out-of-the-way place for the milder months. Keep chemicals like de-icer/salt out of reach of children and pets. If you haven’t done so already, pack up winter/holiday decorations and store them. You can also unpack any spring/summer decorations and items that you boxed up last fall.
4) Check for cracks in walls, flooring and foundations in the garage. Many cracks happen in winter time, again, due to freezing and thawing. If you have a crack that needs attention, it’s best to take care of it now when there is no danger of frost, rather than, say, next November.
Spring is the best time of year to get organized and it’s also an excellent time to do that garage renovation you’ve been thinking about. The transition between winter and fall is ideal for installing garage flooring or putting in garage storage. Tailored Living has some unique solutions and products for both of those things and our reps would be happy to give you a free in-home (or in-garage) estimate on improving the space in your garage.