Remodeling ideas for your garage What is the easiest way to add more space to your house? Of course the answer is to remodel your garage. A very cost-effective way to gain more space for your house is to remodel your garage. You can greatly expand your home's living space especially if you no longer use your garage to park your car using your driveway instead. Remodeling your garage can help you become more organized and stop storing everything in your garage. This is why you have a basement. Your garage offers a perfect environment to house your workshop, studio or home office. Many people also find that their garage can also be used for a gym or for another living room designed for special activities. However, remodeling your garage does not necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice your storage space or your parking area. Garages today have become multifunctional, allowing cars, general storage, a workshop and even a home office all in the same place. Because many garages are attached to the home they can benefit from the same comfort as a home: phone wires, heating and cooling and plumbing. All you need is a little imagination, a fixed budget and a plan. If you think that by remodeling you might be losing too much storage space, you can always build a small storage space behind your garage to house sporting equipment, tools and other items. Moreover, when remodeling your garage you should consider an addition above the garage. Adding a room for work space and even for living, for one of your kids(they usually love this) above the existing garage can give you additional space and also increase the value of your home without major changes to the floor plan. If you feel the need to remodel your garage but you don't know exactly what you want or need, you should consider the following ideas. You can transform your garage into a laundry room if you have your laundry room in the basement. By building a laundry in your garage you will eliminate the need to go up and down the stairs. A music studio can be a great choice for your garage remodeling plans if you or your kids have some tendencies in this direction. The garage is the place where many "garage bands" got their start. To avoid your neighbors' complaints consider soundproofing your garage walls. Another idea for your garage can be to transform it into a gym. If you have your equipment and you don not have enough place to use it indoors you can always move it into the garage and have plenty of place for your daily exercises and training. Also here you will not be bothered by anyone. Major garage transformation One of the most commonly encountered questions when thinking about converting your garage for a new use is the warmth of the floor. Whether you are choosing to convert your garage into a spacious home office or to convert it into a gym room, you have to take into consideration some improvements for your floor. Since the garage has a concrete and uninsulated floor you should focus on making it warmer and more resilient. Furring up the floor with wood and plywood can accomplish both tasks. As a warning, you should use pressure-treated wood or protect the wood which is in contact with the concrete by placing a layer of felt paper between the wood and the concrete. First of all measure and determine how much you want to raise the floor. All garage floors have some amount of slope from the back wall to the wall with the garage door in it to allow the water runoff. To achieve a level floor you will have to adjust the joists, for this if you are placing the joists perpendicular to the slope in the floor each of them would have to be ripped down or shimmed up and if the joists are parallel to the slope, you can rip them on a taper or use shims to level them. Ok, you finished remodeling the floors, now it's time to examine your walls. You might be surprised to find out that your walls are not even with the foundation they sit on. They may be set back from the foundation or maybe overhang it in other areas. Only one step will solve these problems: selecting a lumber size that is deep enough to extend the framing past the concrete. By notching each end of the furring strip and attaching one strip to the face of each wall stud will result in an even wall that completely hides the foundation. Also it will be deep enough for the R-21 wall insulation, this type of insulation being the most common code requirement. When remodeling the walls and the floor several obstructions may appear. Obstructions like pipes, ducts, wires and other impediments to smooth walls may exist. For small obstructions such as wires or small pipes you could adjust the furring strips enough to accommodate them. The solution for larger obstructions is to box around them. If the obstruction is a water heater or something that you will need access to, you can frame it in and enclose it on three sides and then provide a removable access panel for the fourth side. A building permit may be required for a garage make over. Of course all the methods presented here are purely theoretical and only for guidance. All garages are different and some adjustments to the used methods or materials may be required in order to accommodate to your garage. Garage rubber flooring If you are considering remodeling you garage you might consider choosing a rubber flooring for your garage. This is an inexpensive option for general purpose flooring: most common uses include parking vehicles on the rubber flooring, converting the garage space into a play area or into a workout room. Parking your car on a recycled rubber matting is the least common use for this product because of two major inconveniences: recycled rubber tire products have very little resistance to petroleum products so an oil leak could seriously damage the floor; the melting point of this type of flooring is relatively low, in extreme circumstances the heat from the tires can be sufficient to melt the tires into the mat. If planning to remodel for your garage and you also have changing the flooring in mind, it is important to know the primary function that you need your floor to fulfill. If you are going to convert your garage into a dog- house, the rubber flooring would provide insulation against extreme temperatures of the cement as well as an extra cushioning. Also you must consider the ease of maintenance for this type of flooring. For a home theater, a rubber flooring is desired to reduce the noise transmission. Gadgets for your garage If you spend a lot of your time at home in your garage or if you want a clean and organized garage you need a few gadgets. Garage gadgets come in many forms and for different purposes. For example a stop light for parking may come in handy for someone who has a problem with depth perception or for someone who comes home late from work and is very tired. If you have such problems, you need this tool. It is easy to install and use and it helps you to park the car in the same spot every time when the motion sensors are triggered. If you need space on the walls next to the door, you can mount a garage door opener on the ceiling above the door to eliminate chains. Bike storage is ideal in a garage for "hanging" your bike on a wall so you have easy access to it with the advantage of having more clear space in the garage. If you have a lot more items in your garage than you really have Room for or the walls are full of shelves and cabinets, you definitely need additional storage devices like an overhead storage system mounted directly on the ceiling. Garage flat roof Whether you have an old garage or if you construct a new one you should take into consideration the quality and the type of roof that you choose for your garage. You might encounter problems with a home inspector if you don't have an adequate roof for your garage. He may cite your garage. And of course you want to make sure you have a stable and reliable roof that can face a massive rainfall. A flat roof with sagged joists allows rainwater to pool at the center, rather than draining toward the roof edges. This is a common problem and it affects nearly all the so-called flat roofs. Having an insufficient roof slope promotes standing pools of rainwater and this increases the likelihood of leakage as the roof becomes older. Roof drains should be installed at each low point of the roof. Since the roof joists have sagged it seems that they were not designed to support accumulated water. Therefore if you can add drains at the lower points of the roof it could prolong the life of your roof. Organized garage The garage is that one place where we all seem to love to be disorganized, however the sooner you get organized, the sooner you can make better use of that space. Organizing your garage can be a tiresome task for many homeowners. When you think about organizing your garage you should keep in mind that this activity means to find a designated place for everything while keeping your goods available for everyday use. The following five steps compromise a simple system for garage organization. Sort your garage items. First of all sort and categorize all the items in your garage, for this you should empty your garage and start sorting everything into categories. Separate the tools from sporting equipment, electric tools, etc. You will realize how much stuff you have and only then you will be able to determine the best ways to organize and store everything. Misplaced items in your garage should be returned to their proper place. Also you should sort the things that should be in the garage from the things that should actually be in the basement, attic or better, sold at a garage sale. Remember to recycle everything that you decide to throw away. Separate seasonal items and equipment. A special rack should be installed to hang lawn maintenance tools and to keep them accessible yet out of the way. If it is near winter place snow related tools like snow blowers, ice scrapers, snow shovels and also skis, snowboards and sleds grouped together. Also the items for warm seasons should be stored in a special cabinet. Near the beginning of every season you should plan this activity and rotate the cold and warm items places in the cabinet. For the other sporting equipment, shelves and drawers should be designed. Additional shelving and cabinets. While organizing you should consider adding additional garage storage space to help you maintain the organization. Shelves and cabinets should be mounted on the walls. The basic principle is to store the items that you use on a regular basis in a way that makes them accessible every time you need them. Create efficient working area. Installing a bench or a table would be a good choice if you use your garage as a workshop. A sturdy tool chest and a pegboard are great in storing your tools and keeping them easily accessible. Relocate trash and recycling bins nearby the garage. To easily dispose unwanted items from your garage a good idea is to relocate the trash and recycling bins near to your garage entrance. This way you won't be tempted to keep certain items because the trash bins are too far away. Now would be the time to hire a handyman to have cabinets, closets and shelves built right into your garage. Invest in some good storage units as described before and start organizing, sorting and storing. Planning ahead your garage What would your dream garage look like? Some people want to have it fitted for the car, others dream for a really nice workshop, a laundry room, a gym or a rehearsal studio for their own musical band. Some other people only want it to expand their living space and improve their lifestyle. How much money do you have to work with? Even if you want only to remodel, rebuild or only reorganize a small area of your garage you must have a budget. It is imperative to have in mind a specific target and a realistic and finite budget for it. The first step is to carefully evaluate your needs regarding the space and your needs. Even if it is a small garage, you can find plenty of space to use for your work area. Making the decision regarding whether to do the project yourself or to hire a contractor depends on several factors, including your skills and the magnitude of the project. Having only basic skills you can produce a great reorganization project. You can buy the needed furniture yourself accord ing to your needs and your available space. Cabinets, shelves, pegs and hooks are a must have in order to turn your garage into usable space over a weekend. If you have a greater project in mind, maybe you should consult a plumber or an electrician. If you are planning to convert your garage into a living area you'd better be a professional or you'll be risking decreasing the safety and value of your own home. If you opt for a contractor, and this is the choice that we recommend regardless of the project's magnitude or your skills, get one whose work you've seen and if you have the chance, get some recommendations. It is better to see with your own eyes the skills and some relevant work of the contractor so you can decide whether you could be satisfied with his work or not. Costs and construction times vary with the scope and the magnitude of the project. If there are no structural issues, finishing and enclosing a garage and turning it into useable room would take less than two weeks. The costs depend on the materials that you decide to use, but keep in mind that expensive does not necessary mean quality and that cheap does not grant you reliability every time. Your garage can be a place to spend many happy hours for a long time to come if you plan it right according to your needs and dreams. Garage facelift You would probably ask yourself why do you need a facelift for your garage. It is only a garage! But what if you have a two or more cars garage? The garage doors take up a significant portion of the front of the house. What is the use in having a great design for your house but having only generic garage doors? Nowadays the garage door trends are to incorporate the doors into the design of the house. For example you could choose carriage-style doors(look like they open like old-fashioned doors in carriage houses, but they open like normal garage doors) or you could choose wood carriage doors. These wood carriage doors are reminiscences of the horse-drawn carriage days and they are very popular. You don't need to go as far as to order custom made garage doors because you can find more appealing garage doors at most home improvement stores. In addition to the doors, the floor of a garage gives style and can integrate to the overall aesthetics of your house. You could try interlocking garage floor tiles that come in multiple colors and patterns. They are made of polypropylene and are easy to install and clean. Another interesting and practical flooring is the coin shaped G-flooring. Safety: A Garage Necessity What do you see when you first examine a garage? The garage door. This is the first and most important "contact" of your garage to the world. If you want full confidence in your garage, this "contact" should be 100% secure and safe. Also the door says a lot of you and of your taste in design. You can have a beautiful house but if your garage door is a wooden, plain, white one with that makes an awful sound when opened or closed, says a lot of you and your negligence regarding style and safety. An ageing garage door and opener could be a real threat for your children or pets. Injuries and death are a thing of the past with the new openers and garage doors. If you plan to remodel your garage, one of the first steps in doing this must be changing your doors and openers. Old garage doors have been heavy, huge, wooden colossus that rot and crack. Even though wooden doors provide a wide range of styles and textures the problems related to poor insulation are real and even of present times. An alternative is the fiberglass material, inexpensive, easy to lift, resistant to corrosion and the require little maintenance but they also provide little insulation and security. If you want a maintenance-free, durable and not-wrapping garage door you need steel. They also provide good insulation, being made of two or more sheets of steel alternating with a variety of insulating materials. The also come in various textures, styles, shapes and colors suited to your needs. Moreover, you can add windows including the reflective type that provide an obscure view into the garage. In 1991, automatic reversal doors for garage door openers have been required by law in the United States and in since 1993 optical sensors became a requirement. The sensor works perfect for your safety: if something gets in the way of the sensor beam while the door is going down, the sensor sends the door back up. Also the new design provides more security and quieter operation. Today, the silence options include a belt-driven trolley made of Kevlar or, the cheaper option, a screw-drive model with a plastic-lined track to lessen the noisy contact of metal-to-metal. Remote controls have been upgraded so you can find a remote control having enough buttons to control the lightening or appliances in your home and garage. Another option for your remote-control buttons are the child-safe lock-out and the rolling security codes witch automatically change every time the garage door opens to prevent the stealing of your opener's code. Even though you have all these changes added to your garage, security and safety are not 100% guaranteed. It is better that the installation of a new garage door and opener be done by a professional team who can make the proper adjustments that will allow the sensitive equipment to provide you with the maximum amount of safety in your garage. Tips for your garage door The new generation of garage doors is reasonably priced, safe and easy to install and they are no longer a convenience for only a select few. You should consider changing your garage door if it is too old or if it has an old motor or pulley system. The garage doors can be selected by the type of the chain System they use: screw-drive system, chain drive system or computer controlled system. The screw drive system has a mechanism that moves the length of a steel rod; it is a lifting mechanism that is mounted in your garage ceiling. The chain drive system is made of a chain that moves the door along a pair of tracks; this is the most common and affordable system but also has the disadvantage of being extremely noisy. The computer drive mechanism doesn't use any screws or chains; the system's body is mounted above the door. The speed and the type of power are other factors used in selecting a new garage door. A faster door means a more expensive one, but this feature reduces the waiting time on your driveway. Even though it opens quickly, a door usually closes pretty slow for safety. The power of the motor is important in choosing a door because it has to have enough power to raise the door; a large motor is likely to last longer. Also the quietness of the motor should be another decision factor. Enhanced security features can be found in a newer generation door that uses random codes. A new random code is generated each time the remote control is used to open the garage door. This security code prevents you from opening another garage and vice versa. The remote control may be found in several models with a different number of buttons. A multiple button remote control is the best choice for someone who has several garages. The fixed controller is mounted on the wall either inside or outside, near the garage door and it allows the garage door to open without a remote controller. The keypad allows to close the door for a specific period of time and it provides enough time to exit the garage without running. Safety features are present on every garage door. These features prevent the door from crushing objects or people by reversing the direction if it hits something. This safety feature is triggered by an electronic beam and it is mandated by law. A computer-controlled mechanism can detect or compensate for varying conditions, for example if the door is coming in contact with an obstruction or is closing too fast. Sealing a garage floor The floor of your garage is exposed to intense corrosion and deterioration due to road salt, oils and other auto fluids. Sealing your garage floor reduces dust and makes cleaning and sweeping easier. A clear acrylic concrete sealer protects the concrete from damage and stains. Also the same sealers can be used on concrete walks and driveways or as a primer under acrylic or polyurethane floor paints. You should take care when and where you apply a sealer because they cannot be applied over paint or other coatings. In order to do the sealing yourself you need several materials and tools: protective clothing, neoprene rubber gloves, goggles, a stiff brush and a bucket, a paintbrush, a cartridge-style respirator with organic-vapor and small- particle filters, paint roller with extension handle and tray, medium nap roller cover, a concrete degreaser and of course some concrete sealer. Usually ‡ gallon of sealer is used for approximately 100 square feet. Before sealing you have to clean the floor because it has to be free of dirt, grease and oil. To do this you should use a stiff scrub brush to apply the cleaner and concrete degreaser according to the instructions. Allow the solution to lay on the floor for 15 to 20 minutes more for stubborn stains after scrubbing. After his you should rinse thoroughly with clear water. You may need several applications. Many concrete sealers contain hazardous chemicals that may be harmful to skin and eyes and the vapors are not safe to breathe but the vast majority are acrylic. The best way to avoid damages to your skin, eyes and lungs is to wear the protective equipment made of neoprene rubber gloves, goggles and a respirator with both organic-vapor and solid-particle filter cartridges. During the process of sealing the floor you should continuously ventilate the garage by opening all doors and windows and also using a fan would be a great idea. After cleaning and drying the concrete, the sealer has to be applied. The sealer should be tested in an inconspicuous area before applying. Some uneven density in the concrete may result in light/dark appearance that may be objectionable. By using the medium-nap paint roller with extension handle is the easiest way to apply the sealer. Start in a rear corner continuing to work your way out of the garage. Before doing anything else you should allow the sealer to dry as indicated on the sealer bottle, usually for a few hours. For a driveway the procedure is essentially the same but it would be quicker to use a garden sprayer to apply the sealer to a large driveway. You should act with caution not to over spray on other material due to the high risk of staining.
Garage storing -- shelves A garage is the perfect home for all sorts of items and activities from storing sporting equipment to tools and machines; and it's original purpose for car parking to activities like a home-office, a gym or a workshop. If your garage is only used for storage rather than other activities it really needs some shelves for organization. Usually garage shelves can be found in two main forms: site-built and prefabricated. Site-built shelves are usually less expensive and allow you to adapt the sizes to the space available. You can find everything that you need at the local home center, lumber yard, discount store or hardware store. One of the basics of the garage shelves is made of a simple piece of æ" plywood or a length of 1x or 2x lumber on a set of heavy-duty shelf brackets. This is mounted by attaching the brackets to the studs directly using long screws then by attaching the shelf to the brackets. To strengthen the shelf you can add a brace at each stud. Another type of shelves are the floor-supported ones. One method is to run vertical 2x4s every 50 inches and resting them on the floor and attaching them to the rafters or ceiling joists at the top. In addition, the 2x4s are run horizontally on edge between the uprights then a particleboard is used to create the shelve. The most commonly used dimensions are 19-25 inches for depth and the spacing between 2x4s is usually on 25 inches but of course, these sizes can be changed to accommodate the size of the items that you are storing. For storing small items you should take into consideration the space between the studs. By attaching a series of 1x2 strips horizontally to the inside edges of two adjacent studs approximately 6 inches apart, cutting some 1x4 and 1x6 pieces of lumber and fitting them between studs and slipping them on top of the 1x2s you can create some small adjustable shelves. These are great for jars, cans and bottles and also for other small and light items. The small shelves are great for organizing and storing screws and nails. The best choice when building prefabricated garage shelves is Steel shelving. Plastic shelving may be enough for storing light Weight items but in time you may need something more resistant for storing heavier items. One disadvantage of the steel shelving is that they cannot be cut to size so they have standard widths, depths and heights so you have to choose something that fits within your available space. Adjustability is another important consideration in prefabricated shelving. Prefabricated shelves sho uld be adjustable to at least two different locations within the shelving framework and also the pins for adjusting should be heavy duty and should have something in place for preventing them from working loose or becoming accidentally dislodged. Another thing to be taken into consideration when opting for prefabricated shelves, especially those designed for heavy loads, is that they may require a wall attachment or other support against tipping. Insulating you garage You recently bought a house that has a bedroom addition above the garage but it is not insulated. Adding insulation should make those rooms more comfortable and save on energy bills. There are several options for insulating above the garage. Depending on the local building codes, the size of the area, whether you decide to hire a professional or do it yourself and maybe the most important factor is your budget. If you have a sheet rocked garage, the fastest way would be to have blown-in insulation installed behind the sheetrock. A fair warning here, the blown-in insulation may be expensive if your garage is small. If your garage is not sheet rocked you have to install lame-spread rated batt insulation and cover it with sheetrock. First check your local building codes for the requirements of the thickness of the sheetrock for garages including fire safety rules. The lack of smoke detectors in a garage and the possible storage of flammable and combustible liquids can cause a garage to be considered a hazardous space. This is the reason why you should contact a local contractor to help you in insulating this space. The G-floor During the last years, the garage has become an important extension of the house. More and more people remodel their garage giving it a new purpose, for example transforming it into a home office, a workshop, a music studio and even adding a new room on top of it. If you are the type that needs to have a workshop in his garage and you also want to park your car inside it you definitely have to install a G-floor. This type of flooring keeps your garage looking new whatever activities you choose to do inside and also does a great job in hiding cracks and stains while protecting the floor from oil, battery acid, grease, brake fluids, salt, antifreeze, mud or other dirt that finds its way into the garage. If you are living in a colder climate , you definitely know what a mess winter snow and salt make in your garage, this floor is easy to clean , you just have to hose it off. If you are thinking of remodeling your garage, you must consider the option of installing a G-floor for several reasons: the coin-pattern flooring is easy to install, rather cheap, durable and gives a great look to your workshop-garage. Garage spring cleanup Imagine a beautiful spring day. You want to go biking, go fishing or even enjoy a picnic with your family. When you enter your garage to gather your gear and head to having fun you have a tremendous surprise: your stuff is all over the place, on the floor, messed up in corners, misplaced in various drawers. Organizing your garage is as easy as figuring out where to start. The first thing is to purchase some cabinets, some shelves and hammer a series of nails into the walls. The storing and sorting goes as follows. Categorize each object and place it in a place specially designed for it. For example sporting gear should be placed in a cabinet or on some shelves, tools should be placed in drawers or hung on to some peg boards. Be ruthless about throwing away and don't think twice before you throw away anything that you haven't used recently or anything that's broken. If you haven't repaired it yet, chances are you won't repair it. Seasonal gear should also be sorted, boots and out-of- season coats should be organized in small closets. After you finish organizing, sorting and throwing away unwanted items you will be surprised to see your garage floor and corners again. Maybe your car will fit in the garage again. Your workshop-garage heater Why do you need a heater for your remodeled garage? The answer for this question is pretty obvious: one of the major disadvantages of using your garage as a workshop or a home office is that it wasn't meant for that. The garage is the special place reserved for your car, the garage is the room where you keep your lawn and garden accessories. If you start using this space for other projects that you have, you need to deal with one major inconvenience, that is warmth. During the summer you don't have to worry too much about this but during cold seasons you might find some difficulties in continuing your project because of the very low temperature. You can find many ways to warm up your workshop- garage. You can try porcelain heaters; they work great and can warm up a good area but they are not meant to warm a large space for prolonged periods of time. Another solution for you would be to use a kerosene heater. These heaters are easy to turn on, most of them have an electric starter. It should have a thermostat to be able to regulate the temperature also they have a specific scent, they do function on kerosene! So if you think you cannot handle this smell, a kerosene heater wouldn't be a good choice for you. They are quite dangerous for your children, if they have access to the garage and you would definitely want to ventilate the garage very well! A very good and popular choice nowadays is a gas heater. Of cour se you have to hire a professional to install it. You can find a gas heater suited to your budget for remodeling the garage. There are many models and almost all of them are fairly inexpensive. The main advantage of a gas heater is that it gives you a consistently warm environment. They are available in both manual and thermostatic control types. You would probably prefer a model that has a thermostat, even though its price is a little higher than the price of a manual temperature control model. The only thing that you have to do is to set it on a desired temperature and leave it to do its job. There are two types of gas heaters: vented and vent less. The vent less unit uses air from the room and the vented model has a system that vents directly out of the garage. The disadvantage of the vent less model is that you have to keep the room vented at all times because the unit uses the air from the room where it has been installed. The main advantage for the both types of gas heaters is that they have a pretty low running cost compared to the kerosene and electric heaters. Remember that if you choose to install a more advanced heating system like a gas heater, you must ask for a professional's help. Garage floor remodeling The garage is a very important part of your house. It is not only the room where you keep your car but it can be used also as a storeroom. In the garage you keep things that you do not use everyday or things that you want to dispose of later on. Sporting equipment is usually stored in your garage. Also, a lot of people use the garage as a laundry, a workshop or even as a home office. The growing importance of the garage has increased the number of remodeled garages through the past years. Garages are becoming an integral part of the house. One of the things that need to be changed when planning to remodel your garage is the floor. Concrete floors serve the purpose of flooring but do not look good, even if you paint it, the floor will look bare. It is best to have a garage expert adviser to do the job. The best type of garage floor is made of specially formulated polyvinyl, this special material for flooring conceals cracks and protects the floor from getting stained. This flooring protects the floor from accidental spills: oil, battery acid, grease and any other dirt that gets into your garage. By making a few minor changes to your garage you can transform it into an attractive storage room. Improved storage -- your garage One of the most important storage areas of a home is the garage. Because the space it offers is limited it should be used efficiently. So the garage is a prime candidate for storage improvements. Of course you have many options for improving the storage in your garage. One of the options is to buy a modular storage kit. This can have parts and components that you can mix and match together and can solve many storage problems. Another option would be to build your own storage solution. If you have too many items that you keep in your garage maybe a modular storage kit cannot provide you the needed solution. The improvements made to your storage may help you reduce clutter, store seasonal items in a more conveniently way and improve organization. Cabinets, shelves, wall-mounted racks and plastic containers are the most popular types of garage storage and organization solutions. Cabinets work well for protecting their contents from moisture and dust. Shelves save space more efficiently but the most affordable solution are the wall-mounted racks. Clear plastics containers help you to store several items and allow you to see the contents. Garage doors There are four basic types of garage doors and three types of materials commonly used to construct these doors. If a traditional look is desired for the garage, then the side hung garage door is the usual solution. Side-hung doors can be fitted directly on a wood frame or on bricks. Another type of garage door is the sectional garage door. These doors are perfect where the space in front of the garage is limited because they open vertically. They are perfect for a new garage that is intended to have an aesthetic appeal. Similar to sectional garage doors are the roller doors. The door rolls up inside a drum above the opening of the garage door. Also there is no need to allow any room inside or out to operate the door so it would be well suited for limited space in front of the garage. The last type of door is the most common one, up and over garage door. This is the most popular type. They can be manufactured from timber, steel and GPR materials. They can also be manual or automatic and they are relatively easy to install. Garage materialism is growing Ever since the first suburbs were built, the garage became a measure of the financial prosperity of a family. At first there was one, then two, but now four garages are becoming the newest form of decadence in home building. A real estate agent would say that people have a log of gear and items these days so there is a huge demand for a place to store them. These garages, in some instances, may be larger than many apartments, housing more cars than ever. The third and maybe fourth family car is a necessity for families where kids stay home longer and the restrictions on street parking are one of the factors that point towards building larger garages. Moreover, every man has his love for the "toys" such as boats, jet skis, motorcycles, bikes, power tools and workbenches and these "toys" need storage. A look into a three or four car garage may reveal tools, bikes, sporting gear, a workshop and a 25-foot boat. This visual degradation of the suburban landscape is an aspect of materialism that won't stop turning any time soon. Not everybody likes this trend. Some home builders spend the extra time and money on architectural plans that can split these huge expanses of square footage into opposite sides of the house. A problem that appears here is the problem of the house's design after this transformation. The most aesthetical are the back- loading garages but they require the use of the backyard space for turning radiuses. Side-loading garages need wider home sites but can make the front of the house look enormous. With the current rising costs for land, in many areas this is not feasible in the long run. This is a sign of a mega-materialism, that is: if one is good five is better so more and more people understand only one thing: that a garage is not good unless it is as big as a basketball court. When will it stop? Are we going to have the house attached to a garage ten times bigger than the house? Maybe it would be better for everyone to think twice before making such a commitment when buying a house attached to the garage. Maybe it would be better if people would care about the simpler and more basic things in life than owning a four car garage. Your workshop-garage heater Why do you need a heater for your remodeled garage? The answer for this question is pretty obvious: one of the major disadvantages of using your garage as a workshop or a home office is that it wasn't meant for that. The garage is the special place reserved for your car, the garage is the room where you keep your lawn and garden accessories. If you start using this space for other projects that you have, you need to deal with one of the major inconveniences, that is warmth. During the summer you don't have to worry too much about this but during cold seasons you might find some difficulties in continuing your project because of the very low temperature. You can find many ways to warm up your workshop- garage. You can try one of the porcelain heaters; they work great and can warm up a good area but they are not meant to warm a large space for a long time. Another solution for you would be to use a kerosene heater. These heaters are easy to turn on, most of them have an electric starter. It should have a thermostat to be able to regulate the temperature also they have a specific scent, they do function on kerosene! So if you think you cannot handle this smell, a kerosene heater wouldn't be a good choice for you. They are quite dangerous for your children, if they have access to the garage and you would definitely want to ventilate very well the garage! A very good and popular choice nowadays is a gas heater. Of course you have to hire a professional to install it. You can find a gas heater suited to your budget for remodeling the garage. There are many models and almost all of them are fairly inexpensive. The main advantage of a gas heater is that it gives you a consistently warm environment. They are available in both manual and thermostatic control types. You would probably prefer a model that has a thermostat, even though its price is a little higher than the price of a manual temperature control model. The only thing that you have to do is to set it on a desired temperature and leave it to do its job. There are two types of gas heaters: vented and vent less. The vent less unit uses air from the room and the vented model has a system that vents directly out of the garage. The disadvantage of the vent less model is that you have to keep the room vented at all times because the unit uses the air from the room where it has been installed. The main advantage for the both types of gas heaters is that they have a pretty low running cost compared to the kerosene and electric heaters. Remember that if you choose to install a more advanced heating system like a gas heater, you must ask for a professional's help. A garage addition Does our older child need a little more liberty? Your work from home or maybe you just feel that you need another room for a special pr oject that you want to start? Then the solution is to construct a new addition to your garage. By making an addition to your garage you can add to the living space in your house, no matter what type of garage you own: detached or attached to the house. The space above the garage can be converted into a private living space for your older child, guests or a live-in parent. You can convert your garage into your home office. You could very well find here the peace and quiet needed for your work. Also, the new addition can be converted into a music studio if you put some simple sound proofing measures into place. In order to start planning for your garage addition, first prepare a budget and then hire a professional because this is a complex project. Also, you may need to hire an architect to help you with the construction plans. Tornadoes, hurricanes, storms and garage doors Often being the largest opening on most homes, the garage door is usually the most vulnerable to failure under high wind pressure such as hurricanes, tornadoes and storms in general. The pressure of the wind can destroy the garage doors during a storm that allows water and wind to enter the house. This can cause significant damage to furniture, electronic equipment, the contents in general as well as the house's structure. The garage door is often overlooked when strengthening the structure against high winds. Massive building failures and strong winds have convinced storm-prone communities that residents must be prepared to employ active or passive reinforcement systems for their garage doors. An active system is that specific type of reinforcement that must be installed before a high-wind event while passive systems are built into the product and don't need any activation from the owner. For the home owner in hurricane-prone areas there are only two real options: either a new garage door with a built in passive reinforcement system or a garage door reinforcement kit. The option of totally replacing the garage door is usually an expensive procedure so a garage door reinforcement kit would be a good choice if your budget for remodeling your garage is low. Although is rather expensive, a new garage door offers a more secure and safe option in front of a high wind. If you'd rather choose the cheapest option, that is to reinforce your garage door you can protect your home in one of the following ways: first of all install pressure or impact resistant devices, such as shutters, panels, accordion fold shutters on the garage doors or install pressure/impact resistant garage doors that do not require shutters. If your existing door is impact resistant but it is not wind pressure rated, install an approved garage door bracing system to increase the wind pressure resistance. A pressure/impact resistant rating ensures that the device meets the wind pressure and debris impact requirements of the Southern Building Code Congress International standards or the July 1988 wind pressure and debris impact requirements of the American Society of Civil Engineers adopted in September 1994. When adding a garage door bracing first ensure that there is enough and relevant documentation that the product has been tested at a certified testing laboratory. The product should be designed to withstand both positive and negative wind pressure. You should contact a local garage door supplier of approved garage door bracing systems to assist you in the selection of the necessary system for your needs. Music studio in a garage Music is your hobby and you want to practice with your band. The only available place that you can think of is your garage but you also have neighbors that must not be disturbed while you are practicing. The only solution to use your garage as a music studio is to soundproof it or build a small studio in one corner of the garage. For this you need to use two existing garage walls and build another two new walls on an angle to improve the acoustics of the studio. After measuring the angle you will have to anchor sole plates to the garage floor and frame the first new wall. After finishing the framing for the second wall and adding a door to this one you have to insulate the garage walls to help deaden the sounds. Next you will hang drywall on the new walls and patch the seams. The final layer of sound-deadening material will be applied to the walls and to the ceiling. This layer is made of some secondhand carpeting. After applying these carpets you can cover them with some strip boards pinned onto the wall with nails. Five steps to a clean garage workshop You park your car in the driveway and you still have to work on your projects in the back yard. If you don't use your garage for its designed purpose, why not turn it into a tidy workshop? Here are five steps to turn your garage in a perfect small home workshop: 1) Create your own workbench from an old door,s ome sawhorses or scrap wood. 2) Mount a pegboard on the wall to store your tools. It would be a great idea to mount it above your workbench. Strategically place pegs according to the type of tools you will be placing on the board. After hanging your tools, trace around them with a marker so you will know where each one goes. 3) Use old jars for holding nails, nuts, bolts and screws. 4) Make a storage box for the rags because they tend to accumulate in the working area. 5) Use a small tackle box for transporting items such as screws and nails as you move around the shop.
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