Smiling man standing in garage holding cardboard storage box

The garage is the black hole that swallows every item that doesn’t have a proper home in your household. It’s often where all the clutter goes to die. You know, the stuff that you should throw out, but can’t bring yourself to actually throw out. And while this doesn't do any harm in a lot of cases, there are some things that you'd be better not to store in the garage. You may later regret doing so. In this article, we're going to run through a few of these items and explain why the garage may not be the best place for them.

These Things that Don’t Belong in Your Garage

It’s not so much that you can’t keep these things in the garage. It’s more that you won’t want to when you learn about the potential consequences.

Pet Food

Lots of people keep their pet food in the garage. “Well, I don’t want it in the house, do I?!” The problem with this is that it’s not just your pets that’d take great pleasure in eating it. There are plenty of other animals that would absolutely love to dive headfirst into your big bag of dog biscuits, namely rodents. If there’s absolutely no other place your pet food can be stored, we’d recommend you definitely put the bag inside a metal or thick plastic tub. Paper or plastic bags can easily be chewed through by hungry rats or mice.

Paint

If you’ve been putting off the investment in an insulated garage door installation and the temperature inside your garage space yoyo's between stupidly hot to bone-chillingly cold over the course of a year, it might not be the best space to keep your paint.

Most paints will have clear directions for storage conditions on the tin, so do check that first, but a lot of paints will be ruined if they’re exposed to extreme temperature swings.

Propane Tanks

If you have a propane tank that you’re not using, the garage seems a logical place to store it. And 99% of the time there would be nothing wrong with this. But should the tank leak, it can quite literally turn your garage into a death trap. If the gas builds up in an enclosed space like a garage, any type of spark could be deadly, causing an explosion. Even just the act of turning the ignition in your car could provoke this.

So rather than storing them inside, put these tanks outside. That way, if a leak should occur, nobody will be endangered. Just make sure wherever it is, that it’s not exposed to any extreme temperatures.

Old Photo Albums

When loved ones leave us behind, all we have left are the memories that they gave us. And photographs play a big part in helping us to relive those memories, over and over again. But the garage is the last place you want to store them. This is because heat, cold and high levels of humidity will completely ruin photos, and those conditions are typical of the average garage.

Firewood

This might not be an item that you expected to see on this list. In the middle of winter, a hearty fire will keep you warm, and you need a dry supply of wood to keep it going. So, why not store it in the garage? The problem with firewood is that it's an absolute magnet for a range of different pests. And once they're in your garage, they're just a hop and a skip away from being inside your house. And fumigating your home is not much fun. Believe me, I've had to go through it.

Clothing and Bedding

What three things do these two items not do well against? Heat, lots of humidity and creepy crawlies! Fabric just doesn’t hold up against these things, and all of them can be found in the average garage. So whether you’re thinking of storing your collection of vintage sweaters or you have some old baby clothes that you’re going to donate at some point, find another place to store them. If you put them in the garage, they’ll end up ruined.

Any Paper Documents that You Care About

You wouldn’t like to chew on a stack of paper documents, but there are plenty of living things that would. In a garage space, those things are usually mice or insects like termites. So any paper products you care about – tax documents, books you adore or your childhood comic collection – should be kept out of the garage. Because I doubt they’ll be in the same condition if they’re left there for any length of time.

Your Old Electronics

Electronics get outdated so quickly these days. It seems like we’re always “upgrading”. But what do you do with your old phone, computer or printer? We’d recommend that you didn’t store it in your garage. Consider donating it to a charity, a local club or maybe someone you know. Or you could sell it on a marketplace like eBay or Craigslist to raise some extra funds. You see the problem with storing electronics in the garage is that high levels of humidity will often ruin the circuit boards inside these devices.

We are the Garage People in Parker and Broomfield

At A Better Garage Door, we're not just about garage door repairs, installation, and maintenance. We’re interested in everything garage related and could talk about this stuff all day. The garage should be an asset to your home, not a liability, and we help homeowners to make it that way.