If you’re wondering how to store clothes in a garage, you’re not alone. After all, so many of us have far more clothes than we know what to do with – and it’s important to know how to safely store clothes that we don’t currently fit into or are designed for seasonal wear.
What You'll Learn Today
- Can You Keep Clothes in a Garage?
- What is the Best Way to Store Clothes? Alternatives to the Garage
- How Do I Store My Clothes Hanging in the Garage?
- Tips for Garage Clothing Storage
- Garage Clothing Storage is Best
Can You Keep Clothes in a Garage?
You can keep clothes in your garage. It might not be the most ideal spot, especially when you consider that temperatures can fluctuate, clothing can get moldy if not stored properly, and rodents can chew on the fabrics.
However, if you don’t have room inside your house to store your extra clothes, the garage is the next best option.
In fact, it’s even better than storing your clothes in an attic or basement, which pose their own set of challenges.
Will Clothes Get Ruined in a Garage?
Your clothes are less likely to get ruined in the garage than they are if you store them in a damp or hot environment, like a basement or an attic. While the best place to store your clothes is in a closet inside your home, the garage is the next best option.
If you take steps to ensure the safety of your clothing, you shouldn’t have to worry about them getting ruined, either – more on this below!
For now, check out this video on how to keep pests out of your clothes and other gear:
What is the Best Way to Store Clothes? Alternatives to the Garage
The garage isn’t the only place to store your clothing, but it tends to be one of the most convenient.
You can store it just about anywhere you’d like, but keep these tips in mind.
First, the storage area should be clean, dry, and dark. It should maintain a relatively cool temperature, have no direct sunlight, and have good airflow.
Find a space to store your clothes that is free from ultraviolet light and store garments off the round. Don’t use airtight containers, as textiles need air to circulate for longevity. Air quality is important to make sure your clothes don’t absorb any odors.
Some people store clothing in attics. This can work, but the problem is that attics can get excessively hot. The heat can break down clothing fibers, especially when there are frequent fluctuations in temperature.
Similarly, musty basements should be avoided – it might sound obvious, but if you decide to store clothes in your basement, they’ll probably get musty, too.
How Do I Store My Clothes Hanging in the Garage?
For clothes that you plan to hang, avoid metal hangers. These will cause the fabric to stretch and become deformed in places like the neckline and shoulder. Sometimes, you can iron these creases out – but not always.
Plus, metal hangers can rust in humid environments, leading to long-lasting stains on your clothes, or they can rip and tear clothes with their sharp edges.
Instead of using metal hangers, use those that are made of wood or plastic – or better yet, are padded.
You can hang your clothes as-is, particularly if you have a closet in your garage that will lend itself nicely to clothing storage. However, if you really want to do your best at keeping odors and stains away from your garments, you might want to invest in a wardrobe box.
A wardrobe box will enable you to hang your clothing without running the risk of damaging your clothes. You can cover the wardrobe box with a cotton sheet to protect it from light and dust (don’t use plastic, as it can trap heat and moisture).
Tips for Garage Clothing Storage
Here are some tips to help you store your summer or winter clothes in the garage when they aren’t in use.
Get the Wardrobe Ready First
Before you store any clothes, either in the garage or elsewhere, it’s a good time to go through your entire wardrobe and do a bit of an overhaul.
Donate or toss clothes that are damaged or that you no longer wear. This will free up clothing storage space and clutter.
Before storing your clothes, take the time to wash them. Dirt and stains will be more difficult to remove from clothing if they’ve had months or years to settle in.
If you’re storing shoes, consider wiping them down with a damp cloth and putting a satchel filled with baking soda inside. This will prevent your shoes from spreading dirt to your other clothes and will keep them odor-free while in storage.
Prevent Bugs, Mice, and Squirrels
Although storing clothes in the garage is a great way to free up storage space indoors, the sad reality is that bugs and rodents can make their way inside and damage your clothing.
To prevent them, use satchels containing fresh lavender or cedar. These two essential oils smell nice and are chemical-free- plus, they’ll keep pests away. Skip the mothballs, as these have harmful chemicals and can make your clothes stink to high heaven!
Separate Clothes into the Right Containers
Once your clothes are clean and sorted, it’s time to get them stored. Most fabrics can be stored in breathable cotton storage containers. Plastic containers can work, too, especially if your garage gets damp. However, these can restrict airflow and get humid, leading to mold.
Clear bins might be more convenient in that they allow you to easily see the contents of the containers. However, they can let in light, which can cause your clothing to deteriorate.
Instead, use opaque bins and label them on the outside. Don’t ever use cardboard as it can attract insects and won’t offer any protection against moisture.
Put the heaviest articles of clothing at the bottom of the container, then stack medium-weight items and finally light-weight ones. Fold whenever possible. If you must use hangers, choose padded ones and not wire hangers, as these can cause shoulder and neckline areas of clothing to become misshapen.
Avoid vacuum packing your clothes. This can save space but it’s also damaging to your clothing. It can cause permanent wrinkles and creases. Natural fibers, in particular, need to breathe – by sucking all the air out of them, you will cause your clothes to deteriorate more quickly.
You may want to separate your garments with acid-free tissue paper to protect the fabrics. If you plan on storing clothes for a long period of time, once a year, refold it so that creases don’t develop and degrade the fabric.
Store the clothes in a dark location so they don’t fade. It should be as cool as possible as warm environments can lead to mildew. Resist the temptation to overload your containers with clothes and instead, give your clothing room to breathe!
Store in the Garage
You can just stack containers of clothing in the garage but this isn’t going to make the most of your garage storage space. Plus, it’s going to be difficult for you to find what you need.
Instead, consider building a custom garage storage area that includes a combination of lockers, shelves, overhead bins, and more. Some options include:
- Wall-mounted metal shelving
- Overhead racks
- Storage cabinets
- Slatwall panels
Make sure everything is labeled well so it’s easy to find what you’re looking for!
Garage Clothing Storage is Best
As long as you follow the steps above to store your garments, keeping your clothes in the garage is one of the best options for storing clothes.
Consider these tips to ensure that your wardrobe withstands seasonal changes with ease – and to make sure you keep staying stylish no matter where your clothes are stored!
If you’re looking for more storage ides, here is our guide to storing a lawn mower in the garage.