Many people store everything and anything in their garage.  But that makes parking the car (and looking for what you need to use), a challenge at the best of times. Sweep out the garage monthly, and thoroughly clean it at least once a year. Here are some cleaning tips from the experts at MOLLY MAID:  

1. Plan how you want your garage to look when this project is done.  It's best to elevate equipment off the floor and segregate everything into common sections. You'll want to be able to see everything or use labels on bins, so do you need more hooks, racks, bins or shelving units? If so, get them before you begin the next steps.

2. Clear the garage by moving everything outside onto the yard or driveway. Group items by their function (think: 'tools', 'gardening', 'sports', 'car', 'toxic garbage' such as old paint cans, etc.).

  • As you're sorting, deal with anything that needs to be fixed on the spot or put it into a labeled box for later. When in doubt, throw it out or create a 'Goodwill' or 'garage sale' pile as well. Or call a Junk Dealer to take it away.
  • Group together old motor oil, solvents, paint, garden chemicals and other toxic waste material, and check with your municipality about how and when you can safely dispose of it.  

3. Sweep the floor (or use the leaf blower), beginning in the far corner and sweeping out.

  • To clean the floor, fill a bucket with hot water mixed with degreasing cleaner and use an old mop or broom to scrub (don't use abrasive cleaners and bleach products on concrete, as they may damage the finish). Rinse thoroughly.
  • For tough oil stains, cover with a paste made with hot water and automatic dishwashing detergent. Scrub into the spot, soak overnight, rinse and let dry.

4. Dust windows inside and out and then clean with window cleaner and a microfibre cloth.

Voila! Next time you are looking for the rake or your son's ball hockey equipment, you'll know exactly where it is.