Your home may be the largest investment you will make during your lifetime, and as such, you want to be sure you love every part of it. The garage is often an overlooked area of a home and tends to be seen as mainly a utilitarian space. A survey of 900 people conducted by the Wall Street Journal that found 25% of homeowners said they use their garage for vehicle maintenance.
That means that plenty of homeowners have found other uses for their garages, and that makes sense. While some homeowners do not have space for a mudroom in their entryway and choose to create one in the garage, others decide to convert the space into a functional room that meets the needs of their families. No matter what a garage is ultimately used for, who doesn’t additional usable space in their home?
Maybe you’ve considered remodeling your garage before but you just were not quite sure what to do with your space. Should you turn it into a game room for the family to enjoy? Maybe you do not have space for a guest bedroom in your home, but you would like to give visitors their own room when they stay with you. Working from home can be distracting, and to create a more scheduled day, you might want to consider turning your garage into a fully functional home office. When it comes to garage upgrade ideas, the possibilities are limited only by your imagination.
Want more specific information on garage upgrade ideas and practical steps you can take towards improving your garage? Keep reading to find more tips for the perfect garage upgrade.
Take a Look at Your Door
The first thing you will want to do before you complete any major upgrades in your garage is to take a good look at the condition of your current door.
Your overhead garage door takes a lot of wear and tear, so to begin, you should take a moment to open and close the door, and take the time to listen to all of the sounds that it makes. While garage doors will always make some noise during operation, one that is properly functioning should be relatively quiet. Pay attention to noises that your garage door makes, listening for grinding noises or squeaks.
As you are listening for any unusual sounds, you will also want to pay attention to how your door appears as it opens and closes. Your garage door should raise and lower at an even pace, and if your door seems to be operating a bit unevenly, there is a good chance that it is time for a garage door replacement.
Once you have checked your garage door for any issues with opening and closing, it’s time to visually inspect your door. Residential garage doors need to be able to withstand extreme temperatures and other environmental threats, and if you plan to use your garage for something like a home office or playroom for your kids, you will want to check the weatherstripping to make sure it is in good shape.
Next, you will want to take some time to inspect the cables and track. If you find any issues with your cables, resist the urge to fix them on your own. The cables on your garage door are under a large amount of tension and can snap, causing bodily injury, so these fixes should always be completed by a trained and experienced professional.
Why Consider Installing a New Garage Door?
A new door might seem like a boring choice compared to some other garage upgrade ideas, but replacing your outdated door will go a long way in enhancing any other upgrades you make to your space. In the past, garage doors were considered to be merely utilitarian and not an important statement piece of a home’s exterior, but that has changed. There is an impressive selection of styles and options for garage doors now, making them an important part of your home’s exterior style.
New garage door installation impacts a number of things, perhaps the most obvious of which is your home’s curb appeal. With the help of a reputable garage door technician, you will be able to select a garage door that not only offers the function you need but also the style you want.
In addition to providing your home with a boost in curb appeal, a new garage door can help you to increase the energy efficiency in your home. When air leaks into your garage and home, your heating and cooling systems have to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. An energy-efficient garage door will help reduce energy loss, saving you money on your energy bills.
Another benefit you can expect from a new garage door installation is added security. Advancements in home security technology make it possible to add security to your entire home with the installation of a new garage door.
Think About Refinishing Your Floors
When it comes to garage upgrade ideas, flooring is something that is sometimes overlooked. Taking the time to have professionals install garage floor coating can go a long way in improving not only the style of your garage but its function as well.
For garage flooring, there are a number of options, with the most popular being:
- Epoxy Coatings: Perhaps the most common garage floor coating is epoxy systems. Why? When considering garage upgrade ideas, you want to choose products and materials that will provide lasting beauty and performance. Epoxy coatings are incredibly durable because they harden and set through a chemical reaction with resin and a hardening catalyst. There are a number of epoxy coatings to choose from, and garage flooring professionals can help you choose the right system for your needs. Epoxy coatings are able to withstand harsh temperatures and are typically very low maintenance.
- Paint: If you have no interest in waiting upwards of a day for an epoxy coating to fully dry and set, paint is an incredibly cost-effective option. With an impressive number of colors, including custom creations, and easy application, paint is a great DIY option for homeowners looking to add style to a garage. Typically, concrete floor paints are either oil- or latex-based. While the right paint choice totally depends on your preferences, some latex-based paints include a small amount of resin, which means you’ll enjoy harder flooring that is more stain-resistant than other paints.
- Floor Tiles: For a cohesive look from the interior of your home to the garage, you can install the same vinyl tiles you would in rooms like your bathroom or kitchen. However, if you are looking for garage upgrade ideas for flooring that will be more durable and better able to handle the demands of extreme weather and heavy traffic, you might want to consider either rubber tiles or wood composite tiles. Rubber tiles are typically found in gymnasiums or on playgrounds and are resilient and comfortable to stand on. The level of comfort makes them ideal for homeowners who plan to spend time maintaining their vehicles or completing other projects inside the garage. Wood composite tiles are often used as a layer under the carpet or other floor coatings, but they make a great garage flooring on their own.
- Floor Mats: For homeowners looking to enjoy an easy installation over concrete that is stained or cracked, garage floor mats are ideal. Like floor tiles, mats can be placed directly on concrete that is slightly stained or cracked without requiring any preparations. In addition to not requiring extensive prep work, floor mats are ideal because there are so many variations available. If you plan on using your garage for a living space or home office, you may want to consider a textured mat that resembles a rug. If you plan on using your garage for vehicle maintenance, a padded mat is a comfortable and practical option.
Make Time for Upgrading the Outside
Garage upgrade ideas are not limited to the interior of your garage. A new door can provide a great boost in the exterior style of your home, but if the siding surrounding the door has seen better days, you will not get as much benefit from a new garage door as you could.
As you are improving your garage, you might want to reach out to a reliable residential siding contractor to help you make the most of your home improvement project. Siding installers can take a look at your current siding, listen to your ideas about style and efficiency needs, and make recommendations for new siding that will improve your home’s appearance, energy efficiency, and protection. Some of the most popular siding materials include vinyl, insulated vinyl, and fiber cement.
Another exterior project directly related to your garage upgrade ideas is to have your driveway refinished. Your driveway takes a good amount of abuse from car traffic to constantly being exposed to the elements. Rather than deal with a cracked, uneven concrete driveway, consider having yours sealed. Water is one of the largest contributors when it comes to the deterioration of asphalt, and a driveway sealant will help repel water. The sun and oxygen are two other factors in the longevity of your driveway, and a sealant will also address these environmental threats.
Lastly, consider some landscaping. Never underestimate the power of a few well-placed plants or flower boxes. Whether you have an attached or detached garage, there are many simple DIY ways to add a beautiful touch to its exterior.
Invest in Security Measures
One of the most practical garage upgrade ideas is to invest in security measures. From simple tricks to innovative home security technology like a keyless entry system, there are a number of steps you can take to improve your garage’s security.
For garage doors with windows, consider frosting the glass. Windows are a great source of natural light and beauty, but they can also provide a peek into anything valuable stored in your garage. Not only that, but thieves may look into garages to see whether all the cars are gone as a way to plan a time to break into your home. Fortunately, you can easily pick up some frosting film and install it over your windows to obscure the view into your garage.
You may also want to think about installing motion-detecting floodlights. Not only can floodlights help deter thieves who operate under the cover of darkness, but they can also be helpful if you find yourself needing to carry in groceries after dark.
If you are looking for garage upgrade ideas and do not mind making a bit more of an investment, consider smart openers and security cameras. Openers add security because they lock your garage door when it is in the down position. That does not mean your garage is break-in proof, however. Smart openers allow you to monitor the status of your garage door, and you can opt to receive alerts on your smartphone if someone opens it. This gives you the chance to alert law enforcement of any potential danger at your home.
Security cameras do require a larger investment initially, but they are an incredibly effective deterrent to potential burglars. Look for a camera that is motion-activated, which will begin recording as a car pulls into your driveway or someone approaches the garage on foot. Many security cameras sync with smart home systems, allowing you to monitor your home in real-time no matter where you are.
There are plenty of garage upgrade ideas for ways to make the most of your space. Whether you want to continue to use your garage as a place for storage and vehicle maintenance or you want to add a bedroom for a teen, it’s always important to keep security, comfort, and efficiency in mind. Start with a good look at your current garage, including the door, to decide what steps you need to take to end up with the perfect garage for you and your family.
Now that you have got plenty of garage upgrade ideas, and you know how to make these upgrades the most effective, you can get started on planning your remodeling project. If you still need a bit of help, reach out to a local garage door technician to hear more garage upgrade ideas.