If your garage or shed sports a jumble of athletic equipment, tools, and hoses, you can keep your outdoor equipment and gardening tools organized (and easy to access) by using hooks to hang them up. Next time you’re looking for your garden trowel or that one attachment to your hose, you’ll know right where to look once it has its own spot on the wall.
How to hang your tools and materials
To start, you’ll need a screw gun, a drill, and a tape measure. Most of the hook types sold in stores come with their own screws to attach them, but some of your own screws will also come in handy.
Make sure that the walls you’re using for your hooks are clear of electrical wiring. If there is any wiring in the space you’re working, it’s best to turn the power off at the breaker. Also, check to make sure that any doors will be able to open and close freely once your hooks are installed and the equipment is on them.
Choose the right hooks for your heavier objects
There are hooks on the market for everything from the smallest of hand tools, to bikes and chainsaws. Hanging up larger equipment like a bike can dramatically increase your floor space whether you need the space for parking or projects. If you’re hanging up heavier things, it’s important to consider the weight limit for the hook you’re using, as well as the surface you’ll be attaching it to. To avoid overloading a hook or bracket, always check the weight limit on the label. To make sure that you’re attaching your hook securely, a beam or stud is the strongest place to choose.
There are proper hooks for coiled equipment, too
Another way that hooks can be useful is to keep coiled up cords, hoses, and ropes neat and tidy. For these, a hook with a wider base is handy, so you’ll want to look for one that has a wide enough opening for the whole coil. Although these items might not weigh as much as your bike, because these hooks will hold at least some of the weight farther away from the wall, it’s a good idea to choose a hook that can hold twice the weight of your cord to make sure it won’t fail.
Choose two-prong hooks for poles and tools
For brooms, rakes, and shovels, a two-prong hook—sometimes known as a “U-hook”—works best. These are usually designed to hold up to 45 pounds, which is plenty for most long-handled tools.
If you have a lot of things to hang, you can buy a premade strip with hooks already attached, but many of these products tend to be plastic and can break. If you choose a strip of hooks ready made, the most practical type will be metal and have “S” hooks that various sizes of tools can fit. It’s also simple to make your own strip of hooks by simply screwing your hooks into a board and then hanging the board up. If you make your own, you can customize the size, number, and spacing of your hooks.
Use peg boards for your smaller tools and hardware
For smaller tools, peg boards are a good choice. Peg boards can be purchased from a local hardware store and attached to the studs or beams of your garage wall.
It’s important to remember that in order for peg board hooks to work, there needs to be space behind it for the hardware to slide in. If your shed or garage walls are unfinished, tool hooks will fit easily in the spaces between the studs of the wall. If the walls are finished, you’ll need to space the peg board out from the surface of the wall by first attaching two by fours, or other sturdy boards horizontally across the wall studs, and then attach the pegboard to that. Make sure to attach the boards to the structure of the wall and not just the wallboard or your whole pegboard system might collapse.
Once the peg board is securely attached to the wall, a variety of shapes and sizes of hooks are available to hang up tools from screwdrivers to pipe wrenches. There are lots of creative ways to use peg boards to organize your space and help maintain tools. You can hang up paint brushes, garden shears, and hose attachments to allow them enough air circulation to dry out. You can also use bin attachments to organize things like nuts and bolts. Having a place to stash smaller tools can help prevent clutter on workbenches as well as the floor and keep all your materials within reach.