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The garage tends to gather many items over time, creating a cluttered and messy environment. This clutter can make it challenging to find what you need when you need it. Simplifying your garage by removing unnecessary items can help you regain functionality and order.

Cleaning out your garage may seem like a big task, but the benefits of having a more organized space are substantial. It might even allow you to use your garage for its intended purpose, such as parking your car.

Looking at everything that has piled up over the years, you may not know where to start. Consider parting ways with these 14 common items that fill up garages.

Old Paint

old paint and paintbrush
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Keeping a can of leftover paint for touch-ups following a painting job makes sense, but it’s important to store the paint properly.

There’s no reason to hold onto gallons of paint that might never be used. It’s a good moment to discard paint that has expired or that you no longer require.

Broken and Damaged Furniture

old furniture
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If your garage is filling up with old or broken furniture, it’s time to take action. Get rid of furniture that can’t be fixed or no longer has a use.

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cardboard boxes
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If you’re no stranger to receiving Amazon deliveries, chances are you’ve collected quite a collection of cardboard boxes. Unless you’re gearing up for a move in the near future, it’s time to rethink their place in your garage.

Even if those cardboard boxes in your garage are neatly folded and ready for action, there’s a slim list of reasons to keep them hanging around.

Construction and Building Materials

packing supplies
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If you’ve recently tackled a home improvement project, chances are you’ve gathered a collection of building materials and supplies.

Perhaps you’ve got half a stack of roofing shingles, a few chipped patio stones, some lumber, tiles, or bricks – all these odds and ends could be crowding your garage. It’s a good move to hold onto only what you’ll truly use for upcoming projects and properly let go of the rest.

Garden Supplies

garden tools
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Lawn and garden supplies that have seen better days – like that leaky garden hose, cracked pots, torn gloves, and unused tools that have lost their usefulness – tend to end up mixed in with the clutter of a disorganized garage.

Non-Functioning Appliances

washing machine pink background
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Appliances such as outdated fridges, coffee makers, microwaves, or dishwashers tend to occupy space without much reason. Consider recycling or responsibly disposing of them.

If they’ve been stashed away in boxes or storage bins, you could also consider selling them on platforms like OfferUp or other online thrift stores.

Old Newspaper

old newspaper
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Holding onto old newspapers usually boils down to historical interest, but if you haven’t glanced at those stored magazines or newspapers in the past 5-10 years, the likelihood is that you never will.

Old Tires

old tires
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You’ll likely need to dispose of old tires from your bicycles or vehicles at a proper tire recycling facility. Old cars, trucks, and bike tires usually end up in the corner of a garage on the floor. You can’t just toss them in the garbage anymore.

Baby Items

kids clothes and baby stuff
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If your children have grown too big for specific toys, strollers, car seats, or cribs or have lost interest in them, it’s a sign to make room in your garage.

Consider donating or giving away toys that are still in good condition and get rid of the ones that are broken or damaged.


thrifted chest books and chair
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Sorting through paperwork such as old receipts, utility bills, and files collected in your garage can open up some breathing room. Dispose of outdated documents by shredding, recycling, or converting them digitally to help minimize clutter.

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Rusty and Broken Tools

rusty tools
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It’s time to deal with those broken power tools, rakes with missing tines, the old rusty hammers or screwdrivers that have seen better days, or tools that newer models have overshadowed. Toss them aside to clear the path for more efficient tools.

Holding onto these worn-out items only contributes to the clutter in your garage, adding one more thing and taking up valuable space.


donation box
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To free up additional space in the garage, consider going through the boxes or plastic storage bins holding clothing. If you haven’t worn those clothes in a few years, it might be a good moment to let them go.

Examine your clothing for any signs of irreversible damage, such as tears, stains that won’t budge, or persistent odors. Holding onto these items only adds to the clutter.

Outdated Electronics

cell phone next to coffee
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It’s time to declutter those old electronics and appliances that have become outdated or overshadowed by newer models. Take stock of your cell phones, vinyl records, CDs and Players, cassettes, turntables, computers, TVs, DVD players, and VHS tapes.

If they’re just collecting dust, think about letting them go or donate them if they’re still functional.

Fitness and Sports Equipment

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Take a moment to assess your sports and recreational gear stock, and think about letting go of items that have been sitting idle for a while.

If they’re still in decent condition, consider passing them on through donation or selling them. When it comes to gear that’s seen better days or can’t perform its job anymore, it’s time to say goodbye.

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Tamara White is the creator and founder of The Thrifty Apartment, a home decor and DIY blog that focuses on affordable and budget-friendly home decorating ideas and projects. Tamara documents her home improvement journey, love of thrifting, tips for space optimization, and creating beautiful spaces.

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