Maintaining a garage is vital but how you do it will depend on the material it is constructed from and what you use it for. For example a garage that’s dedicated to protecting and securing a valuable car will be maintained in a different way to one that has become a repository for all the family’s junk. We’ll take you through the options.
For a garage that’s protecting a valuable car you will want to look at security and make sure that doors and windows are secure. If you don’t work in the garage a great deal you might consider screwing any windows shut and putting bars on them. Try to keep the bars discrete though or you will be advertising that there’s something worth stealing inside.
Pay attention to the door hinges, locks and the sockets that they mate with. Old-style pairs of wooden doors that open in the middle will often lose the socket in the floor that the bolt goes into so a few sharp pulls will get the door open even if the central lock is secure.
Up and over doors are much harder to open, as anyone who has lost their keys will testify, so they are inherently more secure than traditional wooden doors. Automatic door openers are handy but make sure you know how to operate them manually in case the motor or remote control fails.
Putting security to one side let’s look at keeping a garage in good condition. Although odd holes and leaks won’t cause too much of a problem, it’s essential to keep the frontage of the garage in good condition as it can really lower the value of a property and the neighbourhood. So make sure that the garage gets its fair share of cleaning and repainting when necessary.
If you are using the garage for storing more than vehicles, then leaks may be more problematic. It’s worth clearing the garage out once a year or so to check that there isn’t hidden damage that will get worse because it’s out of sight. If some of the things you’re storing are soft furnishings, bedding, camping equipment or other fabrics it’s not unusual to find that they’ve been colonised by rodents or other pests that can get in through the smallest holes.
If left unchecked these occupations can become health hazards, especially if you have young children running about and getting into small places too. At the same time if you do have to treat a pest infestation with poisons, make sure that they cannot be found by the children either.
Repairing Garage Damage
How to go about mending damage and leaks will depend on the material the garage is constructed from. If it’s an integral garage there should be very few problems and if it’s a separate brick construction you are only likely to get problems with the roof, or perhaps water getting in under the door.
Concrete sectional garages can start to look a bit ropy after a few years and it is possible to replace concrete sections if they begin to crack. To be honest if property values are an issue it will almost certainly be cost effective to replace a concrete section garage with a proper brick built one or perhaps a wooden garage, depending on the look and style of the neighbourhood.
But whatever the materials, it’s still true that a regular clean and inspection is the best way to find problems before they get out of hand and become real issues.