Best Garage Storage Systems
Is there anything more frustrating than walking into your garage to see nothing but clutter everywhere? On top of not being able to find anything you need, you may not have enough room to perform the tasks that need to be done. Thankfully, you can combat this issue as all you need to do is get your garage organized.
But, how do you do that without winding up back to square one afterward? One of the best and most efficient ways is to invest in different types of garage storage systems. When choosing such systems, there is plenty of variety on the market, so you will be able to find something you desire.
In addition to providing you with the ins and outs of what it takes to buy the best garage storage system, we have also detailed some of the absolute best options you can buy today.
In a Hurry? The test winner after 6.25 hrs of research
Features a steel slatwall backsplash
Comes with LED lights
Designed to be secured to a wall
Our Top Picks for the Best Garage Storage Systems
1. NewAge Products
Features a steel slatwall backsplash
Comes with LED lights
Designed to be secured to a wall
Dents a little too easily
There are smaller garage storage systems solutions you can go with and there are also some like this. If you do not mind shelling out some dough and need a lot of gear and items accounted for, consider this system first.Read more
Indeed, this is not a one or two-piece unit. It comes with several different cabinets of varying sizes, but they all come together to create one of the best storage systems out there.
As a whole, when put together, this unit measures 108 inches wide by 77.25 inches tall (18 inches in diameter). The individual cabinets range from 100 to 800 pounds (in terms of what they can support).
Even though this system does dent too quickly, it is still built exceptionally well. This is thanks to the 24-gauge steel and powder coating that has been implemented.
You may need help with carrying these cabinets to your set location, but the assembly process is not too tricky, which is nice.
In addition to the fact that the cabinets have been equipped with well-designed handles, LED lights are also included for adequate illumination. Also, a steel backsplash has been added for both looks and functionality.
Yep, this bad boy is a monster, but it may be the storage solution you have been looking for all along. It should account for what you need and then some, and it looks good too.
2. Gladiator Steel
Each shelf can hold up to 2000 pounds
It is NSF Certified
The assembly is easier than you would think
Needs a flat surface to be flush
In terms of top-name brands, Gladiator is up there with any of the brands that you will see on this list. Their heavy-duty, steel rack shelf is about as top-notch as it gets and offers 8000 pounds of capacity.Read more
This thing is just a beast, and it is capable of holding some cumbersome items. Each shelf is open-ended, and there are four (including the top one) that you can utilize.
Amazingly, each shelf can handle up to 2000 pounds (or one ton). And, in total, there are around 50 square feet of space that you can use. Yeah, this is not small or weak, let’s say that.
Steel was the primary material used for both the frame and the shelves. To provide better protection to the steel, Gladiator also finished it with a powder coating.
Upon first look, it would be easy to assume that this is hard to assemble. On the contrary, it is made easy and does not require any tools. Still, you will want a few hands when you go to move it (it is not light at all).
Admittedly, the legs do not work well on uneven surfaces as they do not have levelers. On another note, this shelf has been NSF Certified.
As with the top option, you may not need something as heavy-duty as this. But, for some of your more substantial items that take up too much space, this garage storage system can be perfect.
3. Gladiator GearBox
Compatible with Gladiator Wall Systems
Comes with two adjustable shelves
It has been tested for quality
The instructions are a little vague
Perhaps you are merely looking for a medium-sized cabinet to hold some bare essentials in the workshop (such as oils, cleaning cloths, etc.). The GearBox can get it done and thanks to its steel construction, it can hold quite a bit of weight.Read more
This can be mounted on Gladiator Wall Systems if you prefer. But, it is simply a standard-sized cabinet that comes with adjustable shelves to suit your liking.
All in all, this is 28 inches tall by 28 inches wide with a depth of 12 inches. It can also support up to 150 pounds but each of the adjustable shelves can only handle 40 pounds each.
As the GearBox has been engineered by Gladiator, you can trust its quality and overall construction. For the record, it sports a solid steel core.
Again, it is probably best to install this to one of Gladiator’s Wall Systems. To actually put this unit together, while not too tricky, you will need to deal with subpar instructions.
One of the best features of this entire design is the magnetic catch that has been implemented. This is going to prevent the doors of the cabinet from coming open.
Even on its own, this is great but it is even better if you already have a Gladiator Wall System installed into your garage. Still, this is well-built and extremely practical.
Complete with a safety lock
It lowers and raises via a crank
Provides 16 square feet of storage
The lag bolts may not be long enough for you
Bends a little with too much weight
Sometimes, it is nice to merely store certain items completely out of the way. If you lack overhead storage in your garage, perhaps you would be interested in these garage storage systems devices here.Read more
Indeed, you will need to mount this to the ceiling in your garage. From there, a pulley system and crank allow you to lower and raise it when you need to store and retrieve your items.
With its four-by-four-foot design, this accounts for 16 square footage of space. As for what it will hold, it has a load capacity of 250 pounds (though it may start to bend at around 210 pounds).
To ensure strength and durability, this was designed with high-strength steel. This steel has also been finished with an epoxy coating for improved protection.
For some of you, the included lag bolts will not be quite long enough if you have double layers of drywall in your ceiling. As for the actual installation, it is not too tight, but you do need to locate your ceiling joists.
Thanks to the built-in safety lock, you can lock your load in place once it is as high as you desire. To then lower it, all you need to do is disengage the lock.
While this is not the beefiest ceiling rack that you can find, it is one of the better-designed ones on the market. Its simplicity, practicality, and build quality make it quite compelling.
The doors can be padlocked
Features a polypropylene resin construction
It is a freestanding cabinet
Not ideal for heavy-duty storage
Even though this cabinet can work great in your garage, it really fits in well anywhere thanks to its resin craftsmanship. It is not ready for heavy-duty use but that is not the purpose of it.Read more
Being a two-door cabinet of moderate height, this can be used for several different types of equipment. The interior shelves can also be configured at different heights.
No, this is not going to hold a ton of weight, but it is also not made out of steel. As for the dimensions, it measures 64 inches in height, 27 inches in width, and 15 inches in depth.
Again, this has not been made out of metal. This is not a big deal as the polypropylene resin that was used is not only durable but also incredibly easy to maintain.
Straightforward installation is required and, for the record, this is a freestanding design. It also only weighs 24 pounds and can be moved easily by one or two people.
What is nice is you can add a padlock to the doors to lock them shut. Take note, though, that you will need to account for a padlock yourself.
Granted, you are not expecting a storage cabinet to hold hundreds of pounds of equipment; you should be fond of this option. It will not rust or corrode and is freestanding with several adjustable shelves.
6. Gladiator GearWall
Backed by a 10-year warranty
The construction is heavy-duty
Quite easy to install overall
Not complete by itself
This is one of those garage storage systems that does not technically provide storage by itself. Once you install these panels into your garage, however, you can add accessories to complete the system.Read more
With the GearWall Panels, once they are installed on your walls, they will be ready to hold various equipment. But, you will need different types of Gladiator wall accessories to put on the panels to do so.
For the record, this is offered in a pack of two, and each panel measures eight-foot by one-foot (length by height). Each one also can support up to 50 pounds per square foot.
These panels are not made out of metal and, instead, sport high-quality composite constructions. When installed, you will not likely be questioning their durability.
Due to the length of each of the panels, you may want some help when installing them. The tongue and groove design of them, however, does make the process somewhat easier.
As noted, you will need Gladiator wall accessories actually to store your equipment on these panels. And, yes, these are sold separately.
Though it almost seems like you would be installing siding into your garage, these panels are incredibly functional. Just buy some additional accessories, and you will be good to go.
7. Wall Control Steel Pegboard
Can account for several smaller tools
Complete with a galvanized finish
Accepts all types of different hooks and brackets
Does not come with many accessories
Nothing makes life easier when you need a specific tool that is directly in front of you. With the addition of this steel pegboard into your garage, several of your tools can be organized and right at your fingertips.Read more
Design Style Capacity Build Quality
On top of the steel craftsmanship, this board has also been completed with a galvanized finish. This is going to provide overall protection against rust and corrosion.
This board needs to be mounted into either sheetrock or the studs in your wall. But, the mounting holes are not quite 16 inches apart (which can pose issues when trying to find two studs).
What is a bit unfortunate is that only a few accessories are included with your purchase. After all, buying extra ones is a bit pricy (but worth it).
For tool organization, this is an excellent choice. On top of being built exceptionally well, it will provide you quick and open access to some of your most frequently used tools.
Can be wall mounted
Available in either black or red
Each drawer is stronger than it looks
Quite a bit smaller than you would expect
This is actually quite a bit smaller than it looks so just a forewarning there. For what it is, it works really well at organizing some of your hardware (nuts, bolts, washers, etc.).Read more
There are several small and smaller drawers that you get with your purchase here. Due to the size of each drawer, these are best for smaller items and general hardware.
As noted, these drawers are a lot smaller than they look. They will not hold anything substantial but work great for items such as drill bits, nails, screws, etc.
Do not be fooled; the build quality here is quite good. The frame is made of high-impact polystyrene (it is a polymer).
If you want to mount this system on a wall, there are keyhole slots that allow for it. Due to the size of it, this may be the most optimal choice.
Though some will feel not enough dividers are included, 12 are included in all. Also, each of the drawers is equipped with a finger-grip pull system.
Again, this is somewhat small, but that is going to be perfect for some of you. To better organize some of your smaller tools and accessories, you will want garage storage systems like this.
9. Seville Classics
You can use it without the wheels
On its feet, each shelf can hold 300 pounds
The shelves can be adjusted
The caster wheels are not the best
With its open-ended design, this shelving unit can be used for quite a few different types of items and gear. It also comes with caster wheels but they are not the greatest, admittedly.Read more
This is as simple as it gets as you are provided with an open-ended shelving unit with five different tiers. Also, the shelves can be adjusted a bit.
This is important because when the caster wheels are on this unit, it can only support 130 pounds. On its feet, though, this skyrockets to 1500 pounds (300 per shelf).
Though the quality of the casters leaves a lot to be desired, the plated steel construction of the unit itself is impressive.
In less than an hour, you should have this puppy up and ready to go. Also, when adjusting the height of the shelves, no tools will be needed.
The caster wheels are nice to have, but their lack of support can be somewhat of an issue. Unless you plan to move this all the time, use the feet instead to allow for a lot more weight.
With improved caster wheels, this may have landed even higher on this list. For what it is, however, it is built well and allows for multiple layers of storage.
10. 4 Basics Work Bench
Only 90-degree cuts will be required
Can be customized to your liking
You can choose the lumber
Some of the components could be better built
Be warned, prep work is involved for this specific workbench. The true beauty of it lies in this fact, however, as it can be customized to your own personal liking. The lumber is not included, though.Read more
As is, this is an incomplete design, but that is the point. It is a DIY workbench that you can customize to your liking (you will need 2x4s and plywood).
Again, you can technically make this the size that you want (within obvious limitations). After you are done, though, the height will be right around 36 inches, and each shelf will hold up to 1000 pounds.
Some of the structural components of this bench could have been better, but the build quality is still excellent overall. This is thanks to the sturdy nature of the framing.
A little more work will be involved than usual here, but it will not be as hard as you think. For most projects, you will need some 2x4s, and you will only need to make 90-degree cuts.
There are not too many advanced or extra features to speak of here.
When this system is complete, you will most likely be glad that you went through the effort of assembling it. At the same time, some of you may not be interested in a DIY project such as this.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Buying what you actually need is the most important thing you need to remember. Do not forget that.
What you need to realize is when you are shopping for the best garage storage systems, there are many different design options that you can go with. This is important as plenty of outside factors are going to come into play when deciding what you need. For example, the equipment you need to be organized, the size of your garage, and your personal preferences will all factor in.
The best way to go about this section is to get to know all the different types of systems that are available on the market. To begin, there are full-fledged options that will come with everything but the kitchen sink. Such opportunities can include several different cabinets and shelves of varying sizes that all sit flush together.
Of course, you can also go with individual solutions. Options such as utility cabinets, pegboards for quick access to your hand multi tools, drawers to organize specific hardware, and even open-ended shelves can all be beneficial in organizing your garage.
Getting a system that is large enough and one that can support the weight you need is critical.
This section piggybacks a little on what was briefly alluded to a moment ago. One of the most crucial buying considerations for your new garage storage systems is ensuring they hold what you need them to. This sounds simple and it really is but it is oh so crucial. To make sure this is the case, pay attention to both the size and load capacity, that a particular system can handle.
Regarding size, assess the physical dimensions that a specific system has. Or, you can merely assess the square footage as this will give you a good idea of the space that you will have to work with. Also, keep in mind that some units will come with multiple shelves, each of which will be able to handle a certain amount of equipment.
The same concept applies for load capacity as some heavy-duty steel shelving units will be able to account for upward of 1000 to 2000 pounds. If you have larger items such as spare tires, propane tanks, toolboxes, etc. options like this may be better. Others will only be able to handle 50 to 200 pounds of weight, which is better for basic tools and accessories.
Given you will be storing your own personal equipment, you will want it to be safe with a high-quality storage system.
There are some of you reading this right now who probably have sworn allegiance to steel, and that is not a wrong way to go. When it comes to garage storage systems, steel is a top material of choice, and it is not too difficult to understand why. In addition to the fact that it is one of the most durable and most reliable metals out there, it can also be coated for protection.
Sure, steel on its own is going to rust and corrode, but when finished, it can resist stuff of this nature. There are several engineering processes and coatings that can accomplish this, such as powder coatings, galvanizing, and even epoxy coatings. All do a tremendous job of providing an extra layer of protection for the metal.
But, steel is not the only option to go with. Composites are also quite popular and are made up of two or more different materials. In addition to being much lighter than steel, composites are also resistant to corrosion and quite durable in their own right. But, if you want heavy-duty garage storage systems, then you better stick with steel.
Ease of Use
This section is all about the assembly and installation processes that you will need to go through.
It is not as if you will need to be an ultra handyman to be able to assemble and install most garage storage systems out there, but a certain level of knowledge when it comes to this stuff is going to be helpful. Then again, a lot of this depends on the system that you end up buying.
Some may be more complex and larger than others, and the quality of the instructions can also either make things harder or more comfortable. The more important factor to discuss, though, is whether you want a freestanding or wall-mounted unit. There are plenty of options out there for both, and some groups will even need to be mounted on the ceiling.
If you need or plan on doing this type of mounting, you will need to become familiar with your garage to find out where the studs and joists (if you mount on the ceiling) are located. Given the weight that most systems will need to hold, you will want them to be supported by solid pieces of wood.
Really, this section simply covers some extra features that you can look out for.
To wrap up this specific subsection of the buying guide, let’s briefly talk about some extra or advanced features that you can look out for in particular garage storage systems. Not all options will have such features, and that is okay, but it still can behoove you to look for them.
Starting, some cabinets and shelving units will be built on caster wheels. The benefit here is you will be able to move them from location to location freely. Be aware, however, that they typically will not be able to account for a ton of weight.
Additionally, with any units that feature doors to close shut, they should probably stay shut when you close them. Implemented magnetic catches can make it easier for such doors to remain shut. Also, and this is mostly for ceiling racks, you can look for implemented safety locks to prevent loads from crashing down (which is something you will want to avoid at all costs).
Expert Interviews & Opinions
First and foremost, you need to get what you want. Sounds obvious, right? It should be, but that does not mean it isn’t essential. It is utterly critical as everyone is going to have different garage storage systems needs and various items that they need to be accounted for. Depending on the size of your garage and the clutter that is inside, you may even need to go with a couple of different systems.
The size and weight capacity of your new garage storage systems need to match the equipment that you need to be stored. If you have several 100-pound objects that you would like off of the ground, you will need to get a reasonably heavy-duty unit, for example. But, if all you need is a few drawers to keep your hardware organized, you will be looking for something smaller.
If you are going to spend money organizing your garage, then you might as well do it right. In other words, this is not an area where you want to skimp out on. It is why a lot of buyers will stick to good old reliable steel, but you do not necessarily have to. Other materials such as polymers, resin, and composites can get the job done well too.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Can you mount these systems in your trailer?
It all depends on the unit that you buy, but you may be able to pull this off. If you wanted a small cabinet in your trailer for specific reasons, you would need to ensure that the sideboards of your trailer could handle the weight.
Do a little research if this is something you are interested in. You will need to buy a system that is appropriately sized to do so, though, so keep that in mind.
q: Will the shelves be able to move?
As you saw on this list, there is a ton of shelving units out there that will come with the ability to be adjusted (the individual shelves that are). Not every design will be like this, but you may want to find the ones that are.
The ability to move the shelves even a little bit can allow for specific items to fit. It will add versatility to your unit, which is essential.
q: What about mounting them in resin sheds?
For heavy-duty garage storage systems, you will probably want to avoid mounting them in sheds that are made of materials such as resin. This is nothing against resin sheds, but they will not be able to provide as much support as traditional garages will.
However, you may be able to get away with a small cabinet that will only hold smaller items. Even still, it is something you should probably consider avoiding.
q: Can you stack two of the same systems on top of one another?
Talk about something else that is not advised; most of the time, manufacturers are not going to design their systems to be stacked on top of one another. For those of you wondering, this is not a stupid question to ask as you never know.
Unless the seller claims explicitly that this is possible with their design, however, you should not tempt fate with this one. There probably is not even going to be a situation where you would see the need to do so, thankfully.
q: What about installing caster wheels yourself?
If the unit you buy is not outfitted with caster wheels, you would need to modify it yourself. Unless you have a keen insight on how to perform such actions, this is yet another thing that you should bypass altogether. As was noted earlier, though, some options will come with the ability to add caster wheels.
To be blunt, if you feel like you need a system with caster wheels, then you should be prioritizing buying one that already has them pre-installed. Remember, and this can’t be stressed enough, such orders will be somewhat limited in their load capacities.
q: Could you install into cement?
The answer to this question is yes, but it deserves a much closer look. With the provided hardware from the manufacturer, you probably will not be able to drill into cement. Thus, you will need to go out and spend some money on specialized hardware that is designed to drill into cement.
Most of the time, you will be given hardware that is suitable for wood (but not cement). All you need to do is ensure that the new hardware you get is the right size, and you will be good to go.