During the summer when we frequently use outdoor gear, it’s easier to leave everything out and easily accessible. But as summer’s end gets closer, now is a good time to make sure you have a well-organized system in place to store your kayaks, tents, bikes, coolers and more to keep it clean, out of harm’s way in the cooler months and of course ready to use when it’s summer again! Here are a few tips to help get you started.
Clean your items first
Before you store your things or tuck them away in a garage, closet, or shed, it’s a good idea to clean everything so that it’s ready to go when you take it out again next year. This is a great time to get the kids involved too! Have them tackle their own bikes and other gear…it’s a great way to teach responsibility.
Throw out or donate items you don’t want
There’s no use storing something you may want to throw away or get rid of, so go through all your gear first and evaluate whether or not you want to keep it. For items that are in good condition but you want to replace, make a run to your nearest donation center. For items that are broken or damaged and can’t be repaired, try to recycle or if that can’t be done, throw them out.
Organize by category
Order some storage bins and then organize by activity. Camping gear, bikes and accessories, boating or water activities, beach gear, and patio items will ensure an easy process when you are ready to hit the summer activities again.
Add good storage
Speaking of storage, whether you have a garage, a shed or a large closet where you plan to store your things, find appropriate storage ideas for each. Shelves, hooks, racks are all helpful for hanging or storing large items like bikes and kayaks. For things that can be condensed or folded, try plastic bins or stackable drawers. Adding some cabinet space to your garage is also a good way to add storage for smaller items.
Make note of where things are
To make sure you remember how everything is stored and where it is, make a note somewhere visible or label containers, shelves or cabinets. This will also make it easier for your family to find things and for everyone to return items to their proper place.