How to Customize Your Garage for Larger Vehicles

Older homes have “all the charm,” but they are typically not built for large vehicles.  Back in the day, cars were smaller, and families also had fewer of them.  Times have changed, we have bigger vehicles, and newer homes have substantially roomier garages.  So, what to do with a small garage and a big vehicle?  This is a problem which plagues many homeowners with large vehicles and small spaces to store them. Modifying your garage’s size is definitely a big undertaking, but the end results are very rewarding.

measuring a garage wall

Measure First

The easiest solution is to measure the garage before purchasing your new vehicle.  If you know that you’ll be purchasing an SUV or a truck, get some measurements first. 

Measure the height, length, and width of the garage.  Next, get the same measurements of the vehicle.  Consider things like the space required for the garage door hinges, the vehicle’s bumpers – which could tack on a few extra inches to the overall width, and the additional space required to open and close the doors of the vehicle with proper clearance.

If you’re getting a truck, you may need to make some adjustments, such as removing the roof racks (at least for the winter) to store the vehicle inside during cold months.

While these are the easiest things you can do to fit a larger vehicle in your garage, they aren’t always an option.  You may need to actually customize your garage instead of forcing the vehicle to fit.

Bump Out Addition

You can customize your garage by doing what is called a “bump out” addition.  This is where you can extend the garage’s space by pushing it into an adjacent room.  Depending on the layout of your house, you can squeeze a couple extra inches to fit your new vehicle, even if that means just a bump out into a neighboring closet. You will need a custom homebuilder or remodeling contractor to pursue this option.

A Full-Throttle Remodel

If it’s worth doing, it’s worth overdoing.  That should be the mantra of a garage remodel.  Yes, it will be expensive, but if you truly want to customize your garage to store larger vehicles, then this is the way to go.

Before you opt for a full remodel, check to see if your new garage addition will meet your town or city’s building codes.  Most areas will need to approve an expansion before you start to build.

Here are some customizations to keep in mind when planning a remodel:

  • Garage walls: the walls will have to be removed, then rebuilt.  The most important thing you can give your garage is more outlets.  Garages, in general, are starved for electricity, so a worthwhile remodel will call for plenty of outlets.  For car lovers and tinkerers, the option to plug in equipment and tools will pay off in a very useful space.
  • Flooring: larger vehicles are going to require a floor that can handle their weight.  Epoxy flooring or concrete are popular options. 
  • Garage door: to maximize space in a garage, choose a garage door that doesn’t take up additional room.  This way, your large vehicle can fit through it without using up valuable wall storage space.

remodeling a garage

  • Storage: it’s critical that you plan for enough space to fit your new vehicle as well as any additional storage needs.  Many garages suffer from a lack of proper storage.  Consider where you’d like a workbench, tool storage, and if you need extra space for seasonal equipment or tools.  That way, you aren’t stuck with a garage that only fits your vehicle and no place to store anything else.

Weighing Pros and Cons

Remodeling your garage is the best way to customize this space to accommodate a large vehicle, but understandably, this path is expensive, and many homeowners can’t prioritize such a project. 

It can be a difficult decision as to how to customize your garage to accommodate a larger vehicle.  Do you remodel or replace your garage?  Or should you opt for temporary fixes?  Ask yourself how long you intend to stay in your home, because if you plan to be there a long time, then you may want to consider expanding your garage or rebuilding it altogether.

That’s why Danley’s Garages is #1 in Chicagoland for detached garage construction. Speak to a specialist and get a free quote online today.

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