DIY Tool Storage Ideas for Your Garage

If you’re like most homeowners, you’ve spent a lot of time hunting for something in the garage.  You can have the cleanest, most organized garage on the block with these genius tool storage ideas.

tool storage

Why Organize Your Tools?

Even if you aren’t that concerned with organization or the aesthetic appeal of your garage, you’ll save time and money when your tools are neatly arranged.  Do you have any idea how many times you have to replace a tool you can’t find?  Probably more times than you’d like to admit.  Check out these handy, simple and inexpensive tool storage ideas.

If you need help organizing your garage, you should check out our article about garage organization.

Repurposed Treasures

Be on the look-out to repurpose anything that can be used as tool storage.  An old filing cabinet makes a great place to store tools.  You can put small power tools in the top drawer, hand tools in the second drawer and nails, screws and other hardware can go in a bottom drawer.  Old chest drawers are awesome to organize tools in too.

Bins and Labels

There are many ways you can use bins and labels for tool storage. For example, set up some metal shelves and place bins on them of various sizes.  Place tools in each according to tool type and size.  Label the bins with chalkboard labels.  No more looking all around for your tools!

Wire Hanging Container Bins

One great rule of thumb when organizing storage space in the garage is to go up and to use wall space.  Wire containers that are designed to hang on the wall are excellent for storing tools.  They remain very accessible and you can see straight through them so there’s no need to hunt around for anything.

Magnetic Strips

Magnetic strips are a lifesaver when it comes to hand tools like hammers, screwdrivers and wrenches.  Simply attach the strips and magnetically hang all of your trusty tools.  You’ll never have to go buy a hammer because you can’t find yours again.


Pegboards rock!  You can put them all over your garage walls to hold baskets or containers for tools.  They take up zero floor space so you can have plenty of room for your projects.  Pegboards look nice too.

tool board

Bench Seating

Mudroom bench seats that open up for storage are the ultimate solution for tools.  You can neatly arrange your power tools inside the open area and sit right on them (after you close the lid, of course).  It’s nice to have some of the more expensive or less used tools out of sight.

Crates and Barrels Too

If you can put a tool in it, it’s useful storage.  Go through your garage and toss all the furniture and contraptions that are just hogging space.  Keep crates that can be stacked on the floor or hung on the wall and barrels that can hold plenty of tools and even lawn equipment.

Plastic Storage Totes

Plastic storage totes are wonderful space-saving tool organizers.  You can fill them with tools and label them to find things easier.  Stack them with the least used tools on the bottom.  They look very nice and even come in very large sizes that are designed specifically to hold tools.


You can never have enough shelves.  Or you can repurpose old ones for little cost or find them on sale in the outdoor section of many hardware stores.  You can also build them yourself with inexpensive materials like pallet boards.  Be sure to actually organize your tools on them so you won’t have to go digging through them to find what’s there.

Cabinets and Countertops

Are you remodeling your kitchen?  Keep the cabinets and countertops for your garage.  You’ll have ample storage spots to put your tools in and a countertop to use for project work as well.


Tools come with accessories that’ll need to be organized too.  Plus, there’s always such items like trash bags, spray paints, tape and such that come along with projects and therefore need a spot to call their own.  Mount a paper towel holder or two on the wall to hang trash bags.  You won’t believe how much time that you’ll save.  You can make a tape dispensary by building or buying a small wooden box.  Make wooden dividers for rolls of various types of tape.

PVC Pipe

You won’t believe what you’ll be able to store in this creative storage source.  Take PVC pipe that you have sitting around or, if you don’t have any, purchase some on sale. Cut the pipes to fit your storage needs then glue them to the wall.  Simply place your items in the hole.  This works well for drafting pencils, hammers, screw drivers, measuring tapes and practically anything that will fit in them.

Rolling Storage

Find an old dresser, chest or any other storage solution that’s a larger size and with plenty of drawers.  Add roller wheels on the bottom so it becomes portable. You can also use the top surface to work on.

Be sure that the rollers you attach are strong enough to hold the piece of furniture plus all your tools.  You don’t want it collapsing on your toes while you push it around or working on top of it.

Tricks and Tips

  • Build or buy a small wooden shelf that can be hung on your garage wall so you can pull it up to act as a table when needed.
  • Store hardware, nails, screws and such in clear mason jars on handy shelves near the tools they accompany.
  • Always return the tool you used to its rightful place. Never procrastinate or you’ll end up back in the same mess you were in before.
  • Organize using the system that best fits your needs. You can arrange your tools according to size.  Or, you may want to sort them according to purpose.  If you use tools for work and often take a group of them with you, store those together for easy access.
  • Lawn tools could be in one spot and those used for household purposes could be stored elsewhere.  You can also store them according to how often you need them.
  • Shoe racks and spice racks are wonderful additions to the garage. You can keep small parts in them and smaller tools fit in them as well.

These Tool Storage Ideas Will Help Organize Your Garage

Having a place for your tools and your tools in their place will simplify your life and save you time, trouble and frustration.  Besides, even if you aren’t known for being a clean freak, everyone likes to be able to find their tools.

The reason we’re so knowledgeable about garage storage is because Danley’s is Chicago’s garage expert. We’ve been building garages since 1959 and have served over 100,000 homeowners. Get a free quote now and have a new garage built.

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