30 Items You Should Never Store In The Garage

Man with labelled storage container in garage

Storing items in the garage can sometimes seem convenient, but certain things are commonly stored in garages that really shouldn’t be.

Below is a curated list of 30 items that are best stored outside the garage due to the potential for damage or safety risks. That said, your garage’s suitability for storage largely depends on its specific conditions. Assess factors like temperature control, humidity levels, and the overall climate of your area. Does your garage maintain a stable temperature, or is it subject to the extremes of the seasons?

Use this list to re-evaluate your garage storage and identify items that shouldn’t be kept in the garage.

1. Paint

used paint cans
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Extreme temperatures can cause paint to separate and spoil. It’s best to store paint in a cool, dry place with a consistent temperature.

2. Propane Tanks

two gray propane tanks
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Storing propane tanks in a garage can be dangerous. If they leak, they can cause an explosion or fire if there’s an ignition source. They should be kept outside.

3. Paper Goods

paper plate, cups, spoon, and spork
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Paper goods like plates, cups, and napkins can attract rodents and pests and be damaged by humidity and temperature fluctuations.

4. Refrigerators

young man transferring a fridge from the kitchen
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While many people do keep an extra refrigerator in the garage, extreme temperatures can cause it to work harder, which could shorten its lifespan and increase your energy bill.

5. Wine

Wine bottles in a box
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Wine requires a stable temperature and humidity level to age correctly. Garages usually can’t provide the right environment, which can spoil the wine.

6. Pet Food

Woman hand and ginger cat takes cat food
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Pet food can attract pests and rodents if not stored in airtight containers, and the food can spoil in high temperatures.

7. Electronics

electronics and other items in home garage
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Fluctuations in temperature and humidity can damage circuitry and other components.

8. Clothing and Bedding

colorful clothing and bedding
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These items can become musty, moldy, or even be ruined by pests if stored in a garage.

9. Photographs

stack of photographs
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Humidity and temperature changes can cause photographs to stick together or become discolored.

10. Important Documents

Businessman looking at a document
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Like photographs, important documents can become illegible or be destroyed by moisture, temperature changes, and pests.

11. Wooden Furniture

Vintage wooden furniture
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Wood can warp, swell, or crack in varying temperatures and humidity levels.

12. Canned Food

canned food in a wooden cabinet
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Excessive heat can cause canned goods to spoil or the cans to swell or burst.

13. Firewood

stack of fire wood
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Storing firewood in a garage can invite pests like termites into the space.

14. Carpet and Rugs

a person rolling a carpet
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These are susceptible to moisture, mold, and pests if stored in a damp environment.

15. Musical Instruments

Musical instruments on wooden planks
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Like wood furniture, instruments can be sensitive to temperature and humidity changes. They can warp, crack, or go out of tune due to temperature and humidity fluctuations.

16. Artwork

back of an inspired talented woman, female artist painting at home studio
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It can be damaged by the environment in a garage, such as fluctuating temperatures and humidity, leading to faded colors and deteriorated materials.

17. Christmas Trees (Artificial)

Potted Christmas tree with fairy lights in stylish room interior
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Heat can warp or melt plastic components, and pests can nest in them during the off-season.

18. Chemicals and Pesticides

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Storing these can be hazardous due to potential leaks and fumes. If not stored securely, they can also be a danger to children and pets.

19. Medications

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Like food products, temperature fluctuations can affect medications, which can reduce their effectiveness.

20. Cosmetics and Toiletries

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These items can degrade in fluctuating temperatures, leading to reduced shelf life and effectiveness.

21. Bicycles

old bicycles standing upright
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If not hung or stored properly, bicycles can rust or get damaged in a cluttered garage.

22. Leather Goods

white, beige and brown leather handbags put on the white dresser
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Leather can crack and deteriorate in the fluctuating temperatures and humidity levels found in many garages.

23. Mattresses

Woman unrolling new Mattress
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Storing a mattress in a garage can lead to mold, mildew, and pest infestations.

24. Seedlings or Houseplants

Woman wearing gardening gloves spraying seedling in pot at wooden table
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Garages typically don’t have the right light or temperature for plants, which can hinder their growth or kill them.

25. Cleaning Supplies

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Some cleaning products can become less effective or even hazardous if they freeze or overheat.

26. Books and Magazines

A stack of books with colorful covers
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Paper can yellow, pages can stick together, and bindings can warp in the garage environment.

27. Sports Equipment

A variety of sports equipment including an american football, a soccer ball, a tennis racket, a tennis ball, and a basketball
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Leather, rubber, and other materials used in sports equipment can degrade in the garage, and some items may also be a target for theft.

28. Outdoor Gear

sleeping bags, camping equipment, and other outdoor gears
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Tents, sleeping bags, and other camping equipment can develop mold or mildew if stored in a damp garage.

29. Luggage

Hand holds the handle of a colorful luggage
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Fabric can become moldy and internal structures can be damaged by humidity and temperature changes.

30. Seasonal Decor

Colorful shiny lights for Christmas and New Year
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The temperature swings and the potential for pests can damage delicate decorations, and electronic components in decorations can fail.

Garage Storage Ideas

organized garage
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When storing items in the garage, it’s important to consider the environment they require to remain in good condition. For many items, the garage is not an ideal storage space due to its exposure to temperature changes, humidity, pests, and potential security issues. It’s best to find a controlled environment within your home or consider a climate-controlled storage unit for sensitive items.