Make use of your space with a DIY garage renovation for summer

Car garages occupy considerable space in a house – take advantage and do more than just parking spot in it. Possible uses of a garage that you can consider are as a man cave, as a library, as workspace or office, as a storage area, as practice space, as a playroom, as a gym, or as an entertainment room. Garage renovation also increases the resale value of your home.

DIY Garage Renovation

You could do DIY garage renovation or hire an expert. A DIY renovation has many advantages, the most obvious being cost saving. You can use the project as a way to bond with your spouse, kids or friends. DIY renovation also means there will be no privacy invasion. 

To do DIY garage renovation, some of the tasks you should be preparing to perform are adding blocking and framing, reroute wiring, adding outlets, weather stripping all windows and doors, providing insulation and ventilation, adding drywall, painting the walls, laying down new flooring, and finishing up with the décor. We will look at what a few of these tasks involve.

Rerouting Wiring and Adding Outlets

If you find the wiring is old and worn out, it is necessary to rewire the garage for functional purposes and to prevent the risk of electrical fires. Old wiring is also unable to meet the requirement of modern appliances.

There has been a growing uptake of pot lights in the recent past and you should consider installing them because they transform a space and give it a sleek, modern, spacious look when properly installed. You have to choose the fixture that best works with your existing décor.

Cables on hard walls should be protected with either metal or PVC conduit. The connectors, straps, and boxes you choose should be compatible with the type of conduit you are using. You may need to consult a licensed electrician in Newmarket to ensure you get this right. 

Start the project by drawing the wiring scheme and nailing the electrical boxes in place. Leave enough stripped cable when running the cable between 2 boxes. To support the cable just before the box, nail in the staples.

Staple the cables at least every 48 inches between boxes, but feel free to go wild with the staples. In the boxes, staple cables every 8 inches (without clamps) and within 12 inches (with clamps).

Tools required: 

·         Cutter or wire stripper

·         4-in-1 screwdriver

·         Drill

·         Hammer

Materials required:

·         Electrical boxes

·         Electrical cables

·         Cable strapes

·         Electrical fittings and conduit

·         Stacker staples

Providing Ventilation and Insulation

Ensure the garage is well ventilated and insulated to allow sufficient air in, to prevent heat loss during winter months, and keep the room cool during summer months.

Ventilation basically involves bringing in the fresh air and getting out stale air. There are many ventilation technologies that you can consider, among them:

·         Natural ventilation

·         Supply-only mechanical ventilation

·         Balanced ventilation

·         Exhaust-only mechanical ventilation

·         Balanced ventilation with heat recovery

Most of these ventilation technologies use fan systems. Go for a good quality fan because the ventilation system is meant to last for many years. Most manufacturers include detailed instructions on how to assemble and maintain their ventilation systems.

The most popular house insulation material today is fiberglass, also called pink insulation because of its colour. This is because of its advantages which include easy and cheap repair following chipping, holes, or cracks, it has the same durability as plaster, it is moisture and mold-resistant, it is soundproof, it is energy efficient, quick and easy installation, it is recyclable, and it gives smooth surfaces, among many other benefits.

Drywall Installation

Start by leaning a piece of drywood horizontally on the wall around the area where you plan to install the drywall and drive in long screws into the studs that are closest to the drywall.You should leave a piece of drywall protruding  – these are the ones that will support the drywall.Consult a drywall supplier in Toronto for guidance on the distance from the ceiling. 

Use a framing square to draw lines on the drywall indicating where the studs will be located. Next, start the installation process by securing the upper drywall piece to the studs using drywall screws. Do not drive the screws in too tight.

Remove the screws you had partially driven in and lean the bottom piece of the drywall against the wall. Transfer the stud lines you had drawn onto it with the help of a level and a straightedge or a speed square. Use a drywall jack or a helper to jack up the bottom piece tightly against the upper one, leaving only the tiniest gap. Use screws to begin fastening the drywall to the wall stud, starting with the beveled edge at the top.

Once the drywall is fastened in place, use drywall mesh tape to fill the gaps between the upper and the lower piece. Next, apply joint compound using a drywall knife and spread it along over the mesh tape. 

Sand the surface once the joint compound has dried. Use regular sandpaper for this, but there are drywall sanding screens that can make the job quicker. You should have safety gear to ensure you do not inhale the dust.

Finally, apply primer until you achieve the smoothness you desire and then paint the wall. 

Materials needed:

·         Drywall panels

·         Nails

·         Screws

·         Drywall compound

·         Paper or fiberglass drywall tape

·         Drywall shims

·         Metal-faced corner bead

·         Sandpaper or sanding screen 

Tools needed:

·         Utility knife

·         Saw

·         Measuring tape

·         Sanding block

·         Utility wet/dry vacuum cleaner

·         Pole Sander

·         Safety goggles

·         Wallboard hammer

·         Marking pencil                       

·         Tin snips

·         Joint finishing knives 

·         Corner trowel 

·         Bread pan (to place the compound)

·         Lift or T-jack  

·         T-square

·         Electric screw gun

·         Drill

·         Dimpler attachement 

It goes without saying that drywall installation, wiring, and other garage renovation jobs leave a lot of debris. The quantity and type of debris generated cannot wait to be picked by your local garbage disposal company. Consider leasing a bin from a reputable bin rental company in your area. The bins come in different sizes and they would also give you flexible picking schedules.




About Joel Levy 2306 Articles
Editor-In-Chief at Toronto Guardian. Photographer and Writer for Toronto Guardian and Joel Levy Photography