Your garage should be a comfortable and relaxing place to want to hang out at. In this article, you will find a lot of ideas for building a new garage or remodeling your existing one to make it your ideal getaway spot.

Tips for Building a Garage with Plenty of Space.

A lot of people use their garages as more than just a place to park vehicles. Garages are used as workshops, car showrooms, storage space, and even places to just get away from what’s going on in the house. For all of these reasons, you probably want to make your garage more than just an empty shell. It should be a place of productivity and play. This article shares some cool features to liven up your garage.

Storage trusses create extra space.

Sometimes you just need extra space to store that camping gear or sporting equipment to go along with all of that other stuff in the garage. Switching out roof trusses with storage binds on a 24 x 24 foot garage is pretty inexpensive and really opens up the roof for additional space. A two-by-six floor frame should be in place to hold a 12-foot wide span. If you are really searching for extra storage space in your house, garage storage trusses are the key.

Attic trusses are more expensive, but can be full-on rooms.

Installing attic trusses can be more expensive, but they can be converted into a separate room or a loft addition to the house. They cost about two and a half times more than average trusses (plan to spend around $1600 on the upgrade), but it’s worth it to create a room that can be wired and insulated just like the other rooms in the house. Attic trusses fitted to a 24-foot wide garage with a sharp pitch can create 16’ width of space. This is plenty of room for an office or fitness area.

Now how do you get up there?

A sturdy aluminum pulldown ladder is the easiest way to get into the attic space. They cost around $450, but you’ll want that extra power and durability. Installing a ladder to access the attic space is considered one of the easiest and cheapest ways to upgrade your garage. Most ladders fit on 24” truss centers, so they can be easily integrated without tearing out any part of the garage. Wood ladders cost about $150 or add on a hundred dollars more for aluminum types.

In building a garage, think about installing an extra tall garage door.

Some people with bikes strapped to the roof or other loads on top of the car may at some point forget that they have something up there when they drive into the garage. This can result in tearing out or damaging the whole garage opening. Give yourself that extra space by installing an eight foot tall garage door rather than a standard seven-foot one.

But keep in mind that the walls will have to be built nine feet tall to accommodate a seven-foot door. This is good because then you’ll have more space to bring in big pieces of plywood and boards without bumping into anything.

Get more done in your garage with a warm floor.

The PEX garage floor heating system is the perfect step to creating your dream garage. If you like to work on cars then you know that you’re on the ground a lot, so why not make that ground warmer and more comfortable?

PEX tubing works as a thermoset, radiating heat as it transfers warm water through the concrete slab flooring. This silent and efficient system adequately heats the floor and the garage. If you are installing this in-floor heating feature yourself, plan on spending two or three dollars per square foot. Calling in a professional will cost about double. Using a standard water heater or an on-demand one will be sufficient to heat your garage without needing a boiler.

To prevent losing heat through the slab floor, integrate stiff insulation boards around the edges of it and under the tubing component. Plus, you’ll want to add insulation to the ceiling, the walls and the door above. Be sure to seal any leaks around the doors and windows to help preserve the heat.

Add extra space to your garage with a shed dormer.

Another way to add space to your home is to install a shed dormer. A shed dormer is basically a shed that is perched on top of a roof. Installing a shed dormer can be a way to skirt around building codes if you are not permitted to extend the height of the ceiling. A shed dormer is a way to meet code while still getting some of the benefits of having a second floor.

However, you want to plan out your shed dormer carefully to make sure it is built with plenty of headroom and space you are looking for. Installing a shed dormer is more involved than just putting up trusses, so it’s best to ask for advice from a structural engineer or an architect on the framing. Framing the roof yourself is cheaper, not that difficult and you can sit back and admire what you built.

We covered heating, but what about air conditioning?

There are a couple of AC options that can help your garage stay cool in hot summers. In building your garage, consider framing the opening to include a sleeve and a dedicated outlet for fitting an air conditioner in later. Through-the-wall air conditioning units are ideal for garages because they can be placed anywhere and they don’t block the windows.

Garage AC may seem like a fancy amenity, but in reality it helps keep your tools dry by lessening the humidity. The air conditioner unit usually comes with a manual that will help you gage the opening it will fit in. Make sure you include space above the opening as if you were installing a window and include a separate power source for the AC on a 20-amp circuit.

Or you can make your garage a drive-through. When one family decided to build a new garage, they wanted more outlets, slot wall to replace pegboard and a 220 volt outlet. But their best idea was to add another garage door in the back so they could easily park their boat in the backyard.

Even if you don’t have a boat, a large garage door in the back can also be ideal for woodworkers who are prone to kick up dust everywhere. A drive-through garage can increase the air flow/ventilation and help clear out the debris. Plus, if you decide to have a backyard party then just open up the back door to your garage and turn it into the premier hangout location.

 

A subpanel acts like the panel to your circuit breaker but it has different wiring. When installing a subpanel, make sure the neutral bar is away from the floor and that the main breaker is fastened. This box should provide 12 circuit breakers for any of your AC, lighting or power tool needs.

A lot of people have said that installing a subpanel was the best feature they implemented in building their garage because of the added convenience. It is much easier to install a subpanel while building a garage than trying to add one in later. It’s more useful to have the breakers in the garage than have to refer back to the main panel when a connection gets lost, and it is way easier to reset the power supply. As an added benefit, you can easily add more circuits when you need them rather than having a mess of wires running back to the main panel.

It will cost a couple of hundred dollars extra for the materials needed to connect back to the main panel, but it’s worth spending it now and having the subpanel amenity than trying to install one later.