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Archive for May, 2015

A Safe Garage, Is A Happy Garage


Garageflex Garage Makeover

My Renovation Magazine Special Feature

For some people their garage is a place for storing anything that doesn’t fit in their house. Battered bicycles, half full paint pots, tennis rackets and rusty tools make us cringe when we open the door and trying to navigate the cluttered floor can be treacherous.

Packed with sharp objects, poisonous substances and multiple trip hazards, a garage can be a dangerous place if safety precautions are not adhered to.

We have identified some common health and safety issues that are simple to remedy and could be the difference between an afternoon in the garden or a long wait in A&E.

Keep It Clean

It might seem like another chore to add to the list, but keeping your garage clean and clutter free is the way to go:

  • Don’t allow piles of junk to build up as this can create fire and trip hazards not to mention making the perfect home for mice – something you do not want.
  • Install lockable cupboards and secure shelving units so that everything has a designated home.
  • Do not leave lengths of rope or hoses lying around or hanging down from hooks instead tie them up and put them in a cupboard with the door closed.
  • Store ladders in a horizontal position and out of the way.

Flammable Products

Any fire is dangerous but garage fires spread quickly and can be disastrous.

  • Petrol, oil and paint are highly flammable liquids are often found in garages without a thought for safety. If these materials have to be stored in the garage, only keep small amounts and ensure they are in sealed containers that are clearly labeled. Store all flammable items away from appliances and heat sources.
  • Under no circumstances should you keep propane cylinders in a garage as they are highly combustible and could potentially cause a deadly explosion.
  • If you spill anything in your garage clear it up immediately and if you come across an unidentified liquid, clear it up and then look for the source.
  • Install a smoke detector in your garage and check it is working on a monthly basis. Keep a fire extinguisher in the garage, or house, as well as a first aid kit.

Electrics

Just like any other part of the house, it is essential to ensure the electrics in your garage are safe and fit for purpose:

  • Ensure the wiring is up to date; a single spark could create a fire.
  • Use light bulbs with an appropriate wattage and do not exceed the limit.
  • Whilst it is tempting to have a power drill, radio and lawnmower plugged in at the same time, do not overload sockets, as this can be potentially dangerous.

Tools

Like a kitchen, garages are home to a variety of tools, many of which can be harmful if left lying around.

  • Whilst tools need to be easily accessible they should be stored correctly. Use cabinets and shelving that are firmly fixed to the walls and store the heaviest items closest to the ground.
  • Remember, a simple toolbox is a safe, portable storage devise but do not leave it lying in the middle of the floor.
  • Tools with metal blades and sharp ends need to be stored somewhere secure and kept in good condition by regularly cleaning and sharpening them.
  • If garden tools are kept in the garage keep them out of harms ways using pegboards, storage bags, boxes, drawers or shelves.
  • Turn off tools once you have finished using them, do not leave leads out on the floor and store them in their original cases.
  • If you keep expensive tools and materials in your garage it is a good idea to lock these away in secure metal cabinets out of sight from thieves.

Garage Doors

Automatic garage doors have become more common and much safer over the years, but severe injuries can still happen.

Things to consider include:

  • If you have manual doors use a counter-balance system rather than a long coil spring. If the doors are electric, have a device fitted that automatically stops the door, or reverses it, when it comes into contact with an object.
  • Check the wheels and tracks of electric doors are working smoothly and lubricate them on a regular basis.
  • Ensure all nuts, bolts and connectors are tight and secure.
  • If the doors squeak or grind, have them checked and if they are damaged, rotten, broken or bent it is probably time for new ones.
  • Keep your garage door opener in good condition and somewhere safe out of reach of small hands.

Children

A general home garage ideally needs to be a child free zone. Explain, in an age appropriate way, that as well as being home to the car it is also full of dangerous things and is a place for adults only.

Pets

Just as with children, a garage is not the place for pets. Leaks and spillages are a common way for animals to be exposed to dangerous products and the consequences can be heart breaking. Contact with the skin or breathing vapors can be enough to cause irreversible damage. Once again ensure products are kept out of the way and try not to let pets in the garage.

Homify UK: The new go-to place for Inspirational Living!


We recently found out about a new site called Homify which provides masses of inspirational ideas on how to design, makeover or decorate your home.  In addition they also write a number of articles featuring the professionals on Homify and we were delighted to be asked to feature on two recent write-ups.

The first article was “Squalor to top dollar: Garage receives a much needed makeoverwhere the writer looked at how we had transformed a triple garage in Henley on Thames into a smart and sleek place to keep your car along with top notch storage.

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The second article titled “Transform your outdoor space: extraordinary garages & sheds” which provided inspiration on how to make best use of your garage and featured one of our makeovers with the title “A Stunning Renovation”.

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We are very proud to be featured and thank Homify very much!

 

Garageflex’s Online Chat – here’s what others are asking…


chat

Did you know we offer the chance to speak to us in real time via our online chat?  Yesterday a future customer contacted us about his garage and wanted some advice, here’s the real conversation that we had.  What would you ask?

Garageflex Customer Services;    Good afternoon, how can I help you today?

Future Customer: Do you have a design consultation. no-obligation

Garageflex Customer Services: Hi yes we do.   We can either assist you by you sending in details of your garage and what you want to store or you can use our design form on the e-store site.  This is a link to the design guide if that helps: http://store.garagetek.co.uk/cmspage.php?page_id=35

Future Customer: i have a double garage. It has plasterboards for wall and ceiling, well insulated (it was a sales office before). so wondering what is best to do if I need to fit your solutions

Garageflex Customer Services: OK.  The best thing to do if you would like us to give some design advice is to send us an email at info@garageflex.co.uk with your dimensions and if you can take some pictures as well that would be great.  Alastair Broom, the Managing Director can then look at it for you and come back with some thoughts.  It would also be helpful if you could tell us what exactly you would like to do ie panel all three walls, anything in particular you want to store etc.  i hope that makes sense.

Future Customer: ok. will do . thanks.. I need a rough estimate of cost as well.

Garageflex Customer Services: Sorry I should have also said that this is a DIY option, if you would like us to come and see your garage to give you the full design and build service then we can do that for you.  A double garage is approx. £9,500 + VAT for this service which includes three walls, a tiled floor and a good range of accessories.

Future Customer: Yes. DIY is fine. Is the cost just doing the walls and floor?

Garageflex Customer Services: it really depends what you want to do and the dimensions of your garage.  We don’t charge to do the rough design work for you and once we have done this we can give you an estimate of how much this would be to buy on the e-store and install yourself.

Future Customer: ok. will do . thanks. I need a rough estimate of cost as well.

Garageflex Customer Services: Sorry I should have also said that this is a DIY option, if you would like us to come and see your garage to give you the full design and build service then we can do that for you.  A double garage is approx. £9,500 + VAT for this service which includes three walls, a tiled floor and a good range of accessories.

Future Customer: Yes. DIY is fine. Is the cost just doing the walls and floor?

Garageflex Customer Services: it really depends what you want to do and the dimensions of your garage.  We don’t charge to do the rough design work for you and once we have done this we can give you an estimate of how much this would be to buy on the e-store and install yourself.

Future Customer: ok. lets do that. thanks

Garageflex Customer Services: No problem at all.  So if you would like to send us the details, dimensions and some pictures we can look at the design for you.  Where are you based?  This may impact on your shipping costs.

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