Looking for some extra storage room to get that garage organized once and for all? You might want to consider getting some help from above–the garage ceiling, that is.

At its simplest, overhead storage can take the form of some basic hooks and hangers for dealing with ladders, bikes, hoses, cords, and similar items. Check out any home center or hardware store, add in a little imagination, and you’ll be surprised how quickly you can get any number of items off the floor and onto the ceiling.

Always wise to consumer needs for more storage, several manufacturers have developed storage racks that mount on the ceiling or on the wall but elevate to utilize overhead space. Ranging from the simple to the elaborate, you’re sure to find something for every budget and every storage need.

HyLoft (www.hyloft.com), for example, offers their Ceiling Storage Unit in a couple of different sizes. These coated, scratch-resistant units consist of steel arms that mount to the ceiling joists of a finished or unfinished garage ceiling and support a steel mesh platform that holds up to 250 pounds of Christmas ornaments, camping gear, luggage, or whatever you want to store. The platforms range from 36-by-36 inches to 45-by-45 inches, and several units can be connected to customize the installation.

The HyLoft Ceiling Storage Units are adjustable in height from 16 to 28 inches, so you can accommodate different locations and different storage needs. Depending on the overall height of your ceiling, they can even be installed over your garage doors, making use of that otherwise dead space above the door while not interfering with the door’s operation. Installation is easy, even for one person, and all the necessary hardware is included with the kit.

You can get even more storage use from these units with the addition of some of their accessories. There are hooks that hang from the steel mesh to hold hoses, cords and the like, or crossbars that allow for the horizontal storage of ladders, yard tools, and other longer items.

On the other end of the storage spectrum, HyLoft offers their Loft-It Motorized Lift System. This is a steel platform, 8-by-4 feet, which runs on tracks that are attached to the wall. Drive your motorcycle, snowmobile, lawn tractor, or any other vehicle weighing up to 1200 pounds onto the platform, touch a button, and the half-horsepower motor will lift it up to 6 feet off the floor, allowing your car or another vehicle to park under it.

If you have a nice attic space you’d like to get some storage use out of but don’t relish the thought of lugging boxes up a ladder, you might want to consider one of the Attic Lift Systems from SpaceLift Products. Both their SpaceLift 5000 and SpaceLift 6000 models are designed to lift storage items up into the attic safely and easily, all at the touch of a button.

The SpaceLift 5000 consists of a platform that lowers down out of the ceiling on cables, powered by a 110-volt electric motor. Press the wall-mounted button, and the platform lowers to the floor so you can load it. Press the button again, and the platform rises up through the ceiling carrying up to 75 pounds, allowing for easy unloading and storage inside the attic. The platform fits into a standard 22 1/2-by-54-inch framed attic opening, so it’s compatible with manufactured trusses as well as conventional ceiling framing.

For even more convenience, there’s the new SpaceLift 6000, which was introduced this January. The SpaceLift 6000 is also electric-powered and capable of lifting 75 pounds, but features a built-in telescoping attic stairway ladder.

Like a conventional attic ladder, the SpaceLift ladder is folded down manually, and offers access to the attic with or without using the storage platform lift. Once the ladder has been folded down, press a button and the platform descends on a track down the ladder to the floor. After loading, the platform reverses itself to ascend back up the ladder into the ceiling, and you can climb the ladder behind it and easily finish up your unloading and storage chores.

More information on both units, as well as weight limits for attic framing, is available through the company’s Web site at www.spaceliftproducts.com.

Remodeling and repair questions?  E-mail Paul at paul2887@direcway.com.

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