How to Organize Tools on a Pegboard
A pegboard is great for organizing tools in home garages, workshops and job sites. If you already have a pegboard in place, it may be time to try something new, especially if your workspace is starting to feel cluttered. Read this guide for some pegboard ideas and smart pegboard hacks to help you organize tools and accessories.
Choose a Pegboard for Mounting
Pegboards are made of different materials. Wood is the most common choice. Pegboards are also available in acrylic, plastic and metal materials.
One thing to consider before installing a pegboard is the weight of your tools. The holes of a standard sized 3/16 in. wood pegboard can hold about 100 pounds. That’s strong enough to accommodate hand power tools, shovels, rakes, hammers and most work supplies on hooks and shelves.
Before organizing your tools, you need to get the pegboard up on the wall. You’ll need a helper to do this for the best results.
- Find the area to install the pegboard. This should be a space that is easy to access. Measure the wall to determine the size of the pegboard piece you’ll be using for your tools.
- Locate the studs in your wall with a stud finder and mark them with a pencil. You’ll also want to mark the general outline of where you want to put your pegboard.
- Using a power saw, cut one 8 ft. 1- x 2-in. board to lengths that match the height of the pegboard. (These lengths of wood are the furring strips.)
- Hold the furring strips to the wall with the help of another person. Use a level to ensure the furring strips are straight.
- Attach the furring strips to the wall studs with a power drill and 3/4 -in. wood screws. Drill into the strips at the end of each strip and in the center. Do not attach the wood screws using the pre-drilled holes of the pegboard.
- Mount the pegboard in place and secure it onto the furring strips with 3 in. screws. (Again, do not attach the screws using the pre-drilled pegboard holes.) Many people use lathe screws for this since they provide more support. This is particularly important if you’re working with a large piece of pegboard or if you’re planning to hang heavy tools. You want your pegboard to be firm on the furring strips, so it doesn’t move when selecting tools from or returning tools to your pegboard.
Organize Tools by Size
Make all of your tools easy to find by organizing them by size. This method also creates balance so you can grab the right tool at any moment.
Here’s how to organize tools by size for an efficient pegboard layout:
- Start by hanging your largest, heaviest tools like sanders or electric drills on the bottom of your pegboard. Many people hang these in a row across the bottom. This also makes your garage safer since you don’t want heavy tools falling from the top of your pegboard.
- Group like-sized tools together. For example, a hammer and mallet are similarly sized items. Screwdrivers and wrenches are also roughly the same size. Hang these items together.
- Create a diagram on a sheet of paper to determine your ideal pegboard layout. Remember that items you use all the time should be in an efficient location.
- Use pegboard hooks to start placing your tools on the pegboard per your outline. Pegboard hook kits are fast and efficient. You can also create DIY pegboard hooks with stiff wire.
- Place your tools section by section. Adjust your diagram as needed if you find that a certain portion of your pegboard requires more space. If desired, you can block out your pegboard with a marker or tape to help subdivide the sections once your tools are in place.
Tip: Popular pegboard ideas include outlining your tools with a marker once they’re in place. This can make it easy to keep your pegboard organized when you’re busy or returning multiple tools to your pegboard at once.
Organize Tools by Usage
Some tools you use all the time; others you barely grab at all. Here’s a method that helps you organize your tools by usage rate and make your work area more efficient. This system is particularly beneficial in a tight garage where workspace is at a premium.
- Go through all of the tools you want to put on your pegboard and organize them based on how often you use them. Sort tools into a few different groups.
- Create a diagram of your pegboard on paper. Focus on putting your most-used tools where they’ll be easiest to reach. This area depends on the layout of your garage, work area and pegboard wall.
- Start hanging your tools using a pegboard hook kit or DIY pegboard hooks. Start with your most-used tools, making sure they’ll be handy when you need them.
- Continue hanging tools by group, putting items you need less often in harder to reach places. If you must put heavy items higher up on your pegboard, make sure they're secure by using more pegboard hooks or ties.
Tip: Before you start organizing your pegboard, go through and take tools that you haven’t used in a year or more out of your “to hang” pile. These tools can go in a toolbox or storage cabinet if you don’t have enough room to efficiently hang them on your pegboard. Doing this can also help cut down on pegboard clutter.
More Pegboard Ideas for an Efficient Garage
Both of the organization methods above can help you make tools more accessible while reducing clutter in your garage. Try these pegboard ideas to take your pegboard system to the next level:
- Mount small shelves through your pegboard to the wall for items that aren’t easy to hang. Touch-up paint, epoxy, glue and graphite pencils are just a few examples.
- Add small pegboard baskets to your setup for screws, nails, washers and other small parts. You can also make DIY pegboard baskets using small cardboard or plastic boxes fastened to your pegboard.
- Aim to keep a little open space on your pegboard for items like tape.
- You may add new tools over time that you want to keep handy. If possible, leave small gaps between tools so that you can add to your pegboard without a complete reconfiguration.
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