The Best Overhead Garage Storage Racks and LIfts (2021)

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Home » Woodworking » Workshop » The Best Overhead Garage Storage Racks and LIfts (2021)

Fleximounts 4x8 Rack

Best Overhead Garage Storage Rack System

Popular: Fleximounts 4×8

One of the most overlooked storage areas in your garage is often right over your head: overhead garage storage racks.

And as you know, overhead storage doesn’t take up the valuable floor space that a standard standing rack does. Making it a great investment when comparing per-square-foot costs of your garage floor.

But not all storage racks are the same, and there are a few specialty styles to consider. Which makes understanding the following important before buying:

  • Types of storage racks that will hold the size and weight of your objects.
  • Mesh vs. no-mesh options
  • Mounting approaches for both ease of installation and weight capacity
  • Dimensions that will allow you to assemble multiple racks for longer runs of storage
  • Weight capacity 
  • And finally, retractable or crank options for ease of lifting

FenceProduct Desc.Shop
Best overhead storage rack - overallBEST OVERALL: Fleximount 4×8 overhead rackCHECK PRICE
Best overhead storage rack - budgetBEST BUDGET: HyLoft overhead storage rackCHECK PRICE
Best overhead storage rack - crank operatedCRANK OPERATED: Racor crank operated overhead storage (48×48)CHECK PRICE
Best overhead storage rack - valueBEST VALUE: MonsterRaxx overhead rack without the meshCHECK PRICE
Best overhead storage rack - wheelbarrowFOR WHEELBARROWS: StoreYourBoards wheelbarrow lift saves a lot of spaceCHECK PRICE

Best Overhead Garage Storage Racks

Fleximounts Large Overhead Garage Storage Rack

The top selling Fleximounts 4×8 features easy installation with wide ceiling connection points, 22-40″ drop, and three color options (black, hammertone, white)

If you’re going to take the time to add storage you might as well install a lot of it. And with this best overhead garage rack you’ll have:

    • 32-square feet of storage
    • Up to 40″ of vertical height
    • 600-pounds of weight capacity
    • Frame and wire shelving are welded together to prevent loads from shifting it

The only drawback? Make sure you’ll have enough clearance for yourself or a taller vehicle for shorter ceilings.

HyLoft Large Overhead Garage Storage Rack

The economical HyLoft 45″x45″ will fit in tight spots of your garage. And with a 17″-28″ height range and pivoting connectors will work on both flat and low slope ceilings.

For a smaller overhead area and shorter ceilings this rack will tuck into tight spots. And with a 17″ minimum height will allow walking clearance for all but the tallest of us (about 6’6″ for a standard 8′ ceiling).

The only pitfall of this rack? You may need to span joists with a 2×4″ as it doesn’t offer a long connection point with the ceiling.

Racor

For easy access the Racor 48×48″ crank operated ceiling storage lift will lower and raise loads with a hand crank or drill.

While most overhead solutions are static, this rack uses an ingenious crank to let you access the storage without risk of a ladder. And doesn’t require a heavy overhead lift for those with mobility challenges.

Key features:

    • 250 pound capacity
    • 48″ x 48″
    • Adapts to sloped ceilings with nylon rings
    • 8-feet of vertical operation to work with taller and short ceilings
    • Safety lock to prevent load from falling when not in use

MonsterRax

The MonsterRax 4×8 ceiling mounted storage rack has all the standard features – including a ceiling hugging 12-21″ drop. All you supply is the decking (no wire included).

If you’re looking for the cheapest possible option and/or want to use plywood vs. wire racks then this is an option worth considering. 
 
Key features:
    • Adjustable 12-21″ drop
    • 600-pound total capacity
    • Homeowner supplies plywood (no wire)

Fleximounts

The Fleximounts 4×6 rack is an in-between size for spots where an 8′ rack won’t fit. And with it’s shorter design you’ll have a massive 550-pound load capacity.

Key features:
    • Adjustable 22-40″ drop
    • 550-pound total capacity
    • 14-guage steel construction

Wheelbarrow

With a StoreYourBoard wheelbarrow lift you’ll be able to gain floor space and store a seldom-used but bulky tool.

Key features:
    • Two patented lifts to grab your wheelbarrow, kayak or ladders
    • Easy lift mechanism
    • 60-pound capacity
    • Tie-down wall cleat

Retractable

Using this BluWorld Retract-a-Rack you’ll be able to lift fishing roads, skis, or other small items off the ground and have easy access.

Key features:
    • Holds up to 16 fishing rods
    • Auto-retract pneumatic pistons

Buying Guide to Overhead Garage Storage Racks

Measure Twice and Order Once

Much like cutting wood once after measuring twice you really don’t want to get this step wrong.

Here’s a few tips for measuring:

    • Remember your vehicle height – tall trucks can go over 6’6″ and a low hanging rack will hit.
    • Units can be combined. If the one you want is too short or long look at combining 2-3 units instead.
    • Make sure you’ll have overhead studs/rafters to connect too.
    • Watch out for garage door rails and clearance needed. 
    • Make sure nobody will hit their head (a relative has theirs too low for me…)

Match Your Weight to the Racks Limits

While most racks are used for storage bins, if you have heavier plans make sure you are staying within the weight limits. Due to longer units of up to 8-feet it doesn’t take a whole lot to put 500+ pounds on the shelf. And an overhead shelf collapsing is more than inconvenient it’s potentially fatal.

Mesh Included vs. Bare Rack

The good news is not all overhead garage storage racks come with mesh. So if your requirement is bare or you want to use plywood you’ll be able to find a system with either.

But remember you might not be saving money as a typical sheet of plywood can run $30-50 depending on thickness.

And don’t forget the plywood counts to the overall weight limit of the rack.

Frequently Asked Questions for Overhead Garage Storage Racks

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I build overhead garage storage?​

Unless your rafters are open and you can access the area above them I recommend looking up one of the best overhead garage storage racks. Due to the weight and nature of this system it might be safer to use a professionally built rack.

How do I organize my garage?​

There are three ways to organize a garage that I recommend starting with. First, for small garages going vertical with an overhead storage rack (of course) is a great method. Second, for a woodworker or hobbyist a garage lumber rack will get your wood off the floor and organized on the wall. And last, a high quality pegboard organizer will give your immediate access to your tools.

Can I combine multiple overhead garage storage units?

Yes each overhead garage storage, following the manufacturer instructions, can be placed adjacent to each other to form a long run of storage.

How do you cover garage storage?

One of the best ways to keep your stored items dust free is to use a cloth sheet or a furniture cover. Both are readily available and will prevent years of accumulating dust from damaging your stored goods.

Summary

The good news is there are a lot of overhead storage racks available for your garage. But, keep in mind you’ll want to measure carefully and plan to have some help for the installation.

Disclaimer: Installing overhead storage is inherently dangerous. This article is not recommending or advising on how to attach the mentioned racks. Review the manufacturers instructions and hire certified help if uncertain about any step of the installation. Read our full disclaimers for more.

Last update on 2021-10-15 at 00:43 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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