How to Store Plywood in a Garage

How to Store Plywood in a Garage

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If you bought a bunch of plywood, too much of it that you now need to store, or you bought some as a preemptive strike for the repairs you need to do next season, then you need to store that plywood properly.

If you have a garage, then storing your plywood is easily done, and there are four main ways of doing so. Any of the following methods will help to keep your plywood from getting wet and from warping.

4 Best Ways to Store Plywood in a Garage

Let’s get right to it and talk about the four best ways to store plywood in your garage so that it remains in prime condition for whenever you need it next.

Method #1: Horizontally on the Ground

Perhaps the easiest way to store your plywood is to do so on the ground in your garage. This method involves the least amount of work, so that’s a definite bonus.

However, do keep in mind that plywood sheets can be quite large, and if they are being stored horizontally, it means that you will need a lot of floor space to accommodate the plywood. Laying the plywood flat on the ground is the best way to stop them from warping. All that you really need to do here is create a small frame out of 2x4s that will elevate the plywood off the ground.

You don’t want the plywood touching the ground, as it will likely be exposed to moisture and insects, and not get enough airflow. Space your 2x4s about 2 feet apart to ensure that the plywood is well supported and doesn’t sag.

If you are really worried about moisture, you can also use some boards or blocks to create spacers that will put some space in between every piece of plywood, thus providing each board with a good deal of airflow, so that moisture cannot build up. That said, many people will stack their plywood like this without any sort of spacers, and it’s usually perfectly fine.

Method #2: Vertically Against a Wall

Another super easy method of storing plywood in your garage, perhaps even easier than the first method, is to simply lean it against the garage wall. Now, this method comes with the benefit of being space friendly, or in other words, leaning the plywood against a wall takes up much less spacing than laying it on the ground horizontally.

However, there is also a drawback here, which is that plywood that is stored vertically leaning against a wall may warp over a prolonged period of time, so it’s not the best choice for very long-term storage.

Remember, when you lean the plywood against a wall, it will be at an angle, and this is what can cause warping to occur. That said, for this method, simply choose a spot and then lean the plywood against a wall. Pretty simple, right?

Alternatively, you can get a rack like the one below.
Substrate Panel Rack for Sheet Materials, Vertical Sheet Storage, Steel Sheet Storage

Method #3: Vertically on a Rack

If you want to store your plywood vertically to save space, and you even want the long side facing upwards (the longest side being vertical), in order to save as much space as possible, then building or buying a storage rack is the way to go.

Moreover, if you build or buy a nice storage rack, you can stand the plywood up in such a way that it is totally 100% vertical. Not having the plywood leaning at an angle will help minimize the chances of it warping over time.

Now, this is admittedly one of the harder plywood storage methods, especially if you need to build your own rack, but that said, you can customize that rack any way you see fit for a variety of storage options.

When it comes down to it, if you are always storing plywood and other lumber for future use, on a very consistent basis, then this is one of the best methods to consider.

Method #4: Overhead

If you have a small garage and you want to save as much space as humanly possible, then storing it overhead is by far the best option to go with, and you do have two options here.

First off, if you have a garage that has real wooden or metal ceiling beams, and they are spaced apart with adequate distancing to prevent warping and sagging from occurring, then you can just put your plywood on those beams. Most average ceiling beams can easily hold around 160 pounds, which is about three sheets of 1/2-inch plywood.

If your ceiling beams are not up to the task, or you just don’t have any, then the other option is to buy an actual lumber storage rack from your local home improvement or lumber shop. Just make sure that your ceiling can handle the weight of the rack and the wood.

Mistakes to Avoid, Tips & Tricks

The number one tip that we want to leave you with today is that whichever of these methods you choose, you need to ensure that the plywood stays dry. This means storing it away from moisture and providing it with good airflow. Moisture will ruin your plywood, so this needs to be avoided at all costs.

Summary

The bottom line here is that there are four good ways to store plywood in your garage. Which of these methods you choose really comes down to how long you need to store the plywood for, how much of it you have, and how much space you have available in your garage.