Build Your Own Wooden Garage Storage Shelves

When you don’t have a lot of storage space, your best bet is to build up. You can purchase steel and plastic shelves from your home improvement store, but the steel shelves are expensive and heavy, and the plastic shelves can sag and fall apart. Take some time to build your own shelves from wood, and you’ll have a fully customisable and solid storage solution.

Your local hardware store or timber yard has everything you need to build your own storage shelves. Heck, you may even have enough materials in your scrap timber pile to build a storage rack.

All you need are a few 2x4s, OSB (or plywood), and 5cm deck screws. This particular shelving unit has four levels and is supported by six 2x4s. A drill/driver, level and measuring tape are required to assemble the unit. This video shows the use of tote boxes and a 2×4 to help hold each new shelf in place as it’s being attached.

Watch the video above for the full cut list and assembly instructions.

How to Build Cheap Shelves Garage Storage [FloppyHatPhotos/YouTube]


  • I can tell you from experience, that if you use cheap thin panels like he is, they will droop over time. Particularly if you live where there is high humidity on a regular basis, and you are placing anything heavy on the shelf. I use 19mm pine panels when I can afford it, but marine ply should be fine too. Definitely steer away from that reconstituted thick cardboard looking crap.

  • One of the best shelving units I have bought was a black metal one with MDF shelves. The unit just gets hammered together (bits lock into place) and then shelves drop on top. Solid and stable and has lasted years.

    If using untreated pine, I hope your shed is on a solid slab or similar. Many sheds I have seen are on brick paving or the 60cm square concrete slabs. Using untreated timber on surfaces like that means termites might have a field day.

  • Those shelves are horrible and won’t take much weight (as the only thing holding them up are small screws!).

    He’s wasted a heap of timber on building frames to prevent the particle board from breaking under load, but then given zero thought to the load of the weight of the shelves themselves.

    Personally I’d build shelves totally different to this, but to modify this shelf to be stronger:
    1) Cut a rebate into each upright that the shelf can sit in. Even the shallowest rebate will take most of the weight off the screws.

    2) Use glue. Fasteners should almost never be used to provide strength or as a replacement to an actual joint. Glue will make any joint or mating between materials considerably stronger.

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