35 Mistakes You Don't Realize You're Making In Your Backyard & Garage

From string lights to mini fridges, your solutions can be found here.

Originally Published: 
We may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.

I’m not here to insult your outdoor setup. I’m sure your plants are thriving and your patio is as cute as can be. However, I am here to let you know that there are a ton of great inventions that can make your backyard and garage a lot better.

Contrary to popular belief, your garage doesn’t have to be just a giant junk drawer. It can actually be organized with the help of something like a wall mount to hold all the tools that probably just lay around on the floor and a smart garage control that’ll give you peace of mind by letting you close it from anywhere.

I’m already predicting that the smart device will have you hooked and looking for more. If you want to transform all your outdoor appliances, grab a smart outlet so you can set up a timer for your sprinklers and never waste energy again on string lights that were left on all night long.

After using all these genius Amazon finds to tidy up your space, you’ll want to relax a bit. But before getting too comfortable in your lounge chair, scroll through the mosquito, fly, and moth traps and repellants so you can kick back with a cold drink from your new portable mini fridge without having to deal with any pesky pests (and the itchy bites that can come with them).

By the time you’re down scrolling through this list, you’ll have a new and improved backyard and garage.

Mistake: You’re Not The Best At Parking

Solution: Use These Parking Stoppers That Protect Your Garage Walls

If it’s a bit difficult for you to gage how much space you actually have between you and those paint cans, this parking stopper will be your nearly invisible best friend. Place the incredibly strong adhesive bottom at the point on the floor where you wish to always stop, and it’ll act as your bumper from then on.

Mistake: You Toss Your Rakes & Brooms Anywhere

Solution: Store Up To 11 Tools With These Wall-Mounted Organizing Racks

Picking up all the equipment that’s leaning or strewn about the floor and hanging it all on this wall mount is probably all you need to make your garage less of a mess. Equipped with six hooks and five slots with anti-skid rubber that hold up things like a rake or broom, each of these two mop and broom holders be able to fit up to 11 pounds of tools and cleaning supplies.

Mistake: You Don’t Water Your Lawn Enough

Solution: Use This Sprinkler That Can Reach 3,600 Square Feet

Watering your lawn can be a lot of work if you don’t have the right sprinkler. That’s why you need this one. With three rotating arms and 12 adjustable spray nozzles, the compact but powerful device can cover up to 3,600 square feet at once. If the 80 PSI water pressure still isn’t enough to cover all of your property, easily attach another sprinkler to form an even stronger team. The interior metal weights keep the thick plastic in place so as not to tip over.

Mistake: Your Extension Cords Are All Tangled

Solution: Neatly Wrap & Hang Them With This Cord Organizer

Instead of trying (and failing) to hide your power cords behind that large flower pot, wrap them up with a cord organizer. The heavy-duty material can not only keep even the heaviest cords contained (up to 50 pounds) but it can also hold them up when hung from the convenient metal hoop. If you end up having some left over from this six-pack, feel free to use them to also hang up shovels, rakes, and other tools.

Mistake: You Struggle To Reach Things On High Shelves

Solution: Use This Step Stool That Can Hold Up To 300 Pounds

Stop jumping up and down and waiting for your arms to magically extend and grab this step stool that’ll give you an extra 11 inches of height. Both the top surface and bottoms have a non-slip surface that’ll keep you and the stool in place. Don’t be afraid to bring down that giant box of old CDs, since this stool can support up to 300 pounds. When not in use, this durable step stool folds up for easy storage, and it’s lightweight enough to carry anywhere with its handle.

Mistake: You Have Too Many Different Wrenches

Solution: Use This Universal Socket Wrench That Adjusts To 6 Various Shapes

This universal socket wrench attachment is made to work with screws and bolts that range from 7mm to 19mm and can take the place of hex, cap, square, nut, eye, and hook tops. Made from a durable chrome steel material, this little powerhouse is meant to last, all while taking up just a few inches in your drawer.

Mistake: You Keep Your Tools In A Bulky, Easily Lost Box

Solution: Hang Up This Magnetic Tool Strip For An Organized Display

This magnetic tool strip makes it easy to use every last inch of wall space that you have. The extendable bar can be customized to fit wherever you want it to so that you have a place designated for displaying your tools clearly instead of having them all jumbled together in a box. Each bar can hold up to 5 pounds so you can store a great amount of wrenches, screwdrivers, and more in sight and arm’s reach.

Mistake: You Don’t Have Any Outdoor Games

Solution: Set Up This Ring Toss Games That’s Fun For Kids & Adults Alike

Your next BBQ needs a backyard activity that’ll let everyone in on the fun. This easy-to-learn ring toss game is perfect for both kids and adults and will quickly have some friendly competitions going on. The adorable bamboo shortboard takes just minutes to set up and can be screwed into a wall or even a tree.

Mistake: You Drag Dirt Into Your Home

Solution: Put Down This Waterproof Mat That Locks In Dirt

You should be wiping your feet before you walk inside to prevent dragging in any outdoor dirt. This waterproof mat is durable enough to stay outside on your porch yet chic and neutral enough to have in your garage. The anti-slip rubber backing will keep it in place so matter where you decide to put it. The soft fibers trap dirt and liquids and can be sprayed clean with a hose if they work a little too well.

Mistake: Bugs Ruin A Good Time

Solution: Keep Around This Zapper Racket That Uses 4,000 Volts Of Electricity

While your first instinct may be to chase after that irritating fly with your bare hands, there’s a better way. This electric zapper racket uses 4,000 volts to instantly get rid of the annoyance. Use it indoors, outdoors, during the day, and even at night thanks to the built-in LED light. A single charge using a USB cable will give you 10,000 zaps. More importantly, the triple-layer safety mesh and indicator light assures that the flying insects are the only thing getting zapped.

Mistake: You Don’t Light Up Your Pathways

Solution: Stick In These Garden Lights That Run On Solar Power

Watch your step and add some style to your yard with these solar-powered lights that shine bright with 10 lumens. Being all-season resistant, all you have to do is stick them in the ground and you’ll be set for the whole year. The set of eight lights automatically turns on at night and turn off at dawn. And once they’re fully charged, the rechargeable batteries light up your walkway for between 10 to 12 hours.

Mistake: You Just Estimate How Big To Make Garden Beds

Solution: Use This Measuring Wheel That Has A Magnified Distance Display

Roll around your garden measuring out the perfect space for each plant and flower bed with this measuring wheel that has a 10,000 foot capacity. The ergonomic handle leads down to a magnified display of the distance you’ve measured so you don’t have to lose your place trying to bend down and catch the number. After measuring the perfect size for your new garden, reset the measuring wheel with the single click of a button.

Mistake: You Don’t Have A Doorbell In Your Garage

Solution: Install This Wireless Doorbell With A Battery That’ll Last 3 Years

If you and your guests tend to come into your home through the garage, you’re going to want to have a wireless doorbell just like you have for your front door. This one in particular is easy to install with included double-sided tape, and is able to withstand rain and temperatures between -4 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Choose between 52 different chimes and four volume levels, all of which can reach the transmitter up to 1,000 feet away. The included battery will last for up to three years, so you can quickly stick it on and not think about it again for a long time to come.

Mistake: You Have No Lighting On Your Patio

Solution: Hang Up These Cute, Waterproof String Lights

If you have no real lighting out on your patio, hang up these chic string lights that’ll turn your backyard into a fairytale. Each bulb projects a warm glow that’s easy on the eyes and can last through snow, rain, wind, and sun. Plus, the 24-foot long wires are waterproof allowing you to leave them up no matter the weather. Oh, and just in case any accidents happen, two extra bulbs are included.

Mistake: You Have Slippery Steps

Solution: Stick On This Glow-In-The Dark, Anti-Slip Tape That Adds Grip

Whether you slip on steps after a winter snowfall or simply don’t see them well when getting home late from a summer BBQ, this anti-slip tape will help all year long. This 30-foot roll gives you enough to cover all your outdoor steps not in its high traction material, adding much-needed grip. But, unlike other anti-slip takes, this also has a glow-in-the-dark strip that makes your stairs easier to spot at night. The tape can withstand temperatures from -4 to 140 degrees Fahrenheit and is completely waterproof.

Mistake: You Use Rusted Gardening Tools

Solution: Use This Tool Set That Comes In An Easy-To-Carry Tote Bag

Upgrade your planting sessions with this garden tools set. In addition to the hand trowel, digging fork, shovel, spade, and weeder, you’ll also receive a mister and a pair of gloves that’ll keep your hands protected while using the others. It all comes cutely packaged in a canvas tote with exterior and interior pockets that are perfect for storage.

Mistake: You Have Pests Invading Your Garage

Solution: Hang Up These Moth Traps That Last 3 Months

Moths have a sneaky way of coming out of nowhere and suddenly being everywhere. To help keep them away from the garage, spread around a few of these moth traps, which use pheromones to attract moths. This pack of seven can have your entire garage covered especially thanks to the handy dandy hook feature on each trap that lets you hang them from shelves and hooks. Switch them out every three months to keep preserving freshness and keeping your goodies safe.

Mistake: You Have To Wrestle With A Heavy Hose

Solution: Use A Lightweight Hose That Expands To 3 Times Its Length

This is not your mother’s hose. This genius hose weighs less than three pounds and expandable to 50 feet in length. The high-strength, thick polyester expands up to three times its size when filled with water and coils back up when emptied so it won’t take up too much space in your yard or driveway. Plus, the four layers of latex protect the inner tube from any sharp corners or thorns that it may come in contact with, and the expandable fabric means this hose won’t kink or coil up.

Mistake: You Get Covered In Mosquito Bites

Solution: Burn The Mosquito-Repelling Incense Sticks That Last Nearly 3 Hours

Skip the sticky mosquito repellant spray and opt for these incense sticks that create a 12-foot barrier that keeps you protected from annoying bites. The DEET-free sticks use natural, plant-based oils (like rosemary, citronella, and lemongrass) to keep away mosquitoes for two and a half hours. This three-pack gives you 36 sticks, making them under a dollar each so you should jump at this deal fast.

Mistake: Your Bike Is Taking Up Precious Floor Space

Solution: Use These Wall Mounts With Anti-Scratch Hooks

These heavy-duty steel bike rack hooks can hold up to 50 pounds each and are coated in anti-scratch rubber and have an anti-slip design that keeps your bike looking as good as new. Screw them in with the included hardware, and you’ll instantly have a ton more floor space to make use of.

Mistake: Your Grill Is Slowly Rusting

Solution: Cover It With A Weatherproof Grill Cover With Secure Straps

Grills are no small investment, so you should do as much as you can to keep it working and looking like new. This rip-proof, waterproof grill cover helps by protecting it from UV rays and any moisture that may cause rust. The oxford material is lined with PVC to create any even stronger barrier that can fit snug around nearly any grill with the help of the fabric hooks and straps that keep it in place, which is why it has over 30,000 five-star reviews. This cover is available in six sizes and four colors to work with your exact model and deck aesthetic.

Mistake: Your Back Gets Strained While Gardening

Solution: Sit & Kneel Comfortably On This Cushiony Garden Stool

While gardening may seem like a relaxing hobby, it can actually take a huge toll on your body when leaning down in uncomfortable positions all for the sake of the perfect bed of petunias. This garden stool is made of super comfy EVA foam padding that gives you the support you need. Adjust the steel frame to use it as a seat or a kneeler to give both your back and knees a bit of relief. There’s also some extra surprises in this kneeler. The side tool organizer makes it easy to have everything you need at hand and — speaking of hands — a pair of gloves with digging tips is included.

Mistake: You Leave Your Outdoor Lights On All Night

Solution: Put Them On A Timer With This Smart Outlet

This water-resistant smart outlet makes it possible — and super easy — to put your sprinklers on a timer or shut off your lights even though you’re already snuggled up on your couch. The three ports can be controlled using the wireless remote from up to 100 feet away and have different timer options, making it effortless to water your lawn for exactly two hours.

Mistake: You Don’t Have Enough Shelf Space For Your Tools

Solution: Use These Anti-Slip Hooks That Can Hold Up To 77 Pounds

If your garage walls aren’t covered in hooks, you’re doing something wrong. This 12-pack of steel hooks comes with an array of five different sizes and two shapes of hooks as well as 48 steel screw nails, 24 steel plugs, and 24 anchors, so that you have everything you need to hang up everything from bikes to drills to leaf blowers, shovels, and everything in between. The non-slip rubber that coats each hooks prevents scratches and keeps your things from sliding around.

Mistake: Your Yard Has No Shade

Solution: Hang Up This Canopy That Blocks 96% Of UV Rays

Believe it or not, you don’t need an awning built into your house or even a table umbrella to enjoy some shade in your backyard. This sun shade canopy uses heavy-duty rope and stainless steel rings to give you a sun-free area to lounge in. Hook the rings onto the side of your home or nearby trees to stretch out the breathable fabric that blocks out 96% of UV rays. And don’t worry about this working for your exact space — there are 11 different shapes and sizes of canopy.

Mistake: You Keep Your Nails & Screws All Over The Place

Solution: Declutter All Your Odds & Ends With This 16-Drawer Organizer

Whether you use your garage as a workshop, crafting space, or spot to store everything there’s no other space for, organize all your small tools, buttons, and other odd bits in this sturdy plastic storage cabinet. With 16 drawers that are 5.25 inches deep each, you can separate each category as needed. Four drawers even come with dividers, which adds extra organization to this piece.

Mistake: You Don’t Have Anywhere To Lounge

Solution: Lay Back In This Lightweight Hammock

While this rip-resistant nylon hammock is durable and portable enough to use for camping, you can absolutely use it in the comfort of your own backyard. The medium-size version is 9 feet long and built to be able to hold up to 400 pounds while the large version holds 500, so if all the kids want to hop on while the adults are enjoying their summer cocktails, it won’t be a problem. The 9-foot long tree straps make it easy to loop around any bark, and the compact carrying bag makes it easy to pack up, move around, and store.

Mistake: Your Garage Doesn’t Have Any Shelves

Solution: Use This Adjustable Shelving Unit That Can Hold 750 Pounds

This storage shelf may look basic, but behind its simple design is the ability to hold 750 pounds. Yes, you read that right. Each tier can hold 250 pounds making it the perfect place to keep boxes of your heaviest tools. The shelves are adjustable in height in 1-inch increments, so taller appliances can fit as well, giving this shelf endless heavy-duty uses.

Mistake: You Lose Track Of Which Plants Are Which

Solution: Use These Plant Labels That Come With Waterproof Markers

Different plants require different watering schedules, but even someone with the greenest thumb can’t be expected to memorize the care instructions for each. Use these plant labels to not only remind yourself which green is parsley and which is cilantro, but to also jot down a quick reminder for yourself in order to keep each thriving. The plastic pieces and oil-based pens that come with them are both waterproof, so you don’t have to worry about all your hard work washing away.

Mistake: You Often Forget To Close Your Garage

Solution: Use This Smart Opener To Control It From Anywhere

The inevitable “Did I shut the garage?” thought always seems to come when you’re already miles down the road driving away. To open or close it from anywhere, easily install this smart garage control, which is compatible with major brand garage doors made after 1993. You can schedule a specific time for the door to close and even be alerted of any activity so you know the status at all times.

Mistake: You’re Surrounded By Flies Outside

Solution: Use These Disposable Fly Traps That Lure Them In

You don’t have to go chasing after every pesky fly anymore. This fly trap uses an odor that they can’t resist to lure them into the bag — and then they drown. All you have to do is fill it with water to activate the bait and dispose of the bag once you notice it getting full. Pull a string or wire through the top loop to hang it from anywhere, and enjoy a fly-free night outside.

Mistake: You Don’t Think Twice About Where You Put Dirty Shoes

Solution: Use This Rubber Boot Mat With Raised Edges

Whether you were out gardening or just walking around town, this rubber mat gives you a designated place to keep those dirty shoes so they don’t make your deck, garage, or hardwood dirty. The raised edges assures that any debris or liquid stay on the mat, making these great for winter boots that get all full of snow.

Mistake: You Decorate Indoors But Not Outdoors

Solution: Add Some Life To Your Patio With This Colorful Thermometer

Your patio walls have been dreaming of being decorated like your indoor walls, believe me. This fun outdoor thermometer is not only an easy way to keep track of the temperature but also an adorable way to add some color your deck. This durable outdoor thermometer will automatically calibrate after two to three hours in a space and is easy to hang using the back hook.

Mistake: You Leave Your Gardening Tools Strewn About

Solution: Keep Your Tools From Rusting With This Waterproof Storage Box

After a long day of yard work, I know it could be tempting to just leave all your tools strewn about. But, you can keep your space looking neat and keep your equipment rust-free at the same time simply by placing it all in this weather-resistant storage box. The double-walled resin construction keep it from leaking, denting, or rotting in any way, making this the weather-resistant solution for storing small shovels, grill tools, or other outdoor odds and ends.

Mistake: You Go Back Inside Every Time You Want A Drink

Solution: Store Up To 6 Cans In This Portable Mini Fridge

This portable mini fridge can store up to six cans at a time so you and your friends can enjoy a cold drink even when tanning in the highest heat or working hard in the garage. It can keep things cool from 32 degrees Fahrenheit or even warm up to 149 degrees Fahrenheit. Plus, the super quiet motor won’t interrupt any jams you have blasting in the backyard.

This article was originally published on