When it comes to creating a work space and organizing your tools and materials for home projects, your work table is at the center of it all. There are several factors to consider when shopping for a workbench, including size, surface materials, design, and compatibility with a tool chest or shop cabinets.
Workbench Size and Design
Before buying a work table, measure the space where it will go and then subtract a few inches on either side for clearance. This will give you the maximum width for your workbench. The correct height for your workbench is largely a matter of preference. It should be tall enough to prevent you from stooping but short enough to work comfortably without straining. An adjustable-height workbench makes it easy to find just the right height.
If you want to be able to move your workbench, look for a design with swivel casters so that you can roll it to a temporary work space. Other design options include a foldable workbench, adjustable shelving, locks for drawers or cabinets, and wall mounting.
Work Table Materials
Workbench surfaces come in a variety of finishes, including maple, bamboo, steel and laminate. Choose a material that is durable enough to withstand the work that you'll be doing. Wood materials offer a strong, all-purpose surface that can withstand heat, marring and impacts. Steel offers heavy-duty durability and prevents absorption of solvents, oils or other liquids. Laminate is an affordable option for a starter workbench but may show wear and tear sooner than other materials.
Completing Your Garage Workshop
To complete your garage workshop, you may want to consider adding shop lights, a power strip and storage space for your tools, such as a peg board, tool chest and magnetic strips. Shop cabinets can also come in handy, especially for storing larger equipment, such as a wet/dry vac or propane heater. Keep the items you use most frequently within easy reach of your workbench. The more efficiently you organize your space based on how you'll use it, the easier it will be to cross projects off your to-do list.