Can I put my elliptical in the garage

Can I Put My Elliptical in the Garage or Outside?

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Hi friends, it’s Kathleen again, and today, I received a really interesting question. Should I put my elliptical in the garage? Seems like a really straightforward question, right?

Yes or no, but it’s a bit more complicated than that. Before you roll that elliptical trainer out to your garage, you really need to read this first.

I have some of my exercise equipment in the garage, but not my rowing machine or my treadmill. A large garage seems like a good spot, though, am I right?

Think about it. Privacy. Few or no windows. No one will mind if you make a little noise. Still, is keeping your elliptical in the garage a good idea?

I was a bit surprised at what I discovered when I looked into this a bit. I bet you will too.

Is It OK to Put an Elliptical or Treadmill in the Garage?

There are a few questions you should answer first so that you can make the right decision about where to place your exercise equipment.

  1. Do you live in a very cold or humid climate?
  2. Is your garage heated, or does it have a humidity control system?
  3. Do you live in a very dusty area?
  4. Is your climate frequently windy?
  5. Does your garage have an electrical outlet?

Once you have the answers to those questions, keep reading.

If you live where it gets very cold (below freezing) and your garage is not heated, you actually run the risk of damaging the electrical parts, such as the LCD screen, on your elliptical or treadmill.

If you read your owner’s manual, nearly all treadmill manufacturers strongly advise you to not store or use these in unheated spaces, like garages. The same is true with most manufacturers of elliptical trainers.

If your garage does not have a humidity control system and you live in an area where it gets hot and humid in the summer, you run the risk of corrosion and premature failure of any piece of fitness equipment, including your elliptical trainer.

The same is true with dusty areas and areas that get lots of wind. Your garage probably isn’t the cleanest room in the house, and it probably doesn’t have weatherstripping on the door(s). This means exposing your machine to dust and dirt that will wear down parts quickly.

Last- let’s talk electricity. Some garages don’t have electrical outlets for some reason and that can pose a problem. Imagine running an extension cord across the yard to the garage. Not a good idea.

Now, this isn’t to say that these things all mean that you absolutely cannot put your workout equipment in the garage. You might still be able to do it if you take a few precautions, such as using a treadmill cover and/or a treadmill mat.  Plus don’t forget to keep up your maintenance on these machines – read my full article on Elliptical Maintenance Guidelines for Your Equipment for more information.

Keep reading and you’ll learn more about these items and the important role that they play in protecting your equipment.

What Temperature Can a Treadmill Withstand?

Believe it or not, most manufacturers strongly advise NOT using your treadmill in temps under 50 degrees.

Personally, I think that’s a bit extreme. I’ve used treadmills in gyms that were probably under 50 first thing in the morning, and I don’t remember any problems!

The belt might be less flexible, but that’s about it. I think anything under 40 is pushing it, but I have some friends who swear that their treadmill is fine in their unheated garage.

Heat doesn’t seem to affect a treadmill that much, unless it’s extreme, such as over 125 degrees, but I can’t imagine anyone using anything other than a pool in that kind of heat.

If you live where it regularly snows or have temps that hit freezing, you might want to put your treadmill somewhere else in the winter months, such as a finished basement, on a second or upper floor, or even a shed or tool room, as long as it’s heated a bit.

Can an Elliptical Be Stored Outside?

This is really NOT a good idea. Hopefully, the place you choose at the very least has a roof. The more enclosed the space, the safer your piece of workout equipment will be.

I understand that there are times when you don’t have a choice and you need to store your treadmill, stationary bike, or elliptical outdoors.

If this is the case, you can help protect it by using a cover designed to prevent damage from the sunlight and keep dust to a minimum.

KKAI Elliptical Machine Cover Waterproof Outdoor Sun Protection Aluminum Film Cotton (Size : X-Large)

There are many different types of covers, depending on your elliptical model or whatever piece of workout equipment you plan on storing. This cover is made for elliptical machines, and I like it because it’s not only waterproof, but it’s also reflective, so you don’t have to worry about sunlight.

If you have a treadmill, this cover is also waterproof and zips up tight for extra protection.

elliptical machine for home use

Can I Put a Treadmill on a Balcony?

Doesn’t this sound nice? Fresh air, interesting things to see, birds going by, the neighbors watching you run…

Even if your balcony is secluded, keeping your treadmill or an elliptical machine is NOT a good idea.

Your balcony may have a roof, but no walls. This is like storing your car outdoors. If you’ve ever seen the pain on a car that’s been left outside for a couple of years, what the elements will do to your treadmill is even worse.

Treadmills, elliptical machines, or any piece of gym equipment are not designed to be left outdoors. The dust, sunlight, air pollution, rain, snow, wind, and even animals (birds love to poop on anything outdoors, don’t they?) will cause serious damage to your fitness equipment.

If you like, you can wheel your treadmill outside and do your workout on a balcony, but be sure to bring it back indoors!

Related Post:  Can the Elliptical Burn Belly Fat?

Should I Use a Treadmill Mat Even If My Treadmill or Elliptical Is Inside?

I always recommend that people put a mat underneath their treadmill, rowing machine, stair climber, or elliptical.

BEAUTYOVO Puzzle Exercise Mat with 12/24 Tiles Interlocking Foam Gym Mats, 24'' x 24'' EVA Foam Floor Tiles, Protective Flooring Mats Interlocking for Gym Equipment

You can buy an elliptical mat or treadmill mat to fit your machine, or you can buy some of the interlocking mats that will fit whatever shape of equipment you want to protect.

Even if you keep your workout equipment indoors, it can become damaged when the motor sucks up carpet fibers, dust bunnies, dirt, and a sucker stick that your two-year-old left on the floor.

Treadmill mats (or elliptical mats) help to keep your exercise equipment sturdy. They have rubber gripper pads that prevent the machine from sliding, eliminate vibrations, and even keep dust from collecting underneath.

I love my equipment mat because all I need to do is swipe a towel underneath it once a week and I know everything is clean and clear. I have a mat under all my equipment, even my Teeter Inversion Table.

If you want to put your workout equipment on a second floor, an equipment mat is a really important factor since it helps stop noise and vibrations that can bug the people downstairs or in the apartment next door.

Using an equipment mat can also help protect your expensive workout equipment if you need to keep it in an unheated garage or other space. Whether you’ve got carpeted floors or cement floors, a mat will go a long way towards protecting your investment.

Think of it as a pair of socks for your equipment!

How Do I Turn a Garage into a Home Gym?

This is probably easier than you think.

First, clear out all the junk that you really don’t need. If you have chemicals, such as paint or gasoline, do your best to find another place to store those items. The fumes might make you sick if you breathe them in during a workout.

BEAUTYOVO Puzzle Exercise Mat with 12/24 Tiles Interlocking Foam Gym Mats, 24'' x 24'' EVA Foam Floor Tiles, Protective Flooring Mats Interlocking for Gym Equipment

Second, go with the interlocking floor mats and cover as much of the floor as you can.

Focus on arranging your workout equipment so that you have as much room as you need to be comfortable as you use them. Don’t place them too close to one another.

Consider adding a window if your garage doesn’t have one.

Do some weatherproofing to the door(s) to help make the space cleaner and more comfortable.

You might also want to consider adding some sort of heating or ceiling fans for the winter and summer months.

Have some fun with it! Paint a scenic view on the ceiling and add an outstanding sound system or a mini-fridge for ice-cold water whenever you want it. For cold months, maybe an Espresso machine!

It’s your gym- give it some style with a unique signature that is all about you!

My Elliptical Rocks Back and Forth- How Do I Stop It?

Check the feet on your elliptical. Many elliptical machines feature adjustable feet to help make up for uneven flooring.

You might also try relocating your elliptical to another room with a different type of flooring.

Last, you might want to try a machine mat underneath.

I’ve seen people opt for a piece of tile underneath one of the feet to help prevent the machine from rocking, but this makes the elliptical less stable, and I wouldn’t recommend it.

Where Should I Put My Elliptical at Home?

This would depend on your housing situation (apartment? duplex? roommates?) and what rooms you have available.

If you have a finished basement, that would be an ideal location. No one would be bothered by the noise these machines create, and you should have ample room for use.

You could also put it in a heated garage or even in a room on the second or upper floor, such as the guest room. Using a mat will greatly reduce the vibration and noise so that it doesn’t bother other people.

It can be difficult to lug heavy equipment upstairs, so be sure to get a helper and move your equipment safely.

This is also true with other large fitness equipment, such as treadmills and rowing machines.

It’s a tempting solution to put your new treadmill on the second floor, so think carefully about all your available space before you find yourself lugging your machine upstairs only to find that everyone in the house complains every time you use it!

The Final Takeaway

Where ever you decide to place your elliptical, be sure that it’s someplace that you look forward to. Nothing puts a damper on your workout like knowing the neighbors will be banging on the wall 20 minutes into your workout.

Many fitness enthusiasts overhaul their garage so that they can use it as a home gym. Your garage has flat ground, open space, and most ellipticals fit there easily, even the larger ellipticals, (ie like a 20 inch stride elliptical machine) as do treadmills and other gym equipment.

One important thing to remember is that, unless heated or you add weatherstripping, you will be exposing your expensive equipment to cold and hot temperatures, dust, dirt, and bugs. Spiders just love your garage!

Protect your equipment with a high-quality mat and a cover to help protect the elliptical or treadmill in your garage.

Stay happy and healthy, friends. Life is too short for anything else!