The garage is the perfect out-of-the-way place to store cumbersome equipment, sports gear and more. Unfortunately, when cars take up most of the real estate, overall storage capacity is severely limited. Getting the most space utility out of your garage often relies on smart storage systems.
You could opt for a wall-hanging pegboard or slatwall system. But for its low cost, easy installation and wide storage versatility, the Rubbermaid FastTrack is an exceptional option for hanging everything from ladders to bicycles. The simple runner comes with an assortment of hooks to arrange your stored items in any configuration that suits your needs.
This article will describe the Rubbermaid FastTrack, its uses and the step-by-step setup process.
How Does Rubbermaid FastTrack Work?
The Rubbermaid FastTrack is a rail storage system that mounts on the wall, either horizontally or vertically, depending on the model. Horizontal rails are available in 48” or 84” sections for long runs along the wall. Its heavy-duty steel core is covered in a black PVC cover, providing durability and strength within an attractive cover.
The vertical system allows many of the hook and shelving attachments. The rails are available in 25 or 48 inch sizes. You can also extend the vertical rails with 25 inch attachments for even more storage.
Attachments snap onto the horizontal rail to hang a wide variety of sports equipment, garden tools, hoses and much more. You have the option to add any of the following holders built for specific equipment:
- Tool handle hooks.
- Hose hooks and bins.
- Ladder hooks.
- Bike hooks.
- Wire baskets.
- Vertical ball racks.
- Cooler hooks.
- Multi-purpose hooks.
- Utility hooks.
- Titanium shelves.
Hooks are constructed from high-grade steel with a powder-coated epoxy finish for rust and wear-resistance. The soft grip coating on the hooks keeps the contact points from scratching or otherwise damaging any equipment you hang. Once you have the hook positioned where you want it, you can snap it into place with a fast grip to the rail. However, if you want to rearrange equipment, a push-pull lever on the hooks allow you to quickly loosen and move the hooks to a new location.
Also Read: Rubbermaid Fasttrack VS Gladiator Geartrack
How to Install the Rubbermaid FastTrack System
To install the FastTrack rails, you will need to mount into wall studs. The FastTrack has a high weight capacity but drywall cannot support the system and equipment weight. If you cannot mount every screw into a stud, be sure to use appropriate weight-rated drywall anchors for your drywall’s thickness.
Rails are available in either horizontal or vertical configurations, and you will have to buy the mounting hardware packs separately. Regardless of which direction you choose, mounting is simple. Follow these steps to place your FastTrack rails securely:
- Locate the wall studs: The studs will hold the screws holding up your FastTrack system. Use a stud finder to locate vertical supports, marking them with a pencil.
- Measure the desired rail height: Measure how high you want to place the rail on the wall and mark it with a pencil. Position a level flush with your pencil mark to mark the drill spots on the studs. To make mounting more accurate, pre-drill pilot holes for the screws to enter.
- Mount the rails: The rails have pre-existing mounting holes for easy setup. Use a drill to screw the appropriate hardware through the rail and into the stud. Reference the user manual to ensure you purchase the correct hardware pack.
- Test the rail: Give the rail a gentle pull to make sure it is mounted fast and strong against the wall. If there is any give, make sure the screws are drilled all the way in and not stripping out of the wall.
How To Plan Out Your Rubbermaid FastTrack System
The first step in setting up the Rubbermaid FastTrack rail system is to plan what you need to store with it and where you want to mount it. FastTrack does an excellent job of curating FastTrack Kits, which come complete with popular mounting accessories for particular storage types.
Garages can often be a mishmash of items, and you may need a completely unique setup for your completely unique equipment. To make sure you are getting the right setup the first time you shop, follow these tips on proper FastTrack planning:
- Measure and diagram: Measuring out your wall and your intended storage items is the first step. Make sure you plan the correct height for large items like bikes and rakes.
- Plan for vertical or horizontal: The available array of storage accessories depends on your rail type. If you have particular storage needs, make sure that the accessory you plan to buy works with the rail configuration you have.
- Plan safe and effective storage accessories: Garages are often where we keep hazardous cleaners and materials, so planning closing/lockable cabinets should be a priority. Use bins and baskets for common smaller items that can be logically organized together. Having a few extra utility hooks on hand can make storage need adjustments easy to manage.
- Try ceiling storage: The FastTrack just as easily mounts to the ceiling as it does to the wall. Be mindful of accessories, as some only work on the wall. However, there are available hooks that can hold a number of larger items safely on the ceiling.
- Find inspiration online: The simple design gives the FastTrack a huge range of versatility beyond its standard use. If you have a limited space to fill out or want to see some offbeat applications, check out Pinterest for inspiration. You can also Google your storage idea to see if anyone else has done it.
Because the FastTrack is commonly used for bicycle storage, keep in mind that each 48 inch set can hold three bicycles while the 84 inch can hold up to eight comfortably. Use this as a benchmark when planning any other hanging equipment.
Also Read: How to Organize Tool Chest
How Much Weight Can Rubbermaid FastTrack Accessories Hold?
Accessories have different weight capacities to consider when planning your storage. The rails themselves can hold up to 300 pounds when properly mounted but an overloaded hook can easily cause failure. Follow these weight guidelines for common FastTrack accessories:
- 25 pounds: This is the maximum weight capacity for small shelves, access bins, hose bins and multipurpose bins.
- 50 pounds: This is the maximum weight capacity for utility hooks, large shelves, hose baskets, bike racks, power tool hooks, s-hooks and vertical ball racks.
- 1750 pounds: This is the maximum overall weight that the 48 inch FastTrack can sustain, which is over 400 pounds per foot. The 84 inch system can hold slightly more at 2000 pounds total.
These weight capacities are just for the accessories. If you are anchoring rails into drywall, it is crucial to note the max weight for those anchors. Even if an accessory can hold a certain amount of weight, the rail will fall from the wall if the anchor is overloaded.
Is This A DIY Project You Can Do?
The light weight, simple design and pre-install work done on the rails makes installation intuitive and stress-free. You can hire a professional if you are concerned about damage but in most cases, you can set these up with few possible issues. Have the following tools on hand to make set up as quick and accurate as possible:
- Power drill (or screwdriver).
- Stud finder.
- I-beam level.
- Applicable hardware kit (check manufacturer’s instructions for model number). NOTE: If you buy a FastTrack kit, installation hardware is included.
- Drill bit (optional for pre-drilling holes). Use a bit slightly smaller than the screw to make sure the hold remains tight.
- Drywall anchors (for drywall-mounted screws).
Can Rubbermaid FastTrack rails be cut?
FastTrack rails can be cut, though there is a limit to how much you can take off. Most studs are situated 16 inches apart so keep your lengths to a 32 inch minimum to ensure you can rest the track on at least three studs. If you wish to cut down rails, use clamps to secure the rail while you make the cut with a hacksaw. Cutting the black sheath can be done with a saw or utility knife to match the length of the metal rail.
Cutting down FastTrack rails is possible but not recommended. Outside of voiding a warranty, the cut will damage the cosmetic and potentially the usable area of the rail. Before cutting down your rails, look for other areas that can handle the normal size. You can also replan the area to see if you can use different rails. For example, you could plan out using vertical rails where you originally intended to put horizontal rails.
Where Can I Find FastTrack Assembly Instructions?
For all of your assembly needs, visit the FastTrack Assembly Instructions page on the Rubbermaid website. Scroll down or search for “FastTrack garage” to find instructions on all current and discontinued FastTrack systems.
The Rubbermaid FastTrack is an incredibly powerful storage solution in a simple frame. This low-cost system has the sturdy, climate-proof build to last for years with minimal upkeep. With the assortment of hooks, bins and cabinets, you have the ability to easily change your storage configuration as your changing needs dictate. For more information on the Rubbermaid FastTrack or similar garage storage solutions, contact us today.
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