Tired of Stepping on LEGOs? Learn How to Organize the Building Blocks Once and For All

Store them correctly, and you'll prevent these renegade bricks from causing painful foot traffic.

lego pieces scattered on wood floor
Photo: Getty Images/mustafagull

If you find yourself swimming in a sea of endless LEGO pieces, it's likely that an efficient organizing system for the toy parts is long overdue. But how are parents supposed to reasonably manage all those tiny and color-specific pieces? By employing some help. Gather your children and get their insight on how they tend to play with their LEGOs. From there, you'll be able to find a system that works for them and keeps your feet safe from stepping on the pointy toys.

Store Based on Building Style

LEGO lovers typically fall into one of three categories: "Kids who love to build and display, others who love to build and rebuild, and kids who love to build and role play," says Chris Steininger, a master LEGO builder. The key to nailing down what system works best in your household is to observe how your builder plays.

Build and Display

Rather than using LEGOs interchangeably, some builders prefer to keep sets together and display them as the design intended. "If your child likes to build and display, it might be best to store each model and its pieces and instruction booklet in its own bin," says Steininger.

Build and Re-Build

On the other hand, some creators prefer to build something and then take it all apart and make a completely new design. If this is the case for your child, it's fine to store all of their LEGOs together in one bin as they'll likely want to use their pieces interchangeably. "Speaking from the heart of a big kid myself, I enjoy the hunt of sifting through a variety of shapes and colors to find pieces I need-and often it gives me inspiration," says Steininger.

Build and Play

If your child is into role-playing with their creation, it's important to place his or her construction where they can easily access it, like on a shelf. They'll likely build their masterpiece and then want to return to it in a few days to continue playing with the pieces. "In our family room we have several shelves in which either I or my kids build the products and then use to display and bring down to play," says Steininger.

Store Like With Like

If you have multiple types of builders in your home, consider going a different route entirely. "Just as there are many ways to build, there are many ways to store LEGO bricks, and there is no right way to store them," says Steininger. In the LEGO Model Shop, where quick visibility and access to the pieces are vital to inspire creativity, LEGOs are stored by color, size, and type.

For some children, the benefit of sorting like with like is that they can easily find the pieces they need to create with, with limited frustration. "If my son decides to build a tree fort, he can easily find all the green and brown bricks he needs to make the creation as they are sorted in their own respective bins," says Steininger.

Store Pieces in Clear Bins

Clear bins allow you to see all of your LEGO pieces without having to endlessly dig through the container. Look for compact bins that you can easily tuck away under the bed when the toys aren't being played with.

Store Pieces in Drawers

If you're keeping like with like, look for storage systems that have drawers. Dedicate one drawer to LEGO characters, another to bricks, another to plates, and so on and so forth. Label each drawer so you can easily access what you're looking for.

Store LEGOs Away From Heat

Never store pieces near a direct heat source like a radiator. LEGO parts hold up the best when they're stored in temperatures below 104 degrees, or they may discolor over time.

Clean LEGOs Regularly

Just like you do with bath toys, you should definitely clean your LEGOs. The brand recommends cleaning LEGO bricks by hand in either a sink or bathtub. Use water no hotter than 104 degrees, a soft cloth or sponge, and a small amount of mild detergent. Make sure you rinse them well and let them air dry on a towel.

How often you clean depends on how much your kids play with their pieces. "If your LEGO bricks have gotten a lot of play-perhaps after a big playdate, birthday party, or a fun adventure in your backyard-it might be time for a quick soak," says Steininger.

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