16 Clever Uses for Tension Rods to organize your home [without tools]

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Tension rods are a very versatile organization tool. They are great for renters because no tools are required (no holes in the walls!). In this article you’ll find 15 tension rod organization ideas.

Check them all out because you never know which of these uses for tension rods you’ll love. They are a great way to help organize your home.

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Some of the ideas I use myself, and others I have found online.

Over the Christmas break I went to Walmart and bought a few different sizes of tension rods.

(I found them in their curtains and blinds section.)

The quality of the small tension rods I bought aren’t great, but they do the trick.

Amazon may have better ones, but I haven’t compared yet.

How to keep a tension rod in place

Click here to see these tension rod cupboard bards on Amazon

List of 14 Clever Tension Rod Organization Ideas

1) Tension Rod Blanket Wrangler (my personal favorite tension rod organization idea)

Tension Rod for Blanket Storage. Stops them from rolling off the shelf

I hate when blankets and pillows fall off the shelf onto my head. It annoys me!

Recently, I discovered that I can use a vertically positioned tension rod to act as a containment device for blankets.

I converted an old bookcase to be my towel and blanket holder. It basically acts as an open faced linen closet. (It isn’t pretty but it works.)

I positioned the tension rod between the top shelf and the ceiling, and it has worked awesome so far.

It is a tension rod organization idea that helps me overcome a frustrating situation. And it is a cheap blanket storage idea!

2) Tension Rods in the Shower for wet clothes

Tension Rod Organization Ideas

Tension rods positioned inside the shower act as a hanging rack to dry off wet bathing suits or wet towels: great after a beach day!

I have a glass shower door so I am able to position the tension rod between the hard frame of the shower door and the wall.

Now after we go to the pool or beach I can place our suits on here and have them drip dry into the tub.

3) Tension rod shelf Under the Sink (and hanger for spray bottles)

I haven’t personally done this myself, but I’ve seen people online make a tension rod shelf and use this to hold storage baskets.

Or you can hang spray bottles (like cleaning supplies) from the rod so you still have shelf space on the bottom of the cabinet.

4) Use Tension rods as Drawer Dividers

Lids for food storage containers can be a real pain in the butt to keep organized. 

Tension rods can help separate Tupperware lids, and anyone can easily customize the length of a tension rod to fit their drawer.

I would love to use something like this, but I don’t have a drawer right now that will work.

These Tension rods in the Amazon picture below claim they can hold up to 20 pounds.

5) Tension Rods as Room Dividers

I’ve seen folks use two tension rods to create a doggy “gate.”

String some fabric over the tension rods, place them in a doorway, and it creates a lightweight barrier to keep dogs out of certain rooms.

6) Tension Rods to Hang Herbs and Plants

Cleverly placed inside a window frame a tension rod acts as a great support for sun-loving herbs.

You can have several rows to create your own vertical garden.

7) Hide Clutter with Tension Rod Curtains under a Desk or Table

A well placed curtain can hide the mess lurking underneath your desk or table (like power cables or printer shelves).

And if you have a litter box under a table or shelf you can put up some little curtains to keep your cat’s “business” out of sight from your guests.

8) Tension Rods as a Wrapping Paper Organizer

There are certain things in a house that are just plain annoying.

They are annoying because it doesn’t matter how carefully you place them, they always topple over!  Yes, I’m talking about you Christmas wrap.

A tension rod placed horizontally, tucked inside a closet or other area with walls on both sides, can keep Christmas wrap upright, and undamaged.

(To have a “greener” Christmas I used colorful newspaper and reused gift bags to wrap gifts this year. But we still have wrapping paper around the house.)

9) Arts and Craft organizers [a “failed” tension rod organization idea]

Tension Rod Organization Ideas for Arts and Crafts

A tension bar provides a way to store your decorative tape or ribbons. And because they are so easy to remove and put back it makes organizing your crafting supplies a breeze.

We used a tension rod to keep scissors and other sharp objects up and away from my toddler but still easily accessible to my older daughters.

I placed the tension rod against the supports of wall-mounted shelf.

You can just get a glimpse of the shelf in the picture.  (And you get a glimpse of a painting my daughter showed me how to paint 🙂

It did work well to keep the scissors away from the young one, and it isn’t a huge chore to take a tension rod down (and put it back up), but we decided to abandon this and now we just put the scissors in a bin and store it up high.

For more ideas on how to organize an arts and crafts room click here.

10) Tension Rods in the Closet for organizing small accessories and shoes

You can loop your accessories and jewelry around small tension rods so they are easily accessible. There is no use in having amazing jewelry or belts if you can’t find them.

You can use tension rods to hold up high heels. This doesn’t pertain to me, but the ladies reading this might find this helpful. You can drape the heels over the rods to help keep your shoes organized, visible and easy to find.

If you want more shoe storage ideas click here for 13 shoe rack ideas.

11) Tension Rod in the bathroom as a shower curtain rod

They provide great “no installation required” shower rods.

We have a shower curtain tension rod in our main bathroom. 

We took down the old glass shower door and are using a tension rod instead.

I like it because even if/when I buy the wrong size of shower curtain, you can easily adjust the height or the curtain rod.

12) Tension Rods in the Kitchen to organize lids of pots and pans

Tension Rod Organization Ideas - organizing lids of pots and pans

Tension rods can help organize the lids of pots and pans. This is a clever use of tension rods that’ll help organize your kitchen.

You can also use a tension rod as a paper towel rod holder. 

I have been trying to cut down on the amount of paper towel I use in the kitchen to minimize waste, but many people still have some in case of emergency spills.

12) Tension rods to hang coffee mugs

Tension Rod Organization Ideas - Coffee Center

I love having a cappuccino now and then, but I don’t make one each and every day. And because I don’t use it every day, I have created a little storage area for our espresso machine inside our pantry.

I don’t need another kitchen device cluttering up our kitchen counter. 

And you can use a tension rod to store extra coffee mugs.  (I don’t have any cool espresso glasses so I took a photo of my colorful coffee mugs 🙂


13) Baby-proofing Bookshelves

Tension Rod Organization Ideas Bookshelf

If your baby loves to grab all the books off your bookshelf and scatter them everywhere, then you should check out this idea.

I’ve seen it done a couple ways (including wrapping a pool noodle around the tension rod), but the basic idea is you put the tension rod near the front of the shelf so that your baby can’t just tug all the books down.

If they were committed then they could probably rip the tension bar off (because they have grips like a steel claw), but this extra hurdle may be enough to deter them.

(I’d make sure to screw the book case to the wall though just in case the baby uses the rod to yank the whole book shelf down!)

This type of thing works great for RV’s, and travel trailers.  For more information on RV storage ideas, click here to check out my post on that topic.

14) Tension Rod For drying wet laundry

Tension Rod Organization ideas - clothes drying rod

A tension rod is easy to put up, and makes a great, portable drying rack.

I have been hang drying my clothes for the past ten years, and a tension rod is great way to hang shirts to dry. This is similar to the idea I posted early about hanging wet bathing suits, but it just shows you can get creative with tension rods.

Click here if you want to see more Laundry drying rack options (saves you money and its greener for the planet).

15) Tension rods for closets – use as an extra hanging rod in your closet [a great tension rod organization idea for people with overflowing closets]

A lot more people are starting to use a tension rod for hanging clothes.

So above I mentioned hanging wet clothes to dry.

And a lot of people use a tension rod in their closet to act as the closet rod (as either the only rod or as a secondary rod).

Adding a tension rod to a closet can be a great way to hang up more clothes. This is a simple and effective tension rod organization idea [and no tools required!].

Closet tension rods are a great way for renters to maximize their closet space without needing to drill or screw into the walls.

Check out these closet organization ideas [that could change everything about how you store things in your closet]

16) Tension Rod Shelf above the toilet

Tension Rod Shelf - a clever use of tension rods to provide extra storage above a toilet
A tension rod shelf provides extra storage above a toilet in an RV

Another clever use of tension rods is to make a tension rod shelf using 2 or more tension rods placed against the walls next to a toilet. It is a great way to create storage above a toilet – that doesn’t require screwing or drilling.

This picture is taken in an RV, and it shows how you can quickly and easily create extra storage space in a small bathroom.

That concludes the list of clever uses for tension rods to organize your home.

I hope you’ve enjoyed these 16 uses of tension rods to organize your home.

If you know any great ways to organize using tension rods, or especially if you have pictures where I don’t, please comment below.

Thank you.

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