I have a mudroom in which I would like to add additional “reach into” storage above the to be installed bench. The reach into space would be provided by going back through the existing wall, in between the existing studs. This wall is load bearing, and is into the garage. I would not disturb the load bearing studs.

There is no apparent plumbing and only one existing electrical like that I can easily move to the side.

I would be in effect creating 4-5 “bays” of about 14” width that would correspond to each persons area for the mudroom above the bench. This would be for gloves hats shoes etc.

The found space would be achieved by adding a wall on the backside in the garage about 18” past the existing wall. This wall would be framed up appropriately, have vapor barrier, use fire rated drywall, and be sealed/insulated. So essentially I’m just creating a cavity for reach in space, so to speak, and adding a wall in the garage.

So, any unforeseen issues or considerations? Again the existing wall would not have the studs disturbed and the vapor barrier and insulation/fire code would be handled on the installed wall.

  • Are these pass-thru cubbies? Or, are they cubbies built in a separate room?
    – Lee Sam
    Feb 18, 2020 at 7:41
  • This is a post that is begging for pictures that would have helped clarify. I’m working on a sketchup diagram! Anyways the final product would look something like google.com/… Or google search recessed mudroom storage Feb 18, 2020 at 10:29
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    – isherwood
    Feb 18, 2020 at 13:44

4 Answers 4


With no plumbing or electrical this would be an easy way to make cubbies. I have done similar at an entry way for shoos and backpacks so they were not scattered around, mine went into the back of a deep linen closet so we did not even notice it. I did add a fish eye light in the ceiling pointing to them to brighten them up the person that purchased the house had 4 kids and loved the cubbies idea.

  • Thanks. I think here it is going to come down to whether the juice is worth the squeeze here. If I were pushing back into an interior space this is a no brainer. Feb 18, 2020 at 10:33

I think you've addressed all the primary concerns:

  • Structural modifications (none)
  • Utility modifications (none)
  • Insulation and vapor barrier (new offset wall)

One reminder would be to treat the new ceiling of the recessed space as just that--a ceiling--and insulate accordingly. You wouldn't really need to meet actual attic requirements for your climate zone, but a little more than what's in your walls wouldn't hurt.

  • Good point, I should be able to add all necessary insulation on the top also. Feb 18, 2020 at 10:36

There is a code requirement for a firewall between an attached garage and the house, so pass through cubbies would not fly.

  • 2
    No pass through reach in , with appropriate fire blocking did you read the question?
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 18, 2020 at 6:44
  • @EdBeal Ed, did you read the OP’s question. He / she says, “The reach into space would be provided by going back THROUGH the existing wall, in between the existing studs.” (See first paragraph.) Also, the OP says a new wall 18” past the existing wall which “will have the vapor barrier, fire rated drywall, sealed and insulated.” (See fourth paragraph.) So what makes you think they are NOT pass-thru cubbies when the OP states IT GOES THROUGH the existing wall?
    – Lee Sam
    Feb 18, 2020 at 16:54
  • 1
    Lee Sam, obviously Ed (and OP) mean that there's no complete passthrough. leaving penetrations in the firebreak. That's all that really matters, right?
    – isherwood
    Feb 18, 2020 at 19:51
  • 3
    I really have no idea what you're getting at, but all that YELLING speaks more about maturity than Ed's fair question. Read paragraph 4 in the post again, which addresses the firewall concern quite nicely. Over and out.
    – isherwood
    Feb 18, 2020 at 21:04
  • 1
    @LeeSam The actual words: adding a wall on the backside in the garage So it is in the garage, not in the house. Whether that is good enough according to Code, I don't know. But I do know it is in the garage. Feb 19, 2020 at 2:44

Bad idea. Pass-thru cubbies is a waste.

So you’re going to have your kids slide their hats, gloves, coats, etc. into the cubbies then walk around and sit on the bench to take off their shoes? Or, are you installing the bench on the garage side and expect them to walk into the unheated garage , sit on the bench and put their shoes on?

It doesn’t work that way. Just build a mud room with bench, cubbies, etc. My aunt and uncle had a pass-thru cubby on their farm. They finally just enclosed the space and made a mud room.

Also, how are you going to control the smell from the garage into the house?

Oh, btw, that opening between the garage and interior requires a fire rated door too, with a fire rated frame. (Make sure it’s set “in-line” with the gypsum board so the fire resistance is consistent.)

  • 1
    Where do you get pass thru? The op said each into. And the vapor and fire block would be done in the garage. I have done similar in an entry and it was a great idea, the person that purchased the home said that was one of her selling points.
    – Ed Beal
    Feb 18, 2020 at 6:42
  • This would definitely be a post that some images would help with. Later this week I’ll throw a few up. Thanks for the comments and suggestions. It’s a project that doesn’t necessarily “need to be done” but would be a neat outcome if done properly. Feb 18, 2020 at 10:35
  • @EdBeal Ed, did you read the question at the very top? It says, “ Are there concerns ... cabinets THROUGH a house garage partition wall? I don’t think you read the question, did you? How can you not think it goes through the wall? Please tell me???????
    – Lee Sam
    Feb 18, 2020 at 18:30

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