It seems garages are used to store just about everything....except the car.
Just 19% of Britain's 28 million cars are put away in a garage at night, analysis by the RAC Foundation showed.
Yet as many as two fifths of households have access to a garage, the foundation said.
The study showed that 53% of cars are left on driveways and 25% are parked on the street, with 3% being left elsewhere.
The proportion of cars being parked in a a garage has fallen by about a third in a decade.
Reasons for the fall in garage use include the fact that garages are now being increasingly used to store possessions, while modern cars are often too big to fit in a garage.
Also, drivers think that it is all right to leave cars out now that vehicles are more rust-proof and secure, while there are now so many multi-vehicle households that there is not enough parking space for every car.
RAC Foundation director Professor Stephen Glaister said: "Given that those people with garages are most likely to be car owners, that means there are a lot of garages not being used for what they were intended.
"Many of us seem to be using our garages to store the things we do not want in our houses or simply do not have room for. After Christmas there will be a rush to put unwanted presents out of sight and out of mind.
"In the old days that might have meant heaving them into the loft or shoving them under the stairs. Today it is more likely to mean dragging them out to the garage. Perhaps it is time to reconsider using the humble garage for what it was intended."