There are several types of vehicle garages in Grand Theft Auto games.
The first type is garage for storing vehicles, almost exclusively attached to a safehouse, or located near one. Garages may vary both in number of spaces and height clearance (for tall vehicles such as a Barracks OL or Hotdog). The primary purpose of the garage is to allow the player to preserve vehicles that have been obtained; normally, vehicles left outside are subject to disappearing after the player saves a game and restarts it later. They can also be stolen. Parking a vehicle in a garage usually protects it (with exceptions noted below).
In Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, a maximum of four vehicles will be saved in any of the garages though fewer or more may actually fit inside, depending on the size of the garage as well as the vehicle. A variation on this is the large hangar at the Verdant Meadows airstrip, in which larger vehicles including planes can be stored. Despite its huge size in which it may store up to at least 30 cars, it can still hold only four vehicles just like any other garage.
GTA San Andreas contains a glitch that causes vehicles to occasionally vanish from a garage. This can occur when the number of vehicles stored in the garage exceeds its storage limit - this is particularly the case with adding motorbikes, although it's possible for vehicles to disappear even if the maximum capacity is not met. The vehicle chosen to be removed from the garage is entirely random.
Computer-controlled pedestrians are also prone to wander into garages if the doors are open. This is a particular annoyance in the Johnson House where Grove Street Families gang members may congregate within a garage, though they disappear after a save or if Carl exits the immediate area. In some places, such as the Paradiso Safehouse in San Fierro, it is possible for a passing pedestrian to enter the garage while the door is open and actually attempt to steal a vehicle parked within.
In the 3D Universe, garages can be used to repair damaged or even destroyed vehicles, similar to Pay 'n' Spray. Once the garage opens and closes, a brand new type of that vehicle respawns, which is useful for acquiring unique vehicles such as the bulletproof Securicar in Van Heist.
In Grand Theft Auto IV, garages were replaced with parking spaces outlined in yellow outside any safehouse marked with 'Residents Parking Only'. Though more may fit inside the space, these spaces can eat up vehicles if the player attempts to fit more than two within the outline. Generally, vehicles parked within the space will become dirty, probably from dirt or such kicked up by traffic passing by, or clean, after rainy weather, other vehicles kept in spots that haven't been driven a while will stay dirty until rain comes. At random times, most stored vehicles will spawn dirty, or clean. There is also a risk that traffic might collide with the vehicles (though this only happens when the parking space is still near the player); although any damage to the vehicle is repaired when the parking spot spawns again, if a vehicle is pushed out of the parking space and not returned, it will be lost.
In Grand Theft Auto V both parking spaces and garages were returned, along with marinas, hangars and helipad for alternate vehicle storage. Franklin's first safehouse contains room for one car, as does Trevor's trailer, but in the latter forcing a second vehicle in works and they can be entered easily. Michael's mansion can fit two vehicles. Franklin's house can also fit two but storing a second can make both one or both vehicles vanish. Garages take a few in game hours to fix vehicles, rather than the automatic fixing in the 3D Universe, and Los Santos Customs is the only place to automatically fix a vehicle. Each protagonist can purchase a vehicle garage, where they can store four vehicles, one for Franklin Clinton in Davis, one for Trevor Philips in Pillbox Hill, and a third in West Vinewood for Michael De Santa. Parking spaces can also be used to save cars. The Vanilla Unicorn can be used to store vehicles, as indicated by the parking spaces located beside the place. This parking space can hold up to two vehicles, as indicated by the white line before the spaces. It also resembles the old parking space system from GTA IV and is also useful for large vehicles, such the Rhino.
The second type is a public vehicle repair business. Pay 'n' Spray garages exist in all 3D Universe cities and in GTA IV, and will repair any non-public vehicle, as well as repainting it and replacing the engine to remove wanted levels. In GTA V, Pay 'n' Spray garages were replaced by Los Santos Customs where vehicles can be repaired and resprayed, but to the player's choice.
The third type is a customization shop. TransFender, Loco Low Co., and Wheel Arch Angels are the public garages in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas from which car modifications can be purchased, such as wheels, nitrous, or hydraulics. Car modification returned in Grand Theft Auto V, with cosmetic upgrades returning from Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, with performances upgrades added. This is accessible from four Los Santos Customs garages, one near Los Santos International Airport, one in Burton near the Rockford Plaza, a third across from Lester's old factory, which is accessed via a small road and a fourth on Route 68 across from Larry's RV Sales, which can be purchased by Franklin. A fifth Los Santos Customs garage can be found at the gas station in Paleto Bay but is named Beeker's Garage.
Bomb-fitting garages are featured in the 2D Universe games Grand Theft Auto and Grand Theft Auto: London 1969. Garages like the 8-Ball Autos in all 3D Universe games and Welding & Weddings in GTA San Andreas allow a bomb to be attached to a vehicle and detonated at a later time. Three types of bombs are available from 8 Ball Autos: ignition, remote and timed.
Ye Olde Armour Shoppe are a unique type of garage present in London in 1961 and featuring predominately in the game Grand Theft Auto: London 1961. These garages are used to put armor plating on vehicles to make them akin to a Tank.
Garages of the given type accept vehicles from the certain list for a payment. Examples are Import/Export garages in Grand Theft Auto III, Sunshine Autos Import Garage in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City, and S&M Auto Sales in Grand Theft Auto IV. Once the list is finished, cars from it become available for purchasing in garage or other bonuses appears (except GTA IV).
Some garages are only available during particular missions, and will not be accessible otherwise. In GTA IV some houses have working garages - for instance, the double-wide garages in Westdyke, Alderney. These will open automatically when a car approaches and NPCs can use them for parking, but vehicles are not saved if the player leaves the area.
In GTA V and GTA Online, there are some working garages through out San Andreas.
- In GTA San Andreas, the Ganton Garage and the Doherty Garage can be used by the player to store cars in before the player even owns them. They are quite useful when storing special vehicles.
- It is actually possible to store more than the intended limit of vehicles in a garage by parking a vehicle as close to the garage as possible, then, step out, when the garage opens, quickly speed into the garage. An alternative way to do this is to walk into the garage, enter one of the vehicles that are already in there and then reverse until the car is parked where the garage door closes. You can then get out, and then enter the extra car that you would like to store, you can then drive that into the garage, then drive the other car (the one that was already in there) into it.
- In GTA Vice City Stories, vehicles will often disappear from the player's garage, making it difficult to store special or rare vehicles. However, this only happens on the PSP version of the game due to a bug that makes the vehicles inside the garage load even though the garage itself is inactive. The bug is triggered when certain actions are performed in close proximity to a garage. Exiting interiors and failing/aborting missions while being close to a garage will trigger the bug, so the player must check the nearest garage when this happens. Also, when passing Leap and Bound, the vehicles inside the 101 Bayshore Avenue safehouse garage will be loaded for some reason. Moreover, using padlocks that are in close proximity to a garage will also trigger the bug. The vehicles inside the Clymenus Suite safehouse garage may also be loaded while the player takes over and/or does missions for the empire building next to the Clymenus Suite.
- In the mobile version of GTA San Andreas, sometimes when the player stores a vehicle into a garage, doesn't exit the vehicle, and then closes and opens the game again, Carl Johnson will be wasted inside the vehicle. This is likely a glitch.
- In GTA IV, the Broker Safehouse becomes unavailable after the mission Roman's Sorrow, but the player can still save vehicles in the parking space. It is unknown if this was intended by the designers or not. This also applies in The Lost and Damned, where The Lost MC Clubhouse is burned down in the last mission, but the parking spaces are still available for saving vehicles.
- In The Lost and Damned and The Ballad of Gay Tony, the parking spaces outside the Grand Theft Auto IV safehouses can also be used to store vehicles.
- In GTA IV Multiplayer, players are able to save cars in the parking spaces provided at the safehouses for the course of the game. However, only cars that do not spawn with traffic will save. Cars that will save include the Sentinel at the airport and the Rancher that's parked outside the Triangle Club in Industrial, Bohan.
- There are a few garages around Liberty City and Los Santos that will open up if approached, but they will not save vehicles and serve no purpose.