Aluminium Carport Kits
Many people are looking for an easy and economical way to protect their car and ease some of the hassle of scraping off ice and snow every winter. Aluminum carport kits is one of the easiest ways to add extra vehicle storage without breaking the bank. If you have been putting off the research into what is the best carport option for you, then maybe this will help you get your planning back on track, and maybe you’ll be able to choose an option suitable for your house and cars.
Deciding on a carport
I have done quite a bit of research and writing about carports, but I’m finding there is always more to learn. You’ll be happy to know that I’m making good progress with my plans, but I just can’t seem to make the final decision. It’s like any project that I do, whether it is painting a room, or decorating, or buying furniture, or even buying a car. I see so many options that I love, and each has their benefits, it takes me a long time to actually decide on one color, or one style, or one couch, or whether I need an suv, a sports car, a convertible, or a super fuel-efficient hybrid. Anyway, that is just a long-winded way of saying that I have done a ton of carport research, but there are so many good options that I just can’t seem to make a final decision. I love the look of wooden carports, but then again aluminum carports have a ton of advantages. It’s best if I get the pros and cons written down, and maybe that will help me make decision about whether or not I should go with a carport kit or splurge and go with a custom design.
Benefits Of Aluminum Carports
I’ve already written quite a bit about aluminum carports, so I thought that I should narrow that down a bit and find out as much information as I can about aluminum carport kits. Just a quick reminder, aluminum is an excellent choice if you are worried about maintenance, as it will not corrode when exposed to wet weather. It is also a great building choice, because it has a very high strength to weight ratio. So as for a carport kit, you will not only save on shipping, but it is also a very easy and lightweight material to build with. It is probably possible to put together one of these kits by yourself, although the sheets of aluminum will be large and awkward to work with alone. Having a building partner is probably your best bet. Just as a reminder, the typical aluminum carport will only contain aluminum for the roof and any covering parts, such as soffits, fascias, ceiling pans, gutters, etc. The structure itself will typically be made of steel, since the legs and roof frame need to be quite heavy, using the more expensive aluminum for large structural members is not worth the extra cost, especially where the weight savings is not essential. You will need to be careful about the finish on any exposed steel pieces, and make sure that the paint or the enamel finish does not get chipped off. If it does, you may want to do some touch-ups with some rust paint or enamel paint so that the unfinished steel does not start to rust when it is exposed to rain or snow. The final advantage with aluminum for building carports is the fact that it doesn’t require regular maintenance like a wooden or steel carport would need. It won’t rot or rust, so that in itself is a pretty big reason for seriously considering aluminum over wood.
Aluminum Carport Kits
So now I want to talk about why I think I would get an aluminum carport kit. Although the options may at first seem pretty limitless when it comes to choosing a carport, from kits to custom, from wood to steel to aluminum, I think that I have done a good job of narrowing down my choices to a couple of options. Thank goodness, because if I hadn’t done the research to get my choices narrowed down, I’m not sure that I’d ever see my car in a carport! Anyway, the kit option has a number of advantages. My list of advantages, in order are: cost, convenience, and time. Let me talk about each one.
If I decide to go with an aluminum carport kit, then I will have much better control over my costs. It’s just a matter of choosing the best supplier, and by ‘best’ I mean one with reasonable prices, not the cheapest, because I’m afraid that the quality would suffer, not the most expensive, because I think there’s such a thing as greedy markup. The other way that I would choose a supplier with the ‘best’ options are by the number of styles available. I’m pretty picky when it comes to my storage buildings, and a portable garage is no exception.
You might wonder why I am calling my carport a portable garage, and that is because I see it as a reasonably portable structure. I won’t be building a foundation, I might pour a pad, but then again I might just use a gravel or interlock base. Without a foundation, technically I could pick up my carport and move it to the backyard, or put it on a large trailer and haul it to my next house and essentially set it down in its new home. Or just as easily as I can assemble a carport kit, I could disassemble it and rebuild it at my next house if I ever move. Anyway, that’s why I think of them as temporary carports or portable garages.
In any event, once I’ve chosen a carport, the price is the price, and the delivery cost will be calculated based on how far away the supplier is from my house. Since I’ll be building this myself with some help from a buddy or two, there won’t be any additional labor cost. As I mentioned before, I’ll have to figure out what sort of floor I want. A concrete slab would be ideal, but in my part of the world, cold snowy winters with heavy frost make cracks inevitable, so I think my second best option for my carport floor is a floor made with interlocking brick. It will be almost as good as concrete, and frankly I like the look of interlocking brick much better. But, the cost of the floor is moot anyway, since I will need a floor regardless of the carport option that I choose.
Whether I go with a diy carport kit, or have a builder custom build a wooden carport, the floor will be a fixed cost on top of the building. So if I choose a kit, I will know the cost, as compared to choosing the custom built option, for example having a wooden carport built to match the style of my house with the same roof pitch, or a lean to carport, again built in a style to match my house. Custom builds can unexpectedly go over budget, either the contractors estimate was a low bid to get your business, or bad weather during construction caused delays, or extra costs mysteriously arise during the build. All these things make me hesitant to trust in a price quote given before a custom construction job.
Carport Kits Are Convenient
Although I’m pretty handy, and I’m planning on doing my construction mostly on my own, I actually have never built a carport before. On top of that I don’t have a lot of experience with constructing buildings from plans. That is something that takes a fair amount of construction knowledge, and of course having some time building with a more experienced builder gives you the knowledge and practice needed to tackle a job like that on your own. Ordering an aluminum carport kit would be a perfect construction job for me though, since they come with plans, instructions, and materials already cut and pre-drilled. The convenience factor for me is for a number of reasons – 1) the materials are all supplied, and I won’t have to go looking for everything, and running back to the store when I realize that I’ve forgotten something, or gotten the wrong gauge of steel or aluminum, 2) everything is pre cut ready for assembly, 3) there are instructions. I can’t think of any more convenient way to build a carport without the fear that you are engineering things wrong, or aren’t getting the best price on materials, or you simply don’t know what you are doing. A kit walks you through the building experience.
How Long Does It Take To Build A Carport Kit
The time that it takes to build a carport from a kit, versus the time it will take to have a carport custom built from scratch, will be substantially different. If time is your biggest priority, then having an aluminum carport kit will be a definite advantage for you. All the materials are provided, everything is pre-cut (except for some trim pieces that you will custom fit yourself), and ready to be assembled. Depending on size, you could build a carport from a kit in a matter of a weekend, or perhaps a bit longer if you ordered an especially large or involved carport kit. All that matters though, is if time matters more to you than a custom look, then a kit is the way to go.
And that’s where I currently am on my carport plans. Still deciding, but I’ve definitely identified the major factors that will be the deciding issues on the final path I choose. I might still decide to find some wooden carport plans, or I might order an aluminum carport kit. I think I need to do more sketching to see exactly how each one will turn out in my driveway before I make the final decision.