Portable Metal Carports

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“Portable Metal Carports”
Everything You Want to Know About Portable Metal Carports

One of the easiest, most economical and efficient ways to protect the considerable investment people make when they buy a vehicle, boat, farm equipment or RV is to install a portable metal carport. There are many things to consider before purchasing a carport.

Portable Metal Carports | Pole Barns | Storage Buildings
Styles – What are the options?

There are several designs out on the market, all over the nation and online, but generally, there are three basic styles to choose from. The first is an A-frame or box eave style, the second is the classic or regular style, and the third is a vertical roof style. The A-frame ends in a basic blunt edge that extends from the high center of the top of the roof and stops at the poles. A classic or regular style carport features a high centered roof which declines downward toward the poles, but rounds at the edges and curves down over the poles, giving a little more side coverage to the structure. The vertical roof style is very similar to the A-frame, but the sheeting material is positioned vertically rather than horizontally, in order to more easily dispel rain, snow or debris. Most carports can be custom sized and are available in a wide array of colors. Another option available to customers is that partial or full sides may be added to any part of the carport structure.

Construction – What are portable metal carports made of and what are their parameters?

Portable metal carports are generally constructed of steel. The frames are made of either 12 or 14 gauge galvanized steel. The difference between the two is in the thickness of the metal; 12 gauge frames measure a square equidistance of 2 1/4″x 2 1/4″, while the 14 gauge measures a square equidistance of 2 1/2″x 2 1/2″. The 12 gauge galvanized steel frame is 3/100th of an inch thicker than the 14 gauge frame. The panels that make up the roof of the carport are made of 29 gauge steel. Roof pitch is something to consider, particularly if the carport will be installed in a location that sees frequent or heavy wet weather such as rain and snow. The pitch of the roof depends upon the style of carport chosen. Generally, the A-frame box eve design features a roof pitch that is about 4:12, while the regular classic design style carports have a roof pitch of about 3:12.

Installation of a portable metal carport

It’s usually best to hire a professionally trained contractor to install a carport. The build, if done by an experienced installer, can take anywhere from one to six hours, depending on the size of the carport chosen and the location of installation, as well as the condition of the foundation into which the base of the carport will be placed. If the installation will be a Do It Yourself project, it can be done fairly easily, but it’s important to check that if a carport kit is purchased, it comes with instructions, and there may be no warranty or a very limited warranty.

No matter who installs it, it’s important to check with the zoning and building officials in the county that the carport will be built in, as there are usually requirements and guidelines that must be met prior to beginning any construction. You may need a permit to build a portable metal carport in order to be consistent with local building codes, zoning regulations or design criteria. The county may have regulations concerning the snow load rating, seismic rating, or wind load and flood load rating of the carport materials. This is information by which one may discern the level of elements that the carport can withstand. There may also be fire rating requirements that must be met if the carport is installed within a specific distance to another structure or residence.

The placing of posts when constructing the carport is of vital importance. The distance between posts depends upon the desired width of the carport. Structures that are 12′- 24′ feet wide require that posts are placed 5′ apart, while on carports that are 26′-30′ feet wide, the posts are placed 3’6″ apart. A note about side panels, in the event that one wishes to enclose part or all of the structure: side panels extend three feet and may be added in succession as desired, until reaching the bottom of the carport frame.

Preparing the foundation upon which the carport will be built is another issue of paramount significance. If an installation company will be building the structure, the foundation must be level before the crew arrives. A level foundation is considered to be anything with a variation of less than four inches. Any escalation in differential greater than four inches will likely increase the labor cost and time it takes to install the carport. The base of the carport may be secured to concrete, asphalt, or earth by drilling holes and placing wedge anchors into the holes, or in the case of a wooden base, with lag bolts.

There are some other things to consider when purchasing a portable metal carport that will be installed professionally. If the carport will be built over another structure, there may be an extra cost involved, so it’s best to get an estimate prior to purchasing. In regards to using a carport as a structural cover for boats, there may be an additional expense in placing the carport over a stationary boat dock. Building a carport over a floating dock is not recommended

Where can a portable metal carport be purchased?

There are carport businesses located all over the country in almost every state, and these locations generally provide professional installation services or subcontractor referrals for their customers. Alternatively, for those who wish to take on the commitment of a major Do It Yourself project, there are carport kits available for purchase from both dealers as well as online suppliers. Some construction department stores also offer self-construct carport kits.

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