Are you considering installing a carport to protect your car, truck, or boat from the elements? Why not think about installing a DIY steel carport from a kit? If you’re handy this is a great way to reach your goal, take satisfaction in a job well done, and save yourself some money in the process? In fact most estimates indicate that you could save yourself forty to fifty percent.
The market for this type of do it yourself project has never been better. The kits are offered in a variety of colors and sizes and in styles suitable for vehicle storage or even home workshops. All you need are basic tools and no more than two people. Not including the slab, this is about a two to three day undertaking.
Know Your Needs
The first thing to ask yourself is about your needs. The answer will indicate the style and size of steel carport kit to look for. If you are going to not only store your vehicles but work on them as well, or use it as a wood shop, the carport model you select will need will be larger and will have side walls and the ability to lock up in order to keep your tools and equipment secure.
If you plan to do any work in your steel carport and you install side walls, it is advisable to include some windows for extra lighting and for ventilation.
Do Your Municipal Homework
Chances are good that you are going to have to get a building permit from your city or county for a project of this type. If you plan to install any type of electrical service to your new carport, that will likely involve a separate permit and inspection.
Although some people choose to tackle a project of this scope “under the radar” to save money on permits and inspections, it’s just not worth it. For one thing, your insurance agent will probably want to see that paperwork to ensure that the new structure is insurable.
As with all things in life, it is a good thing to start off with a solid foundation. Your steel carport is no different. It is tempting to just pour some footings to support the structure but later on you will be glad that you spent the extra money to pour a slab. Just wait until that first big rain.
The steps outlined here are not brand exclusive but typical for most of what you will find out there on the market today. After your slab is dry you’ll want to lay out the structure and be sure to get it square. Next, the bottom rails are bolted down to the slab.
Next, the trusses (for the roof) will need to be put together. Most manufacturers will ship them in pieces to save space. The uprights are secured to the bottom rails and then the trusses will then be secured to the uprights. Now you are seeing the basic skeleton of the carport.
You’ll now complete the framing of the roof by attaching the purloins and girts. This will further stabilize the structure. At this point you should frame out any windows and side doors.
With this done, you are free to attach the sheet metal roof and walls. This will really stabilize your carport.
About all you have left is to install the garage door(s). If you do not feel comfortable working with the springs and tensioning system, feel free to farm this task to a specialist. Now you’re free to step back and admire your masterpiece.