Building a carport – Preparation – Part 1 of 3

Posted: September 6, 2010 by DIY Big Boss in Garden Sheds / Barns / Carports, Uncategorized
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There are so many reasons why you may want to consider building a carport.  One key reason was demonstrated clearly over the winter when the suburbs of Melbourne were hit with one of the fiercest storms in recorded history.  Melbourne residents never expected that given how much further south it is from Sydney that it could be subject to hail the size that was seen that day.

So more and more we are seeing the weather patterns shift and change, and in order to protect ourselves and our belongings we are having to become more aware and prepare.

Building a garage to protect your car can be incredibly costly, however you can achieve the same results with a carport and we’ll tell you how and where to find the best designs on the internet.  But first, you will need to take some time to consider what sort of carport is right for you.

The most simple decision is whether to have it free standing or attached to your house.

Attached carport build by Alexander Handyman in America

When to attach your carport to your house:

If your house currently has a side access that is the width of one or two cars, then this is the best time to build an attached carport, because it can extend from the side of your house over the car.  If your carport will extend to near the wall then this is even better as you will receive weather protection from both the sides (house on one and fence on the other).

Another option for attaching a carport to your home is where the front design of your home is not square on to the street.  These L shaped homes are much more adaptable to adding a carport as they give you maximum area to connect to the house.

Of course there is no right and wrong with this decision, owners of homes with a double garage will often extend a carport from above the garage doors out up their driveway, which effectively provides them with four under cover spaces for their cars.  This is great if you are a family with young adult children who have their own cars.

Free Standing Carport from the Project Centre in NarreWarren

When to build a free standing carport:

If you do not have a building near to where you wish to build your carport, it is clear that you will have to build a free standing carport.  Many other home owners choose to go free standing purely because it can look so much nicer than having it attached to the home.

There are a number of things to remember when building a carport though and something that may influence even this very first and very basic decision of whether to go attached or free standing is your local council’s building rules and regulations.  We look at these in our next installment of Building a Carport.  It is important in Australia to fully consider these before you finalise a decision on design.

What does your carport look like?

Next you will need to consider how you want your carport to look and again there are many different options and alternatives.  The best way of scouting for a design you like is to take a photo of the front of your house.  Then with it in front of you go to google images and type in ‘carport’ this will bring you loads of options.

If you find one you like consider how it would look on your home, would it suit the design of you home?  Is it in keeping with the street? Does it have the basic elements that you need?

Remember that you can change the colour and the materials used, you are just looking to create an idea file at this stage.  When driving around, do the same thing, most of the best ideas for an Australian carport will be found in your surrounding neighbourhood.

What next?

You now should have a preference for whether you want a free standing or attached carport.  You should also have an idea about the design of the carport.  So now you need to measure up the area and ensure that you have ample room to fit your carport in and then it is time to start enquiring about your local council restrictions and requirements.

We’ll go through those with you tomorrow.  In the meantime remember that you can get all your building tools from the DIY Bargain Bin.  Check out the Garden Sheds, Barns and Carports section for kits.

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