How to Build a DIY Carport (for Less Money)

Do you have a carport, but it’s no longer doing its job? Maybe it’s too small, or the wind always seems to find a way underneath and lift your carport cover.

It may be too old and falling apart; it can’t handle the snow and rain anymore. There has never been a better time to get a new carport than now.

But if you are on a budget, what are your options? If that sounds like your situation, then you may be wondering how to build a DIY carport. 

This guide will walk you through everything you need to know to build your carport. 

How to Build a DIY Carport on a Budget

How to make a homemade carport

Building a DIY carport boils down to determining an ideal type for your situation and choosing the right spot.

You want to get proper tools and materials, including beams, rafters, batons, stirrups, and hurdles.

Some notable tools you may need include a drill, saw, and spirit level. You will also need screws, nails, bolts, and washers to complete the job.

Types of Carports

When building your own carport, take your time to decide what type of carport you want. There are four main types: portable, freestanding, attached, and custom.

Portable Carports

A portable carport is the most basic type and usually the least expensive. It is a great option if you only need temporary shelter or are not sure if you want a carport long-term.

A portable carport can be set up and taken down easily, making it perfect for short-term use or when you move homes frequently.

Freestanding Carports

A freestanding carport is not attached to any buildings but instead supported by poles or posts.

This type of carport is a great option if you want more space or if your home does not have any available wall space for an attached carport.

Freestanding carports are also a good choice for homes with garages because you can use them to provide extra covered storage space.

Attached Carports

An attached carport is the most common type and is attached to one or more walls of a home. This is the most secure type of carport, thanks to its location.

Attached carports are also a great way to add extra living space to your home.

Custom Carports

If none of the standard carports fit your needs, you can always opt for a custom carport.

A custom carport is built to your specific specifications and can be made in any shape or size.

This type of carport is the most expensive but also the most versatile. You can use it to provide shelter for cars, boats, RVs, trucks, or any other type of vehicle.

4 Factors to Consider Before Building a DIY Carport

How much does it cost to build a carport or car shed

Building a DIY carport is a great way to save money and get the exact carport you want. However, there are a few things you need to consider before starting construction.

Building Codes

The first thing you need to check is if your city or town has any building codes to be followed when constructing a carport.

Some cities have specific height and size requirements for carports, while others may require that you get a permit before construction can begin.

Utility Lines and Easements

Consider whether there are any utility lines or easements running through the spot where you want to build your carport.

If there are, you will need to contact the appropriate utility company to get permission to build your carport.

You may also need to adjust your plans so that the carport does not interfere with any of the utility lines.

Effect on Property Value

If you are thinking about selling your home in the future, a carport may make your home more attractive to potential buyers.

However, if you live in a historic district or other areas with strict zoning regulations, a carport may not be allowed and could lower the value of your home.

Building Materials

The materials you use for your carport will also affect the cost and construction time.

Metal carports are generally the least expensive but require more maintenance. Wood carports are more expensive but can be painted or stained to match your home’s exterior.

Vinyl and plastic carports are the most expensive but also the easiest to maintain.

Steps to Build a DIY Carport

The following steps will guide you through the process of building your own carport:

  1. Measuring Your Carport Space – Before starting construction, you need to measure the space to build your carport. This will help you determine the size and shape of your carport and the number of materials you will need.
  1. Digging Your Post Holes – Once you have measured the space, mark where the posts for your carport will stand. Use a post hole digger to dig holes at least 24 inches deep and 18 inches in diameter.
  1. Setting Your Posts – Once the holes are dug, set the posts and fill them with concrete. Ensure the posts are plumb (straight up and down) before the concrete sets.
  1. Installing Your Support Beams – Once the concrete has been set, install your support beams. These will be attached to the posts and bear the roof’s weight.
  1. Building Your Roof – The type of roof you choose will depend on the carport you are building. If you are looking to build a standard carport, the roof will be a simple gable (two-sided) roof. If you decide to build a custom carport, you can choose any type of roof you like.
  1. Adding Your Braces and Finish – Once the roof is in place, add braces and finish the carport. Make sure to use hurricane ties or other types of braces to secure the roof to the support beams. Finish the carport with siding, trim or paint as desired.

FAQs

How cheap is it to build a carport on your own?

The cost of materials will vary depending on the type of carport you build, but it is generally less expensive than hiring a contractor.

Can I build a carport without a permit?

It depends on your city or town’s zoning regulations. You may need to get a permit to build a carport, regardless of whether it is attached to your home or not.

Can I build a carport out of metal?

Yes, you can build a carport out of metal, but it will be more expensive than using other materials. Metal carports also require more maintenance.

How many posts are ideal for a carport?

It depends on the size and shape of your carport. Generally, you will want at least two posts in the front and two in the back. For larger carports, you may need more posts.