Garages And Carports

Making a carport

A carport is basically a lean-to arrangement, fully or partially open on one side but usually open at both ends. It is simpler and cheaper to construct than a garage.

This type of structure must conform with building regulations. Any part closer than 6ft (or 1.83m) to the boundary must be made fire-resistant. Timber upright posts may be clad with asbestos or metal posts may be used.

A carport can be of average single-garage size, say about 9 ft (2.75 m) wide and 20 ft (6 m) long. The width could be doubled to provide a double carport but the roof timbers would have to be proportionately stronger.

Roof. A roof slope of about 10 deg is necessary to take away rainwater. However, the roof can be given a “squared” look by fixing 1 in. by 4 in. (2.5 by 10 cm) fascia boarding around it. Guttering can be-concealed inside the front fascia board.

The usual roofing for a carport is clear acrylic plastic sheeting. Upright posts may consist of 4 in. by 4 in. (10 by 10 cm) timber or metal poles. Scaffold poles make suitable uprights. Posts can be bedded about 1 ft (or 30 cm) into concrete or mounted on scaffold sole plates; or the plates can be rag-bolted to the slab.

The wall should be drilled and plugged for a 4 in. by 2 in. (10 by 5 cm) wall plate which is fixed with 6 in. (15 cm). wall bolts. For long runs, two pieces of timber, scarf-jointed, may be needed to provide the plate. Make sure that the plate is level and provides, through its relationship with the front (head) plate, the correct degree of fall.

To assemble the carport:

1. Set the uprights in position at intervals of about 6 ft 6 in. (2 m).

2. Establish that the posts are in fact upright and set the headplate temporarily in place on top to check that all the heights are the same. Scaffold poles can be cut with a hacksaw, using a high-tensile blade.

3. Allow the concrete bedding around posts to set

4. Cut and notch the rafters, which should consist of

A carport is an invaluable asset if you have no garage, or it can provide an extension to your garage, as shown here. This is far cheaper than a garage extension.

4 in. by 2 in. (10 cm by 5 cm) timber, to fit over the headplate.

5. Cut half-laps in both rafters and the purlins (the cross members) at 2 ft 3 in. (68 cm) intervals. It is easier to do this on the ground.

6. These sections can then be glued and screwed together, using No. 12 100 mm galvanized screws, and lifted to notch over the plate and screw into place.

7. Fit the headplate securely to the posts also with No. 12 10 cm galvanized screws.

8. Next fix the front and back sideplates.

9. Finally, fix the fascia board with countersunk screws.

Screen blocks. A carport can also be built with one side constructed in open screen blocks or concrete blocks. This type of construction provides a cut-off and can also look attractive.

The blocks can be laid on a concrete slab or on conventional strip foundations. The outside of the piers should be at least 6 in. (or 15 cm) inside a 4 in. (10 cm) concrete slab. The wall should have piers at about 7 ft (2 m) intervals. The roof is best set out and built for an open court, except that it can be fixed to the top of the pier pillars by a metal strap embedded in the concrete.

A semi-enclosed construction can be made by building a rear return wall. Kits. A number of manufacturers make carport kits which are easy to assemble and come complete and with instructions.

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