One question we often hear from carport owners is, “Is it possible to raise a carport for a larger vehicle?” Often this question comes from someone who upgraded to a larger vehicle, such as a full-sized RV or a large trailer. And while raising a carport might seem like a good idea, there are some problems with this strategy you should consider first.

Raised RV Carports

The Problem(s) with Raising a Carport

Usually the reasoning for attempting to raise a carport is something like this:

  • I have a carport that is still in good or usable condition, but it’s not tall enough for my needs.
  • There are many kits and guides online for how to raise your carport that are cheaper than purchasing a new building.
  • Therefore it makes more sense to keep my current carport and make it taller than it does to purchase a new one.

Unfortunately, this conclusion overlooks a few important factors that you need to consider first.

Problem 1: Voiding Your Warranty

One of the biggest problems with modifying your carport to be taller is that it voids any warranty currently on your building. This includes any material warranties for any part of the building, even if you didn’t replace that specific part. In other words, the manufacturer won’t be able to help you in any way if your building is damaged down the line.

Problem 2: Reducing Your Building’s Strength

Another major issue with modifying your carport is that it can reduce the engineered structural characteristics of the building. Steel carports are built to very high specifications, and modifying them can change the structural qualities of the building and make them weaker. For instance, by making the legs of the carport longer you change its center of gravity, which in turn can make the building more likely to topple over in high wind.

You also need to consider your own ability to reconstruct your building with the same expertise as a professional. Metal building contractors have years of experience with assembling carports and structures properly. If you make even a simple mistake when trying to rebuild their work, you could drastically reduce the effectiveness of your building.

Problem 3: Introducing New Flaws

A third issue is raising your metal building can actually introduce new flaws and problems with the structure that didn’t exist before. For instance, the safest and easiest way of raising a carport requires you to completely remove the roof from the building and replace each leg individually. However, this also means you need to refasten the roof afterward - and it’s almost impossible to refasten it exactly the way it was before. That means you’ll probably end up with small holes, gaps, or dents in the roof that impact the appearance and performance of your building. The same goes for every part of your carport.

Problem 4: The Cost

A final problem with raising a carport is the expense. It’s true that there are many cheap carport extension kits online, but there’s a reason they are cheap - they’re made from low-quality materials such as thin, ungalvanized steel. A high-quality extension kit, plus the tools and equipment necessary to install it properly, will cost nearly as much or more than a new carport. And considering you’ll also void your warranty by installing the kit, it’s almost always a better deal to keep your carport at its current height.

A Better Alternative to Raising a Carport

Instead of raising your carport, the best alternative is to get one that is tall enough to accommodate your future vehicles. If you have any plans to get a full-sized RV, travel trailer or other tall vehicle, a tall carport or shelter should be a priority.

What if you already have a carport? As we mentioned above, the cost of raising a carport is often just as much as, if not more than, replacing the unit altogether. This is especially true if you’re using materials that match the original quality and if you’re using proper construction methods. In other words, you should really consider replacing your current carport if it’s too small for your needs.

It might seem wasteful to replace a perfectly good carport with a new one, but it’s not. Replacement has many advantages over raising your current carport:

  • The cost is generally comparable.
  • The new unit will be much stronger and more stable than one you raise on your own.
  • The new unit will have a new warranty to cover damages and defects.
  • Getting a new carport gives you the opportunity to get exactly what you need instead of being limited by your existing carport’s size or dimensions.
  • A new carport will provide better and longer-lasting protection for your property.
  • Your old carport (if you are getting rid of it) can be recycled, making replacement a green choice as well.

Get the Carport or Building You Need Today

If you’re looking for a great deal on a quality carport, metal building or garage, call Bargain Barns USA today at 405-872-0338. We’re expert metal building contractors and we’re ready to help you build your next building. You can also visit our Facebook page for more news and tips.