How to Frame a Metal Carport
Framing a metal carport yourself can help you save money. A metal carport shields your car from environmental elements. This is easy to do and only requires a few basic steps.
Step 1 - Measure the Area
Measure out the area you want to use on the ground. It should be in the form of a rectangle, about 12 by 20 feet. The corners of this rectangle are where you will set up your corner posts. Place the posts into the ground. You will want to install a support header. The end should be 1/2 inch away from the edge of the building. Leave room for any siding or trim. Mark the location of an end of the header and do the same for another one. Now you can secure the header in place with lag screws through the siding.
Step 2 - Dig
Dig 20 inches deep. Fill the hole halfway with concrete and level it. Repeat this for all four posts. It will take 3 to 4 days to dry.
Step 3 - Drop a Plumb Line
Drop a plumb line from each corner of the header and mark its position. This will be the starting point of the carport. At one plumb mark, attach a string to the building. Drive a stake and fasten the string in place. Now you can measure from the opposite side and place a second string. Measure the distance that is between the two marks and for the length of the carport. Also, measure between the two stakes. You will want to adjust the stakes to reach this same distance.
Step 4 - Put Roof in Place
Now it is time to put the roof in place or frame your metal carport. The measurements taken earlier should be the dimensions you will want to use for the frame. You want to make sure your metal carport exists square with the building. To ensure this you can use right-angle string lines. To do this, measure three feet out of the building from one of the plumb lines and mark it. Do so in the other direction, measuring four feet.
Measure diagonally and the measurement should be five feet and form a square corner. Again, measure between the two stakes to make sure they reach these measurements. You can check for squareness by measuring the plumb line marks to the opposite outside corner locations. Once you determined your corner posts, you can tie a string from one post to another and mark the locations of the other three posts.
Step 5 - Construct
You want your posts to be set and anchored to the concrete piers that are poured into the holes in the ground. You can also set the post in the concrete. If you do this, you must use pressure-treated posts. Make sure the posts are positioned to create a square construction. Always check with the string and the triangular method as discussed above. Be sure the posts are plumb.