The Basics of Mobile Home Carports

You may have seen them before, and they’re a popular component to mobile homes across the country. They don’t require additional space or land if you have a driveway next to your home, and they come in different materials, colors, and sizes. 

We’re of course talking about mobile home carports. But, even if you’ve heard of them, you might not know what they look like, or how they’re installed. 

So, we’ll go over the basics of mobile home carports in this blog post, from what they are to maintenance and installation. 

What Are Mobile Home Carports?

A mobile home carport is an exterior structure attached to your mobile home that is installed above your driveway. The carport provides overhead coverage for your vehicle, and can either lead to a side door or back door that leads into your mobile home, or stand on its own. 

Most carports are mounted from the side of the mobile home, where the roof meets the exterior wall, and are supported via beams on the opposite side of the driveway. This provides ample room for a car to park safely underneath.  

Occasionally, a carport may have a supporting wall on the far end from the mobile home, for additional strength and privacy. 

Is a Carport and Garage The Same Thing? 

No, mobile home carports and garages are not the same thing. 

A garage is a completely enclosed structure that, besides holding at least one car, may often hold other large tools and appliances. They can be either freestanding or be attached to a mobile home, and usually have a large door at the front that is manually or automatically operated. 

A carport, however, is not a fully interior building like a garage. Rather, it is more like a roof extension that covers your vehicle to protect it from the elements. Because a carport is not a full-fledged building, there isn’t a door at the front to raise or lower each time you park your car or leave for the day. 

But, that doesn’t mean a carport isn’t without its benefits. In fact, carports are highly popular for a few different reasons, and many mobile homeowners prefer them to garages. We’ll go over the reasons in a little bit. 

What Materials Are Carports Made Of? 

Carports are most often made out of a sturdy aluminum or other kind of metal. 

This material is popular for carports because it provides ample resistance to rainfall and other kinds of inclement weather. And, it’s rather durable. A carport made of aluminum or metal can last you at least ten years, if not much longer. 

What Benefits Do Carports Offer? 

Carports have a number of great benefits for manufactured homeowners. 

The biggest one, of course, is weather protection. Your carport will shield your car from rain, snow, and other inclement weather. 

Not only that, but it may offer additional shade, too. If your car is sitting out in the sun for hours or even days at a time, it may be too hot to sit in before you cool it down for a few minutes. However, parking your car under a carport means that you may have additional shade to help keep your car cooler on a hot sunny day.

Carports also don’t take up much space. Since they primarily hang over your existing driveway, a carport installation may not require additional clearing of land. 

If anything, you may just need roughly a foot of space along the side of your driveway to make room for the support poles. However, many carports are anchored onto the edge of the driveway itself.

This means that, if your mobile home doesn’t currently have a carport, it may be incredibly easy to find the space to install one. It’s easiest if your driveway is directly next to your mobile home. 

Additionally, carports can be easier to maintain than a garage. Cosmetic damage can be buffed out or painted over, and small dents can be fixed with a heat gun or hair dryer to the opposite end of the dent before pushing it out. 

Another major benefit of a mobile home carport is the cost factor. If you’re installing a carport onto your home for the first time, you’ll find that most carports cost between $1,500 and $6,000. This makes them an affordable option for those looking for protection for their car compared to garages that can run into the five figure range.  

Can I Install My Own Carport? 

You can purchase your own carport and have it delivered to your mobile home. However, you should hire a professional to have it installed.

If you live in a manufactured home community, you will need permission from your park manager to install one as well. Check before you start any carport project to ensure you’re not stepping on any toes with either your community or the local government. Depending on your local jurisdiction, you may need a permit to add a carport onto your mobile home. 

Additionally, make sure that you’re not crossing lot lines if you live in a community. You can get into trouble if you install a carport that crosses over into someone else’s property. 

There’s one other thing to consider when having your mobile home carport installed. This has to do with the age of your manufactured home. If your home is newer, it may have a certificate, sticker, or some other kind of notice that certifies that your home can structurally support a carport or other outdoor structure. This is not present in older mobile homes. Check with your local or state jurisdiction to see if your home should have one, and if so that your home can indeed support a carport.

Carports can be unwieldy and hard to maneuver into place when they’re being installed. This is why you should never try and install a carport on your own, or build your own with spare materials. A team of contractors will have the safety and experience to ensure your carport is installed smoothly and safely. A group of family members or friends can do the job in an afternoon, provided you follow installation instructions exactly.

Where Can I Find Carport Supplies? 

Many manufactured homes come with carports attached when you buy them. However, if you’re looking to purchase a carport to be installed onto your mobile home, we recommend heading over to our Mobile Home Parts & Supplies Guide.

From this handy guide, you can check out their selection of available carports. This’ll give you everything you need to start your carport project the right way!  

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