Can an Oklahoma Carport Be Converted Into a Garage?

Jun 15, 2018 | Custom Garages

One of the most common questions we get about our steel carports is whether it is possible to convert them into garages. The answer? Of course it’s possible – but it’s a bit more complicated than putting up some walls on the sides and calling it a day. We frequently enclose carports we build for customers that want a full garage, but we also know that our carports are highly capable and very protective on their own. Read on to learn about why and how you can convert a steel carport into an enclosed garage.

Why (and Why Not) to Convert Your Carport

Both carports and garages add a lot of value to your home – they’re great for protecting your cars and other property from the sometimes-harsh Oklahoma weather. So why are so many people so keen on converting a carport into a garage? Below are a few of the most common reasons, along with our expert view of these opinions:


  • Idea: Garages offer better or more complete protection for cars and other vehicles than carports do.
    • Reality: Carports protect most vehicles just as well as garages do. It’s very rare for a car to get snow or ice on it while under a carport, or to be struck by any debris.


  • Idea: Garages offer private, enclosed storage for personal belongings.
    • Reality: While garages are inherently more private than a basic open carport, many carports come with attached storage sheds that are perfect for keeping tools or other belongings inside.


  • Idea: Garages are stronger and last longer than carports do.
    • Reality: A well-made steel carport is every bit as strong and durable as a garage. Steel carports can handle literal tons of snow and ice, and will stand strong for years throughout any kind of weather.


  • Idea: Garages match the look of houses better.
    • Reality: This is mostly a matter of personal opinion. However, steel carports do come in a wide range of colors and styles to match almost any home with ease.


In the end, a carport fulfills most of the same functions as a garage – it keeps your car safe from the weather and it allows you to access your vehicles without exposing yourself to rain, snow, and hail. Both carports and garages add value to your home. Most of the time it’s not too hard to convert a carport into a garage, but it’s also not always necessary.


So why would you want to convert a carport into a garage? The most common reasons for pursuing the conversion are because garages are often used for more than just car protection – they’re a “utility room” where you can fix things and store bulky items. It’s tough for an open carport to offer this same utility, which is why many homeowners think converting their carport is a good idea.


If you’re considering converting your carport, think about why you want to do it. If you’re simply looking for more protection for your car from sun and rain, a carport is probably going to do the job just fine. However, if you’re looking for a workshop or a storage area you can use for your car, tools, and household clutter, you might be on the right track.


How to Convert a Carport Into a Garage

In most cases, converting a carport into a garage isn’t difficult. In fact, we regularly convert our own carports into garages for buyers who find their needs have changed over time. If you want to convert your carport, you’ll need to take care of the following steps:


First, contact your city or township planning commission and see if you need a permit to convert your carport into a garage. The rules for what construction jobs require permits are different from place to place, and they can also be difficult to understand. Talk to a planner or a knowledgeable contractor before starting work to see what permits or permission you need.


Speaking of permission, if your house is part of a homeowner’s association, be sure to clear your project with them before you begin. It’s much easier to use a little foresight and get your project cleared than to tear it down and redo it after the fact when it doesn’t meet regulations.


You’ll also need to consider building codes, especially if you’re attaching your garage to your house or installing electricity or water in the structure. These are the situations where an experienced contractor can help since they’ll know what codes to follow and how to do the work efficiently.


Remember that a garage is more than just a few walls and a big door. If you want your garage project to turn out right, you’ll need to consider:


  • Insulation to keep the space warm during the winter and cool during the summer.
  • Electric lighting to find your way around inside the garage after dark.
  • A strong foundation that will keep out moisture and other elements.
  • Additional support for the walls and garage door – a carport is meant to hold up its own roof, not its roof plus heavy walls.


Not sure whether you want a carport or a garage? Some carports are actually designed from the start to be easy to convert – such as the carports we sell here at Bargain Barns USA. We frequently convert our carports into enclosed garages since they’re designed from the start to be easy to enclose. We can’t say the same for carports from other manufacturers though, so make sure to get quote first.


Converting a carport into a finished garage can be a great way to get the most out of your metal building if your needs or lifestyle changes. For more helpful advice on Oklahoma steel carports and garages, contact us today at Bargain Barns USA. We’re Oklahoma’s largest distributor of steel carports and metal garages, and we have the expertise and skill you need for your carport project. You can also visit us online at our Facebook or Google+ pages to learn more, or call us at (405) 872-0338 to learn more!

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