How to Enclose a Carport & Add a Door Opener

Converting a carport to a fully enclosed structure requires good design for curbside appeal.
Design the carport enclosure with clean lines to fit your home.Design the carport enclosure with clean lines to fit your home.
To create a neat enclosure, use materials that harmonize with the house, especially if the carport is connected to the house or close by. Your goal is to construct the enclosure as a garage space with a movable front door on tracking that lifts with a garage-door opener system. Build the roof line of the enclosed carport to look original to the house construction. Use roofing materials, overhangs and paint colors that complement the house, too.

Step 1

Examine the carport foundation carefully to ensure there is no cracking. Ask a concrete mason to offer advice if you're unsure whether the concrete foundation is thick enough to support new framework, house siding and the garage door. Add 4 inches of concrete reinforced with rebar, if necessary. Be sure to remove old concrete completely to pour a new floor if the old floor has serious cracks and gaps.

Step 2

Check the structural strength of the existing carport framing. Figure out if roof rafters are installed on the recommended 16-inch centers, so you can install plywood sheathing and asphalt shingles, for example. Work on enclosing the wall framing first, however, because wall framing must fully support all roof weight.

Step 3

Cut and install wall studs from 2-by-6-inch boards around the enclosure, leaving the main garage door opening and an opening for a walk-out door as well. Install 2-by-6-inch framing boards for the enclosure framework, versus smaller 2-by-4-inch boards, to accommodate door weight and any siding on the structure. Construct the main door opening and side door opening by nailing king studs from the top plate to bottom plate to define the door width. Cut a header board to fit across the top edge of the roll-up door and walkout door.

Step 4

Frame any planned windows by cutting king studs from 2-by-6-inch boards as well. Cut and nail into place headers to fit across the top of the windows.

Step 5

Cut additional rafters, if needed, to strengthen the carport framing for the enclosure. Nail ½-inch plywood sheathing over the roof of the building. Enclose the roof overhangs to match the house overhangs, so the new enclosure looks original to the house construction. Cover the sheathing with roofing felt and install asphalt shingles or metal roofing, as possible choices.

Step 6

Install the garage doors and windows before nailing house siding on the exterior. Screw the garage door tracking to attic framework with 4-inch screws, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Ask an expert to help you install the garage door tracking because any margins can cause the garage door to slip off tracking and fall, possibly injuring or killing someone. Cover the new building enclosure with tongue-and-groove boards, siding made from cement fibers or vinyl siding. Add door and window facings and trim as needed before staining or painting the structure.

Step 7

Install the automatic garage door opener after you have added any interior finishing. Run wiring for the automatic opener through the attic of the space before nailing sheets of drywall in the ceiling area. Install drywall on walls of the structure, if you desire, and paint the concrete floor with epoxy paint.

Things You Will Need

  • Concrete
  • Rebar
  • Plywood sheathing
  • Asphalt shingles
  • 2-by-6-inch boards
  • Garage main door
  • Walkout exterior door
  • Nails
  • Roofing felt
  • Metal roofing
  • Garage door tracking
  • House siding
  • Automatic garage door opener
  • Electric wiring
  • Drywall
  • Epoxy paint

About the Author

Judi Light Hopson is a national columnist for McClatchy Newspapers. She is founder of Hopson Global Education and Training and co-author of the college textbook, Burnout to Balance: EMS Stress. She holds a degree in psychology from East Tennessee State University, and has been a professional writer for 25 years.