Carports are available in an impressive number of styles and sizes, they can be constructed from metal or timber, substantial freestanding structures up to 27ft wide resembling a barn with room for multiple vehicles or, at the other end of the scale, a simple 10ft x 10ft lean to.

Many of the smaller car ports are purely utilitarian offering a simple shelter such as the Kingston Curved Carport and several in the Palram range. However this style is flexible and, as with the Palram Arizona Breeze, the arched roof can be extended to shelter more than one car.

The larger carports are considerable structures in their own right such as the Jagram Revelatio, the largest version of which can easily accommodate three vehicles, the Palmako Robert with exceptional timber supports and the Palmako Karl onto which a shed extension can be integrated.

To personalise your carport there are several options regarding the roof depending on the manufacturer. Jagram and Palmako let you choose different coloured felt roof tiles and shingles, and the latter also offer different treatments for the woodwork in addition to other accessories.

More options include filling in the open sides with fence panels to provide further shelter from the weather, and this type of bespoke alteration will increase the amount of use you make of your carport with the realization that they have a great many uses in addition to protecting your car.

The range of Kington Lean-To carports, for example, are just as useful as a patio cover, providing protection from the elements or shade from the summer sunshine while you enjoy your outside space with family or entertaining friends.

Used as a patio cover, a carport will naturally encourage increased use of your garden especially when equipped with outdoor furniture and perhaps a barbecue, and larger freestanding carports could even stand over a swimming pool if you are lucky enough to have one.

Storage is probably the alternative use that comes most readily to mind especially if the sides are filled in with fencing. For whatever reason, you may have belongings that you would rather not have inside your home but they still require shelter.

Free standing carport

If you want to encompass the good life, pets and other animals can be accommodated together with feed and other materials that are required for a small holding, although the open sides might need chicken wire or mesh installed to limit any chances of your charges escaping.

Carports can become extensive play areas for both children and adults, with more than enough space for outdoor gym or other activities sporting or otherwise, perfect if you have a garage sale or have organized a social event that you don't want to be ruined by the weather.

Not only private households, but commercial businesses will find carports very useful for storage and as an area for employees to gather for meetings in the fresh air and other work related purposes, the ideal alternative to a stuffy office environment.

There's no doubt that carports are versatile structures with many uses far beyond the protection of vehicles, they are economical to install and benefits far outweigh costs, and we haven't got around to mentioning the effect a well-built, high-quality extension will have on the value of your home.