How Much Weight Can I Safely Put In My Apartment Pros and Cons of Aluminum Carport and Patio Covers

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Pros and Cons of Aluminum Carport and Patio Covers

Aluminum carports and patio covers have become a popular and attractive home improvement. The product itself has been used for many years. As a light weight and durable material, aluminum can be a great alternative to stick built or steel structures. Features, colors, and styles have evolved over the years to give homeowners many options. Today we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of this popular aluminum structure.

Excess:

1) Durability – My parents have lived in the same house for over 30 years. The patio cover was installed in the late 1960s, and is still there and functional. This product will stand the test of time with more than a yearly cleaning. Most companies design their units to withstand wind and snow loads. As a result, in the event of a natural weather disaster, your patio cover or carport should last for years.

2) Attractive – As mentioned above with a little maintenance, your carport or patio cover will look great for years. Aluminum pans will not rust. There are a variety of colors to choose from and several styles of framework that should satisfy any homeowner.

3) Structural simplicity – Due to the lightweight nature of aluminum, patio covers can be attached directly to the patio area, and carports can be attached directly to the driveway. Also the attachment to the house requires minimal anchoring. Note: some areas require posts to be set in concrete, check with your local code department. One of the best advantages of the Aluminum structure is the minimal fall required for installation. Aluminum carports and patio covers only require ¼” of fall/ft. spanned. A shingled roof requires a minimum of 4″ fall/ft spanned, which often creates problems with head room on the outside.

4) Functionality – Few home improvement projects can provide the quality of utility that an aluminum patio cover or carport can. Patio covers through decks and patios offer escape from the direct sun and weather, and can make people more useful and enjoyable. Aluminum carports (free standing or attached) can provide excellent shelter for vehicles when a garage is not available.

Disadvantages

1) Bird’s Nest – Aluminum W-pan is notorious for attracting birds. There are several plugs offered by the manufacturer and it is recommended that you insist on them during installation. They add to the cost but will save you from the endless hassle of cleaning the pan.

2) Trees – All aluminum carports and patio covers come with built in gutters and downspouts, in the fall if you live in a wooded area leaves are a constant problem. Because the aluminum structure does not require a slope on the roof, leaves and debris are more likely to collect. The most common problem I see is where this accumulation of leaves is left, it clogs the gutters, absorbs water and eventually causes the panels to bow and leak.

3) Rust in the framework – Most aluminum patio covers and carports are installed with steel beams, and posts, and when painted before installation, the natural exposure of these elements will cause these parts to show rust (especially in contact with the ground)

4) Hail – The most common problem with aluminum carports and patio covers is hail. We change some of these every year. Due to the light nature of aluminum, hail storms can leave unsightly spots on the panels. Most homeowner’s insurance covers this and most of the time if the hail is hard enough, you will end up with more damage to your home

As a contractor for many years, I have learned to appreciate the beauty and functionality of aluminum carports and patio covers. The advantages of this product far outweigh the disadvantages. Almost all defects can be prevented with simple maintenance.

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