Why Leveling The Site Is Very Important Before Carport Installation
Are you in the process of installing a custom metal building on your property? If yes, have you considered leveling your ground? We are sure that almost every website you visit recommends leveling your ground first and then proceeding to the foundation. But why is leveling ground so important? That’s what we will be discussing here. Let’s jump right into it.
What Is Leveling Anyway?
Leveling is a process in which the lowest level of a building is set. It’s the place where the building meets the earth’s surface. It is supposed to remove any inclination from the surface for a smooth installation.
What If I Don’t Level The Ground Before The Carport Installation?
Not leveling ground can decrease your custom metal building appeal or even cause structural failure in some cases. Have a look at some cons of not leveling ground.
- The structure may not function properly.
- For instance, it can get hard to close the door, or there may be a gap in between for insects and other animals to crawl in.
- The entire structure may appear uneven and unbalanced.
- It would become hard to align the frame and panels with each other.
- The steel building may lose its structural strength with time.
- It may raise safety issues.
- Warranties may get void as metal builders strictly recommend installing metal carports on even the ground.
What Are The Benefits Of Leveling Ground Before Constructing Any Steel Structure?
Here are some major benefits of leveling ground.
- It enhances foundation stability.
- It helps avoid structural issues and expensive repairs down the line.
- Leveling ensures floor, sidewalls, legs, roof, etc., are stable even in the worst case scenario.
- It helps determine the land’s slope and grade.
- It enhances drainage and prevents erosion.
Hmm. So, is there a metal carport solution to fix the ground? Let’s see.
What Tools Or Equipment Do I Need To Level Construction Site?
If you are working in a larger area, you may use heavy-duty equipment such as a steel tamper, backhoe, bulldozer, excavator, etc.
How Do I Level The Site For My Custom Metal Building?
Leveling is a simple, few steps process for prepping your site for construction. Let’s have a look at them.
Step 1: Mark the area where you have to install the carport.
Step 2: Secure the corners. If the area is large, consider placing temporary posts after even intervals.
Step 3: Clean the area of installation.
Step 4: Remove any rocks, boulders, vegetation, and plantations from the site with a spade, shovel, and wheelbarrow.
Step 5: If there are large trees with branches that may hang onto your carport’s roof, cut them short with a hand pruner.
Step 6: Remove excess soil with a shovel and fit any pit to even out the area.
Step 7: Use string and tie it to the post at the same height.
Step 8: Use a leveler to see if the strings are parallel to the ground.
Step 9: Spread the top soil evenly and tamp the soil by pressing it down firmly with a steel tamper. Heavy equipment can be used to tamp larger areas.
Spray water while leveling the soil to make it compact and sit properly. You can go back and forth with spraying water to dampen the soil and using a rack and tamper to even the ground. Most of the tools you need for leveling are probably already present in your garden shed or home. It is an easy process, and you can DIY.
Finally, your site is ready for your brand new carport.
What Are Common Foundations That I Can Use For Carport Once The Ground Is Leveled?
Once your ground is leveled, you can proceed to the construction of the foundation. Here is a list of some common metal carport bases used by various homeowners throughout the States. Have a look and find out which one would work best for you.
Budget Friendly Option
Are you looking for a carport solution that won’t take a dollar out of your pocket? Simply leveled ground can also act as a base. You can park your car and keep some garden tools as well. However, we do not recommend storing any temperature or moisture sensitive objects as they might get damaged by humidity from mud.
Also, if you live in a rainy area with frequent floods, this may not be a suitable option.
Gravel Base For Steel Carport
Another affordable solution is to opt for a gravel base. It consists of small stones grinded to fill the site and act as a base. You can DIY it. The issue with gravel bases is that they tend to shift with time, so you may need to re-level them at regular intervals. You can buy extra gravel at the time of purchase for future use.
Note that this may not be effective for areas with extreme weather, such as floods and rain. Yet, it is better than simply leveled ground.
Asphalt For Steel Carport Base
It is a mixture of aggregates (crushed rock, sand, and slag), binder, and filler (petroleum by-product used as a glue). It is usually 3 to 8 inches thick and run over by a steel roller, which presses it to compact. It is highly resistant to water. However, it needs to be sealed on a yearly basis.
It is generally used to create pavement and driveways.
Strongest Of Them All
A concrete base is the most durable, resilient, and long-lasting, and it can bear more load. It doesn’t wear and tear at a faster rate. It is also relatively low maintenance. Anything stored over a concrete base remains clean and dry. Pests, termites, and insects are not attracted to it.
Metal dealers who often sell large-size custom steel buildings highly recommend a concrete foundation. It helps retain structural durability for the longest period.
Bringing Up Rear,
It is clear that a simple leveling of the construction site may appear like a mundane task, but it is highly essential for the support and retention of any custom metal building. You can refer to your local guidelines or take advice from a structural engineer to know what type of base will suit you the best. Always buy a metal carport from a certified dealer. A certified metal dealer will walk you through the entire construction process.