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Car Canopy and Portable Garage Featured

15 Best Carport Canopy Reviews | Outdoor Portable Garages

A reliable, economical and robust method for sheltering and protecting your vehicle when a bricked shelter is simply not available. Additionally, smaller sized models can double as excellent storage sheds for the yard or land. Similar somewhat in appearance to their smaller brothers the pop-up canopy, Carport Canopy however are far superior in size, strength, and resilience to the outdoor elements and have undergone a much more extensive manufacturing process than regular shelters. They are built to last and engineered to protect your investment that lies beneath.

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If you often have difficulty finding appropriate shelter for your vehicle and the idea of having your own private shelter sounds alluring, then read on. The majority of the models in this list will be portable, meaning you can take them from place to place as and when required.

We will include a few metal and fixed versions, that we feel are worthy in regards to quality and price. If you need something to be fixed permanently, then you are definitely better off focusing on some of the fixed car canopies and patio covers that we have on the list.

One thing to remember when it comes to car canopies, metal carports and portable garages alike, the price varies immensely. There are many factors to consider which we will discuss in the buyer’s guide, which should help to explain these price jumps.

So let’s delve into the best choices that are available to you in today’s market.

15 Best Portable Carports Reviewed

1. Abba Patio Storage Shelter

Abba Patio Storage Shelter Car Canopy 8 x 14 Feet

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Our first entry is this compact yet robust model from Abba Patio. Coming in 3 small sizes, it’s probably one of the best choices if you have a smaller car in your drive or want to store bikes, trailers, mowers and quads for example. Plus it can double as a storage shed tent.


Fully enclosed to provide better protection to the elements, as opposed to open air car canopies. However, it does have the ability to detach the zipper doors, in case you are attending an outdoor event and want to open it up for better visibility. It’s simple to set up and collapses down into a compact size that can be stored in the car/truck easily.


With a polyethylene top cover, this does a good job of preventing water from penetrating the fabric. It does an amazing job against wind also, it’s been known to resist up to 70pmh winds. However, please note this is not with the anchors it comes with, this would be with high grade anchors.


Treated with a 1-1/2 inch resistant coating. This powder coating protects the frame from chipping and peeling, also gets to work against corrosion, preventing this natural nuisance from occurring. The powdered coating also strengthens the stability of the frame, which is key when we are protecting vehicles. The legs have been fitted with footpads which makes anchoring into the ground beneath much easier.


As we know this model comes in 3 small size options. 6 x 8, 7 x 12 and 8 x 14. There is 1 color for all, a solid grey that isn’t too dark and easy on the eye.

Note: For a more in depth review, check out our Abba Patio Outdoor Shelter Review which covers all features thoroughly and all size options. 

Key Features:

  • Can Double as a Storage Shed
  • Full Enclosure Option
  • 3 Size Choices


2. Caravan Canopy 10 x 20

Domain Caravan Canopy 10 x 20 Review

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The best selling car canopy on Amazon is the domain carport from Caravan. With decent dimensions of 10 x 20 feet, 2 color choices in white and black and a very simple assembly, it’s a great choice for a short term option.

The price is probably what attracts the most buyers, an economical option for a quick shelter and is not too demanding to set up. 

The frame is reasonably strong with a steel frame that has been powder coated and has 6 supporting legs. The frame is fitted with a compression lock to keep it tight and there are accessories that can be attached, however they are additional purchases. 

The cover is polyethylene which is good quality, with water resistance and fade protection it will protect whatever is beneath well. You can also benefit from UV and anti-fungal protective elements with this piece. 

Being an open air model it lacks protection from the sides, without side walls. 

Note: For a full in-depth view of all 3 variations of Caravan Canopy Domain Carports, check out our full review. 

Key Features:

  • Anti Fungal Cover
  • UV Protected
  • Easy Assembly


3. ShelterLogic Tube Storage Shelter

ShelterLogic Shelter Tube Storage Shelter 12 x 30 feet

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This powerful, fully enclosed car shelter comes in 2 color choices and 3 size options for each color, that’s 6 models in total to choose from. We like the 12 x 30 as it provides a solid option for when you need to cover a larger area, but with the same level of quality as the smaller carport canopies.


The tube storage has a 2-inch steel frame which is coated with a premium black powdered coating finish. This strengthens the frame increases resistance to weathering. The steel is 15 gauge industrial grade, so it’s designed to withstand rust and corrosion. The tubes are square in shape and surround the entire frame. The frame itself consists of 5 ribs that are equally spaced around 5 feet apart, forming a solid structure.

Wind/Snow Rating

The wind speed rating has been tested up to 80mph and a snow load rating recorded at 43psf. Having said that we should always try to clear the snow off as often as it’s possible, to alleviate the unnecessary weight on the roof.


The cover is made with a triple-layer cover of RipStop fabric. Utilizes a heavy-duty 9 ounce PSM cover, which is fully waterproof and also has a fade blocking membrane. UV protected, anti-fungal and anti-aging properties are evident in the material used, a top-quality piece.


The footplates are steel, as opposed to some of the polyethylene canopies, which are usually plastic. A sliding crossrail system has been redesigned, strengthened and optimized to provide a closer fit for the cover to the framework. Two zippered doors are positioned on the front and the back of the canopy, great for ventilation.

Key Features:

  • Tested Wind/Snow/Hail Resistant
  • Front and Rear Entrances
  • Triple-Layered RipStop Cover


4. Ikuby – Lockable Carport

Ikuby SUV Car Canopy

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The Lockable Car Port from Ikuby is innovative, ensuring maximum security, this is the most reliable option on the list in terms of security. With a steel frame that is retractable and lockable, your vehicle will be completely sheltered, invisible and protected. 


 This particular model comes in 2 sizes. The first is the one you see in the photo, it’s 19 x 8.5 x 7 in feet for length, diameter and height respectively. The second is a slightly larger model that measures up at 20.5 x 9.2 x 7.5 in feet for length, diameter, and height.

The company is also open to messages regarding size and can confirm whether or not it will be suitable for your vehicle, this can be done from the product page. As we can see it only has 1 color option available, which is an easygoing solid grey color, much like the Abba Patio.


Robust and sturdy, this carport canopy will not be easily moved, weighing around 170 pounds. It has the ability to withstand intense weathering such as gale-force winds, torrential rain and even hailstorms.

Made with 600D Oxford fabric with a solid PU coating, we can safely say its waterproof. It has been rain and hailstorm tested, both of which can be seen on the product page.


As a retractable car shelter, that completely encloses the vehicle tightly, you get a lot of extra benefits with this. Annoying tasks like cleaning off bird defecation, snow build ups and scraping ice off the roof can become a thing of the past. Wrapping the vehicle snugly like a cocoon, it will keep it completely protected from all outdoor annoyances and dangers.


Utilizing an old-style perambulator hood, giving it a nice balance of new and old. It consists mainly of a steel frame that’s easily folded and retracted. Mild steel for its framework has also been powder coated, to better resist the elements and corrosion. The set up and installation is pretty simple as well, you just need to follow the number marked poles in numerical order. If you can handle DIY you should be fine with something like this.

Note: For more information on the other sizes and designs of the Ikuby Carport Shelter, check out our full review. 

Key Features:

  • Quick and Flexible Installation
  • Rain and Hail Tested
  • Best Theft Prevention Model


5. Quictent 20 x 10 Heavy Duty Carport

Quictent 10 x 20 Heavy Duty Carport Review

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Our next model from Quictent is a heavy duty carport option with strong waterproofing properties. With sidewalls included and a windowed design, it can easily double as an event canopy if needed.


Utilizing a polyethylene cover that has been reinforced for extra protection, it has a canvas-like feel to it. A tear-proof membrane, combined with UV protective material ensures an industrial grade quality, capable of withstanding strong weathering.


The structure is firm and solid, as it employs steel connectors, not plastics, in the framework. This works to counter any twisting and tension when under pressure from strong winds etc. The frame is steel with a 38mm diameter, which is thicker than most models. It’s also coated with a resistant powder coating to defend against steels’ natural enemies, rust and corrosion.


Given the strong canvas-like cover, if it were to be exposed to heavy snowfall, it may collect the weight due to its ruggedness, rather than allowing it to slide off. This creates an issue, so you either need to clear it frequently or avoid use in these weather conditions.

Key Features:

  • Powder Coated Frame
  • Strong Polyethylene Cover
  • Multiple Warranty Options


6. Arrow Steel Carport

Arrow 10 x 15 Steel Carport Review

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If you are considering a permanent car canopy as opposed to the temporary, poly covered models, then a metal one would be much more suitable for the job. In this case, the galvanized steel 29 model from Arrow is suitable. Specializing in top quality and robust shelters for storage, boats, vehicles, etc.

Quality Protection

Galvanized steel offers protection that the cheaper, temporary car canopies find impossible to match. For this reason, you will find a significant price difference. The car canopy has a tried and tested wind speed rating of up to 100mph.

Overexposure, rust, and erosion aren’t issues due to industrial-grade steel. Things like chipping and peeling will also be no cause for concern while it utilizes this kind of quality for material. It also has a tested snow or ground load rating of 35psf, allowing for protection throughout winters snowfall. A true 4 season shelter.


A 29 gauge galvanized steel roof surrounds the top of the carport and overhangs the frame, folding down over the lip of the structure. Horizontal panels with a rounded eave design runs through the panel.

This keeps it compact and secured tightly together, with the roof hugging the frame tightly in place, simultaneously creates a natural run off for rainfall. The rounded eaves on the roof make it simple to clean with a power hose, blasting any dirt and debris right off.

Set Up

Covering up to 234 square meters in total, it’s large, big enough to protect larger vehicles like SUVs, pick up trucks and even boats. Utilizing a slip-fit frame work system, it makes the assembly more simplistic. However, we not going to sugar coat this, it’s not an easy setup, to be honest. Especially if it’s your first time putting together something of this nature.

The robust steel panels aren’t lightweight, so it will require 2 to 3 people. Additionally, each panel needs to be drilled and fitted in place. Having well-positioned feet is the foundation of a good build, so make sure you get these in place correctly before proceeding. Indeed more work than other models, but the end result is far superior in terms of a fixed shelter.

Note: For a full breakdown and size list, check out our Arrow Steel Carport Review on our dedicated page. 

Key Features:

  • 4 Season Certified
  • 10 Year Warranty
  • Galvanized Steel provides Rust/Corrosion Resistance


  • Impenetrable protection but with a slightly demanding set up. 


7. Shelterlogic 10 x 20 Carport

ShelterLogic 10 x 20 Carport Review

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An economical carport canopy from ShelterLogic. If you are aware of this brand you will know they make quality products, specializing in many areas, one of them being Canopies. The 10 x 20 model is definitely an affordable piece that can provide an above-average shelter for your vehicle.


The 1-3/8 inch steel frame has a baked-on protective coating, this is known to increase its resilience and bonding to the steel frame. The frame will benefit from multiple years of additional rust and corrosion protection, also chipping and peeling will stay at bay for longer. This is where you start to see a return on your money.

Triple Layer

Utilizing a polyethylene cover that benefits from advanced engineering. With a triple-layer ripstop material, not only is it UV protected externally but also internally. This creates a double block and also helps to resist fade by having a thicker protective barrier surrounding the material. It also has anti-fungal properties, so when it’s damp or wet from rainfall or morning dew, moss and mildew will not build up.


Fitted with patented stabilizers, this helps to steady it in strong winds, keeping it fixed to the ground. Like some of the other models, it also has the ratchet-tite tension system in place, which keeps the cover fixed tightly to the framework. There is also a door panel, for easy accessibility to the shelter frame. Lastly, a nice feature to add is the easy slide locking system. It works on a cross rail system which provides continual tightening of the cover and will not loosen over time.

Size and Shape

It’s worth noting they also have a 10 x 10 and 10 x 15 foot model if you are in need of something a bit smaller for your vehicle. They have both peak and rounded shaped roofs available. 

Key Features:

  • Patented Stabilizers
  • Cross Rail Locking System
  • Ratchet Tite Cover


8. Palram Vitoria Carport 

Palram Vitoria Carport and Patio Cover

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This stunning car canopy from Palram Vitoria, is ideal for those who want a permanent, fixed and secure shelter to be located within our home or land. The advantage of a fixed carport, is the benefit of luxury designs and stabler builds, utilizing better materials and engineering.

Do It Yourself

You can actually set this one up with 2 people without special tools or assistance. Basic tools and a capable mind is all you need to get this elegant shelter set up within a day. There are also minimal contents in the assembly. Versatility in the form of movable support beams, so you can position them accordingly. One thing that may be demanding for the inexperienced,  fixing the anchors to concrete. This would require some drilling for the anchors to fit down into.


Made up of one of the strongest forms of Polymer around, Polycarbonate is super strong and is widely known as being near unbreakable. It also has a shatterproof safety feature and it only uses virgin materials, which means it has a higher resilience to the elements, no fading or color loss. Additionally, the Poly is a 6mm double wall, which protects 100% of UV rays. This UV protection prevents high temperatures and paint fading on the vehicle.


First off they have built-in guttering, this is actually on both the arched and flat roof options. Preventing any water buildup with the runoff design. Due to the galvanized steel which has been protected and coated, rendering the heavy-duty frame rust, peeling, chipping and corrosion-resistant.

Sizes and Shapes

In 2 design styles and 3 different sizes. They are similar, however, the roofs are Arched and Flat in design.

The arched roof has a natural ability to get rid of water and rainfall, because of the angle. Water will drain from the Flat Roof as well, due to the Polycarbonates surface, but less efficiently. 

Key Features:

  • Efficient Guttering System
  • Unbreakable and Shatter Resistant
  • 10 Year Warranty


9. TopCamp Car Canopy

TopCamp 10x20 ft Pop up Car Canopy

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An excellent choice if you are looking for a lightweight, portable and fast to assemble car canopy for your vehicle. Utilizing the pop up method in its assembly, it’s super-fast and easy to set up and dismantle again.

Fully Protected

A showpiece that has full protection from UV rays with a silver coating etched into the fabric. This provides a sun-protected shade underneath and will keep harmful rays away. Especially useful at an event or social occasion.


The feet of the frame are nylon which has holes drilled into them, this allows anchors to be inserted through, securing it to the ground. Usable on both soft and hard surfaces alike. The simplicity comes from the push button sliders, which help to erect the canopy quickly and safely. The cover is made from a durable 420 Denier Polyester, which does a great job of keeping the rain and sun at bay.


A heavy duty carry bag also comes with the car canopy, along with some ropes and stakes, 6 of each to be exact. The total weight is around 121 pounds, significantly lighter than other similar sized models.

Key Features:

  • Fast Pop Up Assembly
  • Well Priced
  • Integrated Anchor Port Holes


10. Abba Patio 10 x 20 Carport

Abba Patio – Car Canopy 10 x 20 feet

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One in a whole line of car canopies from Abba Patio, a popular outdoors company that makes some quality products. This one has received a best seller award on various sites due to its clean and simplistic design, exceptional pricing and user response.


There is also a fully enclosed option that comes with full sidewalls with integrated windows. This is useful if a brighter interior is wanted, perhaps for use as storage and smaller vehicles.


Utilizing a 1-1/2 inch steel frame it is definitely a little cumbersome, but this isn’t a negative in terms of carports, it helps when faced strong winds. The 6 steel legs can be anchored either on concrete or soft ground and covers 200 square feet. The frame has a white powder coating that protects natural dangers like rust and corrosion, which generally happens after being outdoors extensively.


The cover is made with double Polyethylene and is UV and water resistant, preventing sunlight penetration and shouldn’t fade even with extensive use. In the case of the enclosed version, the sidewalls carry the same protective qualities as the cover. 

Set Up

An easy setup and the instructions are well laid out, although it can be quite heavy to move around when setting up. It’s collapsible and dismantles fairly easily after each use, allowing for transportation to the next event. Steel feet on each of the 6 legs, allows you to drive anchors down through to secure. Finally, the tarp cover is attached to the frame by heavy-duty bungee cords, which secure the cover tightly.

Key Features:

  • Economically Priced
  • Various Design and Size Options
  • Stable and Waterproof


11. ShelterLogic Garage In A Box

ShelterLogic Garage in a box carport review

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A new and improved version of older models, and a larger version of its predecessor the Shed In A Box Carport. The aptly named Garage In A Box remains a popular carport canopy, given its variety of features, quality materials, and various size options. Let’s take a closer look.


They include the frame and cover as expected, but also they have included a zippered door panel for front and back. The patented stabilizing blocks are also included along with an anchoring kit. The kit includes 4 x 15 inch auger anchors with 8 foot plates, which are steel and not plastic. You can anchor the augers through the feet to stabilize the car canopy. Ratchets are also included which fix the piece together tightly and securely.


Using 2 forms of patented technology. The first is the design frame, it is a patented alpine design. The purpose of this patent is to provide an easy assembly process, which becomes apparent with the easy bolt-together sections. All of the frame connections follow the same method. The second one, as seen in previous models, is the patented ShelterLock stabilizers. These are found in nearly all of the Garage-in-a-Box models and provide security during harsh winds.


With more steel to strengthen the frame and fewer connections in the set up reduces the setup time, provides a more efficient structure overall. More steel, however, equates to a heavier canopy, which is good for stability, but not so much for maneuverability.


Utilizing a Polyethylene cover which is triple-layered with RipStop fabric. It has been UV treated during manufacture so you won’t need to apply any further coating. Polyethylene is a waterproof material so you are well protected from rainfall. 


The frame is strong as a 1-3/8 inched steel, which has been coated with Dupont powdered coating, a strong protectant for steel frames. Resilient in the fight against rust and corrosion.

The design has the shell of the canopy with 6 ‘ribs’ aligning along the structure which is spaced 4 feet apart.

This separation creates a sturdy cage-style shelter, with a waterproof cover tightly fitted over the top. Perfect for covering your roof top tent while stationary or during offseason.

Note: For a more in-depth guide check out or review on the ShelterLogic Garage in a Box on our evaluation page. 

Key Features:

  • Triple Layered RipStop Cover
  • Dunpont Powdered Coating
  • Robust Rib Cage Style Framework


12. Hercules Canopy 18 x 20

King Canopy 10 x 20 Hercules Review

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One of the largest carports in our list and coming from a company named Hercules we were expecting something incredibly strong and robust, safe to say we were not disappointed. Given the dimensions, you can fit up to 2 regular sized cars beneath or one larger vehicle comfortably.

Strong Frame

It has a 2 inch 20 gauge thickness steel frame, which has additionally been powder coated. Protecting the frame from wear and tear, it will prevent rust, corrosion and also peeling and chipping. The legs are sturdy, which holds the canopy still during winds. The feet attached are plastic but surprisingly resilient, small and compact giving them more strength. A benefit of this is that they are patio friendly, not scratching up the floor.


The cover is made of Polyethylene which is pretty standard of top-quality models, with great waterproofing properties and resistance to UV. A drawstring cover is easily attached and keeps it tight on the frame. It does well against snowfall,  holding a decent amount of weight on top. However, you should clear the roof off frequently to prevent any damage.


With dimensions of 18 x 20 foot, there is huge coverage underneath. More than enough for a large truck/vehicle, it could be additionally used for events, providing shelter for large groups of people, numerous tables and chairs, etc. They do also make some other models ranging from 10 x 20 up to 18 x 27.

Key Features:

  • 20 Gauge Steel Frame
  • Tall Center Height makes it ideal for Trucks
  • Water and UV Proof


13. Rhino Shelters Canopy 22 x 24

Rhino Shelters- Car Canopy 22 x 24 feet

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Superior in strength, this 22 x 24 foot carport canopy from Rhino Shelters is so robust, it is described as an instant garage. A great choice if you’re looking for something as strong as a bricked shelter, but with the option of moving. Of course, as a steel carport it’s going to have a more demanding set up, heavier materials, pieces and a price tag to boot. 


A wide variety of choices are available in this model line, some top quality vehicle shelters for cars, trucks, SUV and even boats. The sizes range from 12 x 20 up to 30 x 30 in feet and also 3 color choices, Gray, Hunter Green and Tan. 


Made with industrial-grade steel, it is designed not to rust or corrode. The steel tubing is galvanized and employs carriage bolts that are extremely strong. Industrial grade frames like this are manufactured to be resilient during the heaviest of snow and wind speeds. The company has also issued a 10-year warranty on the frame.

Unique Roof

 One unique property in the cover, is the fire retardant membrane, this feature allows the option of grill and barbecue events. Utilizing an industrial fabric with a thickness of 22mm, it has the capability to completely block UV rays. This is supported by the black scrim that runs along the interior of the cover.


A quality anchoring kit is included and the anchors have a cable hook design which gives them versatility on ground surfaces. They have a 1200 pound pull out ratio and can be used on grass, gravel (with a drive rod) hard pack, asphalt and dirt.

Zippered Doors

With a double door design on the front and rear of the canopy, this helps to ventilate the interior, especially beneficial for those scorching summer days. Secondly, this allows you to drive straight through, you can position it so you just drive straight in the back and out through the front. No reversing is necessary. Freezing won’t be an issue as the zippers are made up of heavy duty nylon, so it will work even during winter weather.

Key Features:

  • 10 Year Frame Warranty Plus Various others
  • Industrial Grade Frame and Cover
  • 4 Season Proof


14. Shade Tree Heavy Duty Carport

Shade Tree Car Canopy 20 x 40 feet

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Both the 20 x 30 and 20 x 40 feet car canopies are best sellers and have been well received by users with positive reviews. With a galvanized steel frame it’s heavy duty but also a portable option.


A stable structure that utilizes a spring-loaded locking system that keeps the structure tight. The frame is made from 1.5 inch steel that is galvanized to prevent rust and corrosion, providing overall protection from weathering.

Cover and Sidewalls

The fabric is heavy-duty, employing a 180g polyethylene woven cover top. This is also evident on the sidewalls, offering all-round protection on the car canopy. Side winds will not be an issue when the canopy is fully enclosed. Likewise, the sun’s UV rays will not be able to penetrate through this material due to its UV protected membrane.


The sidewalls are windowed with lattice-style windows running down the side of the canopy, providing an aesthetic appearance, useful during social events. It also helps to bring some natural light inside.


With bungee balls for the canopy tie down, side and end walls for the enclosure and a set of LED lights, it’s not bad value at all. However, they do propose you get your own anchoring kit to set this up. 

Note: For the full review of the Shade Tree Carport Canopy, check out our full guide article. 

Key Features:

  • Aesthetic Lattice Style Windows
  • Galvanized Steel Frame
  • Spring Locking System


15. Bestmart INC Auto Shelter

Bestmart INC Auto Shelter Canopy

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A decent economical choice and a ‘get what you pay for’ option. If you’re looking for a waterproof shelter for your garden equipment, small automobile or motorcycles, it’s an inexpensive option that gets the job done.

Heavy Duty

Manufactured with a 1-3/8 inch steel frame it is strong and sturdy. Furthermore, the frame is protected with a powdered coating during which helps to protect the frame from natural occurrences like rust and corrosion and also from accidents like chips, scrapes and scratches.


Made with a Polyethylene fabric it is resistant to rainfall and water penetration. Also, a PU coating is applied for additional strength. The coating aids in water protection and creates a barrier on the fabric. It also protects from UV and fading which can help when left out under the sun for long periods of time.

The material is fixed drum tight to the framework, providing concealed protection and security. This is done by a ratchet title tensioning system that keeps the frame and fabric tightly fitted together.


At 10 x 10 for the smaller model, it’s not only for cars and small trucks and trailers, but they can be used also for your motorbikes and bicycles. They can also be used as bulk storage for things like wood, stone or any other gardening tools and equipment, even your petrol lawnmower for example.

Key Features:

  • Powder Coated Frame
  • Compact
  • Fully Waterproof


Frequently Asked Questions and Guide

What is a Car Canopy?

 A Car Canopy is a protective, secure, shelter for your vehicle when a bricked building is not an option. The vast majority are portable, which can be moved around, providing shelter with an easy assembly method. Others, like the industrial-grade models, are more suitable for a permanent position. However, they are all generally waterproof, UV resistant and have a variety of design styles.


What is a Car Canopy for?

They can be used for many purposes, not only for cars but also for storage, boats, SUV and trucks for example. The smaller shed like canopies can be used for smaller vehicles like motorbikes, lawnmowers, jet skis and small tractors. Also storage of equipment, boxes, natural resources like wood stocks and stone. Some enclosed models can also double as an event shelter when needed, due to the windowed and design of the side panels


How much is a Car Canopy?

The price range is vast, from roughly $150-$3000. This is due to a number of factors. Firstly it lies in the quality of design. A basic 6 legged steel stand will be on the cheaper end. As opposed to a galvanized steel frame of industrial-grade quality, ribbed frame and quality fixings will be on the higher end. Any effective, patented technology will also increase the price somewhat. The cover is either polyethylene, solid steel or polycarbonate will also affect price, steel generally being the most expensive. Lastly size, of course, increased dimensions leads to a bigger price tag. More legs, larger volume of materials and parts will boost the price all around.


How to Reinforce a Car Canopy?

Now given the importance of the car canopies, we want to take good care of them and they will, in turn, protect your property. Secondly, they aren’t exactly cheap so we want to reinforce them if possible, to give more longevity and strength for the future. The majority of issues from users, come from people who order them, pop them up and leave them outside. This is a bad idea, you should give them some additional protection, especially if the area is prone to bad weather conditions.

Okay, so how?  Let’s take a look.

We talked about anchoring above, this is crucial. I think if you make do with only what comes with the package, it can be risky.

If possible try to get a heavy duty anchoring kit to really provide better stability against winds. Additional anchors and ties never hurt, and it would be recommended.

Secondly, sidewalls, if you have an open car canopy and are storing your vehicle, know that angled sunlight and rain will penetrate. Overtime wearing down the paintwork on the vehicle, consider sidewalls to give all round protection.

If you’re not happy with the quality of your cover or sidewalls for any reason, consider adding an additional tarp over the top or using a tarp as sidewalls. A tarp floated over and tied down on the roof, can create a strong double layering, which will see off any rainfall issues. Billboard tarp is especially strong and durable, performing well for this function.

An extra coating of waterproofing and UV spray won’t hurt, for the polyethylene covers. Furthermore, coating the frames with a rust and corrosion spray every so often will work to ‘top up’ the original coating. This is a good way to keep the protection at its strongest, without diminishing.


How to Clean a Car Canopy?

Cleaning the car canopy is a pretty simple task. You can use a power hose or jet washer on the metal-roofed ones, to blast any dirt to leaves from the surface. For the polyethylene, a hose down will suffice also. If possible you can detach the cover and use a chemical friendly liquid to clean the fabric.

 Avoid any cleaning liquids that have a high bleach or acidic content, this can really mess with the protective coating that the cover is manufactured with and can leave you unprotected. Make sure to use the proper cleaning liquids for canopy materials.

Also note that if you are storing it back away after cleaning, for transport, it is imperative that it is bone dry before being put away. If damp, in time, it can grow mold and mildew which will affect the original protective coating.

If you notice or see any faults or defects upon opening, send it straight back. Defects happen with intricate frameworks from time to time and a good company will have you covered with a warranty.


Can I Attach a Portable Air Conditioner in my Car Canopy?

Absolutely, there should be more than enough hanging opportunities on the framework, failing that you can attach a loop yourself and attach it that way.

Be aware that if you are using it to heat, rather than cool, condensation may occur so proofing with an anti-fungal spray prior is a very good idea. Many canopies will come with this, but some don’t and you don’t want to find out before it’s too late, so take the necessary precautions.


Should I use a Metal or Portable Car Canopy?

Again this refers back to the intended use. But for a simple answer, we would definitely suggest using a metal rooftop for any kind of permanent and fixed shelter. The portable, Polyethylene car canopies are great, but they don’t hold a candle to the Metal car canopies in terms of stability and protection. The price difference also tells the same story. They also have a natural resistance to rust and corrosion given the industrial-grade materials that are utilized in their manufacturing.

Portable canopies are excellent as an economical choice, also if you are on the move and need the shelter for various different locations throughout the year. They have more customization options with colors, windowed sidewalls, and extremely large dimensions, giving more protective coverage, which is clear in the Shade Tree range.


Buyers Guide: How to Choose a Portable Garage?

There are numerous factors to consider when buying a car canopy, let’s look at the most important ones and what exactly to look for.


So in terms of size, we would suggest to nearly always buy oversize.

If it’s for a vehicle then you need to calculate for the vehicle doors opening and space to move around.

Buying oversize of what you need is a good model to follow, giving yourself a few feet on either side of the vehicle is ideal.

If you’re using a smaller one purely as storage, then it’s not as important.



Generally, the more temporary, portable models should have a Polyethylene cover top.

This is a waterproof and UV protected material that will serve you well.

Additional features to look for would be the thickness of the material and whether or not it employs RipStop or other similar technology in the design.

Also for the Polyethylene covers an anti-fungal or anti-aging (sunblock/fade) is ideal, but not a necessity.

Permanent car canopy models will utilize a stronger build, utilizing steel, polycarbonate and industrial grade cover tops.

These are much more resilient and have greater protection against rust and corrosion.



The more expensive, sturdier models should have a galvanized steel frame of industrial grade.

This is a sign of quality and will last a very long time, usually outlasting the covers for many years.

Quality portable models will also have a steel frame that has been protected with a coating.

They will normally show the gauge number of steel to show its density and thickness value.


Powdered Coating

Every car canopy on our list has powdered coating applied during the manufacturing process.

The reason being, it’s so crucial, without it the frame will succumb to detrimental natural occurrences, resulting in a frame with diminishing quality.

Peeling, chipping, rust, corrosion are just a few of the dangers that occur naturally without protection.

Make sure this is on the frame, sprayed on, baked on, whichever, as long as it’s there it will make all the difference.



Normally a given, but still worth a check. If they have a hydrostatic rating, all the better, however, we haven’t seen much of these in regards to car canopies.

You will be safe with anything metal/steel and for temporary Polyethylene will suffice.

Additional protection is definitely a suggested option with the Poly covers if this is a concern, or if you live in an area that has persistent rainfall.

Likewise, they will have UV protection, although some will have a fade blocker for better longevity against the sun and also for a really cool feature, black scrim or coat on the inside of the fabric.

This offers 2 sided protection and the rays will be unable to penetrate both sides.


Fully Enclosed

Now, this depends also on what you will use it for.

But if you do need a fully enclosed car canopy, look for one that has all the sides included.

It’s much simpler to buy as one and they will all be designed to be used together, as opposed to buying separate branded sides that may not have the best compatibility.

Any ratchet system is great, this will keep the fabric tightly hugging the frame.

Secondly, make sure the sidewalls are made of the same fabric as the cover, we want the same protection all round as we do on the top, stopping morning/evening rays again our sidewalls.


Windowed or Solid

The next thing to consider is windowed or solid sidewalls.

Again this is dependent on the purpose of use.

Windowed will let the sun in, resulting in an increased temperature internally, while solid will do a better job of providing an enclosed space with no penetrating sunlight.

Another thing to consider is privacy, if you wish to hide your vehicle or storage, solid will do this a lot better, giving more security.

If your canopy is doubling as an event canopy, then windowed might be your better choice.



Interestingly doors directly relate to positioning.

If you are positioning the car canopy up against a wall or building, which helps against winds, then a large front door should be fine.

However, if you are positioning it more openly and you are using an enclosed canopy, then the front and rear doors might be a good idea.

This is because it enables a drive-through function, making it much easier to drive in and out, no reversing needed.

The other thing to look for regarding the doors is are they zippered or just pull overs.

A zippered door is stronger and offers a tighter fit as a whole, making it more compact.

It also adds to security as you can pop a padlock through the zipper to add some kind of protection.

Heavy duty nylon zippers are very good for this method and will endure rugged use.



If you are looking to protect something of high value, a luxury car, SUV or boat, for example, you may consider the garage style or retractable models.

The garage-style canopies have a much stronger steel frame with industrial grade covers that fit tightly to the ground with a ratchet system. You can lock the front.

The best kind for security is the retractable style, these completely cover the vehicle and lock tightly down to the ground.

With a steel rim running along the sides at ground level, they offer the best protection, when considering theft.



Usually in 2 designs, plastic and steel.

They both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Initially, you may consider the steel as the better choice but again think about where you will be using it.

If it’s any kind of event/show or if it is positioned on a beautiful patio, this could some nasty damage to the surface. In which case plastic feet would be more suitable.

If you’re on a suitable ground surface and you want the strongest stability, steel-plated feet are the ones to go for.

For both plastic and steel, what they both need is anchor spaces. Gaps to drive the anchors down through the feet to fix and stabilize the canopy in position.


Temporary or Permanent

Now first let’s understand that ‘temporary’ doesn’t mean it won’t last long, it’s just an opposite term used to permanent.

What it’s really referring to is being in a position ‘temporarily’, meaning ‘portable.

Not referring to the longevity of the product.

The permanent ones will mean it will be fixed in a position and not be moved at any time.

These are generally much more robust as they have been designed without focusing on assembly and dismantling ease.

Permanent car canopies have the benefit of disregarding portability, an easy set up process and weight restrictions.

For this reason, the manufacturers can focus on using industrial grade materials, thicker steel frames and in some cases, larger dimensions.

Portable/Temporary car canopies have been designed in a way to be more lightweight, quick to set up and serve a variety of additional functions.

They can be used as showpieces at events, car shelters or be used for a wedding party outdoors. Whatever the case may be, they can be moved around when needed, for portable protection.

Some are easier to move and pitch than others so pay attention to the design.

The simpler the better if you plan to be on the move frequently.


Roof Shape

In regard to the roof, they generally come in 3 different design shapes.

Rounded, peaked and flat.

We like the peaked roof designs, basically because it has a natural run off for rain fall and won’t collect snow as much as the other 2.

Rounded is also good with a natural run off for rain, however, if it is not tightly wrapped around the frame then it may collect and bow.

Being tight is key for rounded roofs.

Flat roofs should only be used if you have a permanent canopy in place, we don’t recommend this for portable use, and the polyethylene covers will not fare well with a flat roof design.

If you do use a patio cover carport as your car shelter, then flat roof can work well, as they will tend to use steel or polycarbonate rooftops, which is incredibly strong, resilient and easy to clean.

They have the ability to hold snow due to their strength and the rainfall won’t be an issue as they are usually slightly angled with a gutter flow off.



Always check for a warranty, especially products of this price.

A lot of companies get negative reviews due to broken pieces on delivery.

This doesn’t mean the model or company is crap, this happens from time to time with any company, it’s a manufacturing occurrence.

What you really want to keep an eye out for is specific negative reviews and see if that specific point has been echoed elsewhere, if it has, then this could be a legit issue with the model.

This is one of the many ways we can cross-reference our own experiences with these models.

Just make sure you are covered with a warranty for cover and frame.

Good companies who have confidence in their products will offer a substantial frame warranty, so look out for this for extensive cover.



Does the canopy come with an anchor set and is it a quality set.

If we are forking out hundreds or thousands on a car canopy, we need to make sure the anchoring kit is of equivalent quality.

On some of the temporary canopies, the free anchor kits are definitely worth a check and often will need replacing with a quality kit, especially for tougher ground surfaces.

Likewise, if you intend to be up against strong winds, additional anchors and lines will be a great idea. We discuss more in our FAQ about anchoring and reinforcing your canopy.



As you may have seen car canopies vary significantly in price.

This all comes down to what exactly you are protecting and what you intend to use it for.

If it’s simply for an area of land beside the home and you plan to store your lawnmower and bikes in there or perhaps it’s for a run of events, then you don’t need to be splurging out thousands on a robust car shelter.

A modest polyethylene canopy around $300-$500 may suffice and be perfect for the job.

But in another scenario, you have spent thousands restoring an old boat, putting a luxury car on show or need a permanent shelter for a few vehicles, then you need to think about in terms of investment.

A canopy that will be fixed in place, with materials that are known to withstand weathering for 10 years or more with ease.

Protecting assets of $20-$100k, you can see why a $500 canopy just doesn’t cut it.

This is your decision to calculate and decide, how much money is it worth to protect what you intend to protect.


How to Assemble a Car Canopy?

We will run through how to set up a basic 10 x 20 Car Canopy, these are the most commonly used dimensions. For the specific canopies like the retractable, garage in a box and metal canopies, please consult their set up manuals.

Useful tools: Wrench/Spanner, Spirit Level, Tape Measure, Bungee Balls, Anchor Kit


1: Positioning the Top Cover

After unpacking, position all the parts and pieces for the cover out on the ground. Position, in the same way, it’s meant to be put together, ready for assembly. Take note to position the 4-way junction fittings in the middle of the canopy and the 3-way junction fitting on the ends of the canopy. When you feel this is done, double-check on the instruction manual to be sure, then move on to step 2.


2: Top Assembly

There will be 2 methods to do this, depending on the design of the car canopy. Some may be push-fit, in which case you just pop all the fittings together as it has been laid out. Refrain from using any glue or adhesive to reinforce. The other method will be nuts and bolts, so in this case, you will need to use a wrench/spinner to tighten the bolts into place. Turn until its fixed, then an extra little nib for tightness will be enough, don’t overdo it, we want to be able to take it down again later.


3: Cover or Tarp Assembly

With the top section ready it is now time to attach the tarp or polyethylene cover. Float the tarp over the top structure with all 4 corners meeting together, fabric to the frame. This is where the ball bungees come into play. Use the bungee to secure the cover down to the frame, looping the balls through the cover then back through themselves, to create a knot, pull to tighten. Then do this around the entire frame to secure the tarp in place.


4: Leg Assembly

The 10 x 20 feet car canopies will usually have around 6 legs in total, rarely do they have 8 for these dimensions, but it’s not impossible. Assembling the legs correctly is crucial to a stable and level frame. The legs should pop into place if its push fit. If they need to be screwed into place, you may find a steel cross bar running under the frame, with ports to fit the legs into.


5: Securing Legs

After you have positioned all the legs correctly in place, underneath the top frame. Push them into their portholes and secure them with the designated bolts or screws. Now use the spirit level to check the frame is level before and after tightening, you may need to adjust the ground in certain areas to ensure the whole canopy is completely level.

This is a particularly simple set up, usually for the cheaper, more portable models that focus on a quick and lightweight set up. You can expect a more demanding set up from the more robust models.


How to Anchor a Car Canopy?

Let’s divide this up into 2 sections. There is really a huge amount of possible surfaces including concrete, asphalt, dirt, hardpack, grass, gravel with drive rod and more. We will simplify it to concrete and dirt (hard and soft).

Anchoring is absolutely key to the longevity of your Car Canopy and it’s imperative that it is anchored securely and effectively. There are many different ways to anchor a car canopy, the reason being the vast variety of ground surfaces and also styles of the canopy. Some will simply be anchored through their feet, others will have base rails that require a bit more attention during the anchoring process. But we are here to guide you through it.


How to Anchor a Car Canopy into Dirt or Soft Ground?

Even with the big metal models or a weighty portable car canopy, they all still need anchoring to stop from falling over in the wind and causing damage to your property. If there is no foundation you will need to anchor and they should be included in the car canopy purchase. However, if they aren’t, it’s crucial that you pick up an Anchoring Kit, preferably a heavy duty one.

You can also buy specifically Earth Drive anchors, which are usually found in your local hardware stores etc. They are designed with ‘ribs’ which are spaced up the shaft of the drive, these are to stop the anchors from being pulled out the ground, acting as a blocker or stopper. Extremely efficient during high wind speeds and is recommended. 

If you own something a bit more robust, perhaps a metal car canopy here is a step by step guide to anchor that one into dirt. 

For the portable ones we normally drill through the steel/plastic feet to anchor, as opposed to a base rail. Nevertheless, it may prove helpful for methodology purposes.


How to anchor in dirt step by step:

1: Base Rail

Grab the base rail on the frame and locate the holes that are positioned there. These holes are designed for the anchors, this will be your anchoring point on the frame. There are usually around 3-4 holes in general, running around the frame of the car canopy.

2: Drill

Now we need to do some drilling and bore out the holes a bit more, to make way for the anchor shafts. For this step you can use a Hole Saw kit and remember to use a drill bit roughly the same size as the bottom part of the anchor, this will allow the anchor to slide all the way through as it increases in diameter like a cone.

3: Insertion

Now it’s time to position the anchors through those beautifully drilled holes you’ve just worked on. Insert the earth drives from above, so that the bottom of the anchor goes through head first, touching the ground surface on the other side.

4: Hammer-time

Its hammer time, with your most trusted sledgehammer and even more trusted friend, hold the anchor straight and knock it into the ground. Be careful and make sure you drive it directly down, as straight as possible. Keep hitting the anchor until the head touches the base rail, refrain from hammering it hard when it’s touching the base rail.

5: Rinse and Repeat

Now all you need to do is move to the next port hole that you’ve drilled and hammer the anchors down through in the same fashion. Once all anchors have been driven through, voila, your car canopy is secure as houses and you can rest easy in high winds.


How to Anchor a Car Canopy into Concrete or Hard Ground?

I know to anchor into concrete may feel like a daunting task. However, it’s really not so bad with the modern designs of car canopies and the great tools available, it’s a breeze.

When considering anchoring into the hard ground there are a few basic ways to approach this.

If you plan to mount it to a concrete pad for example, then you will want to get hold of some Concrete Wedge Anchors.

If it’s taking pride of place on a hard pack or gravel surface, then we suggest using a 30 Inch Rebar Anchor to complete the most effective anchoring.

Again we are going to keep the following step by step tutorial basic, to cover the majority of car canopies out there. You can follow if it’s compatible with your car canopy, or simply learn a bit more about the whole process in general. 


How to Dig Holes when Anchoring your Car Canopy

1: Marking

The first step is a simple, yet important one, especially in terms of positioning. Firstly you will need to mark exactly where the base rails and holes for the anchors will be positioned, on the ground itself.

2: Digging

Now you have your hole locations marked up, it’s time to dig. You want to aim to dig a hole for each marking, in the range of 7-8 inches in diameter for each hole. Be consistent with your dimensions and hole sizes for the best effect. Regards the depth of the hole, this will really depend on a few factors.

Firstly the earth type in your area, if you’re hit with tough clay as you dig, you may want to call it a day there and use that as a level guide.

Secondly is the length of your anchors, if you have extra-long ones, then you will need to dig deeper accordingly. Remember you want the head of the anchor to touch the base rail, regardless of anchor length.

Lastly is the strength of windows that you usually deal within your area, if it’s strong winds, then buy longer anchors. If it’s moderate weather, standard anchor size will suffice.


Step by Step to Concrete Anchoring

  1. Start off with acquiring a drill and remember to use a Masonry Bit to drill with, a wood bit will shred to pieces trying to drill through concrete
  2. Next, you want to position the metal base plate in correctly. Use a marker to mark the position of the hole in the center of the base plate, this is to help guide us during the drilling.
  3. Now you can start with the drilling, get the drill with masonry bit attachment and being to drill a hole directly down through the marking. Around 3-4 inches in depth should be sufficient for a standard-sized bolt.
  4. When the hole is drilled you can now drop the brand bolt into the drilled hole and tighten it up accordingly.
  5. After this, you can put the post base over it and secure it with the nut and bolt. Do remember to use a washer for this, it will help secure more effectively.
  6. Lastly you can position the standoff metal and the wooden post can be installed as well, after these 2 have been done you can simply leave it to let the concrete settle overnight.



How to Anchor with Versatube anchors?

Another way to anchor on concrete is to use Versatube Ground Anchors, let’s take a quick look at the process involved.

  1. Start by positioning the base rails side-up and insert a Versatube anchor in each of the anchor port holes, which are located in the base rails.
  2. While you are positioning the base rails over the markings you can drop the anchors down into each porthole accordingly. Paying attention to position and dimensions in the process.
  3. You can now start to drive the anchors down through their port holes, being careful the base rails aren’t jumping out of position in the process.
  4. After this is done you can fill earth into the holes and pat it down compactly and leave the concrete to set overnight.


User Trends for Anchoring

People have been known to set the anchors in plastic buckets then fill the buckets with concrete. Also burying the buckets into the ground to create a solid surface on soft ground.

The issue with this is in time the buckets can break, which may also give way to the concrete, in time. However, there are steps you can take to reinforce the buckets.



In conclusion, carport canopies are an excellent shelter if you need to protect your vehicle, stock, boat, truck, show car or even in some cases, hold large social events.

The price range is vast, as are the features and functions, giving a huge choice for finding the right fit for your vehicle.

We hope this helped in choosing the best model for you, however, if you are still unsure and would like to learn more, you can consult our buyers guide here.

If you’re looking for something slightly less exorbitant in appearance, size and not to mention price, check out our pop up canopy guide here, it could be the alternative you are looking for if nothing caught your eye here.

If you have any questions email us on the contact us page or drop a comment below.

Until next time, 

Happy Camping!


Resources and Sources:

Anchoring into concrete



Tyler is our editor-in-chief at the Tent Hub. He is a dedicated backcountry explorer and a trained Wilderness First Responder. Tyler has hiked every mountain range in the US and summited Highpoints in several US states as well as Germany. His favorite outdoor destinations are the Canadian Rockies, the Black Hills of South Dakota, Mt. Tongariro in New Zealand, and the San Juan Region of Colorado.

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