Exploring the Distinctions: Boxed Eave vs. Vertical Carports

by | Jan 3, 2024

Carports stand as protective shields for vehicles and versatile shelters for various purposes. The choice of roof style significantly impacts their functionality, durability, and visual appeal. Among the variety of carport roof designs, two popular styles, the boxed eave, and vertical roofs, stand out with their unique characteristics and suitability for different conditions.

Car parked under the carport

Understanding Carport Roofs

Carports typically offer three main roof styles: regular, boxed eave, and vertical. Each type presents distinct features catering to specific needs and weather conditions.

Boxed Eave Carports: Functionality Meets Aesthetics

Boxed eave carports present a popular roof style known for its fusion of functionality and visual appeal. Resembling a traditional A-frame structure, these carports stand out due to their angled joint between the roof and supporting struts, creating an overhang at the edges that enhances their overall aesthetics.

Design Characteristics

The defining feature of boxed eave carports lies in the angled joint that runs between the roof and supporting elements. This joint creates an appealing overhang, lending a traditional and classic look to the structure. The horizontal ridges, while adding to its visual appeal, can pose a slight concern regarding the accumulation of snow or debris.

Aesthetic Appeal

The traditional A-frame design of boxed eave carports harmonizes well with various architectural styles. This design aspect makes them an attractive addition to residential properties, blending seamlessly with the aesthetics of homes and landscapes. The overhang created by the angled joint adds a touch of sophistication and can offer some protection from the elements.

Functionality and Cost-Effectiveness

One of the primary advantages of boxed eave carports is their cost-effectiveness compared to other styles. They strike a balance between aesthetics and affordability, making them an appealing choice for those seeking both visual appeal and practicality within a budget.

Considerations: Snow and Debris Accumulation

While boxed eave carports offer several advantages, their horizontal ridges might pose a concern in regions experiencing heavy snowfall or where debris accumulation is common. The design could potentially allow snow or debris to gather on the roof, necessitating periodic maintenance to ensure optimal functionality.

Mossy roof tiles

Decoding Vertical Carports: Superior Efficiency in Runoff and Strength

Vertical carports present a distinct roof style where roof panels run seamlessly from the top to the eaves, setting them apart from other designs. Their unique design elements cater to efficient water and snow runoff, making them a prime choice for regions characterized by heavy precipitation.

Design Features

The hallmark feature of vertical carports lies in their design orientation, with roof panels running vertically from the ridge to the eaves. This vertical configuration ensures that water, snow, or debris effortlessly slides off the roof, preventing accumulation issues common in other roof styles.

Efficient Water and Snow Runoff

Vertical ridges play a pivotal role in facilitating efficient runoff of water and snow, making these carports ideal for areas experiencing heavy precipitation. The vertical orientation of the panels allows precipitation to cascade off the roof, minimizing the risk of buildup that could potentially lead to structural issues.

Enhanced Structural Strength

A key strength of vertical carports lies in their robust design. Metal cross braces, integrated into the structure to support the vertical roof panels, add significant strength and durability. This reinforced construction ensures the stability of the carport, making it better equipped to withstand various weather conditions.

Considerations: Cost and Construction Complexity

While vertical carports offer superior efficiency in runoff and structural strength, their construction complexity and additional materials, particularly the metal cross braces, contribute to higher costs compared to other roof styles. This increased cost is an investment in enhanced durability and longevity, making them suitable for areas with harsh weather conditions.

Comparative Analysis

Comparing these styles reveals distinctive structural variations and weather suitability. The boxed eave carport, visually appealing and suitable for moderate weather, contrasts with the vertical carport, offering superior durability and efficiency in handling heavy precipitation and extreme weather conditions.

Factors Influencing Choice

Considerations such as budget, regional weather patterns, and aligning with property aesthetics impact the choice between boxed eave and vertical carports. While the boxed eave suits moderate climates and budget-conscious consumers, the vertical style caters to areas with heavy snowfall or rain, prioritizing durability over cost.

Usage Beyond Vehicle Protection

Beyond vehicle shelter, carports find versatile applications in various settings like covered walkways, canopies, athletic shelters, and more. Understanding their multifunctional nature helps in choosing the most suitable design for specific purposes.

Customization and Personalization

Both boxed eave and vertical carports offer customization opportunities in materials, colors, and styles, allowing individuals to align the structure with their preferences and property aesthetics.

Certifications and Regulations

Carport installations, like any construction project, are subject to a range of building regulations and codes established by local, regional, or national authorities. Compliance with these regulations is imperative to ensure structural integrity, safety, and the legality of the structure.

Understanding Certifications

Certifications often involve assessments and verifications conducted by licensed professionals or authorized agencies. These certifications may include:

  1. Roof Certification: Roof certification is issued by licensed roofing contractors, it certifies that the installed roof meets specific standards, ensuring it functions as designed for a designated period. However, it may not always guarantee a roof warranty for all conditions.
  2. Structural Certifications: Ensure that the entire carport structure complies with safety and structural integrity standards set by relevant authorities.

Influence on Carport Roof Styles

Certifications play a pivotal role in determining the suitability of different carport roof styles. Compliance with regulations influences the choice between boxed eave and vertical carports:

  1. Regional Building Codes: Different regions have varying building codes and requirements. For instance, areas prone to heavy snowfall might mandate structures capable of withstanding significant snow loads. Vertical carports, with their efficient snow runoff design, might be more compliant in such areas.
  2. Certified Structural Strength: Certain certifications might require a specific level of structural integrity. Vertical carports, known for their reinforced design and superior strength due to metal cross braces, could align better with stringent certification requirements.
  3. Permitting Procedures: Building permits are often contingent upon adherence to building codes. In many cases, the type of carport roof chosen might impact the ease of obtaining permits. Meeting regulatory standards for the chosen roof style is crucial for smooth permitting processes.


In summary, the differences between boxed eave and vertical carports lie in their structural design, weather suitability, and cost considerations. Choosing between them demands a thorough assessment of individual needs, budget, and regional weather patterns.

For expert guidance in selecting your ideal carport, reach out to Best in the West Construction.

Closing Thoughts

Selecting the right carport roof style, whether boxed eave or vertical, entails weighing the pros and cons carefully. By considering individual preferences, property aesthetics, and weather conditions, one can make a prudent choice for long-term benefits.