6 Best Portable Garages to Protect Your Vehicle (and Yourself)

Don’t have a residential garage and looking for a way to protect your car from the bad weather and a (kinda) comfortable place to work during winter? A portable garage is all this and even more!

How to EMP Proof Your Car
How to EMP Proof Your Car
EDITOR’S PICK
Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport
Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport
  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure
  • Size: 10′ W x 20′ L x 9.4′ H
  • Wall height: 6.6′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.5″ (38mm)
  • Cover material: 180g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall with mesh windows
  • Color: beige, gray
  • 2-year warranty
PREMIUM PICK
ShelterLogic Arrow Carport
ShelterLogic Arrow Carport
  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure (sold separately)
  • Size: 12′ W x 20′ L x 8.5′ H
  • Wall height: 7′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Galvanized steel roof
  • Tube diameter: 2.0″ (51mm)
  • Cover material: 213g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall
  • Color: Eggshell, Charcoal
  • 10-year warranty
BUDGET PICK
Aleko Heavy Duty Outdoor Carport Tent
Aleko Heavy Duty Outdoor Carport Tent
  • Setup: canopy only or full enclosure
  • Dimension: 10′ W x 20′ L x 8.6′ H
  • Wall height: 6.5′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.5″ (38mm)
  • Cover material: 160g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall
  • Color: beige, gray, white
  • 1-year warranty

Is it okay to park your car outside? The swift answer to that question is most certainly yes. After all, the outdoors is essentially their natural habitat. They’re designed to be weatherproof, and a rain shower or two isn’t going to hurt.

However, in the long run, the elements will start to take a toll on your beloved vehicle. For instance, sunny days will cause paint to fade, and dust will eventually leave tiny scratches on the surface. Not to mention, acid rain, stagnant snow, and tree leaves may lead to premature rust, while bird poop will definitely ruin the paint. There are numerous other examples of how nature may hurt the look of your car; so to avoid those altogether, why not protect your vehicle with a portable garage?

A portable garage/carport is a temporary outdoor structure, usually a steel frame with a fabric cover. Think of it as a tent for your car that you can assemble or disassemble at will. Moreover, not only will it protect your vehicle from bad weather, but it’ll also provide you with extra storage space and a place to work on your car somewhat comfortably if you don’t have a proper residential garage (of course, you might need a decent garage heater if you live in a cold climate but it’s a lot better than nothing).

Of course, a portable garage can also be used for several other applications — trust me; once you have one, you’ll never want to go back. To help you find the right one for your specific needs and budget, we have curated and reviewed the best portable garages you can buy today, including everything you know about each of them, their pros and cons, and a complete buying guide to make sure you are satisfied with your investment.

Enjoy!

Portable Garage Reviews

1. Aleko Heavy Duty Outdoor Carport Tent – Budget Pick

Aleko Heavy Duty Outdoor Carport Tent

Famous for providing affordable outdoor solutions since 2005, Aleko makes some of the best portable garages for the money. And despite being a budget-friendly option, you’re still getting plenty of features you’ll find on some of the higher-end units, including a rustproof steel framework with thick tubes and UV-resistant fabric roof and walls.

Interestingly, you can assemble it as either a canopy-only or full-enclosure unit, increasing its versatility — if you only use it to shelter your car during winter, for instance, nothing prevents you from mounting it in your backyard during summer and use it during your next barbecue party.

Moreover, it comes with complete installation hardware, and you don’t have to worry about the wind blowing it away from your driveway since the kit also includes sturdy anchors. And although the absence of windows might be a bit of a bummer as it might trap moisture inside, this portable carport still delivers robustness and versatility in an affordable package. But after all, you can expect this model to come with all the bells and whistles of a more premium model at this price.

Aleko offers this carport tent in plenty of color options to suit your taste, including beige, gray, or white. And while most people who seek to store one vehicle may be just fine with the 10 x 20 ft. size, smaller and larger size variations are available, too.

Thus, if you’re looking for a budget portable garage with excellent value for money and safe for year-round use, the Aleko Carport Tent should sit quite near the top of your list.

Key Features

  • Setup: canopy only or full enclosure
  • Dimension: 10′ W x 20′ L x 8.6′ H
  • Wall height: 6.5′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.5″ (38mm)
  • Cover material: 160g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall
  • Color: beige, gray, white
  • 1-year warranty

Pros

  • Pretty affordable
  • Fairly robust and versatile for the price
  • Available in multiple sizes
  • Many color options

Cons

  • No windows

2. ShelterLogic AutoShelter

ShelterLogic AutoShelter

After 70 years in the industry, ShelterLogic is an expert at making outdoor shade and shelter products, including its AutoShelter Instant Garage lineup, a compact portable garage aimed at those seeking an affordable and easy-to-setup unit.

Worth mentioning, you can only build the AutoShelter as a full-enclosure unit, which should be fine if you want to shelter your car from the snow and sun rays. However, you do lose the flexibility that a canopy-only setup brings, such as hosting several outdoor activities.

Despite that, assembling and disassembling this portable garage is straightforward, as the built-in cover fits the frame structure instantly without having to deal with zippers and latches, significantly reducing the installation time. Hence, it’s especially well suited for occasional use, like during snowy or rainy seasons only, or if you frequently need to move it around.

The rigid frame is built from powder-coated steel, and the cover material is a waterproof polyethylene fabric, complete with UV protection. And although I wish the tube diameter was slightly thicker, it still comes with an anchor kit, ensuring it stays on the ground even on windy days.

Overall, the ShelterLogic AutoShelter is perfect for those looking for a compact and affordable portable carport with an easy setup process, especially if you can settle with the full-enclosure setup.

Key Features

  • Setup: full enclosure
  • Size: 10′ W x 15′ L x 8′ H
  • Wall height: 6.4′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.34″ (34mm)
  • Cover material: 156g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Color: sandstone
  • 1-year warranty

Pros

  • Straightforward setup
  • Incredibly compact and portable
  • Fairly priced
  • Available in a larger 10′ x 20′ size

Cons

  • Thinnest frame poles on the list
  • Can’t be set up as a canopy-only unit
  • No windows

3. Quictent Car Shelter with Windows

Quictent Car Shelter with Windows

If you are looking for a model with windows, look for this one instead. The Quictent Car Shelter is reasonably priced for a versatile portable garage and is equipped with large windows, which is especially interesting if you frequently work in there.

Moreover, you can also set it up as either a canopy-only or full-enclosure unit and choose which side you want to put the wall cover on. Hence, combined with its 10 x 20 ft. size, this tent is perfect for a carport, a closed storage unit, a shaded patio, or even for a small workshop.

The large front and rear panels also provide excellent ventilation, reducing condensation and the humidity level in summer while the windows are a neat addition. Although garages don’t technically need windows, it’s still nice to have a bit of natural light, especially if you are working on your project car (no matter how good is your work light, there is no such thing as “too much light” when working on a car).

Although the installation process is a bit trickier than the previous models, this portable carport is made of much thicker steel for the frame and polyethylene fabric for the cover. As a result, it will last significantly longer, and just in case, the manufacturer offers a 1-year warranty for the frame and cover, plus a lifetime warranty for the small bits that ties them together, such as connectors, pegs, and ropes — an excellent deal!

So if you’re looking for a versatile portable garage with windows that won’t break the bank, the Quictent Car Shelter with Windows is a strong candidate.

Key Features

  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure
  • Size: 10′ W x 20′ L x 9.1′ H
  • Wall height: 6.5′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.5″ (38mm)
  • Cover material: 160g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall with plastic windows
  • Color: beige, white
  • 1-year warranty for covers and frame, lifetime warranty for connectors, pegs, and ropes

Pros

  • Plenty of large windows
  • Reasonably priced
  • Thick roof material
  • Advantageous warranty

Cons

  • Installation could be simpler
  • Lack of darker color options

4. Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport – Editor’s Pick

Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport

The Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport deserves our Editor’s Pick title for its spaciousness, ruggedness, and reasonable price. The steel frame is on the thicker side at 1.5 inches, and the 180g polyethylene fabric used for the cover is highly resistant to wear and tear, waterproof, and UV-proof — what’s not to like?

While Qomotop doesn’t offer multiple sizes, the 10 x 20 ft. footprint is large enough for any kind of vehicle. The walls are also decently high, and the roof’s highest point is 9.4 ft. from the ground. Hence you can rely on its spaciousness to park even a tall truck or SUV inside.

Also worth mentioning, if the lack of ventilation in the previous models was a problem for you, you’ll be happy to hear that this one is equipped with mesh windows. Of course, depending on where you live, that might be a pro or a con — if you live in a cold climate and want to protect your car (and yourself when working on it) from the snow, rain, and heavy wind, this model won’t be of much help here. Still, if you work in there during the summer, you’ll surely appreciate the extra vents.

Moreover, it also comes with complete installation hardware, an anchor kit, and an excellent 2-year warranty. And just like the previous product, the windowed sidewalls are attachable individually, making this model suitable for a wide range of applications.

In short, if you want a versatile heavy-duty portable garage with a spacious interior, good ventilation, and a reasonable price, the Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport is definitely one of your best options.

Key Features

  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure
  • Size: 10′ W x 20′ L x 9.4′ H
  • Wall height: 6.6′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.5″ (38mm)
  • Cover material: 180g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall with mesh windows
  • Color: beige, gray
  • 2-year warranty

Pros

  • Rugged construction
  • 180g polyethylene fabric is incredibly resistant
  • Well-ventilated
  • Generous warranty

Cons

  • Setup time is longer than average

5. Advance Outdoor Heavy Duty Carport

Advance Outdoor Heavy Duty Carport

The Advance Outdoor Heavy Duty Carport has a nice trick up its sleeve. At first glance, it may look like a regular 10 x 20 ft. portable garage with large windows on the side. However, the eight-adjustable walls let you adjust the total height between 9.5 and 11 ft., depending on your needs — perfect if you plan to store tall items like a box truck, garage equipment or a boat.

Aside from being the tallest portable garage of the bunch, the thicker-than-standard 1.65 inches steel frame and polyethylene fabric cover will make sure to protect whatever you might want to store in there for years to come. Oh, and the presence of large windows is also not to neglect, but don’t provide ventilation as the previous model — just regular plastic windows here. However, like the previous product, you can choose which sidewall cover you want to install, making it suitable to be used for outdoor activities or when working on your car in the scorching heat.

Still, it’s important to keep in mind that the height-adjustable roof and higher overall quality also mean a higher price tag. Nonetheless, if you want a top-notch portable garage slightly higher than most and providing somewhat of a more premium feel, the Advance Outdoor Heavy Duty Carport is what you need!

Key Features

  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure
  • Size: 10′ W x 20′ L x 9.5-11′ H
  • Wall height: 6.5-8′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Tube diameter: 1.65″ (42mm)
  • Cover material: 183g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall with windows
  • Color: beige, white
  • 1-year warranty

Pros

  • Adjustable height
  • Robust construction
  • Thicker frame poles
  • Premium quality materials

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • More color options would be appreciated

6. ShelterLogic Arrow Carport – Premium Pick

If you’re looking for a portable carport with a similar ruggedness to a permanent garage, the ShelterLogic Arrow packs plenty of muscles. The second ShelterLogic product on this list has plenty of attractive features for those who want to set and forget their carport. Of course, this one is that “portable” anymore but it can still be disassembled and re-assembled elsewhere so, yeah, it’s still a “portable garage”.

Thanks to the 2″ tubes and super sturdy galvanized steel roof, it’s officially rated to withstand a wind speed of up to 100 mph and a snow pressure of up to 35 PSF — if you aren’t sure of what that means, let’s just say it’s really really solid lol.

However, it’s important to mention that this model is actually made of two units: a canopy and an enclosure kit, both sold separately. When adding the cost of the two, it’s definitely not what I would call a budget-friendly model. On the other hand, the premium price tag does bring several benefits, including a thick polyethylene fabric that’s rugged and secure and the most generous warranty on this list, covering up to ten years.

Regardless, if you are looking for the most heavy-duty (somewhat) portable garage out there and won’t settle for anything less than the best money can buy, this is the one!

Key Features

  • Setup: canopy only and full enclosure (sold separately)
  • Size: 12′ W x 20′ L x 8.5′ H
  • Wall height: 7′
  • Framework: powder-coated steel
  • Galvanized steel roof
  • Tube diameter: 2.0″ (51mm)
  • Cover material: 213g polyethylene fabric
  • UV protection
  • Removable sidewall
  • Color: Eggshell, Charcoal
  • 10-year warranty

Pros

  • Premium build
  • Galvanized steel roof is a must
  • Thicker fabric material of the list
  • Available in multiple sizes
  • Outstanding warranty
  • As premium as it gets

Cons

  • Premium price
  • More complex installation
  • Enclosure kit is not included and sold separately
  • Not that “portable” anymore
Tan portable garage with lawnmower

Buying Guide: What to Consider When Choosing the Best Portable Garage

Setup – Canopy Only vs. Full Enclosure

Portable garages are available in two different setups — single overhead canopy and full enclosure — each with its own sets of advantages and drawbacks.

A canopy configuration is cheaper, featuring just a single overhead canopy with naked supporting poles. This setup protects your car from sunlight, falling branches, and light rain showers. However, while it’s suitable for outdoor activities, it doesn’t really make a proper storage space for your garage equipment. Also, your vehicle will still be exposed to harsh elements such as wind, dust, snow, or heavy rain.

Meanwhile, a full-enclosure configuration fully covers the tent’s top, sides, front, and back, creating a proper enclosed room or area. Usually, the walls are canvas, with zips for your opening/closing access. Besides, although it’s a tad more expensive and less portable than the canopy-only setup, this one will do a much better job at protecting your car from all sorts of weather and those can actually be used as storage units, too.

Nonetheless, some portable garages (including most models featured above) can be built as both a canopy-only or full-enclosure unit, basically just removing the side panels at will. Obviously, carports with such features are more versatile, and you can have the best of both worlds. But keep in mind the potentially higher price tag and the slightly more time-consuming installation.

Size

The right size for you will depend on several factors, including how large your vehicle and your driveway are. And even if you aren’t using it to park a car, think about what you’ll utilize it for and make sure it fits.

If you want to park your vehicles inside, note how many cars you desire to park there and ensure it will accommodate them comfortably. You should also verify whether you can easily get in/out of the vehicles with the provided space. The most common size, suitable for most vehicle types and driveways. is 10 x 20 ft., and should suit even the longest pickups. Still, it never hurts to double-check before finalizing your purchase.

Also, you should mind the height if you want to park something like a big truck, van, or even a boat. Make sure you’re not referring to the tallest point of the roof, as it will most likely be sloped. Instead, always look for the height of the walls or steel post on the front entrance for a more accurate reference — the total height of the highest point doesn’t really matter if your truck doesn’t fit in the doorway.

Material

The typical materials you’ll find in a portable garage are fabric canvas for the cover and steel for the frame poles. Thick canvas like polyurethane or polyethylene is the best of its kind since these materials are durable, weatherproof, and provide decent UV protection, so your car and whatever you store inside is protected from sun rays (otherwise, you’ll need to use a proper car cover to prevent your car’s paint from fading).

Frame-wise, try to settle with powder-coated steel providing rust protection for better longevity. You should also focus on the overall pole thickness (diameter), as thicker poles translate to better stability when facing strong winds. Preferably, you want to go with at least 1.5-inch (38mm) tubes if you plan to use the tent year-round.

Floor Surface

For a more stable overall structure, you’ll have to secure the garage’s frame by anchoring it to the ground. So make sure to take a good look at your driveway’s surface (or the floor where you plan to assemble it on) before starting the assembly.

Most built-in anchor kits should let you do this with ease, without any additional tools, if you anchor it to the soft and grassy ground. However, not all units come with an anchor kit that supports harder surfaces like concrete or asphalt. So, in that case, you may need a couple of extra tools, such as a concrete drill and bolts to plant the chain, or even weigh it down manually with something heavy.

Assembly

No need to mention that your best bet is to assemble your portable garage using the proper installation hardware and follow the manufacturer’s recommended instructions. The package usually includes the framing structure, fabric tent cover, anchor kit, and the necessary bits like bolts and hooks joining everything together. Thus, make sure you’re not missing any parts here.

At the same time, you may also need to prepare some basic tools that aren’t included in the package, like an adjustable wrench, a tape measure, a ratchet and socket set, a utility knife, scissors, and a ladder to smoothen the process.

Moreover, note that setting up a portable garage isn’t exactly a one-person job, so being able to rely on one or two helpers will definitely make the process a lot simpler. Preferably, someone with experience could help you minimize errors and have it done more quickly but since you landed on our site, we’ll assume you’re already pretty handy.

Jeep Wrangler under portable garage

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are portable garages used for?

Well, other than actually parking and protecting your vehicle, portable garages also provide extra space for your tools or gardening supplies. They also bring a ton of other advantages depending on how they are installed. For instance, installing yours right in front of the house will allow you to get home almost completely dry, even when it’s raining. And in winter, you won’t have to worry about having to shovel off the snow or remove it from your car first thing in the morning before going to work — just that is already worth the investment.

Don’t intend to park a car inside? Mount it in your backyard and this portable garage can also act as a very convenient canopy to host a barbecue party, create a children’s play area, or support other outdoor activities better enjoyed with a bit of shade.

They can also be set up behind your shop to create more storage space or as a stand to sell tons of things (think of those fruit and vegetable sellers on the side of the road)

Put simply, a portable garage is exactly that: a portable storage space you can erect just about anywhere, so there are plenty of things you can use it for.

Are portable garages stable?

Compared to the wobbly standard canopies you usually see at festivals, most heavy-duty portable garages are significantly more stable. They typically have a thick frame made out of rugged steel, and most of them come with an anchor kit securing them to the ground.

However, keep in mind that such portable carports aren’t as sturdy as permanent ones. Although they may withstand high winds, they are still not designed to handle hurricanes or any other form of bad storms. Such conditions may still blow even the most high-end units away, and I recommend a permanently structured garage if you live in an area prone to hurricanes.

Do I need a building permit to set up a portable garage?

As portable garages are temporary structures, you should be okay setting them up without a permit in most cases. However, it wouldn’t hurt to check for any height restrictions with your local ordinances to ensure you’re not breaking any municipal codes.

Verdict

Regardless of the season or weather, protecting your vehicle is a necessity, and there’s no better way to do it than sheltering it with a portable garage. It’s affordable, safe for year-round use, and convenient. Even if you’re lucky enough to have a residential garage, you’d still benefit from installing one right in front of the garage door. And of course, since you can use them for tons of other applications, you’ll without a doubt find a use for yours.

All in all, if you are on a budget, you’ll do more than okay with the Aleko Carport Tent. It provides multiple setup options, high-quality materials, and a generous size, without costing an arm and a leg.

Meanwhile, if you can spend a tad more and invest in a higher-end unit, the Qomotop Heavy Duty Carport is an excellent choice. It has mesh windows for extra ventilation and a waterproof fabric cover that’s thicker than standard.

Yet, if you have deeper pockets and won’t settle for anything but the best of the best, you simply can’t go wrong with the ShelterLogic Arrow Carport. It comes in loads of size variations and has a metal roof and super thick steel poles that are rated to handle high-speed wind and even heavy snow — you simply can’t go wrong with this one!

Ivan is a petrolhead at heart. He believes that the love between a man and his car can only be understood by those who have felt it. He currently has a mixed feeling about electric cars because although he’s sad that the internal combustion engine is fading, he’s still a sucker for electric Porsches.

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