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I need to raise my garage by 16″


I have to raise the garage at our residence by 16" in order to accommodate new garage doors. Is it better to just raise the roof or try and lift up the entire garage?

The garage is built on a cement slab separate from the house. I was thinking about cutting the nails along where the roof meets the wall, lifting the roof and building a new section. Then, on both sides, I would separate the roof at the ridge line and raise it the same amount, building a new support wall at each end of the roof. After each side was completed, I would build new sections at the top of the roof and replace the shingles. --Barry Myers

In my experience it is always easier to lift a complete structure rather than a stick-framed roof. By doing it the way you propose, it would be pretty much impossible to seat the rafters on the wall properly (due to the 16” change messing up the geometry), not to mention the difficulty in dealing with the sheeting, etc.

I see two options, but neither are easy… and not necessarily DIY-friendly (calling in a pro may be a good idea):

1. You can cross-brace the structure’s inside walls to ensure it is rigid in all directions, lift the entire structure, and build your 16” walls underneath. (I would use two rows of block on the slab.)


2. Tear off the roof altogether and re-frame it once you have your walls done. It may seem more difficult than what you proposed, but in the end, this approach will be far easier and faster.

Ryan Shervill

Ryan Shervill is a field editor and contributor to Outdoor Canada, as well as an avid hunter and shooter. He is also Canadian Home Workshop’s online Ask a Pro and contributing editor.


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Feb. 17, 2012

4:58 pm

I lifted my 14 x 21 ft garage by attaching 2 x10"s on both sides of the garage ( with lots of lag bolts ) at a height that I could put 2 hydraulic bottle jacks under, (spaced equally between the front and back of the garage) With the cross-bracing across the door opening, we jacked up one side at a time, only about 6" but we did lift it a little over a foot in total. If you do jack it up, play it cool and do it a little at a time, and be prepared with everthing to let the one side of the garage rest on while you are lifting the other side.


Dec. 22, 2011

3:06 pm

I like the idea of cross-bracing the inside. I have done this and then lifted one end (door opening) with a 2 x 8 accross the opening with a loader. Once it is up about a foot, place a block just over half way to the back and when it is let down the back will come up. Block the back and repeat the left on the front with a higher block in the middle next time you let it down. This ratcheting sequence will let you raise the building in a controlled sequence.

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