Popularity of Ford Trucks Leads to Need for Larger Garages
Larger Ford vehicles are forcing homeowners to modify their homes for safer storage.
Trucks and SUVs from Ford and pretty much every other automaker doing business in the United States have progressively gotten bigger over the course of the past few decades. While that is great when it comes to capability and comfort, homeowners are running into a unique problem; their vehicles won’t fit in their garage.
Whether it is a Lincoln Navigator that is too tall to fit through the garage door or a Ford F-150 SuperCrew that won’t fit far enough in to close the garage door, homeowners are unable to properly store their larger vehicles inside. As a result, contractors are being asked to enlarge garages in a variety of ways in order to accommodate stock and modified vehicles alike.
Big Truck, Little Garage
The Detroit Free Press recently spoke to a handful of home remodeling contractors around Michigan with reference to the need for larger garages. Trucks and SUVs are bigger than ever while garages, especially those connected to older houses, are built to accommodate much smaller vehicles. As a result, many trucks and SUVs won’t fit into the garage at all and if they will fit through the low entry, the door won’t close behind them.
With many vehicles like the F-150, the Explorer or the Navigator, they will fit in most garages in stock form, but if you add larger wheels and tires or anything on the roof such as a cargo rack or aftermarket lights, they won’t fit into a standard 8-foot-tall garage.
“Vehicles are just taller. You might be able to fit a Ford F-150 into a garage with nothing on its roof, but if you have lights or anything up there, its cutting things close,” said Dustin Collier, a builder based in Traverse City. “Our busiest time is in the spring, when everybody gets their taxes back. We get calls in the fall, too, because people are trying to get ready for winter. I see a lot of four-door pickup trucks. They just don’t fit. People are all about their toys now. The trucks are jacked up in the air with big tires.”
Big Money Trucks, Big Money Projects
Twenty years ago, trucks and SUVs with custom work wouldn’t fit in garages either, but trucks and SUVs have come a long way since then. Vehicles that were once reserved for work vehicles are now premium luxury machines with price tags nearing or topping the $100,000-mark. People who buy a $100,000 SUV or an $80,000 F-150 want those vehicles stored safely inside, so they turn to contractors to enlarge their garages.
“I’ve actually had homeowners ask that the rear wall be extended out a few feet. Or I’ve seen it done where they just design the change so that the hood of the vehicle slips into a little cubby,” said Tim Kubinec, an architect based in Chesterfield. “The cubby hole enlargement for the hood of a vehicle surprises me. It’s just an odd way to accomplish the goal. Why not move the whole wall out? I don’t like being involved in projects that look goofy but that’s sometimes what people want.”
While the initial report relates specific to contractors in the Michigan area, this is a problem that impacts many people who come home with a new vehicle, only to learn that it won’t fit in the garage. Since trucks and SUVs aren’t likely to start shrinking anytime soon, we are likely to see more houses built with big garages and more home remodeling projects that include elaborate expansions of the garage area.