Shelters have three primary parts: frames, roofing, and foundations.
Steel roofing is formed from .29-gauge panels attached to the frame with self- starting screws with rubber washers to prevent leakage. The screws and all seams are then covered with a liquid rubber sealant to make sure they don’t loosen, rust, or leak. In northern climates where heavy snow loads are common, the frames will be strengthened to support the extra load and to ensure compliance with local building codes.
Although fabric is about $400 less expensive than steel initially, it will cost a little more than steel in the long run because of the need for periodic replacement. However, this nominal extra cost is spread out over a 20-year period, and in the meantime, with fabric, you get the flexibility of leaving the cover on or taking it off to match the seasonal climate changes, plus the ability to take your shelter with you if you have to move to a new location. Financially, it’s pretty much a toss-up. The decision really depends on your non-financial needs – permanent and virtually hassle-free, or flexible and accommodating.
For example, that would put the cost of a slab for a 40-ft shelter at around $3,360 (and you would have to pour the concrete yourself). Compare that with about $2,400 for a set of TITAN footings….a savings of nearly $1,000!….in just the foundation alone. And we do all the work while you kick back and sip your mint julep.
So, how does TITAN do this? We offer proprietary (Patent pending) above-ground footings, a separate one supporting each leg of the shelter individually. Each footing is made of high-strength, reinforced concrete with a cavity inside to reduce the weight during installation. The footing Is actually quite small, about 16” x 20” x 12” high, and weighs about 175 lbs. when the cavity is empty. An extra 50 lbs. can be added at any time, if desired, before or after the installation is completed, by filling the cavity with additional concrete. Each footing is small at the top, and tapers to a wider bottom to increase stability, and to deflect the wheel of an errant RV in order to prevent damage to the RV’s body and to the attached shelter support as well.
Shelter legs are spaced 4.0 to 4.5 ft apart, so a 20’ shelter has a total of 10 legs and 10 footings (5 on each side), a 30 ft shelter has 16, and a 40 ft shelter has 20, so the total weight of the footings for a 40 ft shelter, for example, would be around 3,500 lbs. (empty cavity) to 4,500 lbs. (filled cavity). That’s over two tons of concrete holding it down.
Although we haven’t actually tested these footings in winds over 90 mph, we are quite confident that even tornado or hurricane-force winds of 150 mph or more would simply blow the roof off the frame before it would damage or hurt the frame itself in any way. And even a steel roof can be replaced at a nominal cost if necessary.
And one more thing, the number of footings does not change if the width changes. This mans the foundation’s cost also remains unchanged, regardless of whether your shelter is 2 feet or 20 feet wide. However, a similar change in any dimension, width or length, for a slab would create an increase in cost. The length of the structure is the only dimension that affects the number of footings and the cost of a TITAN foundation.