4 Essential Features of a Metal Above-Ground Storm Shelter

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Stronghold Safe Rooms specializes in constructing above-ground storm shelters for your home. They’re designed to sit on a concrete pad, typically in a garage (attached or unattached) to save your life in the event a tornado damages your home. 

Your family will be quite safe inside the structure. We’ll go over four main features of a metal above-ground storm shelter to help you decide if this is something you want installed at your home.

Carbon Steel Construction in an Above-Ground Storm Shelter

Your custom above-ground tornado shelter is made of reinforced carbon steel. This is a special alloy of steel that optimizes the lattice structure of the iron in the steel, making it harder to break compared to ordinary steel. That’s why automakers put carbon steel in car frames, and developers make commercial buildings out of carbon steel beams. Carbon steel can last for decades.


In addition to saving your life in a tornado, an above-ground tornado shelter must also give you and your family easy access. That’s why tornado shelters should be above ground instead of in the ground due to easier access. There are no steps to navigate. Instead, there is just a ramp for wheelchairs (if needed). Kids and elderly with mobility issues can easily walk into the tornado shelter.

Weather-Proof Anchors

The concrete pad on which the above-ground tornado shelter sits must be adequately anchored. The carbon steel sides must be anchored to the concrete properly. Otherwise, it will be blown away by excessive winds. Anchor points must be spaced correctly to keep the entire reinforced structure in the ground.

Room for People & Supplies in an Above-Ground Tornado Shelter

Your above-ground storm shelter must have enough room for your family as well as supplies. You’ll need supplies in case you can’t get out right away due to debris piled against your door or help can’t reach you just yet. 

Plan on including:

  • Canned and non-perishable food
  • Baby supplies if you have an infant
  • Personal hygiene items
  • Hand sanitizer
  • A battery-powered radio
  • Warm blankets or sleeping bags
  • Bottled water
  • First aid supplies
  • A change of clothes for each person
  • A basic tool kit
  • Rain gear
  • Copies of important documents
  • Small portable chairs, one for each person
  • Flashlights

These items can make waiting for rescue easier for you and your family. For canned, non-perishable food, check it twice a year and replace any expired items.

Why invest in an above-ground tornado shelter?

A custom carbon steel tornado shelter for your residence can save your life and the lives of your loved ones. Winter is the perfect time to get one installed before the spring tornado season hits.

Stronghold Safe Rooms can install a residential tornado shelter in your home at any time of year. Hundreds of families have trusted us to install a tornado safe room to keep them safe.

Contact our team or call (417) 883-0733 today for a consultation.