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Frequently Asked Questions

If You’ve Got Questions. We’ve Got Answers!

Some cities and towns require a building permit. Contact your local Building Inspection or Code Enforcement department to find out. Storm shelters are typically treated as an accessory building for permitting purposes. Permit requirements vary by city.

How easy is it to get a building permit? City building inspection departments are usually accommodating and will walk you through the process. In most areas, getting a permit involves completing a simple building permit application and providing two copies of your property plot plan (or survey) with the shelter location designated on the drawing and engineering drawings of the shelter (which we will provide to the city). Some cities require the contractor to obtain the permit. We will work to make your experience as pleasant as possible.

Yes, we are fully covered by insurance and our staff is covered with workers compensation.

Our manufacturers have installed hundreds of units with no issue of structural damage to foundations. Our process is certified by a structural engineer and considered to be sound. However, some counties in Mississippi are known for their difficult soil. We have developed a new technique that applies to the Yazoo clay and it should not cause any problems with your foundation. If there is any problem with the foundation within 5 feet around the shelter, Torshel will give you $2,000 for repairs. If the foundation is a main concern, then your best option might be an above ground shelter. Ultimately, Torshel believes that protecting your family is more important than the foundation of a house.

Yes we can install it in your back yard and can provide you an outside lid at no cost..

Unless there are too many rocks in the soil or something else that might cause a delay, it normally takes only one day.

Our shelters come with built-in ventilation. However ,we also include a battery-operated fan. Our shelters meet and exceed FEMA’s requirements for ventilation.

Torshel accepts down payments in the form of cashier’s checks, money orders, cash and major debit and credit cards. We have also partnered with banks and credit unions that offer tornado shelter loans with the best possible rate. We want to make sure you are comfortable during this process. Should FEMA or another state agency ever create grants to build storm shelters in Mississippi, Alabama or Louisiana, we will let our customers know.

Driving over or parking on the shelter will not damage it. The ¼ inch reinforced steel lid is built to withstand 4000 lb wheel weight. Parking on the lid WILL prohibit you from accessing your shelter.

Tornado shelters can be very appealing for certain buyers. According to research by Dr. Kevin Simmons, an economics professor at University of Texas, Austin, having a tornado shelter can increase the value of your home by about 3.5%. Depending on the current value of your home, this could be a significant amount.

No, we use a water saw to cut our slabs with minimal dust. We only use jackhammers if we encounter some rock below the slab.[/toggle][toggle title=”Does the installation job leave a mess for us to clean up

We train our crews to try to leave your garage cleaner than they found it and we want you to be happy with the results.

Most clients’ decide to use the dirt for personal projects on their property or, for an additional $95, we can dispose of it off-site for you.

We include a 4000 lb. “come along winch” in each shelter. The winch provides you a manual egress (exit) out of the shelter should fallen debris jam the lid bearings and prohibit you from easily sliding the lid open. Torshel installers will provide a demonstration on how to use your shelter.

It is possible for water to get in the unit. It is raised slightly and has a sloped finish to assist in preventing water runoff when washing out your garage. Simply wipe down the shelter if this occurs.

Cell phone reception depends on your cell phone carrier. Torshel will give you a whistle just in case.

All of our shelters have ball-bearing sliding doors which allow you to roll the lids open easily instead of lifting them against debris. Also, the shelters are registered after installation with your local agency (police) so that emergency personnel know who has them and where you are located.

We can also include a powerful jack so you can lift up to 3 tons with it. Torshel also includes an emergency kit with a whistle.

Pets are members of the family. You can carry smaller pets down into the unit as you enter. You may also put the smaller pet into a pet carrier, as they will also be stressed. We suggest you work with larger animals to familiarize them with entering and exiting the unit.

No. We will include battery operated lights with your shelter.