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Old 07-16-2019, 06:14 PM   #1
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Is Four Inches of Concrete Enough?

I am in the process of obtaining bids for a concrete floor in an new garage that will house at 39 foot class A diesel pusher with no tag axle. The manufacturer of the motorhome says the front axle GAWR is 14,320 pounds and the rear axle GAWR is 24,000 pounds. The GVWR is 38,200 pounds. I can not find anything on the manufacturer's web site that states what the unloaded vehicle weight is. Since the coach is not in my possession yet I can not take it to a weigh station.

With the above information do you think four inches of concrete with rebar is sufficient, if not, how thick? I am looking for answers from people who have built their own garage, or who had it built for them, with the above approximate weights.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:22 PM   #2
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4” should be plenty, especially re-bar reinforced. Having said that though, not all concrete is created equal and can be mixed for different uses. If your getting bids from a reputable contractor, and you tell him what you intend it for, he should guarantee his work to that standard.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:24 PM   #3
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I would pour at least 6". Mine is 8" and seems to be holding up well. I had a 30,000 lb pusher. I have not weighed the one i have now but it is probably 42k ish.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:26 PM   #4
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All my garage and driveway were formed with 2x6's for a 5-1/2" pour. 2 x 4 for 3-1/2" sidewalks. I would go thicker.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:31 PM   #5
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Every situation is a little different; some of those differences make for a bigger total difference. What works for me, in my locale, may be unsuitable for you in your locale.

In dealing with contractors I've found it best to set my own specifications, developed in conjunction with appropriate professionals, and that way I'm getting "apples to apples" bids and have some proof of performance requirements to determine contract fulfillment.

If you know the size of the tires and the approximate weight of the coach you can figure out the PSI load on the tire "footprint". The point loading on the slab is more important than the weight averaged over the slab area.

Grade preparation, soil load bearing and stability, etc also factor into the decision about reinforcement and thickness, as well as picking the concrete blend itself. Not rocket surgery but you need local input. My guess is that with sufficient reinforcement and good prep, 4 *might* be enough, but I'm only guessing.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:31 PM   #6
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26000 lbs of motor home and I have a pad 6Ē with rebar. About to built a carport that will have the same but also perimeter and crossbeams.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:39 PM   #7
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5" of 4500 PSI and you will be good to go.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:45 PM   #8
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I agree that the sub-base has got a lot to do with it, 4" ok on good hard ground with rebar and a small footer around edges. Down here in the swamp I would probably do 6".
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:50 PM   #9
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Concrete is very strong in compression, but weak in shear strength. Rebar placement and ground prep under the concrete are most important. You could have a very thick slab but if it gets undermined or if there is very little rebar or if the rebar is laying on the ground (and not in the slab) it will crack and move.

With that said, ensure your slab is poured over a compacted base. Rebar grids 16" O.C. approx 1.5" from the bottom of the slab. 5.5" thick should be plenty.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:52 PM   #10
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Just did a pad for my 23000lb coach. Contractor poured 5 inches with rebar mesh.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:52 PM   #11
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Forget the rebar, go with fiberglass filler. The cement company can mix the fiberglass in with the concrete and save the rebar hassle. The fiberglass will leave little fiber hairs sticking up that will eventually wear down and disappear with time. I would go at least 5", better too thick than not enough. Make sure you have a good gravel base and drain tiles along the edge with a drain basket in the center unless the floor is sloped. Also put in seams or have the concrete cut every 6' to relieve the stress and control any cracks that might show up later. Your concrete contractor should have plenty of suggestions. Tip - Someone might suggest to broom the surface to make it nonslip. Don't go for that, you want a finished smooth surface, easier to sweep clean and to move a floor jack around on.
I built my pole barn 20 years ago using 5" fiberglass. Now my son parks his semi in the barn and the floor is still holding up good. You never know what the future use for the barn might be.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:02 PM   #12
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4 inches would be the least I would go. Most recommend 5 or 6 inches. I would do 5 1/2 just to be sure.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:03 PM   #13
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X2 on fiber mixed in the concrete. I used pig wire on both the pours I have done along with fiber. Got a few small cracks over 20 yrs but no separation.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:14 PM   #14
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The fiberglass reinforced with mesh hash held up at work very well. Doesn't finish out quite as fast or well as plain.My son in law has has a sweet stainless drain basin 18"x24" ish in his big garage with 1" grate. It has like a reverse trap made of 4" pvc .Not exactly sure of idea. It in heated floor. Maybe to stop breeze when filled a bit or stop accidental oil spill from flowing out I know it's sweet setup. Can definitely bucket wash car or truck in there .
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