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Old 02-13-2018, 07:13 PM   #1
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Driveway strength

So my community HOA prohibits keeping RVs at the house but of course I have it there before and after each trip for loading, cleanup and maintenance items. Usually I park it in the driveway when Its there to keep the street open for traffic. But a friend of mine who builds houses told me I shouldn’t because most modern residential driveways are not strong enough. Cars weigh maybe 4000 lbs but my motorhome is like 4 or 5 times that. I haven’t seen any damage or cracking but maybe my friend has a point. Any enlightened opinions from my friends here?
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:20 PM   #2
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You could try adding some snap pads to your levelers, and setting them down on pads...
Anything to spread the weight out a bit more!
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Old 02-13-2018, 07:44 PM   #3
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What about the occasional delivery truck that stops by (dropping off a fridge, washer, dryer, etc.)? Do they break the driveway (many back in)?

How about the guy delivering a yard of mulch?

Looks to me concrete strength is measured in PSI (according to these web pages:
https://sciencing.com/calculate-conc...d-7478283.html
https://www.buildingsguide.com/calcu...ctural/FCSGSG/ )
In the one example it mentions that a bag of concrete has a compression strength of 4,000 psi--interesting in that example matches the value given to you.

I would bet they probably have their units mixed up (lbs vs psi) and that you are just fine. (I also park my RV on the driveway before and after trips and haven't heard a peep from the association).

Left as an exercise for the reader: Calculate your RV's PSI value (hint: weight/contact patch area).
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Old 02-13-2018, 08:03 PM   #4
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Well had to comment. Been there. I believe your neighbors is "politely" telling you he doesn't want your rv there. For whatever reason. Most residential subdivision driveways are at least 4 inches thick. They are meant to hold up delivery trucks. Unless you are abusing the edges.
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:12 PM   #5
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.....cut.....

Left as an exercise for the reader: Calculate your RV's PSI value (hint: weight/contact patch area).

That's not the way a concrete driveway will fail, so not really relevant.

For what it's worth, my driveway at home is all cracked and needs replacement. And that's without placing a 20,000-pound RV on it -- or any other heavy truck. There's a lot that goes into whether the concrete will crack or not.


My guess to your question: Weight/contact patch area is in 60 ~ 120 PSI range, about same as tire air pressure.
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:15 PM   #6
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I have the same situation re HOA. Sometimes I park it in the back, but I’ve put it in the driveway several times. Challenger weight is about 24k, no signs or sounds of cracking.
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Old 02-13-2018, 09:39 PM   #7
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That's not the way a concrete driveway will fail, so not really relevant.

For what it's worth, my driveway at home is all cracked and needs replacement. And that's without placing a 20,000-pound RV on it -- or any other heavy truck. There's a lot that goes into whether the concrete will crack or not.


My guess to your question: Weight/contact patch area is in 60 ~ 120 PSI range, about same as tire air pressure.
Yep... I've been told by many a concrete man that there are two things you can count on... death and cracks in concrete....
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:00 PM   #8
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As was mentioned prior, lots of variables. How was the substrate prepared, loose sand, tamped sand, poured over dirt... All depends on the builder and subs how it was done. Sometimes will scrimp on the concrete in the mix and have found that you have to verify they are delivering what you thought you were getting. Most concrete companies are okay, but builders can tell you one thing and order a cheaper mix with less strength. I won't park on my drive, as I wouldn't be surprised that there are voids underneath and places with less than 4 inches of concrete. Of course, it makes it easier as driveway isn't long enough so it sits in the street when I'm loading and unloading.
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:13 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
Left as an exercise for the reader: Calculate your RV's PSI value (hint: weight/contact patch area).
Don't forget to stop by the truck scales, and get some accurate readings of the weight that each axle (Better yet: each corner!) is holding up off of the ground.
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Old 02-13-2018, 10:52 PM   #10
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I have good friend 8n the concrete business & he says ALL concrete slabs WILL. crack the secret is to keep it from separating With wire/steel/rebar.
And as stated sounds like the neighbor doesn't like it in your driveway, or the neighborhood for that matter. If he pours driveways that crack that easily I don't want one of his homes.
That is the reason that I WILL NOT own a home/property in a HOA or COOP neighborhood, if I buy property it's mine, some noisy busy body next or down the street is going to tell me what I can/can't do with said property.
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Old 02-13-2018, 11:22 PM   #11
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Agreed. I park mine in my front lawn on top of my white rocks. My next door neighbor has his boat and trailer parked in his. The wives might not like it, but I don’t know a guy in the neighborhood that complains. Wouldn’t do him any good anyway.
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Old 02-14-2018, 03:09 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete'sMH View Post
So my community HOA prohibits keeping RVs at the house but of course I have it there before and after each trip for loading, cleanup and maintenance items. Usually I park it in the driveway when Its there to keep the street open for traffic. But a friend of mine who builds houses told me I shouldn’t because most modern residential driveways are not strong enough. Cars weigh maybe 4000 lbs but my motorhome is like 4 or 5 times that. I haven’t seen any damage or cracking but maybe my friend has a point. Any enlightened opinions from my friends here?

Pete,

I recently retired after working 50 years in the concrete construction industry. Over half of that time specializing in concrete mix design and quality assurance. The building codes I am familiar with are designed to insure residential driveways will stand up to regular automobile traffic with occasional local delivery truck traffic. Assuming your builder complied with the codes, I would expect that occasional parking your RV on your driveway to load and unload would not cause problems. With that said, if I were going to construct an RV parking pad, I would use 6” thick concrete on well compacted base aggregate, not the 4” of concrete found in most driveways. I would also use rubber, wooden or plastic pads between the RV leveling jack’s steel feet and the concrete.

Tom
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Old 02-14-2018, 11:56 AM   #13
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Occasionally parking your RV on your driveway will not crack the slab. The only time you need to be careful is if you drive off an edge onto the grass. Even then, chances are you won't crack it unless the grass is really soft, like after a day or 2 of rain.
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Old 02-14-2018, 12:04 PM   #14
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Have you noticed how the word "occasional" has been added to the discussion?

I'm sure we all know how many times we've turned "occasional", into "pretty darn permanent"!

I also think that a much thicker pad would be the ideal solution.
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Old 02-14-2018, 01:13 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Bob Denman View Post
Have you noticed how the word "occasional" has been added to the discussion?

I'm sure we all know how many times we've turned "occasional", into "pretty darn permanent"!

I also think that a much thicker pad would be the ideal solution.
Since the OP has HOA restrictions, the conversation assumed "occasionally" parking. Another way around the issue would be go to 4500 psi concrete instead of the 2500 psi commonly used in sidewalks and driveways.

In either case, you're probably gonna blow out an edge long before you crack the center of the driveway.
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Old 02-14-2018, 01:18 PM   #16
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Yeah... you can even bust an anvil; if you put your mind to it!

I feel lucky to own my own property, and can make my own decisions about where and when I park.
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Old 02-14-2018, 02:44 PM   #17
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"Occasionally" in this context means nothing. You can't design and engineer things of inferior strength just because you plan to use them occasionally rather than daily. A driveway could fail/crack the very first time you drive the RV on it, or it may not crack after 1,000 cycles. And the only way I know to find out is to actually do it; while being ready to replace or fix it if it cracks.

The problem with concrete is that it's relatively strong in compression, but weak in tension. For that reason if the load on the driveway tries to bend any part of it, it will likely crack on the tension side. And it doesn't take much at all. Rebar will help immensely on tension side, but minor cracks in concrete form anyway as rebar stretches some as it takes most of the tension load. As mentioned numerous times by many, the base under the concrete is key. If base is prepared well, then it won't yield significantly under pressure from concrete above and everything will be fine. And do you know details of what's under driveway -- probably not.

In an area like my driveway where concrete was placed essentially over clay, any real change in ground moisture alone can cause clay to expand and contract, which then tries to bend the driveway. And this leads to many cracks. Another factor in my area are tree roots that get under driveway and lift it; also causing cracks.

Pure downward compression from parking an RV isn't much of a load in itself -- roughly 100 PSI from RV tires is nothing for 4,000 PSI concrete. I managed design and construction of a few warehouses where pallet racks for heavy products placed more load on each rack baseplate than many RVs weigh, and the concrete didn't crack. If done right the driveway won't crack, if done poorly it surely will. Beyond that it's speculation because we can't know for sure.
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Old 02-14-2018, 02:52 PM   #18
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I guess the word "occasional" counts in this conversation, because that seems to be what the HOA is willing to allow...
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Old 02-14-2018, 08:42 PM   #19
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I guess the word "occasional" counts in this conversation, because that seems to be what the HOA is willing to allow...
Zactly.
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Old 02-14-2018, 08:52 PM   #20
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contractors are cheap s.o.b.'s cutting everywhere they can, the driveway be inferior by design, and then i broke my driveway into pieces by parking my one ton truck and 12k trailer on it, it took a bunch of years but it broke up
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