BUSINESS: F5 Storm Shelters

At the young age of 26, Ryan Ford knew he wanted to create a business that would help people, while also seeing a need in the market for people wanting more options when buying a storm shelter. In 2010, Ryan realized his dream of starting his own business when he created F5 Storm Shelters. His drive is evident through his personal motto: “People who don’t want to take risks will never see any reward.”

Ryan Ford & Blake LeeAccording to Ryan, a storm shelter is more than just metal or concrete—it’s peace of mind. “There aren’t enough people who have storm shelters, considering where we live,” said Ryan, and he’s right. In 2013, Oklahoma ranked second highest in the nation for tornadoes.

One would think that almost every Oklahoman would want to have a storm shelter, but such is not the case. Believe it or not, Ryan says he encounters resistance from people with arguments against the need for storm shelters. He’s heard people say that tornadoes can’t cross rivers or that they are not in danger because they don’t live in Moore—which simply aren’t true.

After the horrifically violent storms that rocked the metro last spring, Ryan says that demand for storm shelters has spiked dramatically. One memorable customer called him two weeks after the May 20th tornado. The elderly woman had the good fortune of having access to her neighbor’s storm shelter next door. The storm completely leveled her neighbor’s house and severely damaged hers, but they both survived unharmed and thankful to be alive. Showing Ryan pictures of her mangled home, she immediately made plans with him to install a storm shelter of her own.

Ryan’s business is booming, but not by luck or by chance. He is committed to the success of F5 Storm Shelters, and part of that success can be attributed to his drive to offer a unique product. F5 Storm Shelters are set apart by Ryan’s attention to detail in the construction. For example, his underground shelters have added ventilation, the stairs are less steep for easier access during emergencies, and they’re more comfortable while waiting out storms. In addition, F5 Storm Shelters have a lifetime warranty, whereas competitors may only offer a limited warranty.

Starting a new business on his own may have been tough, but Ryan’s drive and energy led F5 Storm Shelters to be successful. “Find something you are passionate about and go do it! You will have to weather some storms, but you can’t be afraid to fail.”

For more information, visit or call 802-6946.

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