Dimensions of a Silo

Although silo sizes vary, three types are used today. SiloThey are the bag silos, the tower silos and the bunker silos. All are employed for storing food, sawdust, cement and other materials.

The Tower Silos

The tower silos are the biggest of the three. In terms of height, these structures usually start at 30 ft and can reach up to 275 ft (10 to 84 meters). The diameter ranges from 10 ft to 90 ft. The slipform and jumpform are usually the biggest ones.

Their composition will vary. Common materials used include wood or concrete staves and steel. Of course the silo size plays a part in the quality and quantity of the material used.

Invariably, silos are unloaded with augers or air slides. Sometimes, they are dropped off onto cars, conveyors or trucks. It is common among farmers in the US to use silos to store grain.

Bunker Silos

These silos are trenches surrounded by concrete walls. They are filled up by loaders and sealed by a plastic tarp. Dimensions will vary, but a lot measure 8 ½ ft high or 12 ft high. Depending on the silo, the structure will either be freestanding or require support.

The thickness of the walls varies, but quality types utilize concrete and don’t have voids. For reinforcing, rebar is often used regardless of silo size. Unlike tower silos, bunker silos are less costly. They are also ideal for different kinds of tasks and operations. The bigger bunker silos use special additives to strengthen the concrete.

Bag Silos

Typically these silos are 8 ft in diameter although some are 12 ft. The material is usually plastic. The length depends on the amount to be stored. These bags are usually packed via a machine. The contents are unloaded by a tractor and the bag is disposed off.

Farms make use of bag silos during peak harvest season. However, some farmers now utilize the silos regularly as it provides space for their harvest. Without silos, the grain would be subject to the elements and lead to deterioration.

Well Known Silos

Several silos have become attractions and become well known. They include the Schapfen-Mill-Tower in Ulm, Germany. This one stands over 130 meters. Also in Germany is the Henninger Turm. Standing over 120 meters, it’s located in Frankfurt. It has 2 restaurants and a deck.

In terms of silo size, the Silo Tower Basel in Switzerland can’t compare with the others (only 52 meters). However it has an observation deck. Also well known is the Dagon in Haifa, Israel.


Although not technically a silo, bins are sometimes included among silo types. They are shorter and used for keeping concrete and other dry materials. Size wise they vary and are square or round. Some bins also have screened shafts. This allows for air inflow, necessary for grain bins. This feature isn’t present in all bins though.

There are several manufacturers, so the actual silo sizes will not always be the same. If you need one, specify the amount to be stored so the proper dimensions can be given.

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