Solutions for Leaky Basement Windows

April 25th, 2011

leaky basement window

Basement windows are meant to bring some much needed natural daylight into the basement.. They make that area, which otherwise would look like a dark dungeon, a bit brighter and safer.

However, if your basement windows are old and rusty, if the well is rusty and full of debris, and there is water coming into the basement because of them, your basement windows become a source of problems rather than daylight. They might be inviting in pests and, having an impact on your home’s energy efficiency as well.

It almost defeats the purpose of having a basement window in the first place.

If you have a leaky basement window, here are three possible solutions for the problem:

rusty basement window1- Examine the windows.

When there is water seeping through the corners or the window itself, the problem might reside on the windows themselves. Wood and steel basement windows tend to decay or rot overtime, causing the water intrusion. If your basement windows are outdated consider replacing them by double-paned vinyl basement windows. Vinyl is impervious to water and its seal doesn’t decay easily when in contact with the elements. Properly installed, these windows will also stop air leaks, which will make your basement more energy efficient.

 

 

SunHouse Window Well

SunHouse Window Well

 

2- Inspect Window Wells

Old fashioned window wells can be a source of more problems than solutions. Originally meant to allow daylight to enter the basement, they are usually left uncovered, at the mercy of the elements. They quickly fill with dirt, debris, leaves, weeds, and of course, snow and water accumulates on them, and eventually find their way into the basement.

Consider replacing them for covered, fiberglass window enclosures like Basement System’s SunHouse Basement Window Wells.  SunHouse window wells will not decay in contact with wet dirt and the elements, and the clear cover will keep debris, leaves, water and snow from accumulating in the enclosure, while allowing the light to get through. They also have a  bright reflective surface that bounces the sunlight into the basement, making it even brighter. And since the cover will keep the cold winter winds from blasting straight against the windows, the basement will be more energy efficient and well.

3- Yard drainage

Even with all the above measures, we need to understand that basements are not submarines, there is no way to completely seal the water out. But you can, and should, take every necessary step to relief the pressure that pushes the water against the walls and make them leak in the first place. And that can only be accomplished with a combination of good foundation and good yard drainage.

Make sure the terrain is properly graded and slopes away from the foundation. Keep your gutters clean and in good working condition or, by all means, install them if you have none. Keep the downspouts from pouring water close to the foundation walls, by extending them as far as possible from the house.

Make sure your foundation drainage is in good condition, or have Basement Systems install a WaterGuard internal perimeter drainage, with a good sump pump.

Leaky Window Drainage4- Leaky Window Repair

In some cases, the above measures, individually or combined may not solve the problem completely.  Additional measures need to be taken to stop water from leaking windows from flooding the basement. At Basement Systems, we use WellDuct Window Drain to direct this water into your perimeter drainage system.

When this is installed, a drain hole is drilled through the foundation wall just under the windowsill. If the wall is a block wall, the hole is lined with a section of pipe. A grate is then installed on the outside of the hole and surrounded with clean stone to prevent clogs from leaves and debris.

When water rises high enough to leak through the window, it instead goes through the grate, through the wall, into the channel, and inside your perimeter drainage system.

If you have leaky basement windows, trust your local Basement Systems Dealer to provide the best solutions. Contact us for a free basement window repair estimate!

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