Simple Maintenance to Prevent Basement Water Damage

First fall in your new home?

If this is your first fall in a new home, it’s a perfect time to do some simple preventative maintenance with your window wells.  Even homes with good window well drainage can end up clogged if it gets filled with leaves, plastic or other debris.  If water sits in a clogged window well, you can end up with water damage.

Window well full of water

What steps can you take?

This fall, I was preparing for new tenants to move into an investment property.  I wouldn’t be there every day, so it was even more important to come up with a good strategy to keep debris (and ultimately water) out of the window wells.   I looked at two options:

  1. If your home has standard window sizes, the easiest option is to purchase a plastic window well cover from your local home building store.

Plastic window will cover

Plastic window well cover

  1. If you’re windows are not a standard size, or you want something more rugged, it’s relatively easy to make window well covers. I wanted “rugged” covers. The pictures below show the window well covers I built.  The materials included 2×2 wood, a sheet of Plexiglas, and screws.

Window well frame

Wood frames for custom window well covers

Custom window well cover

Installed window well cover

One final point to consider…. when you’re installing your covers, make sure you don’t block a fire escape from your basement.