What to do when basement wells are filled with snow?
With over 40 years of experience, we at Window Well Experts are well acquainted with the woes of every homeowner who has neglected the window well cover business for another year.
The most common problems with cleaning the window wells during winter are:
- Snow and ice – a combination between them can block the window well drain. After melting, the water can seep into the basement and promote mold growth. Cleaning around the window well can be dangerous, especially when it’s covered by snow and ice. That means you need to make sure to cover your window well before every winter.
- Hazard – open/uncovered window well can quickly become a danger to children and pets. Especially if playtime in the backyard is involved.
- Small Animals – skunks, mice, and other small animals can be trapped in a window well. You have to get them out, which could be dangerous, smelly, or expensive.
- Floods – one of the biggest and most frequent complications is flooding, especially after melting and rain.
- Emergencies – during the winter can happen at any time. It’s essential to have a functioning window well cover that allows you easy access out and can leave the home safely.
What to do if you basement well is already filled with snow?
If heavy snowfalls have already passed and your well is still not covered, consider cleaning the snow from the well. It will prevent it from turning into an ice cube or melting down and leaking inside the basement.
We know that cleaning up the snow can be a tricky business. For some wells, grabbing a shovel might just not do the trick. This goes specifically for small wells and for very deep wells. In these cases, you might want to consider cleaning up the snow from the bottom out – meaning through the basement window.
- Yes, it is messy.
- Yes, you will have to deal with snow on your basement floor.
- Yes, it will take quite a while.
But hey, consider how costly the alternative can be – a flooded basement when the snow above starts to melt and the snow below it is still iced over the drain.
Our recommendation is not to wait for warmer weather when the snow starts to melt. Your basement well might not withstand the heavy snow load. Even worse, the increased pressure can corrupt its core structure.
Again, melting snow can be unpredictable. It can flood the basement, clog the drainage if any debris is left, or harm the basement window itself.
To prevent all of the above problems, simply check your window wells regularly during the winter to ensure that compacted snow or ice isn’t blocking your opening. After all, the most critical job of a window well is to ensure a safe evacuation from the basement in case of fire or another emergency. So let’s keep it clean.
Better yet, keep your window wells covered with an unbreakable basement cover over the winter months. For regions with heavy snow, grates might not provide enough protection. And that is one of the core differences between plastic and metal covers.
Why choose a custom cover made by the engineers at Window Well Experts?
By getting and installing a quality window well cover, you already won because they really can keep away ice, snow, and other elements.
Moreover, you can also prevent dangerous incidents. The most common scenario is people or pets falling into the window well.
Did you know that in the United States, about one in four adults (28%) age 65 and older report falling each year? This results in about 36 million fall each year. While not all falls result in an injury, about 37% of those who fall reported an injury that required medical treatment or restricted their activity for at least one day, resulting in an estimated 8 million fall injuries.
Most falls are caused by a combination of risk factors. The more risk factors a person has, the greater their chances of falling.
That’s why you need a quality solution to protect your home. But even more to ensure the safety of your loved ones. Our custom-engineered basement window well covers withstand:
- Extreme temperatures: The heavy-duty polycarbonate easily withstands temperatures between -40° and 130° Fahrenheit
- Heavy loads: Our custom-made low-profile covers can withstand up to 400 lbs. Our atrium and bubble covers can support up to 150 lbs (and we have seen them hold off 6 ft of snow!)
- Egress: All of our covers are egress compliant. The fasteners on every cover will release easily with a push from below or a pull-up from above.
- Burglary attempts: You can secure your home and basement with our property burglar-resistant locks. They release from below by pulling the release pin and pushing up on the cover.
It’s good to remember that using “one size fits all” types of covers is not the best solution mostly because they may not fit correctly on your well and will create an additional obstacle instead of a solution. It will also allow the water to reach the window well and blow off during heavy rain or snowstorm. Even more importantly, they can freeze, crack, chip, or even crumble beneath the pressure of a heavy snowfall.
How to choose the best cover to protect your wells from the snow?
With our window well covers, you have endless options for materials, design, and functionality. We fabricate them on-demand with custom sizes to fit your window well measurements exactly.
Our polycarbonate well covers will stay crystal-clear like the day you got them because they’re UV resistant. And hold up to 400 pounds, so you can be sure nothing and no one will fall in your window well.
SLOPED-STYLE WINDOW WELL COVERS
The sloped style is our premium low-profile cover. It has a slight slope from front to back and side to side that sheds water, dirt, and debris easily to be as close to self-cleaning as anything can get, yet still has an unobtrusive profile that does not make its presence known in your landscaping.
Thanks to their sturdy design, sloped covers can hold up large quantities of snow, and your well will remain clean and safe.
ATRIUM DOME WINDOW WELL COVER
Atrium domes are the solution when nothing else will work! The cover is ideal when there is a casement/crank-out window up above the lip of the well, which makes it the perfect match for those egress-sized wells that require you also to get a crank-out window. In addition, the clips provided allow an easy push-off exit cover.
Thanks to the raised and slanted design-, atrium dome window well covers allow snow and rainfall to slide easily off them. Thus making your job of cleaning the covers from snowless necessary!
SUPER-SLANT WINDOW WELL COVERS
Our super-slant window well covers are the perfect solution if you want snow, rain, and debris to simply slide off your well cover and want the weight-bearing capabilities of our popular Sloped cover. The super-slanted design makes this a certainty. Even more, it looks simply fantastic when installed.
For those of you who want non-stop ventilation, we can make the cover with mesh aluminum sides. That way you can not only protect your window well from all-weather elements and pests but also prevent mold and mildew infestations in your well and basement.
Best of all, the heavy-duty slanted design discourages pets and young children from sitting on top of it!
This in-depth look at our covers will hopefully help guide you in your decision as to which covers will help keep your home safe and dry in the upcoming years. All the polycarbonate we use has a UV cap sheet that has more than 20 years of durability in outdoor applications.