Window Wells Installation & Repair

While basement windows are great for bringing natural light or ventilation into your home, they are an entry point for water if window wells are not properly installed.

Window well installation is recommended when the bottom of your basement window frame is found at or below grade.

Without proper drainage water will pool in your window well. If the drain is blocked it needs to be inspected and likely repaired. Also, if the well itself is bending away from the wall, or lifting up, then it should be re-attached or replaced.

Window Wells are an Essential Part of Basement Waterproofing

Window well installation is key for allowing water to drain away to the footing and away from the home. When your basement windows are below grade, ensure that your window wells are properly functioning by considering the following factors:

No Homeowner Wants Water Pooling Against Their Basement Windows

Window well drains are the most effective way to ensure water does not accumulate in the well and threaten to leak into your basement. Without a drain, the risk exists of allowing water in the well, or heavy rains causing an overflow, that can lead to window damage, mold or a wet basement.

  • Remove debris such as leaves or sticks from the window well
  • Is water pooling on top of the rocks in your window well?
  • If debris is a constant problem, consider custom window well covers to block debris from entering
  • Make sure no downspouts are draining into your window well
  • Never empty excess water into your window well for draining
  • Make sure your gutters aren’t leaking water directly into your window well

Window Wells need to be secured tightly to your wall

If they are not, they can start to bend away and the earth underneath can start to leak into the well and will eventually clog your drain.

How does a window well drain work?

Window wells collect water that drains down to the weeping tile system, which can disperse the water to a set drainage point. Like the sinks in your home, this simple system is effective but only works if it is not clogged.

Stay Dry can diagnose & fix all window well issues

We can excavate down to the weeping tile to ensure your drainage is working properly and we will properly fasten the well to the wall. In addition, we will perform an analysis on your soil compaction. Your soil needs to be properly compacted to allow water to flow properly and avoid sinkholes forming around your window well due to water damage. Sinkholes are bad news as they allow the earth to flow into the well and eventually clog the drain.

FAQ: How can I test my window well drainage?

One way to test the drainage of your window well is to actually use a hose and put some water the window well to see how it drains. Don’t do this for too long, but enough to see if pooling occurs, or if the water disperses and doesn’t return. There will be some accumulation of water, but it should eventually drain away and not fill the window well. If it does not drain, or if it fills the window well, then there is a drainage issue. Heavy rains will likely create the same results as the hose test and the window well should be dealt with to prevent future water leakage issues.

Custom Window Well Covers

Homeowners who experience a large amount of recurring debris filling their window wells should consider custom sized window well covers. These go on top of the window well and prevent sticks, leaves and large debris from high winds from entering your window well and clogging the drain. This simple solution is a great way to ensure you window wells stay clear and properly drained all year round.

Common Window Well Problems

If you are experiencing any of these common window well problems, call our window well repair experts for advice. Common problems include:

  • Water pooling in your window well
  • Window wells bending away or detaching from your wall
  • Water pooling against your below grade basement windows
  • Debris constantly clogging your window well
  • Sinkholes forming around your window wells
  • Water leaking into your home from your basement windows
  • Window wells no longer draining or weeping tile system ineffective

If you notice these problems, don’t wait too long to have them inspected. Window wells can be a vulnerable point in your home’s defense against leakage and proper window well maintenance can make the difference between a dry or wet basement.

FAQ: How hard is it to install a window well drain?

Window well drain installation requires a few steps and is not complicated for an experienced waterproofing team. Excavation is required down to the footings or weeping tile. A drain pipe will be installed with a debris cover that allows water in but not items that can clog the drain. The window well is then filled with gravel and tested for proper drainage.

Window Wells and Egress Windows

If you want to have the ability to exit from your basement in case of emergency, know that window size is important.

A window that opens into a window well have certain requirements by building code so that people can escape from the basement through the window well without any problems.

Larger windows will, of course, require larger window wells. Speak to our expert window well installers about your specific requirements.