Steps to Prevent a Flooded Basement
LESLIE: Heading over to Minnesota to chat with Jim. What can we do for you today?JIM: I enjoy your show very much.TOM and LESLIE: Thank you.JIM: Last winter, I fixed my basement up and under code I had to put an egress window in.
TOM: (overlapping voices) Yep.
LESLIE: (overlapping voices) OK.
JIM: Well, this spring, the egress window filled up with water.
JIM: And it didn’t come through the window though but it went all the way down and came up through the (inaudible at 0:10:30.7).
TOM: Yeah, I bet. Kind of looks like a fish tank, right? (Leslie chuckles)
JIM: Yeah. (chuckles) And you know the shock when I came down – I had put brand new carpet and everything else down in there.
TOM: Well …
JIM: Well, anyway, I got it corrected. I went up and put a plastic dome on top of it.
JIM: So that took care of that. Well, now my problem is when I go to open my window and crank it out, the dome holds it in.
JIM: Right. In case of emergency, I wouldn’t be able to get out of it.
TOM: Yeah, good point. Listen, you can have that window not leak; usually if the drainage is set right around the outside, Jim. So did you take a look at your gutter systems? Did you take a look at your grading? Are you moving the water away from the wall? Because it’s not just the water that comes like straight down into the window well; it’s usually water that soaks in from the surrounding area.
JIM: Well, where the window is, there are no eaves there because it’s, you know, the straight up-and-down side of the house.
JIM: So I didn’t – there’s no eaves in, because there’s no way you can put it on.
TOM: (overlapping voices) So there’s no gutters anywhere near there.
TOM: OK. And the soil, does it slope away?
JIM: Yes, it does.
TOM: Alright. Well, the other thing that you could do, and it’s a big job, but if you want to remove that window well, you could put a drain in the bottom of it. You could use PVC pipes and you could cook up a drain and run it around the house, hopefully to a lower side where you can let the water out. Sometimes you have to drain those wells.
JIM: OK. I was hoping there would be an easier way to fix …(Leslie chuckles)
TOM: No, you see what happens, Jim, when you call us we make it worse. (Leslie and Tom chuckle)
JIM: (chuckling) Yeah. Well, it sure has been my pleasure to have talked to you people, though.
TOM: (overlapping voices) Same here, Jim.
LESLIE: (overlapping voices) Thanks, Jim.
JIM: (overlapping voices) I enjoy your show very much.
TOM: Thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.