3 Helpful Tips for Cleaning Basement Window Wells
Colorado has experienced a rare extended heat wave through the beginning of Autumn. Despite the continued high temperatures, there is no lack of falling and fallen leaves and debris littering the ground, everywhere. These two factors hardly seen in tandem allow for a rare opportunity. The opportunity to begin cleaning basement window wells without having to put on a hundred layers to do the job.
There are some common practices associated with cleaning basement window wells. Not considering these practices could result in costly window replacement. Leaves may be light, but they are not alone in your basement window well. Small rocks, sticks, and other debris can cause serious damage to your basement windows if not properly removed.
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If you’re not too late and your basement windows remain intact, but you still need to remove the leaves piling up in the basement window wells, follow these five tips to properly removing leaves from basement window wells.
Never Too Early to Start Cleaning Basement Window Wells
It’s an age-old conundrum. The basement window wells are filling up with leaves, sticks, and other debris from the changing of the seasons, but when looking up at the tree dispensing all those leaves and debris and there appears to be even more yet to come. So what to do?
Do it now.
Colorado weather can turn extreme in an instant. With the extended dry heat wave gripping the region, one sudden heavy downpour could oversaturate the ground…and your basement window well below it. Removing leaves and debris now can help ensure the inevitable dumping of heavy Winter and Spring snow won’t catch you off guard later – leading to basement flooding. It may sound tedious, but take a few minutes once every couple of weeks to remove any additional debris buildup from your window well.
Don’t get caught out in the rain! (Couldn’t help the pun.) Remove debris now, and relax later.
Rock On! to Prevent Flooding
Large rocks surrounding the 3 – 6″ PVC drain pipe prevent smaller debris from falling into the open drain and clogging it. Smaller debris, leaves, sticks and even small animals still find their way into the cracks and crevices of the larger rocks so removing and cleaning beneath the large rock pieces seasonally is recommended.
Be sure to wear gloves when working in your window well. Not only can sharps be hiding beneath and amongst the rocks and debris, but the rocks themselves can also obtain sharp edges. Erosion is real!
Give ‘Em an Out
Warning: this section deals with deceased animals.
A significant contributing factor to many basement window wells’ clogged drains is the buildup of animal carcasses. While an intact carcass remains supplanted atop most debris, once the carcass begins to decompose, the decomposed remains can quickly leech into the drain pipe. The extreme changes in weather typical to Denver often force small animals to find emergency hiding places from the harsh cold. Enter: your basement window well. Unfortunately, these heat-seeking animals often succumb to the harsh environment, leaving unwanted carcasses to eventually clog the window drain.
To combat this unfortunate situation, some homeowners construct small wooden ramps to allow small animals the ability to climb out of the window well once the harsh weather has passed. Keeping the well free from excess debris that could serve as food will further ensure these little tykes do not create a permanent residence in your basement window well.
The best way to avoid a potential problem is to not let it become a problem in the first place. Give the little creatures that seek solice in your window well an out, before they succumb to mother nature.