I remember when I was a little kid and my Mom would ask me at night to go down the basement (A.K.A. the dungeon to me) to get something for her. This was a dreaded task indeed – that basement was a dark and scary place. I would run down, grab what I was asked to get and ran back upstairs as fast as I could.
Well today I’m a little older and I no longer run downstairs (and it’s now my wife sending me down to the basement for things) but the basement – and most basement windows can still be a spooky site. In many homes basement windows can be rusty, moldy and filled with cobwebs. Some of these windows would be prime candidates for your local haunted house tour. In the article below learn 5 tricks to eliminate spooky basement windows …and maybe get you on the journey to want to fix up and actually enjoy your lower level space.
• Trick #1 – Get rid of the frame – The real frightening part of basement windows is often not the glass, it is the rusted, rotten and deteriorated frames surrounding the glass.
So – trick #1 is to eliminate the frame. You might be saying, “How can I do that?” The answer – frameless glass block windows. This type of window provides high security (and good energy efficiency) and is mortared directly to the poured concrete or concrete block foundation thereby eliminating the frame altogether.
• Trick #2– Get me out of here! – Does your basement (or cellar as some people call it) smell damp and musty and also give you a trapped in feeling because the windows are too small to get out of in case of a fire? These problems can be solved simultaneously by installing an egress window. Egress windows provide more light (to create a healthier lower living space), increased air flow and provides a way to get out (which can be critical if you use part of your basement as a bedroom). The downside of the egress windows is the complete cost of installing one of these systems can range from $5,000 to $7,000 (note – this price includes the costs of cutting the opening, grading the land and the window).
• Trick #3 – “Slide” or “hop” into a better solution – Many people worry their current windows (which are sometimes rusted shut or deteriorated) will not be able to be closed again if they even try to open them. Another option – in addition to the glass block window or egress window mentioned in tricks 2 and 3 – are a vinyl framed hopper or sliding glass window. The vinyl frame will perform well in a lower level vs. metal or wood frames because vinyl is not negatively affected by moisture.
• Trick #4 – Spiders, cobwebs, bugs and bad smells meet your match – Creepy, crawly creatures and bad odors love the humidity and moisture from a below ground level basement. The cure for this challenge is improved circulation and reducing humidity. Some strategies to improve circulation and reduce humidity include using a basement window with an exhaust fan, adding ceiling fans and/or using a dehumidifier. This improved air quality and circulation may even motivate you to consider finishing your basement to create some much needed room for your family.
• Trick #5 – Improve the “grade” of your landscape design – It’s possible the problem with the basement windows isn’t the basement windows at all – but the windows have been damaged and water may have entered the basement as a result of improper grading of the land or the lack of drainage around window wells. Take a tour around the perimeter of your home. Is the ground pitched towards the foundation or away from it? If you have window wells is there sufficient gravel and/or a drain to move water away from the windows and foundations when you get flash flooding? After this inspection if you would give yourself an “F grade” for your landscape grading and drainage it’s time to dig out the well and add gravel or to add soil to change the slope around the home.
How scary are your basement windows? Comment below or call us for ideas and products to improve your spooky windows and basement.
Call Innovate Building Solutions on a nationwide basis (877-668-5888) or for a local project their divisions including Columbus Glass Block (614-252-5888), Cleveland Glass Block (216-531-6363), or Cleveland Design and Remodeling (216-658-1270) for tricks to get the spookiness of out of your basement windows and lower level space.
Tags: basement grading, basement problems, basement window, basement windows, egress windows, finished basement, glass block windows, hopper window, lower level, sliding window for a basement., spooky basement
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