DIY Window Well Covers: Why You May Want to Reconsider
Basement window wells are common even in newer homes with basements. Why? Because getting more light into those typically dark spaces makes them more livable. When homeowners renovate older basements, they also often add window wells for the same reason.
But the window wells themselves create their own issues. They can be a trap for water when it rains, resulting in basement floods or they can be a hazard to children and pets playing in the yard around the house. They also create certain security concerns.
The solution is often found in window well covers. While there are several DIY type solutions, you may want to reconsider doing them yourself, and hire a professional instead. Why? Here are some of the many reasons.
Your children or pets playing in your yard is a huge concern, and one of the biggest failures of DIY window well covers is that they will not hold enough weight. The reason? Children playing are not just gently walking over window well covers. They are often running, jumping, and even falling on them.
Commercial covers have a much larger weight capacity. Metal covers like those made by Safewell can hold up to 400 pounds and offer a lifetime warranty. DIY covers don’t provide that level of safety, nor is there any guarantee of their structural integrity. But there are also other reasons commercial covers are superior to DIY window well covers.
In Case of Emergency
When it comes homemade window well covers, one issue is often a lack of planning for emergencies. One of the biggest potential hazards is someone becoming trapped in the basement in case of fire or other disaster, and the window well cover inhibiting their escape.
Companies like Safewell offer window well covers equipped with escape hatches for just such emergencies. Instead of relying on first responders or other household members to release them from the outside, basement occupants can release the well covers from the inside, allowing them to exit safely.
This type of window well cover is more difficult for you to create on your own, and may be more costly.
Besides being prepared in case of emergency, an important part of window well covers is safety. One of the reasons homeowners often consider them is that they can be a hazard to children and pets playing in the yard around their home. In many cases, injuries can occur when a toy or a ball falls into the well, and the child or pet tries to retrieve it.
The problem with homemade window well covers is that they are often not properly flitted, and can slip off the window well or even blow open or blow away under windy conditions. Also, homeowners often do not have access to the correct materials to make them sturdy enough for pets and children to walk on.
This can create even worse injuries if a child were to fall through the material because it breaks, or the material were to slip to one side or the other, causing a worse fall. A well fitted window cover that will hold enough weight and be secure enough is difficult for the average do-it-yourselfer to produce.
The reason for window wells in the first place is to let light into the basement area and to enhance the appearance of those spaces. It is just as important that window well covers look nice from the outside instead of detracting from the look and curb appeal of your home.
DIY covers often lack this appealing look, as it is difficult to achieve in the average home workshop. Safewell Window Well Covers have either a mesh or rebar look that is both subtle and appealing, and creates a low-profile cover that looks good all year round.
They are also have a three-stage powder coat finish, a much better choice than paint, as the finish stays year after year without the need for touchups.
This is another key when it comes to window well covers: you want something that will last for years. You want them to look good year after year, but also continue to function well, with parts that are protected from rust and other deterioration. A window well cover that fails is just one more project added to your DIY list.
This durability is related to the materials the pros use, as well as to the types of finishes they can apply and the quality of hardware they have access to. This kind of durability is hard to achieve with a DIY window well cover.
When it comes to installation, it is about more than just putting a window well cover in place. There are often things that a DIY homeowner may not think of. For instance, it is often a good idea to install a window well ladder just in case of emergency and a locking system for the cover for added security.
While window wells are often a standard size, they can vary slightly, and the pros know how to ensure that covers fit properly and are secure no matter what the shape and size of your window wells. This is often difficult to achieve with DIY window well covers, something that can lead to issues later on.
When it comes to installation, leaving the job to the pros is often the best way to make sure it is done right the first time, and that your window wells are safe and secure.
While saving money is often the reason people decide to learn how to make their own window well covers, but the cost from professionals may be lower than you think. By the time you buy materials and specialized hardware, take the time to make and create the window well covers yourself, and then install them, you will probably save money by hiring a professional instead.
The durability of professionally designed window well covers will also save you money in the long run. Covers that do not have to be replaced frequently not only gives you peace of mind, but saves you time and money long-term.
Do you want more information about the costs of professionally installed window well covers? Contact Safewell Covers today. We’d love to talk about your needs and how we can best help you with your window well cover needs. We serve customers all along the Wasatch front and we’re confident you’ll love our product and our service.