Why is there a window in my pump room?

My pump room, is a little room in the basement where the pump for my well is. It also has my water heater. The room itself is tiny. It’s almost a crawl space, because it is about half the height of the rest of the basement. At the top, there is a tiny window about 4x10. The window is basically open. There is no way to close it except to put a board over it.

That is what I want to do. I want to just nail it shut, because I don’t see any reason for it. My well froze up last night, and I don’t want to waste electricity on the heating or have my pipes freeze again.

But they must have put it there for a reason. It make so little sense, that there has to be a reason for it. Why would you just open all of your main pipes to the risk of freezing for nothing.

Can I close this off without causing an unexpected problem?

A way to get large items in there without dragging them through the house and down the stairs?

How big is the pump? how long are the well casing sections? Would the water heater fit through that window?

ETA: Combustion air for the WH?

Your water heater needs an exhaust. Does it have an exhaust pipe already? If not perhaps the window was used as a poor mans exhaust.

Perhaps closing the window wont make that much difference. You may need to heat that area even after you shut the window.

Your pump is in the bottom of your well. It’s not in the pump room. I suspect what you are seeing is the pressure tank and pressure controls for same. And your Water heater.

If you have a gas or propane water heater, it absolutely must vent the exhaust gases outside. The ‘window’ may be to let oxygen into the room for the water heater. Do not cover it up without the advice of a pro.

Re the ‘Window’ is it open to the outside of the house, or the inside of the basement?

submersible pumps are at the bottom of a well. shallow and deeper jet pumps are above the ground.

often with pumps you would need to run to clean of minerals or microorganisms. easy to run a hose out the window to do this.

In an industrial/commercial environment, this could meet the qualifications of a confined space.

When you see a see a closed-off compartment containing with metal pipes, you’ll obviously see that the pipes have been rusted away by oxygen, but, conversely, the metal is leaching oxygen out of the air at the same time. When this happens in an airtight compartment, someone can enter the space and suffocate.

Seems we need a bit more info…

OK I need to clarify a few things. The window is 4"x10" (about. Definitely not big enough to fit anything through. It is just above ground level. Our water heater is electric, so no exhaust is necessary. The window is open to the outside of the house.

I’ve no idea what it is. If you say the pump is at the bottom of the well, I’ll have to believe you. The only control I see is a single button to restart it. It is pretty big so I assumed it was the pump itself. There is no obvious tank. So if my pump goes bad, they will actually have to dig another well?

If you add a small closet you can advertise it as a bedroom :smiley:

As the owner of an above ground pump, I’d guess it is for a hose, additional wiring and/or to be able to observe the pump.

Anyone else reading this with the hairs on the back of their neck standing up? Sort of Very Vaguely Creepy-like? Basement. Confined space. Mysterious heavy machinery. Suffocation by oxidation. Pointless windows too small to escape through.

Where do you live and how deep is your well?

John Post may be able to give more information about Jet above ground pumps. Frankly, I had never heard of them. If your well is deeper than 33 feet, I doubt you have such a system.

You said your pipes froze up. Is your water heater in the same rooms that you call the pump room? If it is, that should provide plenty of heat to keep things from freezing up.

Understanding that you have an electric water heater, I doubt that there is any need for the ‘window’ to the outside. But, it is probably there for some reason.

I believe they work to 22 feet.
That’s why they are called “shallow well” pumps. :slight_smile:

How old is your house? Is it possible the “window” is the remains of a coal door?

The house is only 20 years old. I have no idea how deap our well is. We didn’t know enough about wells to get that information when we bought the house. I actually doubt the girl we bought it from knew either. There is water nearby, but I also notice that there are electrical wires heading out towards the well.

You would think that the water heater would provide enough heat to keep the pipes from freezing except that there is an open window to below zero weather. In fact, I just discovered that the previous owners left a space heater in that room, so I’m guessing they had this problem a few times. The question is, “Why the hell did the builder put that window there in the first place?”

Anyway, I think I’m sealing that window up tomorrow. That thing is almost as bad as the pet/possum door into the pantry.

Here are pictures of shallow well pumps.

If you have a deep well pump, you will just see a water tank and some plumbing.

Close it up. (Put it on hinges if you fear you may need to open it in the future.

My pump and water heater are in a little nook that extends out from the basement below the front stoop, and the only place that air circulates is back through the opening in the wall between the rest of the basement and the pump room.

Given your location south of the snow belt, I would guess that the opening was intended to provide a way for air to circulate to prevent extra condensation to accumulate on the plumbing from the humidity. If that is the case, you might want to put a screen across it with a shutter to close in winter and open in summer. (Does your house have a history of small animals visiting through that opening, or is the room closed off from the rest of the house?)

If the room is closed off from the house, just the hot water pipes will keep the room warm enough, once the hole is blocked, to keep the pipes from freezing at around 30°F, but below that you might want to consider adding a space heater, wrapping the pipe with heat tape, (special tape with an internal electric wire that acts as a pipe heater), or opening the passage between the pump room and the basement to allow the house’s heat to keep it above freezing.

I would also put insulation on the back of the board you use to seal the hole, but where I live, we insulate everything.

deep well jet pumps can get water from 120 feet. you pump a high pressure jet of water which then brings up the water. there are both shallow and deep well jet pumps.

I remember seeing the plumbing that attaches to the front of the pump; the shallow well has a single pipe, the deep well two. I stand corrected.
You have fought ignorance, Sir. :slight_smile: