A basement floor drain is 6" across but sits 8" below the surface of
the concrete floor. The concrete floor slopes down to the drain (like
a funnel), the entire thing is about 36" in diameter. How can I cover
this up so that it is still accessible, while allowing enough strength
for a person to stand on it.
I'm considering pouring new concrete to reduce the diameter from 36"
to something a bit more manageable. Use sonotube, wood framing, or
ABS pipe as support and to keep new concrete from plugging the drain.
Alternately, adjust floor drain to (nearly) the height of the concrete
floor and fill the area with concrete.
Does this seem like a sensible approach?
Anyone want to hazard a guess as to why the builder would go through
the effort of sloping a 36" drain?
Filling with concrete is better, though be careful not to slope things
upward. With plywood, you would have to take all kinds of measures to
ensure the wood doesn't touch the concrete, and doesn't get wet
(doable, but the concrete idea is better).
Heh...true, but (a) the rest of the basement floor isn't sloped toward
the drain and (b) a slight dip in the floor would have sufficed for
water to 'run'. No need for the concrete to have a 45 degree slope!
Apparently I can swim in it and/or wash my dog. :)
From a local building code perspective, it has to be accessible. It
will also be convenient for the annual 'drain-the-water-tank'
maintenance, but generally it will be unused.
I think the answer in this case will be to pour new concrete to fill
the area in, then use it as if it was a normal floor (with an access
hatch cut for the drain).
On Tue, 26 Oct 2010 10:37:15 -0700 (PDT), Borrall Wonnell
Most water leaks end up in the basement, even if they don't start
Besides sticking a hose in it to drain the hot water tank or boiler.
I can't imagine not having a basement floor drain.
I would extend the current drain with PVC before pouring in the
concrete, then fit the drain plate in before it sets.
But I don't know your intent.
My drain is in the unfinished sink/washer area of the basement.
re: "I can't imagine not having a basement floor drain."
Then there are a lot (and I mean *a lot*) of houses you couldn't
imagine living in.
I'd like a show of hands:
Whose house has a floor drain (right hands) and whose doesn't (left
Never seen a house without one, but it might be code here.
I've had a leaking foundation, which I got fixed, and a few inches of
water in the basement when a so-called "100 year rain" also knocked
out power to my pumps.
Both times the drain was very useful.
Other than that I've used them to drain hot water heaters and boilers.
I never look at a basement as something I'd finish except maybe one
room. Others go the full nine yards around here and never have a
Just a personal habit.
I'm in such a room now, finished by the previous owner.
Takes about 1/3 of the basement.
Tiled floor and dark 1/4" paneling on studs. No insulation.
Acoustic tiles ceiling. Not bad really.
But if I ever get to it I'll tear everything but the floor tiles out
and paint it all white. And junk the bar, which just gets in the way.
I see a basement as mostly shop/storage and a place to get away.
Handy, but I always figure it's ripe for flooding.
Maybe that comes mostly from TV reports of all the basement
furnishings on the street after a big rain that fills the storm
The few inches of water I had down there wasn't a big deal because
except for a few cardboard boxes of junk nothing was lost.
Now I've got about $400 worth of plastic containers for my wife to
keep her "stuff" in.
Most of it is clothes, curtains, drapes, and the kids old toys and
school stuff. You know - the stuff a woman can let go of.
All my stuff is man stuff.
Wipe it down and it's good as new (-:
On Wed, 27 Oct 2010 13:22:45 -0700 (PDT), DerbyDad03
I've read about pouring a pitcher of water down there once in a while,
or mineral oil if you're going to cover it.
But I've never had a problem with odors from floor drains.
I just looked and sniffed. The drain pipe is full of spider webs, but
I saw water down below.
It's at least half a year since anything went down the drain.
Think I poured maybe a pint of water from a bowl in there when I
rodded the laundry tub drain, which was full of caked lint.
If it ever dries up where I get an odor I'll just pour some water down
Now THAT (manhole cover) is an excellent idea!
Quick update: I carefully chiselled away the concrete surrounding/
covering the ABS drain plate (I thought it was about 5", but turns out
to be closer to 8" after I removed the concrete). Had to drill the
two philips screws that were holding the plate in place (slots were
filled wtih concrete).
Turns out that the plate was covering a bowl-shaped fixture with a 2"
drain in the middle (and a floating plastic ball to prevent back
flow). Most of the bowl was full of hardened concrete...with enough
room for water to pass down the drain. What an ugly piece of work.
Ultimately I ditched the concrete idea and scribed some lumber to
follow the curve of the 36" depression. Seems to work so far...
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