My house is about 30 years old. We moved in about 5 years ago. We have
a septic and well, living in the country. We also have lots of
rodents outdoors. Up until about 2 years ago they stayed outdoors. Now
they have moved in, our basement that is. From what we can tell the
mice are coming in through a hole in our basement floor. We have an
oil tank and the tank is over the hole, but on legs. THe hole is for
the pipes from our water well and is about 2 feet x 2 feet. It is
covered by peice of wood and plastic on top of that, duct taped down.
It appears to have come loose and I did see one of the mice run under
it. My husband also hear one scratching at the board. Obviously we
need to seal it up somehow. I hesitate to do what they did before
because it was not a long term solution. This is our first house so I
have not seen this before, or a house with a well. Does anyone know
how we could seal it up? There will have to be a hole for the pipes
to come up from the floor to inside of the house. Does anyone know if
the well pump is located there? I thought of getting sheet metal and
screwing it down. Maybe sealing around the pipes with steal wool? But
I am not sure if I need to have it more accessible for some reason in
case something goes wrong with our well? Any information would be
appreciated. I have not been able to find any information about it so
far. Thanks so much!
All of the following are guesses since I cannot investigate your
basement and property from where I am.
Besides, I am not a plumber, but I play one at home and do have a well.
I doubt that the well is directly below the hole. Since you have more
than one pipe (2?) coming from that hole, one is probably for the water
supply, and the other for the electrical wires going to a submersible
pump. The submersible pump is a large cylinder about 3 1/2" or 4" in
diameter and about 4 feet long (I don't have one on hand so the
measurements are just fuzzy guestimates from the last time I saw mine).
How could they pull the 4' well pump, and its lengthy supply pipe and
wires, out for repair or replacement from the hole in the basement, or
even more unlikely, from under an oil tank? The last time I had mine
pulled from my 20 year old, <300' deep well, there were stiff plastic
supply pipes that were about 12' or more in length and screwed to each
other to make one long 300' continuous pipe.
Have you looked around on your property for a well head, either sticking
up out of the ground, or under some metal access plate? The well head
will be about 7" in diameter. Mine is in my front yard and sticks 1' out
of the ground. Some people hide them under removable lawn structures
(like a small wishing well or windmill). Mine is somewhat camouflaged by
the end branches of a weeping cherry tree.
Back to the basement: What's in the bottom of the hole? Be careful, the
mice may have a nest in there. Use a handlight and mirror to look in
there. It seems unlikly that someone left that big hole in the floor
unless there was another reason, like for a sump pump.
If you can positively identify that hole as just an access for the well
pipe(s) and not also for a sump pump, I would just fill it with dirt to
about 2" inches from the floor and then cap it off with 1" or 2" of
concrete mix (in case you have to break it out for some reason).
All of the above may not apply, so you should get a plumber in to make
sure that what you think it is, is.
<< try steel wool and see if that works >>
Steel wool rusts pretty quickly when damp. If that is a probelm, squirt the
opening full of foam. Easily removed for future work if needed. Critters seem
to give up on munching foam fairly quickly in my experience, YMMV
My well is a 1.5" galvanized pipe driven vertically into the basement
floor. I'm mildly surprised that anyone would do a setup like that
a mere 30 years ago, and setting up an oil tank over the wellhead
is monumentally stupid. But in any case, my solution to OP's
problem would be to cast a cement lid to put over the hole,
in two parts, so it fits around the pipe(s). Just make it heavy
enough so mice can't move it.
Ditto on Expanding foam. I find it a great way to seal out the mice..
and it is easilly removable if needed. The only downside is it is
messy, and looks cheap when done, but it is your basement floor so who
cares if it can get the job done.
Just cut a piece of sheet metal so it is just small enough to rest in
the hole, with maybe a half inch clearance on every side, temporarily
duct tape it in place, and fill around it's edge with the foam. the
foam will expand and lock metal in place, It will look messy, but it
will seal that baby up tightly, and keep mice out. You could just
use a plywood board, but they could chew through it.
I had to laugh at the oil tank comment being "stupid." My husband and
I were saying that all afternoon while trying to fix it! We have also
come to the conclusion that the PVC pipe is there for drainage. But
our basement has not had one drop of water in 5 years we have lived
here. And have 100 + inches of snow a year, plus alot of rain. So I
don't see the need for this drainage pipe. And no one else around
here has this setup. All their well pipes come in through the wall
also. We do have it sealed for now (I hope) but are going to have a
plumber come out at some point to verfy that the pipe is useless and
that we can fill it with gravel and cement. Thanks for all the ideas.
iT just confirms what I was feeling!
firstname.lastname@example.org (Harry K) wrote in message
email@example.com (Lissa) wrote in message
O.K. Now for the real problem. If you are on a well the major thing
is to find WHERE that well is. Then do some googling on well/tank
maintenance procedures. The time to do that is now, not a 4 p.m. on a
Sunday when you find you are out of water. Maintaining these systems
is something the average homeowner can do but they need to understand
Beware: perhaps you have a toilet down there, or something
else that feeds the sewer (if you use a sewer, that is, not
a cess pool.)
In our case, during a big rain the sewer ourside, running
down the (small!) hill our house is halfway up, COLLAPSED
just a few feet DOWNhill from our house and sewer-connection.
Luckily I heard the noise in the basement, and when I
went down there, there was about 3 inthes of "water"
(er, sewage), and a GUYSER rising out of the toilet,
about two feet high!
Being as the hill also sloped down perpendicular to
the road (and seweer and front door), and the back
of the basement was at ground level, and had a door
to the back yard -- I managed to get it open -- WHOOSH
all this crap runs out, down the hill into the yard
at our back, and on down to a wee creek.
The city's sewer-people came (this was 10pm on a friday
night), worked all night, huge ditch dug into the street,
finally fixed maybe 8am next morning. Those guys then came
in and helped clean up the place, and that done, they
left for what was left of the weekend.
A few hours later, more rain.
Damned if it didn't collapse again! Another guyser! Same shit --
no, different shit, I guess, since the other had already
gone down the hill.
Again -- they came back, repeated the whole operation,
Moral: beware of removing all drainage from the basement.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.