Egress window wells come in a variety of materials, including metal, plastic, and concrete.
Each type has its strengths and weaknesses. Keep reading to see why we always use precast concrete window wells for our egress window wells.
Metal Window Wells
Steel window wells can be quite rigid and strong, and are easier for the DIY installer to work with, since they usually weigh less than concrete. While metal window wells can be rather industrial looking, there are some interesting and attractive designs available. Their biggest drawback is the potential for rust. While a galvanized steel well has a protective coating, at the end of the day, you’re still putting metal against damp dirt and hoping for the best.
Plastic Window Wells
This category includes fiberglass and any type of poly egress window well. This type of window well is excellent in terms of long-term moisture resistance since it can’t rot or rust. These are lighter than concrete window wells, making a DIY installation easier, but the look of these window wells won’t be for everybody.
The challenge with most plastic materials is strength and UV resistance. It’s not at all uncommon for us to replace broken plastic window wells. The soil around the window well can put a lot of pressure on the window well as it expands and contracts, eventually destroying some fiberglass and poly window wells.
Concrete Window Wells
We are big fans of precast concrete window wells. Rust, rot, and UV degradation are simply not an issue. We’ve had them certified by an engineer, and we’ve proven their durability in the real world. Our employees cast them here in our own facility, which allows us to produce a consistently high quality product. The stamped stone design is an attractive light gray. The only downside to working with precast concrete is working with the sheer weight of these window wells. Fortunately, installation is not a problem with a good backhoe and our skilled team.
In terms of strength and durability, concrete window wells are absolutely the best choice. If you’re doing a DIY installation and you don’t have any power equipment to maneuver heavy slabs of concrete, you might choose a plastic or metal window well. (We also offer a service where we can cut your concrete basement wall, install a precast window well, and you do the rest). Typically, you’ll be best served by sticking with an engineered concrete egress window well.