Houses without bulkhead question

LilJimmyRbinson

Best muppet ever
Nov 19, 2004
586
#1
My wife and I been house hunting for the past few months. We finally found a house that we both like and our parents are pointing out all the bad things. For some reason her parents are stuck up on the fact that there's no bulkhead to the basement. It's not a finish-able basement so it's just for storage, and the furnace, water heater, etc. They're concerned about what would happen if/when something breaks down there. We say it got down there, it'll get back up. I don't know. Is that a stupid thing to be hung up on, or is that a real issue (not having a bulkhead)? I figure somebody here is in contracting and has had to deal with basement access.
 

d0uche_n0zzle

**Negative_Creep**
Sep 15, 2004
763
#2
Hand the in-laws some shoves and have them start shoving. Also, let them pay for the cost of a fucking bulkhead if it's so important...
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
898
#3
How do you obtain access to the basemement if there's no exterior bulkhead? Where is the access and how big is the opening?

We have a split-level house without a basement. There is a crawlspace under 1/2 of the house. The crawlspace is approximately 3 1/2 feet in height. It's accessed via our laundry/utility room. The opening is about 3 feet by 4 feet. The only things that were in the crawlspace when we moved in besides wiring/plumbing running through the joists is the pressure tank and control box setup for the well pump, and a 275 gallon heating-oil tank. The oil tank was installed when the house was built. We converted to heat pumps so the oil tank is now unused. It's still got some oil in it. But, it doesn't leak, isn't corroded (the crawlspace is bone dry - water never gets in there). I'm not concerned with removing it, because I may entertain the thought of putting in a small furnace in the future to backup/supplement the heat pumps - especially if we put an addition on or something years down the road.

When we converted to heat pumps, we had two units installed. One air handler is in the crawlspace, the other is in our utility room where the oil furnace was originally located. They had no problem with the installation in the crawlspace.

Realistically, if sometihng happened, the oil tank could emptied and cut into pieces for removal. It would be expensive and difficult, but doable.

Plus, don't let someone else's opinion make a huge impact on your decision. My parents had alot to say about our house being on a main road (they live at the end of a dead-end street). But, we don't have ANY of the problems they do (kids loitering, vandalism, people parking in front of our house at all hours, etc, etc). We've got a nicer house, in a nicer neighborhood, in a better town. They have their opinion and the above-mentioned problems.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
848
#4
well they do have a point, im a fan of walk out basements but my freind has a home with no outside access to his basement, and it is a pain in the ass, but how often do you have to replace your heater? maybe once or twice a life time. as for how the stuff got down there bet that stuff was installed before the floors, how old is the home and how old are the boiler/hot water heater?
 

thelord68

There's always time for lubricant
Feb 24, 2003
0
#5
I've never lived in a house that did have outside access to the basement. I don't see what the big deal is. Except for the high ranch style houses where I grew up, virtually none of the houses had a bulkhead doors either.
 
Jun 2, 2005
0
#6
We don't have basements down here... Or foundations as it's turning out.
 
Jul 13, 2006
0
#7
We don't have basements down here... Or foundations as it's turning out.
So, your house is on a footing then. The main problem with that is cold weather that allows for air to get under the house and freeze your pipes.
 

Creasy Bear

gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh
Donator
Mar 10, 2006
628
#8
My wife and I been house hunting for the past few months. We finally found a house that we both like and our parents are pointing out all the bad things. For some reason her parents are stuck up on the fact that there's no bulkhead to the basement. It's not a finish-able basement so it's just for storage, and the furnace, water heater, etc. They're concerned about what would happen if/when something breaks down there. We say it got down there, it'll get back up. I don't know. Is that a stupid thing to be hung up on, or is that a real issue (not having a bulkhead)? I figure somebody here is in contracting and has had to deal with basement access.
If you're not going to finish the basement then it's a 'WGAS?' situation.

Your in-laws are probably remembering back to the oldern days when houses had boilers that were cast iron and weighed like half a ton. Modern furnaces and hot water heaters are so lightweight and compact that one person can easily handle them.

Tell the old fossils to shut their traps.

Besides... you can always have a Bilco door installed later if you find that you absolutely have to have one... for whatever reason.

http://www.bilco.com/foundations/store/shopdetail.asp?product=1UBD-1

They're pretty cheap and easy to install.
 

Creasy Bear

gorgeousness and gorgeousity made flesh
Donator
Mar 10, 2006
628
#9
We don't have basements down here... Or foundations as it's turning out.
I noticed that when we were looking to move to Dallas. The houses are all on slabs, and get this... it's so frigging dry down there that you have to "water your foundation" otherwise it will crack.

Seriously... you have to water your house like you water your lawn
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
898
#10
Those new-style Bilco doors kick ass... composite, won't rot away... My buddy had a house built and I fucking told him to go with those, but he's a chisler. He got cheap steel ones.
 

LilJimmyRbinson

Best muppet ever
Nov 19, 2004
586
#11
How do you obtain access to the basemement if there's no exterior bulkhead? Where is the access and how big is the opening?

We have a split-level house without a basement. There is a crawlspace under 1/2 of the house. The crawlspace is approximately 3 1/2 feet in height. It's accessed via our laundry/utility room. The opening is about 3 feet by 4 feet. The only things that were in the crawlspace when we moved in besides wiring/plumbing running through the joists is the pressure tank and control box setup for the well pump, and a 275 gallon heating-oil tank. The oil tank was installed when the house was built. We converted to heat pumps so the oil tank is now unused. It's still got some oil in it. But, it doesn't leak, isn't corroded (the crawlspace is bone dry - water never gets in there). I'm not concerned with removing it, because I may entertain the thought of putting in a small furnace in the future to backup/supplement the heat pumps - especially if we put an addition on or something years down the road.

When we converted to heat pumps, we had two units installed. One air handler is in the crawlspace, the other is in our utility room where the oil furnace was originally located. They had no problem with the installation in the crawlspace.

Realistically, if sometihng happened, the oil tank could emptied and cut into pieces for removal. It would be expensive and difficult, but doable.

Plus, don't let someone else's opinion make a huge impact on your decision. My parents had alot to say about our house being on a main road (they live at the end of a dead-end street). But, we don't have ANY of the problems they do (kids loitering, vandalism, people parking in front of our house at all hours, etc, etc). We've got a nicer house, in a nicer neighborhood, in a better town. They have their opinion and the above-mentioned problems.
The basement is accessible through the kitchen. Probably 10 steps not quite spiral but not 5-landing-5 either. Then there's a semi-finished room with the washer/dryer and insulation, then a door to the real basement where the furnace/oil tank/water heater are. The furnace isn't the original. It's newer, I'd say 10 years at least. The oil tanks are original but still work and no leakage (that we know of - no inspection yet). If they were to go we'd cut them up...and probably convert to gas.
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
898
#12
LilJimmyRbinson;24490 65 said:
The basement is accessible through the kitchen. Probably 10 steps not quite spiral but not 5-landing-5 either. Then there's a semi-finished room with the washer/dryer and insulation, then a door to the real basement where the furnace/oil tank/water heater are. The furnace isn't the original. It's newer, I'd say 10 years at least. The oil tanks are original but still work and no leakage (that we know of - no inspection yet). If they were to go we'd cut them up...and probably convert to gas.
Doesn't sound like any major obstacles. If the water heater goes, it's not hard to get an empty old water heater up some stairs and out. Getting the new one in - same deal.

My father's external access to his basement is a regular size doorway with 3 steps up to ground level (raised rancher - full basement). He replaced the original furnace. The new furnace was able to be wheeled right in on a hand truck. The old one had to be cut into pieces to be removed.

How old is the house? Our house was built in 1960 and the oil tank is in excellent shape. There are buried steel tanks out there that have been in the ground for 50 years... So, one would think a tank located in the house would last a hell of alot longer.
 

NotSoFast

Registered User
Apr 23, 2006
498
#13
I've never seen a house with a basement.
 

LilJimmyRbinson

Best muppet ever
Nov 19, 2004
586
#14
Doesn't sound like any major obstacles. If the water heater goes, it's not hard to get an empty old water heater up some stairs and out. Getting the new one in - same deal.

My father's external access to his basement is a regular size doorway with 3 steps up to ground level (raised rancher - full basement). He replaced the original furnace. The new furnace was able to be wheeled right in on a hand truck. The old one had to be cut into pieces to be removed.

How old is the house? Our house was built in 1960 and the oil tank is in excellent shape. There are buried steel tanks out there that have been in the ground for 50 years... So, one would think a tank located in the house would last a hell of alot longer.
It was built in 1950. I bet the oil tanks are the originals, but everything else is updated.