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Old 11-19-2010, 09:04 PM   #1
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Convert cistern into a laundry room?

I am thinking about trying to or finding someone that may be able to put an opening in our basement wall into the old cistern in our house. When my wife bought the house the homeowner had to put a well in for her to get the loan. They ran all the electric and piping through the cistern so it isnt usable anymore.

Where I would put the doorway in isn't a load bearing wall as the kitchen/dining area is right above it. Our basement stays pretty dry currently, I dont want to cause a new issue with if the tank is actually seperate from the basement wall. I havent had time to go down in the cistern and try to see how thick the wall is where they ran the electric and piping through it into the basement.

Has anyone done this or heard of it being done? I could get a nice space for a nice laundry room.
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Old 11-20-2010, 08:01 AM   #2
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You didn't think it would be a good idea to check it out before you posted?
At first blush it would seem like a bad idea, but without pictures, condition ,age approximation, it's just a guess.
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Old 11-20-2010, 09:02 AM   #3
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Ayuh,... Lots of old houses with old cisterns around here,...
Some are stacked mortared limestone, some are poured concrete...
Years ago I did what you're talkin' about for a friend,...
We used a gas demosaw to cut in the doorway...
Then framed it out,...
Floyd used it as a wineroom... probably still is...
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Old 11-20-2010, 05:57 PM   #4
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You will probably have moisture/venting problems using a waterproofed vessel as a washroom. Wine/root cellar seem like better uses.
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Old 11-20-2010, 09:16 PM   #5
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We looked at a few houses with this.... there seems to be 2 types..

Some we looked it had the walls used as support, others didnt go to the ceiling at all, my only concern (as i would have removed the whole thing) was would the outer walls bow inwards do to no support there anymore.

Didnt like the idea so looked at houses with no basement water storage at all.

However if it was me, i would remove the whole thing, after you have confirmed you could do that for upper / outer wall support issues.
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Old 11-21-2010, 06:51 AM   #6
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I've cut openings into quite a few of them through the years, as well as removed them completely. Here, they're typically 6" thick concrete (damn hard concrete too) with plenty of steel re-enforcement, whether it be old rebar, lightning rods, farm implements, bicycle parts, etc.........

Check into it first, as it's usually an expensive and labor intensive way to pick up a small amount of less than ideal basement space.
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