Basement Egress Compliant Windows; A means of escape
What is a basement egress window?
The proper term is Egress Compliant Window. An egress compliant window is one that complies with the egress window code, and providing an emergency exit window from your basement or lower level. According to building codes, a basement sleeping area must have two exits, with one to the exterior. This window must be large enough for a person to exit and for a fully outfitted firefighter to enter.
We don't have a bedroom in our finished basement. Do I still need an egress window?
It's a matter of safety. An egress compliant window will provide a safe fire emergency exit for your family or guest using the basement living space.
How are basement egress compliant windows installed?
Cutting through concrete isn't a DIY-friendly job and it is important to hire experienced professionals. With over 45 years of experience, Foundation Builders LLC has the equipment and expertise to make sure the window is installed properly in a timely and efficient manner.
Do they leak?
Professional installation, careful finishing, and appropriate drainage make egress windows as impervious to rain and snow as any other window in your home.
How does water drain from the window well?
When excavating for your new window well, we dig to the bottom of your current foundation wall to locate the existing basement drainage system. Once we locate the system, we fill the hole with washed stone all of the way to 4" below the cut in the foundation wall. Any water that comes into the well will then will drain through the gravel at the bottom into the window well and into the existing basement drainage system.
Can I put an egress compliant window in a spot with no existing window?
We can install a new outside window in any location in your basement. Keep in mind that windows cannot be located less than 2 feet from a gas or propane meter. We also recommend keeping windows at least 2 feet away from air conditioner compressors.
Can you install a window if the ground is frozen?
Our equipment allows us to dig through frozen dirt. We can install egress compliant windows in every season of the year.
Where should I put my basement egress window?
Positioning the window to get as much sunlight as possible will brighten your basement. For safety reasons, the outside window should have clear access to the outdoors. Egress windows can be installed under a deck or porch, but building codes require a clear path with a height of 36 inches under the deck for an escape route.
We're in the process of remodeling our basement. Can you work with our contractor or remodeling company?
We're happy to work with your contractor, and can accommodate their schedule with a prompt installation.
My basement is already finished. Is it too late to add an egress window?
No problem! Most of the windows we install are in finished basements. We can install a new outside window, while protecting your finished basement's walls and carpeting.
Will the carpet be destroyed?
Foundation Builders has a proprietary method for cutting the opening of your egress window. No dust or water will invade your basement. We call it "No Mess Egress!" ™
Will installation damage my home's foundation?
Installation by an experienced crew protects your foundation from any damage. It is wise to hire someone with a lot of experience. An experienced and knowledgeable contractor will know what needs to be cut, and where. Weak and strong points of the foundation will be able to be identified with ease. Foundation Builders has over 45 years of experience in the home building experience and can be trusted with your homes foundation.
Are basement windows a safety hazard?
Egress compliant windows are not a safety hazard. The window itself locks securely, like any other window in your home, to deter break-ins. (Security experts say most burglars enter homes through front, back or garage doors.) Covers and metal grates are available to cover window wells and guard against falls. Building codes require covers for wells that are 32 inches or deeper, or within 3 feet of a sidewalk or patio.
How will a basement egress window look on the inside?
It allows natural sunlight to enter your basement, and is aesthetically pleasing when you are designing and decorating a room. We leave your interior space clean, free from debris and ready for interior trim.
What will I see when I look out the window?
Foundation Builders uses a composite well from Rockwell Inc. for most installations. Your view will be enhanced by window wells that resemble real stone. Other well finishing options are available.
What kind of window can I use?
We use a 4x4 Pella Vinyl window as our standard window. There are many other types to choose from that meet code requirements, and you can select windows in other sizes and materials. Casement windows (which open by swinging inward) and double hung windows are also available options.
Will I need a permit for a basement egress window?
Permit requirements vary by municipality. Foundation Builders will provide the drawings and specifications you need to obtain any necessary permits.
What about buried utility wires?
We contact Ohio Utilities Protection Service (OUPS) to mark utility lines. Please let us know if you have other lines buried on site, such as electrical lines to a shed or garage, or an electric pet fence.
Do you stand behind your work?
Foundation Builders' commitment to total customer satisfaction is what sets us apart from the rest. We warrant all of our work for a 2-year period. Rockwell has a 10-year warranty on their window wells, and Pella provides a 20-year warranty on the window.
How many egress windows can I install?
Available wall space is the only limiting factor in designing your windows.
Will installation ruin my lawn or landscaping?
No. Foundation Builders uses special mats to protect your lawn from vehicle damage during installation. We use containment boxes to store dirt so that it is not placed on your lawn.
What happens to the dirt that's dug out for the window?
We can haul the dirt away or leave it on site. We can suggest ways for you to use the dirt to re-grade your property during our free site consultation.
How long does installation take?
Our crews can install your basement windows in just a few days, weather permitting.
What do I do next?
Click here to request a free site consultation or call Foundation Builders at 513-753-6699.
We look forward to making your dream basement a reality.
- Maritza Palusiak,