Basement egress windows… Do I really need them?

Basement egress windows…  Do I really need them?


If you are considering the renovation of a basement as a way to extend your living space, don’t be amazed if your building-codes office has something to say about it.

They may complain especially if you have a new bedroom in your plan. Without a basement egress window in case of fire, regulations just would not allow a basement bedroom.

It is a dilemma that could keep you confined for space, with all the space you need beneath your feet. Thankfully, you need not be limited to the basement in your house if you have basement egress window.

You can make provision for this by cutting a large opening in a basement and adding a window that meets code regulations including a basement escape window.

Here is a list of questions below that will help you to decide whether you really need a basement exit windows!  Let’s take a look.

What is a basement egress window?

Egress implies a way out or exit; therefore a basement egress window is an exit or means to escape especially in case of fire. It is an opening in a wall, roof, and door that allows the passage of sound, light, and air.

A basement emergency exit window is such a window that can serve as an emergency exit from any living space

below the base. It is a must have  in any living area or basement bedroom.

Do I need an egress window?

It is mentioned earlier that basement access windows are designed to be applied as an exit in an emergency. So I need this emergency egress window.

Besides this, there are also plenty of building codes that cover not just the requirement of the window but also the structural elements of the basement easement window itself.

The basic necessity that decides whether you need an egress window is only when you include a bedroom in your completed basement design. (According to the above definition, any room that is a bedroom must need an egress window.)

What are the other advantages of an egress window?

  • An egress window is primarily used in a fire in two ways. The first one is to escape the house and the second one is to allow firefighters get into the house to saving anyone confined in that area of the house.
  • The basement egress window considerably increases the available light in your dark basement.
  • It will also improve ventilation to help stop a damp and dark basement room.

What will be the maximum and minimum size needs of an egress window?

  • Minimum Opening: 3.8 square feet
  • Minimum Height: 15 inches

What will be the other necessities are required for an egress window?

  • It must open from the inside and does not need any extra key or tool to open it.
  • All bars, grilles, and screens on or around the egress window must also open from inside and does not need any extra key or tool.
  • The basement egress window must be able to open fully.
  • An egress window must have a minimum opening of 3.8 sq. ft. It refers to the bright and free space that exists when the window is open.

Final verdict:

This sounds like a lot of trouble, and it is. Placing basement egress windows is challenging. You need to dig a large hole, cut through and remove concrete.

It seems like a massive project. However, it is a matter of safety that you need to install this basement emergency egress window. It will not only ensure the safety but also increase the beauty of your basement.

Thank you for reading my article. If you feel any recommendations or relevant information that we need to add in this article, please let me know through your comment below.

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