Egress windows provide a safe and easy way of exiting a house in case there is an emergency such as a fire. In addition to acting as emergency exits, egress windows also make it possible for natural light to reach the basement. Because of these benefits, homes that have egress windows have more value. Below is some useful information on where egress windows should be located, the standards that egress windows should meet, and why you should engage professionals for egress window design and installation.
- Where are egress windows located on a house?
The International Residential Code of 2003 requires that an egress window be installed in each room that is used as a sleeping room. If the basement of a building is to be used as a living space, it should also have an egress window.
The Code also requires that the design of a new house should include an egress window for every bedroom and any habitable space to be situated in the basement, whether the basement has been finished or not. Further, any bedroom that is added to an existing building should also have an egress window.
- Egress window standards
Apart from the need to have egress windows fitted in certain positions within a home, there are also a number of requirements pertaining to the specifications of the windows. According to the International Residential Code, egress windows must have the following features:
- The width of the window should be at least 20 inches.
- The height should be at least 24 inches.
- The window’s area should be a minimum of 7 sq. ft. or 5.0 sq. ft. if the window is installed on the ground floor.
- The maximum window sill height is 44 inches from the floor level.
In addition, the egress window should be designed in such a way that you can operate it from inside without any tool or a key. It is only when this requirement is met that the egress window can be regarded as an emergency exit.
- Why you should let professionals install your egress windows
It is important to engage professionals in the design and fitting of egress windows because of the requirements that have to be met. Only a professional contractor will be in a position to know the best location of each egress window in relation to the design of your house. Professional egress window installers are also familiar with the building code and all the specifications of egress windows.
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