Egress windows in your home provide emergency exits in case of fire. Ideally, they should be large enough to accommodate you and your family members as you make your escape during such instances. Yes, they are essential life-saving fixtures, but if they are not big enough, then you might want to consider investing in a window replacement project.
WMGB Home Improvement, your local source of egress and glass block windows, discusses what you need to know about determining the size of your egress windows and their placement in your home.
Following the Building Code
The International Building Code (IBC) defines an “escape and rescue opening” as a window, skylight or patio door that should “open directly into a public street, alley, yard or court.” Any habitable home requires at least one such opening.
Egress windows must be at least 24 inches high and 20 inches wide. The bottom opening must be within 44 inches of the floor. They must also be operational from the inside without keys or tools. Take note, however, that the minimum specifications may not meet egress requirements, which calls for a 5.7 square footage of net clear opening or the actual free and clear space of the opened window.
That said, it is important that your egress windows must be taller and/or wider than the minimum specifications to meet the opening requirement.
Not All Egress Windows Are the Same
Egress windows, however, are not created equal. They come in a variety of styles and can be constructed to meet the initial requirements. Be sure to turn to our window professionals for ideas on which style works best for your upper bedroom or basement. We can even install one with glass block pieces as additional components.
Take for example sliding windows. They must be at least four feet wide and four feet high. They are perfect for the basement given their extra glass area and the light they bring into the entire space. Casement windows, meanwhile, also meet the same requirements while taking up the smallest amount of wall space. Any limited indoor space can benefit from this type of egress window.
WMGB Home Improvement is committed to making your home look its absolute best through its offering of egress and glass block windows. Call (616) 328-6625, or fill out our contact form to request a free estimate. We serve residents of Grand Rapids and Lansing, MI.