basement windows


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Old 09-18-02, 08:15 PM
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basement windows

I'm finishing my basement. My basement window openings (in the concrete walls) are pretty small (33" x 21"). The usual double pane vinyl slider inserts makes the area of glass rediculously small. Since I will not have a bedroom in the basement (and these openings are not code for "egress purposes" anyway), would it be okay if I insert a plain double pane "window" (i.e. without all that vinyl) that can not open. I.e caulk it in etc. Is this acceptable, or must all windows be able to open, for reasons other than egress?
 
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Old 09-19-02, 10:07 AM
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would not go that route

I know that 32 x 21 is not large enough to count as an egress window, but I would not feel comfortable having basement windows that cannot open. In case of a fire, I would say most people (at least most all kids) could fit thru a 21 x 32 opening.

You do not say if your basement is a full walk-out, then the sealed windows may be okay, but otherwise I would not do this. I think it is good to air out a basement now and then anyway.
 
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Old 09-19-02, 02:06 PM
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get your point

I get your point, but if you look at the opening remaining after the vinyl insert is in, it is really really tiny (of which only one side can open anyway) and with insect screen in front of it. I am not too sure that any creature that can reach that high would fit through it. Maybe one should go with a "glass only" insert and store a baseball bat next to it?
 
  #4  
Old 09-23-02, 05:02 AM
Kaps
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Granted I am just a weekend DYI'er, but I would never put a non-opening window in a basement. The cost to do it right (to egress code, or at least a window that opens) is minimal compared to the thought of having someone hunting for an exit should there be a fire. I just put two 33x48 casement windows in my basement. I extended my existing 33x12 windows by cutting larger openings in my poured foundation. (A contractor did the cutting - I was going to attempt, but glad I didn't after watching the pro do it). You may want to think about cutting your existing window larger - not only is it safer, but it adds an enormous amount of light (much more than I originally thought it would).

Storing a baseball bat next to a window in case of an emergency is ridiculous.
 
  #5  
Old 09-28-02, 07:27 AM
zippylaura
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Basement Windows

Instead of using square, level framing around my egress window, I angled the sill, sides and top. I was surprised how much more light this brought in. When I invited my neighbor over to show him my handywork, he suggested I use white pebbles or marble chips outside as well since it is a north-facing basement window. I doubted this would make much difference. The next day he delivered a wheel-barrow load of marble chips. I strongly recommend you use every trick in the book to bring more light into your basement. You'll be pleasantly surprised.
 
  #6  
Old 10-21-02, 11:38 AM
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concerning sealed windows vs. open windows;
some homeowners consider the aspect of burglar break ins through the basement window more of a threat than a fire; they prefer to install block glass windows which are strong and energy efficient.
it is a matter of preference and situation.
 
 

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