Glass Block - Basement

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  #1  
Old 02-19-08, 11:16 AM
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Glass Block - Basement

My basement has old (house built in 52) glass block windows with aluminum vents framed vents in them. The majority of these are broken and will not close properly. Being an un-finished basement in Chicago its pretty darn cold down there.

Is it possible to carefully cut out the old frame and install new vinyl vents or do I have to remove all the glass blocks and start from scratch?

The windows are setup like this:
*= block
v=vent

*vv*
****

If starting from scratch what would be the best energy efficient route to go? I do want ventilation in my basement.

The end function of the room will be the party/family/theater room.


Ed
 
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  #2  
Old 02-19-08, 01:46 PM
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Re: "Is it possible to carefully cut out the old frame and install new vinyl vents or do I have to remove all the glass blocks and start from scratch?"

The answer is probably 'it all depends'.

Can the existing vents be removed without damaging the assembly? Are new vents available with the dimensions you require? Being in the Chicago area, what are the code requirements? (If you're renovating things, you might be required to provide a means of egress via these windows in case of fire, etc.) Current glass block window assemblies have an R-value of about 2. If you replaced the vent or entire opening with an awning window (or other style), you can achieve about an R-3 with low-e argon-filled glazing.
 
  #3  
Old 02-20-08, 09:17 AM
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Thanks for the reply.

The vent is not large enough for any egress other than my kitten

They're standard sized glass blocks so there are new vents assemblies that would fit in the same spot. I guess the challenge would be creating a clean cut in the existing mortar and filling it in with a new vent and mortar.

The assemblies are pretty shot, some of them are bent and overall they're just not very efficient, the newer vinyl assemblies seem to hold a better seal.

Thats good to know about the argon windows being more efficient, I guess the only hand off would be security. It would be easy for someone to break into a house from basement windows. But then again I'm in a low crime area.


Ed
 
  #4  
Old 02-20-08, 10:07 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Posts: 6,130
Glass Block - Basement

The difference between the R2 and R3 is really insignificant.
 
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