Basement Egress Windows: Casement vs Double Hung

The kind of basement egress windows you choose will depend on how large the space for the window is in your basement and how much of that space is above ground level. Because most basement windows do not meet egress code (they are not large enough for a person to exit through in case of an emergency) we shall see that casement windows are often preferable to double hung windows.

Double Hung Windows

If the ceiling of your basement is not several feet above ground level, or you do not have window wells that are at least three feet deep, you most likely cannot use double hung windows. The basic idea is that because someone can only exit through what is really half the area of a double hung window, you need twice the area you would need for a casement window for it to be up to code.

Casement Windows

Casement Windows are windows that hang vertically and swing open or hang horizontally and open like a door, either towards or away from the house. The windows might open by simply pushing them open or operating a crank. That these windows can be opened with a crank makes them perfect for opening and closing hard to reach basement windows. The other advantage is that the opening mechanism takes very little away from the area of the window that will be measure to determine if it is up to egress code.