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Everything To Know About Egress Windows In case of emergency situations, window wells provide a quick exit for people inside the building; after all, it is the objective of its design. In bedrooms on every floor, they’re actually required but for most of the time, you would see them in basements that have habitable space and designed to be accessed by firemen as well as rescue teams easily. For egress windows, it must be able to comply with the International Regulation Code or IRC. For instance, these windows should have a minimum opening height of at least 24 inches, minimum opening width of 20 inches, a minimum net clear opening of 5sq/ft for ground floors and 5.7sq/ft for other floors and lastly, maximum still height of 44 inches above floor. Basically, net clear is the amount of available space for a person to crawl into if the window is open while the minimum height and width for window wells are 24 and 20 inches respectively, a 24 x 20 inch window is capable of yielding a net clear opening of 3.3 sq/ft. which is less than the net clear opening required in IRC criteria.
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Now, in an effort to attain net clear opening of 5.7 sq/ft. minimum, there has to be at least 20 inch window that have a minimum height of 42 inches and also, a 42 inch high window should be at least 34 inches wide. IRC has regulations in monitoring window wells, indicating that the egress window must have sufficient space to allow the window be opened fully with minimum 9 sq/ft floor area.
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Say for example that you’re living in an old house which was constructed prior to the IRC requirements were set, your window wells might not potentially meet its regulations. Sometimes, when homeowners have made a decision to convert an office or other room of the house to a bedroom or add a new room to the basement when doing home remodeling, they do forget to add egress windows that meet the IRC criteria. If any of your windows is missing such, then you must consider installing one for safety precaution. Because of the reason that egress windows primarily serve as a mean to escape, it is essential not just to keep it free of any objects or widow treatments that might hinder a person’s escape but to also avoid using complex locks which can make it hard to operate. On the other hand, this doesn’t mean that the windows should look boring. Of course, there’s no problem in using any design idea or style but see to it that it meets the IRC criteria. You might want to contact a professional if you want to be sure with the design and style.