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Question DetailsAsked on 9/29/2014

How much should it cost to install an egress window in an existing basement?

We want to finish in our basement and add a bedroom. For it to be up to code, we need to add an egress window. We would need to dig down on the outside as there is not an exposed side to the basement. Does anybody have an idea what this would cost?

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Look right below this answer for several prior responses to that question - more in the Home > Windows and Doors (Doors and Windows ?) category in Browse Projects at lower left.

Be sure to select the ballpark cost estimates that include installing outside window well, not just a window - you will have to check your local building codes about how high the step-out from the window well can be without requiring stairs - usually the same height as the allowable height up from the floor to the bottom of the egress window, which is typically about 36-44 inches - the latter probably being the most common in codes, so as long as the bottom of the window well is not more than that amount from the lip of the well, you will probably be OK - but check your local codes. I have seen codes that requires standard steps (typically 8" max per step) up out of window wells, so that becomes more of a cellar door situation.

Be sure well is waterproofed to house and waterproof seal/concrete filled in bottom if chance of high water table, otherwise if only water getting into it would likely be rain and snow drifting, then put in a drain gravel filled drywell in the bottom so it does not accumulate water and rotted debris.

Also, in snow country, check your local regs but be sure to leave snow accumulation area in bottom of pit below window level so snow does not block it opening in an emergency - typically about 1 foot that I have seen. And of course, bottom of well has to be well below top of foundation wall regardless, so wagter accumulated in there cannot overtop the foundation wall.

Don't forget utility locates - I have seen several people p[utting in window wells who cut telecommunications, electric, or gas lines that were running alongside the house.

Answered 5 years ago by LCD

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