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Question DetailsAsked on 10/17/2013

How much to install an egress window when cutting the concrete

it will be used as a fire exit
need to cut hole in concrete to install

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1 Answer


Here is an answer I gave to a very similar question a while ago -

One thing that might cut your cost, if legal in your area - you would have to get the egress window requirements sheet from your local building department to be sure. You can sometimes (depending on head room) raise the bottom of the window to the sill level on top of the concrete/block foundation, which typically brings it to ground level and eliminates the need for a window well or outside steps also. Then, on the inside, to meet the requirement for the height of the window from floor level, build a permanent (usually not allowed to be tilt-down because takes an extra action to get out, and stuff might be piled in front of it) platform on the floor in front of the window, with the necessary number of steps to get up to the window. Takes up a 3' square of floor space under the window, but works for many people - can even be made into a window-seat type storage unit. In some jurisdictions, putting a permanent window seat below the window that one can climb up on to get out the window also meets the code requirement. If that is not allowed, I have also seen a raised floor platform along that wall - like a raised bed platform in a bedroom, all along that wall, so the "floor" is legally higher in that area. Using one of these solutions can potentially save up to about a quarter to half the cost of putting in a legal egress, if allowed in your area.

Be sure to check your local regs for legal type windows - some areas do not allow casement type with operator bars in the bottom of the egress path, some do not allow double-hung or vertically sliding windows that could slide back down on an exiting person, etc., and make sure your contract specifies it shall meet ALL requirements for a legal basement egress window, and if your town does code inspections, make sure it is inspected and passes inspection before making final payment for the job.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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