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When should you get egress windows and what are the regulations?

Egress windows offer emergency leavings to people in case of fire or any other life-threatening situation. While they aren’t something new, the standards and rules linked with where they are required and the sizes they are needed in have changed with time.

Hence, when you meet a professional egress window supplier or installer, you will be properly informed about the current egress window regulations. Most of the time, the installed windows do not comply with the provincial fire code standard. It isn’t just illegal but also deadly.

In order to acquire better knowledge about egress windows, here are some important points mentioned to you. So the next time you plan to renovate your basement or to enhance the energy efficiency of your house, you will be aware of the basement window requisitions.

Though bedroom windows don’t need an escape route, but you can still use them in case of a fire exit if the size and type meet specific criteria.

When should you install egress windows?

As per the NBCC norms, the bedroom windows should abide by the following requirements:

  • Offers a minimum of 5% light to the flooring of the area.
  • Offer ventilation sufficient for all year mechanical ventilation
  • Should be efficiently sized to offer Emergency Escape and can be opened from inside, without using any keys, hardware or extra knowledge.

The building codes differ from one area to another, the standard egress window styles are casement and slider.

Minimum size recommended for egress windows

As per the NBCC guidelines, egress windows should offer an unobstructed opening with space not less than 0.35 m2 with no dimensions smaller than 380mm. in order to make the unbarred opening meets these requirements, make sure you measure between the sashes, sills and other opening mechanisms.

Other rules related to egress windows

  • Windows with safety bars installed should easily be operable from the inside without requirement of any knowledge or tool.
  • Egress windows shouldn’t be more than 1.5m above the floor.
  • If there is a sprinkler system fixed in the room, you don’t need an outside window for an emergency exit.

What do you need to convert your normal basement window to an egress window?

In most situations, when basement windows are changed to bedroom basement egress windows to develop it as a kids’ playroom or reading room, the concrete wall is cut to enlarge the present window opening.

In such a situation, you need to hire a reputable window replacement company to enlarge the window opening to the recommended window size. Your contractor will provide the precise dimensions needed as per your local building code.

However, the transformation project needs a permit from your municipality, so always clarify with the installation company whether your renovation project needs any additional approvals or not.

Once the opening has been enlarged, you can install the new window. If you want to change basement windows to egress basement windows, make sure you book an appointment and discuss your intentions with a window product consultant. They will help you choose the best egress window for your bedroom basement.

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