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Should You Build An Egress Window This Spring?

http://uppermoretonfarm.co.uk/contact-us/ Spring is here and it is finally beginning to warm up. Soon, the hot Central Maryland summers will arrive, and homeowners will be lowering the temperatures in their homes or looking for the coolest room in the house as a respite from the heat. 

For many people, the coolest room in the house is the basement. It is below ground, and the cool air is kept tight. It doesn’t go up into the above floors or get warm, like the top floor of the home typically does (especially in older homes.)

Since the time people stay in the basement will greatly increase, it may be time to consider what might happen if there is an emergency and you are stuck in the basement. Can you exit quickly? Is the exit large enough for everyone? Are you even able to open the window or door to get out? 

It may be time to have an egress window installed in your basement. Egress windows are essential for your family and others who are staying or visiting your home. An egress window does the following:

    1. Safety: Basements are often used as extra bedrooms. I see these all the time in my Central Maryland customers. If you or a family member is staying in your home, you should have an egress window installed immediately. Should there be a fire or other emergency, the egress window is an easy and accessible escape route for them. It also can be an entry point for emergency personnel. It is particularly helpful if there is a stairwell on the opposite side of the home where individuals are staying http://tiffaneejacob.com/tag/destiny/
    2. Comfortable Desert Hot Springs :  Maryland building codes require egress windows to have an opening of, at least, 5.7 sq. ft. This opening brings natural light to the basement. It also can make it much more comfortable. Your basement may not be a bedroom. It could be a rec room, home office, or a living room. The egress window will add light to an otherwise dark and dingy room. 
    3. Property values are increased. Adding an egress window to your home will also increase the resale value. As this space may be used by the next owners as a closet, storage, or another type of living space. In fact, not having an egress window in your basement may be a disadvantage. The prospective new buyer may even require one to be installed. 

Also, if you install the egress window in the spring or summer, there won’t be any cold-weather drafts coming through which will keep your electricity bill down. Caulk also bonds better in warmer weather. Installing the egress window this season is a smart decision, and won’t interrupt your lifestyle or increase your living expenses. 

M Taylor Enterprise has installed many Egress windows in the Montgomery County, Maryland area. We can install them efficiently and quickly.  Contact us at (301) 649-3406 or at matt@mtaylorenterprise.com for a free consultation.

*** For more information on Maryland temperatures, visit the Maryland state website.

What is an Egress Window and How It Could Save Your Life

egress window M Taylor ConstructionImagine sitting in your basement, watching TV or playing with your children on the floor and, suddenly, it catches on fire. Do you have an emergency exit so you and your children can escape quickly? If not, your family’s safety is in peril.

However, there is a solution for that: an Egress Window.

An “Egress Window” is defined by www.HomeAdvisor.com as:

“a path out” or “to emerge,” and these terms directly apply to the design principles behind egress windows. In case of an emergency, windows installed in any sleeping room must pass strict codes so that occupants can exit and rescue specialists can enter the bedroom.

But, these windows cannot just be any size. The requirements for an Egress Window are the following:

  1. Minimum width of opening: lasix 20 in.
  2. Minimum height of opening: 24 in.
  3. Minimum net clear opening: 5.7 sq. ft. (5.0 sq. ft./ground floor)
  4. Maximum sill height above floor: 44 in.

If you need to install them, please do it. Your family’s safety is at stake, so don’t delay. It can be done without busting your budget, too. In fact, an Egress window can be substantially less, as mush as 1/4 the cost of a standard window.

Along with safety, these windows can also allow for more light in your basement. Many basements that we work in are dark and kind of creepy. Egress windows allow sunlight to break through and that changes the entire atmosphere of the basement making it more useful for activities and more inviting for family and guests. 

There are three types of Egress Window installations you can do:

  1. Glider or Double-Hung Windows: These are larger windows than a typical Egress. They will pass code but they have a lot of glass when opened. These are not always recommended but can be installed as they will certainly allow for escape.
  2. Casement Windows: These are the most common and most recommended Egress windows to install. It is typically attached to the frame by several hinges. They are opened by using a crank, a lever or a cam handle. They open from the inside so one can exit through it quickly and without harm.
  3. Awning Windows: These windows swing out from the bottom thus making escape awkward and even impossible to achieve because the hinges are centered in the middle. They are not recommended by most contractors.

All of these windows should open easily and not have any obstructions. Give yourself plenty of room to escape. Clear all of the space around it of clutter and keep a ladder or stepladder next to it.

So, if you love your basement and spend a lot of time there, make sure you, your family and visitors have a way to escape should a disaster occur in it. Have your local contractor come over for a consultation and determine your safety needs.

M Taylor Enterprise has installed many Egress windows in the Montgomery County, Maryland area. We can install them efficiently and quickly.  

Contact us at (301) 649-3406 or  at matt@mtaylorenterprise.com for a free consultation.