Egress Window in Aurora
Going out to see the home owner I found that he has two windows in the back of his house; in the basement, and he wanted to enlarge one of them. This would be an Egress Window in Aurora.
After submitting the drawings to the City of Aurora‘s Permits Department, we found a few problems:
- The total cut out of both windows has to be within a specific ratio of the total wall length.
- The depth of the new dig cannot be over a certain depth, so that it will not disturb the pressure on the foundation of the house.
Later we found other problems like the air conditioning was close to the new dig site and we had to verify that it would not move once the earth was removed.
The actual window had to be cut; down into the ground; to fit a 30” by 30” window so it would fit a standard fire escape size; also known as an Egress Window; and to do that it had to satisfy two things:
- Minimum square foot of clear opening has to be at least 4.1 square feet.
- The minimum length of the shorter side has to be at least 18”.
We chose a Double Slider Lift Out Window for the Egress Window in Aurora, since this window allows both sides to be removed out of the frame in one motion and the total clear opening came out to be 26.5” X 26.5”.
The window’s sealed units have low-E film and Argon gas filled to get the Energy star high thermal insulation.
To do this installation, we needed to dig a hole for a well, install a drain pipe to the weeping tile and test it to make sure that the weeping tile is not blocked and that when it rains hard, the basement is not going to be flooded. Then we did the cut, down to the right size and installed a lintel on top to prevent the bricks from dropping down.
The lintel according to the city has to be an angle iron L shape and sized to be 3.5 x 3.5 x 0.25 inch and when installed above the window it has to sit on each side at least six inch from the end of the cut out.
After the lintel was installed we inserted a brick veneer and secured it with screws to the cement to cover all four sides all across from the outside to the end of the dry wall, and only then could we install the window and use spray foam to insulate the frame before we used white aluminum capping all around including over the lintel so it’s all sealed and we will not have leaks into the house.
Only then did we installed the metal well wall in the dig following the city guide lines:
- Minimum projection from the wall is 22 inch.
- The inside of the well will have the top 4 inch made of gravel (crushed stone).
- The top of gravel to be 4 inch below window sill.
- The bottom of metal to be 12″ below window sill.
Pictures from various Cut Outs and Egress Window installations are available at these links.
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