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Old 02-27-2007, 09:54 PM   #1
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In an attic remodel I am putting in new double hung vinyl replacements. They measure 24" wide by 36" tall. I have already purchased them and they are non refundable. I also heard that this size would not be acceptable for use in a bedroom. The space has already been coded as a bedroom and finished space. Am I okay to replace these windows, or is making the window large my only option?

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Old 02-27-2007, 10:52 PM   #2
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In an attic remodel I am putting in new double hung vinyl replacements. They measure 24" wide by 36" tall. I have already purchased them and they are non refundable. I also heard that this size would not be acceptable for use in a bedroom. The space has already been coded as a bedroom and finished space. Am I okay to replace these windows, or is making the window large my only option?
This would only be the case if these were the only windows in the bedroom. The issue pertains to "means of egress"...or to translate:
'Means of escape'...(i.e.- emergency circumstances)


Basic Standard Codes:
Minimum window required - One
Minimum net clear opening - 5.7 sq. ft*
Minimum net clear opening height - 24-inches
Minimum net clear opening width - 20-inches
Maximum still height - 42 to 44-inches

*This means the window must have 5.7 square feet of clear area when the window is open.

(The above information is based on the 'general code' standard requirements..... Check YOUR own local code requirements)

... Hope this helps....

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Old 02-28-2007, 05:42 AM   #3
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These are going to be used in a bedroom. But, like I said, the space is already coded as a bedroom. The stairs are open and there is no door. At the bottom of the stairs is the front door of the house.
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:45 AM   #4
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These are going to be used in a bedroom. But, like I said, the space is already coded as a bedroom. The stairs are open and there is no door. At the bottom of the stairs is the front door of the house.
Just so you know, regardless of the stairs, the windows still need to meet the minimum code opening 'dimension' requirements (5.7 net. SF)
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Old 02-28-2007, 06:56 AM   #5
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So does that count for my windows if they measure approx. 36" x 24". They are double hung, so could be opened to the required 5.7 ft. but obviously you normally just have one side open at a time.

I guess I'm just confused as to why this house is assessed with the attic space as bedrooms and why my inspector did not mention anything about this to me. It was definately used as a bedroom previously. The house was built in 1935.
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Old 02-28-2007, 07:12 AM   #6
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We have the same issue, except the window in our attic bedroom is a small octagone shaped one. We were told by inspector (home not city) that the window needed to be 2ft tall for a fireman to access the room.....but he didn't know jack, so when the time comes to replace that window I will be looking up my local codes regarding that.
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Old 02-28-2007, 07:55 AM   #7
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Yeah, I think our inspector sounds like yours. I think what I am going to do is this. Put the replacements in. They are only a couple inches from being code and they are large enough to crawl out of and a fireman could climb in. If we sell or when we sell, if this is a problem, then I'll just put a casement window in for one of the windows. The casement would measure36"x24" rough opening and should be fine for any code.
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Old 03-01-2007, 09:49 PM   #8
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If this is a permitted job, you have no choice but to use legal windows, as the building inspectors are usually pretty unforgiving on this. If the job is not being inspected, you can "practically speaking" use what you want, but be aware that at some point this may come back to haunt you. If you sell the house, the home inspection may catch this; you will have to disclose this in the disclosure statement under the clause dealing with known code violations/non permitted work to the property; and should there be some tragedy resulting from a person not being able to escape/be rescued , this will be a major legal issue for you. The interior door situation you decribe does not matter, you must have a legal egress sized window or second door to the exterior in this space.
Just for information, you can have the same size windows from different fabricators, and have some meet the requirements and others not, depending on the width of the extrusions they use. Always ask, the fabricators have listings of their particular size and styles (single/ double hung, casement) units that pass code requirements.I make sure that the sales agreement clearly identifies a unit that is claimed to be legal, so that if the inspector refuses it, I have a leg to stand on with the fabricator.
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Old 03-02-2007, 06:07 AM   #9
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If there is a chance that you will ever sell your home, it behoves you to get it to the current codes now. Later, the codes may be more stringent causing you to do even more to make it where you can sell it. Otherwise, a potential buyer will use it to negotiate the price down. Also, if you ever plan to sell your home, and you make any improvements that will add conditioned square footage, the structures footprint on the property, or the size of the mechanical systems, you should pull a permit. Pulling a permit is often seen as a hassle, but in addition, the improvements are registered at the county courthouse. When you put a house up for sale, a realtor will get the information from the Registrar of Deeds, and your property is only valued on that information. You do not have to be a GC to pull permits and make improvements on your own property. In many municipalities, you can be an unliscensed GC to build your own house, live in it 1 year, and put it up for sale taking advantage of "sweat equity".
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Old 03-02-2007, 09:06 AM   #10
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Thanks. The space is already coded as finished. So, basically for all anyone else knows, the project will just be consmetic. This is not a "flip" house so we will be here for several more years. I totally understand getting a permit for adding square footage, but we have not reached that point in our makeover.
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Old 03-11-2007, 02:48 PM   #11
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Okay, so in my city the building code is from the 2003 International Building Code. My question is this. I have already bought two windows for the attic (1 on each gable end) They measure 24 wide by 36 tall, and are double hung. I have been reading things that say that the opening has to be at least 22 inches wide and 20 inches tall or thereabouts. Would my current window size meet code? If not could I install a larger double hung, or maybe a casement with rough opening dimensions of 24x36?
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Old 03-12-2007, 07:08 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by cibula11 View Post
Okay, so in my city the building code is from the 2003 International Building Code. My question is this. I have already bought two windows for the attic (1 on each gable end) They measure 24 wide by 36 tall, and are double hung. I have been reading things that say that the opening has to be at least 22 inches wide and 20 inches tall or thereabouts. Would my current window size meet code? If not could I install a larger double hung, or maybe a casement with rough opening dimensions of 24x36?
Basic Standard Codes:
Minimum window required - One
Minimum net clear opening - 5.7 sq. ft*
Minimum net clear opening height - 24-inches
Minimum net clear opening width - 20-inches
Maximum sill height - 42 to 44-inches

*This means the window must have 5.7 square feet of clear area when the window is open.



This may help you. Click on this and scroll down to the illustrated page titled -

"For Escape Windows Installed Above or Below the Level of Exit Discharge on or After April 11, 1983"

LINK:

http://www.dps.state.mn.us/fmarshal/...essWindows.pdf

Last edited by AtlanticWBConst.; 03-12-2007 at 07:29 AM.
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Old 03-12-2007, 08:33 AM   #13
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What are the dimensions of the open window? That's the important part of the equation.

Why not bite the bullet on one window now while you're doing the remodel? This way, it's done. You won't have to worry about it in the future.
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Old 03-12-2007, 09:47 AM   #14
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I talked with a window guy who gave me a pamphlet on windows that are egress. I am going with a casement that measures 28" wide by 48" tall.
I guess I was just confused by all of this because none of my bedroom windows in the house are as large as they are suppose to be. And I doubt by looking that any of my neighbors are either. I can't figure out why I would need a 3' by 5' double hung in a bedroom, yet I have not once seen a window that large in any house that I have been in.

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