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Old 03-26-2013, 06:54 PM   #1
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Egress question


So I live in Columbus Ohio, however we are visiting friends in PA. they recently bought a beautiful new home and we were discussing basement finishing options. When the topic of egress came up.

They have an egress window, but they said it needs to be in a common area not a bedroom for the basement to be "legal". My understanding was that it needs to be in the basement if there is a bedroom. The egress can be located any where in the basement but must be there for the bedroom. Ergo if it was in the bedroom... All the better.

Can you weigh in on a contentious dinner conversation?

Thank you,

JC

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Old 03-26-2013, 07:03 PM   #2
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Egress question


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Originally Posted by JCAHILL4 View Post
...they said it needs to be in a common area not a bedroom
That would be incorrect. It may ALSO be required in the common area...
but all bedrooms must have egress. More depends on local rules.

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Old 03-26-2013, 08:29 PM   #3
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Egress question


It depends on the adopted code, but if memory serves me well PA is using the 2009 International Residential Code. Tarheel is correct, all bedrooms in addition to the bedroom door must have an Emergency Escape and Rescue Opening. From the 2009 IRC:

SECTION R310 EMERGENCY ESCAPE AND RESCUE OPENINGS

R310.1 Emergency escape and rescue required.
Basements, habitable attics and every sleeping room shall have at least one operable emergency escape and rescue opening. Where basements contain one or more sleeping rooms, emergency egress and rescue openings shall be required in each sleeping room. Where emergency escape and rescue openings are provided they shall have a sill height of not more than 44 inches (1118 mm) above the floor. Where a door opening having a threshold below the adjacent ground elevation serves as an emergency escape and rescue opening and is provided with a bulkhead enclosure, the bulkhead enclosure shall comply with Section R310.3. The net clear opening dimensions required by this section shall be obtained by the normal operation of the emergency escape and rescue opening from the inside. Emergency escape and rescue openings with a finished sill height below the adjacent ground elevation shall be provided with a window well in accordance with Section R310.2. Emergency escape and rescue openings shall open directly into a public way, or to a yard or court that opens to a public way.

Exception:
Basements used only to house mechanical equipment and not exceeding total floor area of 200 square feet (18.58 m2).

R310.1.1 Minimum opening area.
All emergency escape and rescue openings shall have a minimum net clear opening of 5.7 square feet (0.530 m2).

Exception:
Grade floor openings shall have a minimum net clear opening of 5 square feet (0.465 m2). R310.1.2 Minimum opening height. The minimum net clear opening height shall be 24 inches (610 mm). R310.1.3 Minimum opening width. The minimum net clear opening width shall be 20 inches (508 mm). R310.1.4 Operational constraints. Emergency escape and rescue openings shall be operational from the inside of the room without the use of keys, tools or special knowledge.

Locally we are required to have a secondary means of egress from a habitable basement which may be a bulkhead enclosure. Secondary means here is not a window. Not sure in PA.
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Old 03-26-2013, 08:36 PM   #4
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Thank you GBrackins and TarheelTerp!
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