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Old 06-08-2018, 02:48 PM   #1
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Header for egress window


Cutting a basement wall to install a 42x21 egress window.

Currently the top of the wall has a 2x6 sill plate with two joists(unsupported) on it and after enlarging the window opening, there will be 3 joists on unsupported sill plate.

Would cutting off 3" from each of the joists to wiggle in a double 2x10 to act as a header be enough to beef up the support over this window?

Span of the existing joists to next beam is ~10' or 11'.

Thanks.
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Old 06-08-2018, 03:26 PM   #2
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Re: Header for egress window


Depending on siding but the best is to go from the outside remove 45" of rim joist. Cut the joists back 1 1/2" and slip in hangers and replace the rim with 2 for a header and nail the hangers from the inside. That is called a flush beam.
It is easy if you say it fast. Actually it is a pain to do.
You can do it from the inside if you double the joist on each side then cut your joists above the window and add a double joist across the ends and use hangers to tie everything together.
All that is good as long as you don't have some extra load coming from above at this point, extra wide window or beam landing somewhere in house above.
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Old 06-08-2018, 10:42 PM   #3
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Re: Header for egress window


Thanks for the info. That's easy to understand.

I'll probably do the double outside joist method from the inside.

What is your method for getting a clean cut on the existing joists?
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Old 06-08-2018, 11:17 PM   #4
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Re: Header for egress window


Clean cut is a relative term! I used to cut as far as I could with a skilsaw, and then finish with a Sawzall with a long wood blade. These days, I don't frame much anymore, but if I was I'd consider cutting as far as I can with a skilsaw, and then finish with a multitool with a 2 1/2" wide blade. The trick there is to saw quickly back and forth, almost like using it as a hand saw--the tendency is to want to press hard, but then the blade will heat up and get dull real quick. But if you keep it moving with a lighter touch, the sawdust will clear the cut and the blade will last much, much longer. The multitool would take longer than a Sawzall, but would produce a nicer cut I think.
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