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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are hoping to put a large window into the concrete wall of our walkout basement so there will be more daylight in the area. The basement is 35 years old. Can this be done?
 

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Concrete & Masonry
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Yes, but it isn't nearly as easy as in wood framing. It will require a precast concrete lintel more than likely.
 

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Thank you for the input! Is this done by a contractor or can you do it yourself with rented tools? If anyone out there has done this, can you tell us about your experience?
 

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Lic. Builder/GC/Remodeler
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Thank you for the input! Is this done by a contractor or can you do it yourself with rented tools? If anyone out there has done this, can you tell us about your experience?
We have done this many times. What we do is hire out the concrete portion to a properly experienced "concrete-cutting" company. If you agree to break up and dispose of the left-over concrete, the costs will be less.

1.) Pull building permit. You will have to detail the plan, and the new opening's framing.
2.) Get pricing from concrete-cutting companies.
3.) Get prices from reputable companies to do the framing and window installation - or - do your research and do the work yourself.

Essentially, the work would involve temporarily supporting the first floor joists, above the area, prior to the cutting of the concrete.

The concrete would be cut all the way up to the first floor wall plates. The opening would then be framed out using Pressure Treated Lumber and either tapcons, or powder actuated fasteners. The opening would be spanned by a proper header arrangement, and supported by at least double jack studs, and a king stud.

That is a basic layout. There are more details involved.

I would strongly suggest that you subcontract out the cutting, and the structural framing. You should be able to take over from there: window install, trimming out, insulation, sheetrock, etc...
Good Luck.
 

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If this is going on a side that has double rim joists,
wouldn't they count/serve as the headers?
I have this with my basement door, no header except the rim joists

But the house is from the 50's

How big /wide will the window be?
1 story, 2 story house?
 

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Large window = Structural Engineer. You may be talking thousands of pounds, here!!! Bearing point loads as well.

I've had the concrete cut by a professional. He did this after I installed the header, sitting on the top plate/mudsill.

The joist direction makes a big difference in the size of header required ( as Dave said: 1 story? or what?)

The load on mine took 4-2x8's. I measured the thickness of all, measure from the rim into the room, cut the joists back, and installed them one at a time, with Simpson screws, as per engineering. Then install the joist hangers, finish the hole as Atlantic said. Be safe, GBAR
 
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