Window Well Requirements and Installation Variables

A window well will allow natural light to enter a basement, will keep soil away from a home's foundation, and will support the use of an egress window to exit a basement during an emergency. A window well installation involves excavating the land around a window and installing a drainage system and a rounded or rigid framework.

Building Codes

Some basements are used predominantly to store household goods. Others may serve as both a storage area and a space that is used by people. If anyone will be sleeping in a basement or spending a considerable amount of time within the underground space, a series of egress windows should be installed. Egress windows are large enough to allow a person to fit through each opening.

A home or a business that will provide livable basement quarters may require that egress windows are installed and that fairly large barriers surround each window well. If a window is going to provide a potential escape route from a residence or a commercial structure, the amount of land that is excavated will be more extensive than the excavation requirements for a standard window that will not serve as an exit route.

Egress windows typically require that a rigid framework installation around each window well. This type of framework will contain a square or rectangular shape and will be larger in diameter than a rounded framework that surrounds a small, shallow window well.

Materials And Installation Steps

An excavation tool, drainage supplies, and window well components will be needed during the installation process. Some cheaper window well components may be constructed of plastic. Stronger window well frameworks will be constructed of reinforced steel or another type of metal. After the windows in a basement are installed, measurements of them will be taken.

Whether or not a window is classified as an egress opening will determine the depth and width of each window well that is dug out around the perimeter of a home or a business. After the window wells are dug out, the drainage supplies will be installed. Drainage materials will prevent rainwater accumulation.

After the framework for each well is installed, loose gravel may be added to each well. An above or belowground drainage system and the gravel will work simultaneously to prevent water from pooling. To prevent debris from entering each well, a soft or hard cover can be secured to each frame that surrounds a window well.

For more insight, contact window well installation contractors.