An Egress Window is usually a semi-circular window made from galvanized metal, plastic, wood, or stone. The primary purpose of such a window well is for evacuation and emergency purposes. In the event of heavy rains, snowfall, and fire disasters, your basement can get flooded or loaded with debris, dirt, and tree leaves. With the installation of an Egress window well, you will have an escape route from all such situations, and the possibility of a tragedy becomes almost next to 0.1%. In the unfortunate event of floods or major pipe leaks, while one is asleep or working in the basement, they can get trapped if action is not taken soon. Still, with the presence of a Window well, one can push the window open and climb up the ladder into open land in a matter of seconds. There are a plethora of options when it comes to choosing a window well, some with broader window frame entrances, longer ladders, materials to soak up the excess water, and even base fans attached to the lower walls to blow out weeds, leaves, and excess waste that may block the drainage. To help you make the right choices, we have formulated a detailed list of the best Egress Window well and Window to purchase.
Best Egress Window Well and Window
1.Wellcraft 29’’ x 47’’ Acrylic Block Egress Window
The perfect window will support water drainage and prevent leaks and hydrostatic pressure in and around the window. Its in-swing design enables easy opening and closing of the windows; this permits speedy actions, which eventually can save many people’s lives in case of mishaps. The acrylic material ensures a tough and durable window frame; this also doesn’t let cold air seep in from the outside, making it a great choice for people who live in locations where the weather can become freezing.
Being ¾ of an inch, the acrylic block glass behaves as a great barrier from external dirt and assures that your basement will be free from all sorts of insects that would otherwise possibly seep in from your garden, lawn, or backyard.
- Exceptional amounts of light seep in for illuminating the basement.
- Looks beautiful from a distance
- Meets IRC Building codes
- Attractive from the inside and outside
- Long-term functionality
- Plastic is extremely soft and delicate.
- Does not give value for its high price
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2. Wellcraft 2060 Window Well 090 Gray Granite
Wellcraft’s 2060 Window is manufactured using UV-protected polyethylene, which ensures no part of the product will ever face any rust-related issues and remain durable in the most extreme weather conditions. This product comes with an optional addition of extending the depth of the window well to up to 12 feet. One can purchase the window well in either a Grey Granite model or a Sandstone design, depending on the basement’s colors and interior outlook. The window frame is 4 feet wide, which is enough space to allow two to four people to exit simultaneously in emergencies.
Instead of using junk or sand, Wellcraft uses 2B stone to backfill the well-covered layers; this provides more than sufficient thickness and eradicates the chance of any structural failure.
- One-Piece Construction enables easy and straightforward installation.
- Capacity to extend to a depth of 12 feet, permitting flexible options for the client.
- Despite being Granite, it looks more like plastic.
- Rather than having to drill, it can be fastened to the wall.
- Optional Polycarbonate cover can be provided on request.
- The lid is sold separately for an additional 500 dollars.
- Fasteners are not included and have to be purchased separately
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3. StakWEL Emergency Egress Window Wells
The StakWEL Egress Window functions well as per its standards, ensuring Safety, Durability, Economic installation process, natural beautification of the basement, and abiding by Code-compliances. The use of maintenance-free materials promises no chance of rotting, rusting, or any kind of part replacements.
Its intricate design allows natural sunlight into the basement and allocates a fair number of soft spots for hassle-free ventilation. The soft earth tone color advocates the earthy underground vibe that the owner wants to try and inculcate. Each module is bigger in length from top to bottom and has been made efficiently, keeping in mind that the client can attach the desired number of modules needed to arrive at their specific height requirements.
It’s a kind Grip and Step design that allocates a convenient handle for opening the window or climbing the ladder, along with a gusseted step to enable a quick escape process for people in a hurry or danger.
- Completes all IRC 2018 Building code requirements
- Durable due to chemically engineered materials
- The number of modules can be chosen as per necessity.
- The Modular system provides an inexpensive installation process.
- A specialized clear dome cover can be purchased with this item.
- No customizations are available.
- It cannot be used with 60’’ windows.
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4. Wellcraft 6700 Series 3-piece kit Egress Window Well
Wellcraft Window wells always live up to their standards and are a reputed brand due to this reason. It comes with 3 pieces, where each unit has to be locked together to form the main shelter or covered area for the well.
The 6700 Series Egress Window Well boasts a set of 6 terraced steps, which drastically reduces erosion possibilities in business and home landscapes, where maintaining beauty is an important attribute. If you want functionality along with a positive, appealing look, then Wellcraft’s Egress Systems is your solution. A height of 60 inches and width X depth of 76.5’’ X 56.5’’ gives a person the ability to hop right in out of the egress within no time.
- UV protected Polyethylene ensures ultimate weathering capabilities.
- 6 Terraced steps enable effortless entry and exit from basements
- Sandstone and Granite materials beautify the view through your basement.
- Innovative 5 feet wide window design also gives added space for removing big items.
- Modular Well allows easy transport and installation.
- Extreme lightweight jeopardizes the damage control capacity.
- There are better Wellcraft models for the same budget.
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5. Wellcraft 2062 Window Well 091
The last of Wellcraft’s Egress Window Wells that we have to show is the 2062 series Window Well. A not so deep and large window well sized at 62 inches X 49 inches X 37.5 inches of height, weight, and depth, respectively.
Despite being designed as a single piece product, the Window Well is extremely convenient to carry in case of a change of location, delivery, or internal repairs. An added advantage is that the UV-protected polyethylene once again acts as a great barrier against harsh weather and added tear due to no maintenance.
A perfect solution for all sorts of crawl space foundation vents.
- Meets Legal requirements of 2012 IRC standards
- Mechanically carved interiors act as a great surface for window well to shine under light.
- Spacious enough to add living space in basements
- Intelligent air-flow functionality provides more ventilation.
- Sandstone Granite color and feel radiates elegance in your basement.
- 3-foot-wide windows can prove to be small in situations
- Weighing 64 pounds, it can be heavy and requires strong exteriors for structural durability
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6. Paul Corrugating Co. FV208-12 Foundation Area Wall
Not exactly an Egress Window Well, but surely a basic Window Wall, which can be almost three times cheaper than a product with precisely the same functionality. The shape of the cover from the inside and outside consists of long parallel grooves and ridges to channel a greater rigidity, robustness, and sturdiness. This feature provides superior resistance from rocks, branches, and tree barks instead of having a plastic/glass material instead. The coated metal defends iron when exposed to ambient humidity, moisture, or storms.
Three fantastic reasons to purchase St. Paul’s Corrugating Area Wall are the fact it is made in the USA, delivered in no time, and comes at a price worth twice its value. The wall being 12 inches (H) X 20 inches (W) X 8 inches (D) is much smaller in size than you would imagine.
- Galvanized steel makes the Well corrosion resistant.
- Zinc coated over metal prevents damage due to the air.
- It weighs a mere 5 pounds, 10 times lighter to transport and detach if needed.
- Lexel Sealand bond is enough, and you won’t need to drill holes.
- The rustic look is a great addition to backyard and garage exits.
- Self-Installation would be required.
- Zero Cosmetic quality
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7. Amerimax Home Products – 75204 12’’ Plastic Area Wall
Available to purchase in various heights ranging from 12 inches to 30 inches, the Amerimax Area Wall can be a great option for a window well cover and helps accommodate the client’s requirements. Being 36 inches in width can be used as a secondary crawl space access zone or even for the window access territory. It can prove to be tight to fit through the secondary crawling zone, but you are assured to get through incase the upper window access is inaccessible.
Highly galvanized steel enables durability and protection. Its small size can be ideal for ground-level basement egress window wells. The plastic Area wall acts as a perfect barricade to help hold back debris, dirt, and stones from falling into the window well. Due to the rugged metallic design, one can conveniently bend any structural alteration to its original curvature.
- It can be used as a Secondary crawl access area.
- Extremely cheap; 100 dollars for wall and cover
- Pre-installed holes drilled on the sides of the plastic well
- It can be used as a soil retainer.
- A special Translucent Well Cover can be purchased together.
- No cover is sold with the item.
- Shallow depth would not be an ideal Egress Window Well
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8. 42 inches Height X 36 inches Width X 48 inches Depth Egress Well
Already breaking through your budget barriers because of various basement expenses? Don’t want to burn a hole in your pocket by purchasing a high-end egress window well? The best solution for you is this Egress Areawall. It is simple, made of galvanized metal, boasts a great depth of 48 inches, and has 2 dozen pre-drilled holes at either end of the wall. The strength that the 48 collective screws provide is enough to withstand 3-5 people’s weight and behave like a wall immune to harsh weather conditions.
Though it has got a casement egress design, it can be used as a slider egress window and even a casement for sheltering the area. The 9-inch corner radius creates more space for living, storage, and comfortably letting multiple people escape at once.
- Corrugated and Galvanized steel ensuring product safety from bad weather
- Safety edges eliminate chances of injury while climbing out
- Compatible as an area wall or window well cover
- Complies with International Residential Code for Section R310 emergency regulations
- Casement profiled egress
- Aesthetically poor for basements that are regularly used
- Large numbers of screw holes significantly increase installation time
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When purchasing an Egress Window Well, many factors must be considered to ensure you face no issues post-installation. Imagine one day you are stuck in the basement due to a flood or fire, and your window well is not opening because the material was not rust proof. This factor of material quality can provide a quicker reaction time and eventually save lives. Here are a few factors one must look at while buying the best window well available in the market.
Even if you have window well Covers, the window well can easily get flooded if the drainage architecture is not perfect in rough weather. Most egress window wells come with around 4 inches of gravel at the base of the well for excess water storage. But the best egress window well and window should supply you with a drain pipe that drains excess water outside the foundation of the Well walls. Ideally, one must invest the extra amount to build a drain pipe that pumps extra water directly to an even further area to avoid weakening the exteriors.
Complies with Local Residency Standards
Most rules and regulations state that the Egress Window must be about 7-14 percent of the basement square footage. There are rules also stating the well’s depth, the number of steps needed, and the wall’s material handles staircases and casement covers. Ensure your Window Well is not an overfit or underfit compared to your basement area, as this can prove hazardous when a time of emergency comes.
Window and Well Design
There is a myriad of designs that can be implemented for specific requirements of customers. Before choosing a window well, you must carefully analyze whether you want a mixture of beauty, secondary exit spots, elegance, and space conservation rather than just focusing on one attribute. For example – Choose if you want a carved and engraved stairway or an outward-facing stairway. Or whether you want a greater amount of natural light to enter the room rather than leave it dark and dull.
Do not be fooled by the price range of egress window wells. All window wells provide the same functionality but with different points of focus. You can get a 1500 dollar well and a 100 dollar well, both with similar advantages such as corrosion-proof material, window covers with a handle, and detachable staircases.
Whether you think you need or do not need the best egress window well and window, the fact is that without contemplating at all, you must study your basement, figure your requirements, optimizes your escape plan financially and efficiently, and chose the best window well that is available in the market. The best part about adding this safety feature to your homes is lifelong addiction and investment. Even if you leave home for a few years or abandon your basement while you live there, there is a meager chance of any destruction and spoilage occurring.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is an Egress Window?
An Egress window is an emergency entry and exit point in a business or residential home basement; it proves more than worthy in the unfortunate event of a fire, flood, and natural calamity. The window well area consists of about 1/12th the basement area's size, and there is a 3-8 step staircase or engraved ladder attached to the Well walls. The Egress window can either be of a sliding or gliding design, depending on the steps' positioning outside the window. It also proves as a great solution to keeping dirt, weeds, and leaves away from entering the basement.
What is the minimum size for an Egress Window?
The minimum opening area of the egress window is 5.9 square feet. Minimum of 24 inches and 20 inches respectively for net clear height opening and the net clear width opening, respectively. For a single/double Hung Egress window, one window's height must be 24”’ minimum clear. It must be 44” Maximum about the ground.
Why do I need an Egress window?
You do not want your basement to get dusty and muddy due to the weeds and dirt flying in from the outsides. One may have expensive electronics equipment or even some antique items in the basement; these are easily susceptible to pests and dirty external elements that gather in the basement over time. The Egress window also allows you to provide ventilation in times of need. Its main benefit is the escape route it offers during a crisis. Whether an internal fire due to some short circuit in the basement or an earthquake that has blocked the entry door, the Egress window serves as an emergency exit to flee or as an entry to save somebody.
How many egress windows are required in a basement?
One Egress usually suffices for a basement of the size ranging from 150-240 feet. In cases you have a basement that is more than 240 and less than 400 feet, you will need to install two Egress windows at either end of the basement. If you are the lucky person with a basement bigger than 500 feet, then be sure to take up some consultation, which will help install the windows in well-strategized positions after finalizing multiple escape plans.
How much do Egress windows cost?
This simple answer to your question is anything from 150 dollars to 4000 dollars depending on the level of complexity involved in fitting in the structure outside your basement window. If you only want to buy it and do the installation yourself, then expect to shell out a maximum of 150-1000 dollars, depending on the material you choose, buy a window well cover or not, have pre-fitted steps on the wall. In the situation that you want installation done too, there will be a substantial amount of labor costs, ranging to a total of 1400-4000 dollars. There are a lot of options for people with low budgets and also for people who are ready to spend a bomb on an extremely reliable Egress window.
How to install an Egress window in a concrete basement wall?
Depending on the type of Egress window set purchased, the installation procedure varies. One must ensure that the window's base is at a maximum height of 44 inches from the gravel dug below. Window size requirements vary according to the design you are purchasing. There are two ways to attach the Egress window to the concrete basement wall. One uses a proven strong, flexible bond to stick the window wall area to the foundation walls. Two, drill holes at strategically determined points and then attach the screws to ensure it stands rough weather, heavy-weight, and debris that fall inside during storms.
Does an Egress window have to be in the bedroom?
Egress windows are necessary in every habitable place that exists in a room or office. Especially if it is a room for sleeping purposes, having a separate window for emergencies is a must.
What does an Egress window look like?
A window large enough to allow the entry and exit of multiple persons to the window well area and then out of the basement is what an Egress window looks like. There will be a latch on the inside and outside, which can turn, lock, or unlock the window when taking shelter from undesirable situations. Typically, an Egress window will open into a window well where one can immediately climb the ladder and get to open land.