Home Improvement Blog

What is an egress window and do I need one?

Posted by Bill Bateman on Sat, Mar 06, 2021 @ 07:19 AM

A common question hear all the time is "what is an egress window" ? Essentially an egress window is a fire escape window for any occupied finished basement in the country. The requirement became part of the International Residential Code in 1997 that all basements require an egress window. From experience throughout the years I have concluded that about 90% of our calls are from customers that are looking to sell or in the middle of selling and find they are in violation. Not installing one will hold up the closing of your home which in some cases can be months which can be a huge burden on both buyer/seller.

 

Customers always ask what is involved and what is the cost of an egress window. Many different factors play into the cost and installation. On average an egress window ranges 3k-5k within reason. Not a bad investment considering the work involved and what you get for it. Just peace in mind is worth it knowing that your loved ones will be protected in case of an emergency.

What are the requirements of an egress window?:

  • Minimum net clear opening of 5.7 square feet
  • Minimum net clear opening height of 24"
  • Minimum net clear opening width of 20"
  • Window well must be 9 square feet
  • Maximum 44" sill height from finished floor
  • Maximum 44" height from inside window well
  • Any heights over 44" require a ladder installed
  • Ladders shall be affixed permanently with width of at least 12 inches; shall project at least 3" from wall and ladder treads should not exceed 18" on center
     

What can determine the cost when installing an egress window?:

  • Block wall or poured concrete wall
  • Access to the location where window is
  • Amount of digging depth
  • Removal of excess dirt off of premises
  • Finish the interior or not
  • Add a Bilco preformed egress window well
  • Removal of trees in front of location where window is to be installed

 

Commonly asked questions:

  • How long will it take to install an egress window? Typically 2-5 days
  • Will there be any dust during the project? Yes, as with any construction you can expect some dust. We have a system though that keeps dust at nominal levels
  • What if there are any gas/water/electrical lines in wall? We will move at an additional cost; unfortunately we cannot determine that until wall has been opened
  • Will not having an egress window hold up my closing? Absolutely, if you have a finished basement you need one and 90% of our calls are for this reason
  • Will an egress window increase the value of my home? Any upgrade will increase the value. Besides more ventilation and light, you bring your basement to code and also protect your loved ones in case of an emergency
  • What kind of window will you be using? We use an Anderson 400 series casement window with a 22" net clear opening

Installing an egress window will also improve light and ventilation for your basement. Basements are always a breeding ground for mold and mildew as they are underground and create moisture. Adding light and ventilation will cut down your chances of toxic mold and mildew forming. Many people add a dehumidifier also to help remove moisture from their basement especially during the hot humid months of summer. Weather you are looking to sell or keep your home, an egress window is a great investment that brings safety and added value to your home!!!

 

Click here and fill out our contact page for a free estimate!

 

Topics: General Contractor, construction-general, bathrooms, Construction, basements, drainage, anderson, egress windows, finished basement, excavation, backhoe, fire escape

Choosing the right contractor/Orange County NY

Posted by Bill Bateman on Mon, Aug 14, 2017 @ 07:54 AM

For most of us purchasing a home will be one of the largest investments you will make in your life. It takes lots of preplanning, negotiation and work to get into the home of your dreams. Purchasing a home is part of the American dream that starts as a dream at a very young age when growing up with your family and wanting the same things when you grow older. Now the time has come and you are the proud owners of a home to start your life. A home brings much happiness and goals in life; a roof over your head,  bathroom for personal hygeine, a kitchen to feed your family, a dining room for eating and entertaining, a backyard........... You get the point!!!  With a home and family also comes a busy life, especially when kids come into the picture. Between cooking, cutting grass, cleaning, etc.; time becomes limited. So basically that is what most of us strive for in society, that crazy life!!! Sounds crazy but for centuries that has been the way of life and there is no greater satisfaction than creating and achieving what you have worked so hard at.

 

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Now with anything in life, including our own bodies and health, you need maintainance. Owning a home comes with responsibility and upkeep over the years you own your property. Wheather it may be a broken pipe that may pop up or a renovation to enhance your home, choosing the right contractor for these issues/upgrades is a necessity. With so many fly by night contractors it is good to do your homework to protect yourself and your investment.

 

What to look for when choosing a contractor:

  • Word of mouth recommendation is usually always the best
  • Years of business under the same name
  • References
  • Experiences and knowledge in all phases
  • Proper insurance
  • Clean and neat
  • Puncuality
  • Good communication from the start
  • Detailed contract of work being performed

 

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There are many different enhancements you can perform to your home. Every upgrade you make increases the value of your home and gets you closer to the home you always wanted and dreamed of. Working with a good contractor can make this a fun and painless experience from picking out the decor you want to seeing your project from start to finish. Here at WMB CONSTRUCTION we specialize in happy customers and creating lasting, breathtaking results.

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WMB CONSTRUCTION specializes in:

 

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Topics: Monroe NY, orange county ny, General Contractor, Construction, egress windows, excavation

Bi-Levels and their benefits/remodeling

Posted by Bill Bateman on Mon, Aug 07, 2017 @ 02:13 PM

                                                     William M. Bateman

                                                             845-590-5336

 

There are many different and types and styles of homes around the world that we all as humans need for survival. Centuries ago the home has evolved from a simple tent, cave, log cabin...... into the modern homes of today with all the ammenities necessary for comfortable living. One of the most genius and popular designs is the Bi-Level home. Its a design that became mostly popular in the 1960's and continues to this day to offer good square footage for comfortable living under a simple and practical design.  

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Why Bi-Levels are so popular:

  • Constructed easily on one square foundation
  • One standard roof line
  • Mostly one interior plumbing wall for all waste lines
  • Standard straight gutters
  • Two floors on top of each other for perfect economic heat exchange throughout house
  • Fits on a small building lot
  • Good square footage
  • Garage space
  • Most have 2-3 bathrroms for larger families
  • Plenty of space for laundry room
  • Back deck for relaxing or entertaining
  • Easy floor plan to clean

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Bi-Levels offer so many different qualities in a small package that most homes do not. Bigger isn't always better and you want to enjoy your home and family while not having it consume your life with constant cleaning and maintainance. There are many different remodeling options as well with Bi-Levels that can set yours apart from the rest and make it younique.

 

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Bi-Level remodel options:

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In the photo above we removed wall in between kitchen and living/dining room area. It instantly created an open floor plan with a more pleasing appeal. These walls removed are usually weight bearing so we had to add extra support in the ceiling to ensure the integrity of the homes weight load, especially in the winter months with heavy snow on your roof.

 

What we added from this upgrade:

  • An open floor plan
  • Increased airflow
  • More sitting/entertaining area
  • Added lighting
  • Custom oak top
  • New countertop and sink
  • Tile backsplash

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In this photo above we added a fully maintainance free composite deck to replace the smaller old pressure treated deck. Composite decks add a little more money to a deck project over your tradition pressure treated lumber deck but in the long run add low maintainance and adds value to your home instantly. With that being said, pressure treated decks have been around for years and are tried and true. You can easily expect 30 years with the proper maintainance of apply stain every few years.

 

 

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There are many different options for your home to make it the home of your dream and WMB Construction out of Orange County, NY can make those dreams become a reality. With over 30 years in the business we have the ideas and foresight to turn your Bi-Level into your own creation under one small roof.

 

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Topics: General Contractor, remodel, contractor, egress windows, excavation, bi-level, carpenter

What is a Curtain Drain?

Posted by william bateman on Sat, Sep 17, 2011 @ 09:31 AM

What is a curtain drain?

Curtain drains are essentially trenches filled with gravel covering perforated pipe acting like a gutter system to remove unwanted water away from your home. The trench is lined with filter fabric to ensure that the perforated pipe with remain free of clogs from dirt and silt over the years.

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Why you might need a curtain drain:

  • Areas of your property where you have unwanted water pooling

  • Water issues in your basement(curtain drains work great in conjunction with you homes footing drains)

  • Remove water away from retaining walls and driveways

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With any drainage project performed by WMB Construction , we always use more gravel than necessary. Gravel is natural drainage that quickly filters water to your perforated pipe and away from your home. Most drainage contractors under due this step leaving your curtain drain system practically useless.

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How we install a curtain drain:

  • Dig a trench 18"-24" deep in the ground

  • Line trench with filter fabric

  • Install a 4" perforated pipe in ground pitched out to daylight

  • Fill trench with 3/4" gravel

  • Regrade dirt

 

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 WMB Construction specializes in:

  • Curtain drains

  • Footing drains

  • Sump Pumps

  • Foundation sealing

  • All phases of Home Improvements

 

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Topics: General Contractor, basements, footing drain, excavating, drainage, excavation

How to fix a wet basement

Posted by william bateman on Sun, Apr 10, 2011 @ 07:56 PM

Has heavy rainfall and snow melt left your basement unlivable?  As the water tables rises, so does the water in your basement? Ever wonder why this is happening? Most likely your footing drains are failing. As water tables rise from the ground up it needs somewhere to be relieved and with poor drainage you will experience what is called hydrostatic pressure. Water will penetrate to the path of least resistance, usually cracks in foundation and/or floor. Signs of a failing footing drain is usually dampness in the corner of concrete floof and wall  Footing drains are designed to catch unwanted water from rising water tables. When installed correctly they will quickly remove water from your footings and foundation before it can penetrate into your basement. Over the years footing drains and foundation coatings will fail resulting in a complete replacement of your drainage system.

 

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When caught early enough damage to you home will be minimized. Water is the #1 most expensive costs every year due to the catastrophic nature that water can cause. It can range from a small leak (lots of times hidden behind walls for years) to major flooding. It creates toxic mold and mildew that can travel trough your entire home, rot wood and attract carpenter ants and termites, destroy your belongs,etc.........

How WMB Construction fixed the problem:

  • Excavated the old footing drains

  • Installed 30 feet of curtain drain

  • Installed approx. 40 tons of gravel

  • Installed filter fabric around gravel

  • Installed 4" PVC corrugated pipe for footing and curtain drains

  • Installed filter fabric sock over 4" schedule 40  corrugated pipe

  • Installed 4" PVC solid pipe for gutters to remove water away from foundation

  • Applied tar foundation coating on foundation walls

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Poor footing drains will result in:

  • Loss of home value

  • Mold and mildew issues

  • Damage to your possessions

  • Constant flooding

  • Foundation deterioration

  • Allergies and respiratory ailments

  • Wet rotten wood that can attract carpenter ants and termites

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Adding a curtain drain also helps relieve a great deal of water off of the property. The idea is to try and catch some of the water before it reaches the footing drains.

Why would you need a curtain drain:

  • Excessive water effecting your footing drains

    Wet areas on your lawn where you need to transfer water

  • In ground gutter to remove water from your property

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What you gain by using WMB Construction for your next footing drain project:

  • We supersede the competition by overdoing every project with extra material and labor that over qualifies with current codes

  • Work one job at a time so you can get back to your regular life

  • Experience in the trade

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Many homes new and old all have water issues. Instead of living with it, fix it! Some water issues can be so bad that your entire foundation could lose its integrity and collapse leaving you with thousands in repairs. 

 

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Just as an example, WMB Construction had to remove this damaged section of foundation due to water pressure buildup. Do you know that water pressure can reach 33,000 lbs. per square foot on your foundation walls? This could be enough to severely damage your foundation walls, as you can see!!

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WMB Drainage includes:

  • Footing drains

  • Curtain drains

  • Gutter drains

  • Sump pumps

 

excavating central valley ny

Topics: orange county ny, basements, construction-general--monroe, footing drain, excavating, egress windows, finished basement, excavation