The National Building Code of Canada (NBCC) requires every basement in Canada to have at least one egress window. This article will include the requirements set forth by the NBCC for the egress basement window size.

If your current basement windows in  Toronto & GTA area, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Regina & Saskatoon areas do not meet these guidelines, you may have to convert them to egress windows to remain in adherence to fire codes. We will cover this information as well. 

Standards for the Basement Window Size, Etc. for Egress Windows

Egress Basement Window Size

  • Basement egress Regina windows must have an opening no less than 15 inches in dimension.
  • Egress windows must have a window well higher than 44 inches above the floor.
  • There must be an opening between the window well and the unit of greater than 22 inches.

Additional Requirements for Basement Egress Windows

  • These windows must not be obstructed, and they must be able to open without the use of additional tools or detailed instructions.
  • A permanent ladder or step is required to be affixed to egress windows for easy escape in the event of an emergency.
  • There should be no glass panels on the way that will hinder the means of a quick and easy escape.
  • Any installed security bars must be located within the home and should be easy to remove without the use of additional instructions or any tools.
  • Most casement windows are compatible with egress window codes and sizes.

How to Convert the Basement Window Size To Egress Window Standards

Following are the options available should you need to convert your basement window size to meet the guidelines for egress basement windows.

Make Your Current Basement Window Bigger

This may be an option for some homes. However, you need to cut into the concrete walls of your basement. This will require you to hire a professional contractor and acquire the necessary permit for your municipality. The process may also involve additional costs, such as trenching, relocating sprinkler systems, and possible costs of landscaping.

Expansion of the Basement Wall

This process can be very costly, as it involves reconstruction of the basement wall structure. A permit is required as well before this process can take place.

Cut Down

The cut down process is the least intrusive and expensive option for converting the basement window size to egress windows. This is due to the fact that this method requires less physical labor. However, you should check with your municipality first to see what is involved in the process. The window must be expanded downward; thus, it will not interfere with the structural integrity of the window studs or header.

Keep in mind that the majority of window companies do not perform this type of labor, so you may have to employ a professional contractor. If this is the case, you should coordinate the two projects to ensure that everything goes smoothly. Also, check with your township to see if any permits are required for the construction before you begin to avoid any hassle or possible fines.

If you have any further questions about the basement window size or other requirements for egress windows, please contact WeatherPro Windows and Doors. Our staff is up to date on the latest fire codes and can answer any questions you may have. Call us today to install your basement egress windows.



About Weather Pro – Windows and doors replacement company in Toronto & GTA area, Winnipeg, Regina, Saskatoon, Calgary, Edmonton.

Weather Pro Windows & Doors has years of industry experience and our goal is to use our expertise to help each and every client that approaches us, whether a first time buyer or a long-time homeowner, to find the perfect windows and doors that meet all their needs. We specialize in Replacement Windows, Vinyl Windows, Entry Doors, Exterior Doors and Patio Doors. Weather Pro Windows and Doors proudly serves Toronto & GTA area, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Regina & Saskatoon areas. Follow us on Facebook!!