My Home Inspector Blog: Have You Checked Your Egress Windows?- Encinitas Home Inspector

Have You Checked Your Egress Windows?- Encinitas Home Inspector

Have You Checked Your Egress Windows?- Encinitas Home Inspector

It's midnight and you've just drifted off to sleep. All of a sudden, the smoke alarms in your home begin to blast. You changed all the detector batteries just two weeks ago! This must be the real deal! You forgot to turn off the dryer before going to bed and the lint trap has ignited starting a roaring fire in the hallway outside your bedroom! You quickly jump out of bed and slam the bedroom door shut to contain the fire.

 

 

After closing the door, you realize the bedroom window is now your only way out. Running over to the window, you discover it is painted shut and you're unable to open it! You pick up a shoe and smash the glass, but there's a problem. You cannot fit through the window! You had the original window taken out and replaced with a smaller one several years ago to provide more wall space for your new bedroom suite. The fire is now licking at the door and smoke is beginning to pour in under the door!

 

 

 

All of a sudden, you feel a wet tongue licking your face. It's Barney, your Golden Retriever- It was just a dream! The next morning, after a restless night's sleep, as soon as you get out of bed, you check your window. Whew! It opens smoothly and is large enough to exit.

 

Emergency escape and rescue openings in a home are very important. Basements, habitable attics, and every sleeping room must have one such opening. Here are the size requirements: The sill height cannot be more than 44" above the floor. The net clear opening must be at least 5.7 square feet and must be at least 24" high and 20" wide. This will allow escape of the occupants and entrance by emergency personnel. These egress windows must open directly into a public way, or to a yard or court that opens to a public way.

 

Have You Checked Your Egress Windows?- Encinitas Home Inspector- If not, don't put it off! Your life may depend on it! The bedroom windows at the Encinitas home inspection in the video below are a hazard. This item should be immediately corrected for the safety of the occupants. Steve Stenros, an Encinitas home inspector, is the owner of First Choice Inspections. He is a CREIA MCI home inspector and can be reached for appointment at 888-335-3040. Clients receive a FREE lifetime appliance RecallChek with every standard home inspection.

 


             Steve Stenros, MCI         Biz card photo

             Master CREIA Inspector #0115

             ICC Residential Combination Inspector #5251439

             Certified Infrared Thermographer #7791

                                       FHA/HUD Inspector- #V975

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Comment balloon 12 commentsSteve Stenros • June 23 2011 03:05PM

Comments

Steve:  I see how this could be a big problem!  Next, one would be looking to break the window, more mess, and potential for getting cut!

Posted by Sidney Kutchuk - Realty Works Temecula Kutchuk - Realty Works Temecula, Realty Works Temecula (Realty Works Temecula) over 9 years ago

Jane, I see so many of the older homes in San Diego with inoperative bedroom windows. Either painted shut, screwed shut, or security bars with no interior opening device.

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

Hi Steve great post. I see too many windows painted shut and bedrooms in basements with no escape

Posted by Tim Peterson, Realtor Safety Training Classes (Wisconsin Realtor Safety and Concealed Carry Classes) over 9 years ago

Good evening Steve, very important information for home owners!  If a fireman in a Scott Air Pac can not enter thru the window, you could have a have a disaster.

Posted by Dan Edward Phillips, Realtor and Broker/Owner (Dan Edward Phillips) over 9 years ago

That's right, Tim. The basement windows usually do not meet the 44" rule either unless there are window steps installed. Thanks for your comment!

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

You've got it, Dan! They need to be able to fit through with an Air Pac on.

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

Steve,  Very good post.  You see this a lot inolder homes where there are layers of paint and with air conditioning some windows are not opened.  So important to know the exits, to be able to exit, and make sure those windows open.

Posted by Kathleen Vetrano, Helping YOU Achieve YOUR Dreams (RE/MAX Gateway) over 9 years ago

I agree, Kathleen. Most homeowners have not checked their emergency escapes in years!

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

I know of several windows in my upstairs that are painted shut.. I need to remedy that!

Posted by Sheila Newton Team Anderson & Greenville SC, Selling the Upstate since 1989 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - C. Dan Joyner) over 9 years ago

Good deal. You'll sleep better knowing you have a safe exit!

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

Dear Steve -
If there were a fire there - not everyone could KICK the door open - could they?
Have a happy day -
Lynn

Posted by Lynn B. Friedman, Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers (Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty Call/Text 404-939-2727 Buckhead - Midtown - Westside -- and more ...) over 9 years ago

That was my point, Lynn. The door exiting the patio had been permanently bolted shut when the rain gutter downspout was attached to it. That needs to be an openable door for an emergency escape.

Posted by Steve Stenros, CREIA MCI, ICC, ACI Home Inspector,San Diego (Poway,La Jolla,Del Mar,Mira Mesa,Carlsbad,Escondido,Temecula) over 9 years ago

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