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Here’s why windows are one of the most important safety features in your home

In an emergency, egress windows offer a specific route to safety, especially in basement and upper floor living spaces
Egress windows are manufactured to serve as an exit in emergency situations. Photo via: Ecoline Windows.

If you are looking for an updated way to help bring your home up to current building codes that improves safety, think about adding an egress window.

What is an egress window?

In short, egress windows are specifically manufactured to serve as an emergency exit.

If you have ever had the misfortune of living through the ordeal of a residential fire or another dangerous situation, you may have experienced the challenges of escaping the confines of your home.

Your stairs leading to the front or back doors may be inaccessible or blocked. And the understandable panic could have caused you and your family members injury, also making their route to safety difficult.

To help prevent such situations from happening, the building code in your community, including Thunder Bay, calls for egress window installation in bedrooms and basements used as habitable places.

When it’s a question of providing safety, choosing a reliable manufacturer to build and install something as important as an egress window is vital.

Ecoline Windows is a leading Canadian manufacturer and installer, offering the best variety of vinyl windows and steel/fibreglass exterior doors and patio doors that ensure maximum energy efficiency, noise reduction, draft prevention and safety.

Egress windows. Photo via: Ecoline Windows.

What does an egress window look like?

Egress windows are wide-opening models that provide an extra exit in the event of an emergency, and are particularly crucial in bedrooms and basements where other exits may be limited or non-existent.

While not every room requires an egress window, it is desirable to have at least one emergency exit option on each floor of your home, if it is three storeys or less.

What to look for when choosing an egress window 

What details should you look for when choosing an egress window for your property? What are the guidelines?

The good news is that egress is not a specific type of window, which means most window models can be considered egress if their dimensions match the code in your area.

The most popular egress windows in Canada are hopper windows, which are usually installed in basements converted into living areas and bedrooms. Egress windows in this hopper design need to feature hinges on the top edge of the window frame and open upwards. This will allow occupants easier access through the opening by climbing under and out of the window.

Casement windows. Photo via: Ecoline Windows.
Casement windows. Photo via: Ecoline Windows.

Casement windows and slider windows in other parts of your home can also be designated as an egress window. Since casement windows have side hinges which open both outside and inside, this option can be the best choice for arranging an escape route, especially if you don’t have a lot of wall space. Thanks to its mechanism, you can open the sash to the full, maximizing the opening size in relation to the frame size. Casement egress windows are extremely easy to use, super energy efficient, and will easily fit into any home design.

That said, you must ensure that you have enough space for the outward opening sash since it can create an obstacle to getting out, especially if the exit leads to a window well.

Since egress window codes vary depending on the province, it's highly recommended to contract professional window installers to make sure your installation project complies with the requirements and standards of your province. They will also let you know if your egress window installation will require additional permits from your municipality.

Ecoline Windows operates in six provinces and more than 20 cities across Canada, making it your local and reliable brand to supply and install the best variety of vinyl windows and steel/fibreglass exterior doors and patio doors (vinyl) that ensure maximum energy efficiency, noise reduction, and draft prevention.

For more about what they can do for you, visit their website at 

Working directly with homeowners, Ecoline Windows specializes in replacement windows, doors, and patio doors for the residential markets across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Ontario. Their mission is to improve your home!


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