Search the forums

Loading

Tempered glass in basement window???

Karl's picture

I am getting a bit frustrated as I try to order some Andersen basement utility windows. They will be installed within a few inches of grade and I was under the impression any window withing 18 inches of floor (ground) level needs to be tempered.

The andersen website shows these windows are availible with both tempered and untempered glass. When I went to the local Andersen dealer they went through their software application for specifying all the window details and there was no tempered glass option. The sales rep called his next higher up source of andersen info who told him tempered glass is not availible.

Do I go untempered?

Do I look for a different window that comes tempered?

Do I look to different manufacturer?

I appreciate any thoughts on this as I want to get the windows ordered monday morning.

Thanks, Karl

(post #75601, reply #1 of 12)

Is this a basement egress window?

********************************************************
"It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts."

John Wooden 1910-

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-2010

(post #75601, reply #2 of 12)

Not an egress window. Just a small 2'8" by 2'0" hopper/awning window to get some light and ventilation in the dark recesses of the basement. It is so high off the basement floor that it is not in any way realistic for ingress/egress.
Thanks for the reply
Karl

(post #75601, reply #3 of 12)

I believe that's for windows over 9 sq ft glass size

Barry E-Remodeler

 


Barry E-Remodeler  

(post #75601, reply #4 of 12)

I hope someone comes along to answer your question who knows more about the codes pertaining to this than I do, but I can't think of any reason it would be necessary to use tempered glass in such a window.

********************************************************
"It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts."

John Wooden 1910-

******************************************************** "It is what we learn after we think we know it all, that counts." John Wooden 1910-2010

(post #75601, reply #6 of 12)

yea here's our local..yours may differ:

Are there safety glass requirements from the outside ground, such as a basement window?
A. Local codes govern the requirements for safety glazing. Model building codes like the International Building Code frequently form the basis for local regulations and are generally viewed as establishing a "standard of care". On the basis of the International Building Code (IBC) the glass would probably not have to be safety glazing. According to the IBC, the basement window would require safety glass only if all four following conditions are met:

1. Glass is greater than 9 sq ft in area.
2. Bottom edge of glass is less than 18 inches above the floor (walking surface).
3. Top edge of glass is more than 36 inches above the floor (walking surface).
4. And there is a walkway within 36 inches (horizontally) of the glass.

Barry E-Remodeler

 


Barry E-Remodeler  

(post #75601, reply #8 of 12)

Although we don't use UBC, just to be more complete tempered glass is also required if:


5) The window is < 24" from a door.
6) Any door glass
7) glass is within 60" of steps
8) glass is within 60" of the drain of a tub/shower.
9) any glass in a railing (like a deck or something)


There are several odd-ball exceptions to the above.  That is off the top of my head, there may be more.  We use a modified IRC.  Is the UBC different? 


Also, on #5, it is actually window is < 24" from a door and on the same wall as the door.  That last part I'm almost positive is a NC modification.

Matt

(post #75601, reply #10 of 12)

Matt

that excerpt is from the IBC, which I believe the IRC is derived from

Barry E-Remodeler

 


Barry E-Remodeler  

(post #75601, reply #11 of 12)

Oh - OK.

Matt

(post #75601, reply #12 of 12)

Barry, Bill, Matt, Tom and Dave,
Thank you for the very thorough and comprehensive explanation. It sounds like I can go ahead and place the order monday morning.

Karl

(post #75601, reply #5 of 12)

" I was under the impression any window withing 18 inches of floor (ground) level needs to be tempered.

In this case it would within 18" of the BASEMENT floor level.

There is also a requirement if the glass is within 36" of a "walking surface".

That would not include a basement window unless you had a sidewalk right next to it.

.
.
A-holes. Hey every group has to have one. And I have been elected to be the one. I should make that my tagline.
. William the Geezer, the sequel to Billy the Kid - Shoe

(post #75601, reply #7 of 12)

I don't think they mean 18" above grade. They're talking about floor level in the interior space. Codes around here do call for tempered within 18" of finished floor, and within 12" of a door (like sidelights), and a few other specialty locations, at tubs, etc.
I'v seen a bunch of those hoppers put in, never saw it be an issue with the BE.

(post #75601, reply #9 of 12)

The requirement for tempered glass applies when the window or door is within 18" of the floor and the glass area is greater than X sq ft. (I think that X = 9).  I can't remember ever seeing the height requirement being tied to a grade (i.e. outside the house)


I doubt if your basement window would meet either requirement, but your building department could tell you for sure.