Code Compliance for Windows

Windows should look great and last long so they contribute to home comfort, energy efficiency, curb appeal and real estate value. But there are other considerations before you choose your windows. Trust only window replacement contractors that know about these considerations. 


There are four key aspects when it comes to window code compliance: emergency escape and rescue (EERO), safety glazing, energy conservation and fall protection. For emergency escape and rescue or emergency egress, and fall protection, you may need a contractor to adjust the openings in the wall, as well.




Emergency escape and rescue openings have to comply with codes for the purpose of safety in case of the unexpected. Standards have been in place since the 1960s and have evolved over time. Sill heights, for example, cannot exceed 44 inches above the floor. Operable windows should open within 20 inches (width) and within 24 inches (height). Total open area should not fall below five square feet.


It’s best to discuss this with a contractor in case your window openings are not up to code.


Fall Protection


You can’t comply with EERO and break fall protection codes. Fall protection codes are meant to prevent children five years old and younger from falling out of a window while standing on the floor. You may have to raise a window opening for your sliding windows or any other type of window if there is a drop of more than six feet outside. Your windows cannot be less than 224 inches high from the floor.


Safety Glazing and Energy Conservation


Safety glazing is about the use of safety glass or tempered glass, or a security film, in windows installed in locations that are deemed hazardous. As for energy conservation, this is the reason windows now have to show the U-factor and the solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC). Mind that the cost of windows is affected by these factors.


If you have more questions about the factors that affect your windows’ code compliance, call Renewal by Andersen® of Houston. We offer different types of windows, including picture windows. Get in touch with us through (281) 547-6177. We are available in Sugar Land, TX, and in surrounding areas.