Code violation, venting basement window help!!!

6 Replies

Hi all,  Just joined the forum,  I've been looking online trying to find some information on how to deal with a situation that's preventing me from passing my u and o inspection,  the problem is, or problems are two basement windows that have been boarded up with 3/4 plywood.  The property is located in Norristown Pa,  and in a compromised area in terms of security.  I did not mess with it,  because in my initial u and o inspection I was not told that it would be a problem. I understand the necessity of ventilation in the basement,  However I appreciate the security that the non functioning windows afford me.  That being said,  the windows behind the plywood cover are functioning casement windows,  but because they are located on the street and would provide direct access to the property I feel they are too easily breached for opportunists in the area.  is there a way i can adequately vent these windows while keeping the plywood partially intact.  was thinking that perhaps,  I could put some small vents in the plywood that would be too narrow for someone to fit through,  this way with the windows inside open,  it would have access to fresh air while still keeping the property secure.  Looking for solutions more affordable that glass block with vents or wrought iron bars.  thanks for the help any and all solutions appreciated!

Replace the plywood with those window bars. I usually do that on lower level windows and I don't lock the bars for safety reasons.

are those the wrought iron type bars... I just spoke to my code enforcement officer,  and she says that because i'm in the historical section plywood covering is not allowed.  she suggested the same,  was trying to avoid spending hundreds of dollars on this.  do they make pre fab or adjustable grates that perform similarly?  this is my first investment,  so I appreciate the input! and excusing my naivety 

Definitely check on the historical issues in Norristown. You may be required to leave the windows unboarded. I can put you in touch with my contractor if you wish. He has done work in Norristown for years so he might have some ideas. I think bars are your best bet.

The only thing that comes immediately to mine is to try some of your neighbors or on Craig's list to see if you can find some bars that will fit your windows on the cheap then if you are handy install them yourself. I can't think of anything else that would do an adequate job of providing the protection you need and still save you the money you want to save. 

Gates can be removed of u have security concerns. Buy some glass block windows and have them installed. Looks way better also

Thanks everyone for your replies... and Volpe you are right on point.  it is considered the historical district.  I've been checking out the neighbors and most seem to have boarded the windows up.  I'm considering building a second window,  that would serve as a security measure, utilizing the space i have now,  and using a metal,  chicken wire type screen over sandblasted glass. havent had much luck on craigslist or ebay.  called a few ironworks and general price per window grate is between 125-200.  Jon Volpe I would love to talk to your contractor about brick pointing if that's something he would do.  The last project on my list before reinspection.  


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