Let's talk about building a window into an interior wall

dreamywhiteJanuary 29, 2011

We are planning a rec room in our basement that has very little natural lighting. We would like to add some DIY windows on some of the interior walls that lead into the workout room and kids playroom. Is there anyway you can build this window yourself without purchasing an actual window. Can you purchase some kind of glass and frame it in? If anyone has done this before and has any suggestions they would be greatly appreciated.

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Yes, this can be done. However, do you think you have the skills to do this? You would need to cut out the sheetrock, cut out studs (which would be a problem if it's a load-bearing wall), re-route any wiring, ductwork, or plumbing you encounter, re-frame the opening, install glass (tempered or laminated for safety) into the opening (preferably with spacer blocks and glazing tape), possibly repair the sheetrock that had to be cutback for the new framing, install finish trim around the opening, and re-paint. If you don't know the procedures and materials for all these steps, you need help from someone who does.

I'm not trying to discourage you, but I see the potential for someone with limited skills ending up with a botched, half-finished project.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 3:21AM
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"tempered or laminated for safety"

Not required unless the glass over a certain (large) size per pane.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 2:46PM
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i would try to trace the piping/wiring/ducts to see what obstacles are in the wall, like kudzu9 says. if there's stuff already there, not worth it. if theres not much else in there, then go for it.

    Bookmark   January 30, 2011 at 10:42PM
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While it's true that tempered or laminated is required only for larger windows or those close to the floor, I intentionally said "for safety," since the OP described one of these spaces as a kids playroom. I don't know if you have kids, but mine engaged in bouncing on sofas and throwing things to one another indoors on a couple of occasions....

    Bookmark   January 31, 2011 at 1:26PM
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Does it have to have glass in it?could you just leave the hole open?

    Bookmark   January 31, 2011 at 7:13PM
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in a rec room, wrecking things is normal. Kids will be kids. Plexiglas would work well in an interior window.

    Bookmark   February 1, 2011 at 1:55AM
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Sorry I should have been more clear. We are going to be starting a brand new rec room on a brand new construction home that we moved into last year, so no walls are up and no electrical is present. We normally would just purchase a window to put into an interior wall, but now after the build we are back to reality and limited funds etc, so I would rather make the interior window to save money. We do know what we are doing as we just finished building two homes over the past two years, one for us and one for my parents. I just didn't know of anyone that made their own interior window vs purchasing one and the best advise on what kind of glass to use and the easiest way to install etc.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2011 at 6:21PM
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