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San Ramon LogoRetro-fit Window and Door Installation
For Single Family Dwellings


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>>>Click here for on Emergency Escape and Rescue Window Requirements<<<

To obtain a permit for window installation, please provide the following:

  • Building Permit Application
  • Window Retrofit Schedule
  • Copy of the signed contract
  • Floor plan of dwelling including:
    • Dimensions of windows, existing and proposed
    • Location of doors and stairs
    • Room usage (Bedroom, Dining, Living, etc.)
    • Detail of any new framing for enlarging window and door openings

Items to consider

  • Egress
  • Safety Glazing
  • Energy Requirements
  • Installation Requirements
  • Inspections


Sleeping rooms in every dwelling shall have at least one operable window or door approved for emergency escape or rescue that shall open directly into a public street, public alley, yard, or exit court. The emergency door or window shall be operable from the inside to provide a full, net clear opening without the use of separate tools.

Escape or rescue windows shall have a minimum net clear openable area of 5.7 square feet. The minimum net clear openable height dimension shall be 24 inches. The minimum net clear openable width dimension shall be 20 inches.

Exception: Dwelling units built prior to January 1, 1979, will not have to comply with the current building code. Those dwelling units built prior to January 1, 1979 shall be permitted to have window sill heights at no greater than 48 (forty-eight) inches, with a net clear width of 22 (twenty-two) inches and a net clear height of 22 (twenty-two) inches. Additionally, the minimum net clear area shall be a minimum of 5 (five) square foot. This is all in compliance with the 1973 Uniform Building Code which would have been enforced until approximately January 1, 1979, considering a 2 (two) year delay in adoption of the 1976 Building Code.

For windows that are cut down to meet egress, provide flashing detail for department approval prior to installing window. Flashing will need to be inspected prior to installing the new or retrofit window, to insure the window is properly flashed.

For window openings where existing flashing has been removed, new construction (nail fin) windows are required to be installed in opening.

Bars, grilles, grates, or similar devices may be installed on emergency escape, rescue windows, or doors provided:

  • The Building Official shall approve devices.
  • The devices are equipped with approved release mechanisms that are openable from the inside without the use of a key or special knowledge or effort; and
  • The building is equipped with smoke detectors installed in each sleeping room and at a point centrally located in the corridor or area giving access to each separate sleeping area. When the unit has more than one story, detectors shall be installed on each story. In dwelling units where the ceiling height of a room open to the hallway serving the sleeping rooms exceeds that of the hallway by 24 inches or more, smoke detectors shall be installed in the hallways and in the adjacent room.

If the valuation of the window replacement permit exceeds $1000.00 (labor and materials), smoke detectors shall be installed on the ceiling in all sleeping rooms within 2 (two) feet of the door leading to the hall.

Safety Glazing
Hazardous Locations

  • Glazing shall meet safety requirements of section 2406 of 2013 California Building Code.

Energy Requirements
California energy requirements for Zone 12 (San Ramon)

  • The U-Value of fenestration being installed must be 0.4 or lower.

Installation Requirements
Flashing and Counterflashing

  • Exterior openings shall be flashed in such a manner as to make them weatherproof.
  • Removal of existing frames without breaking back stucco or siding does not allow for flashing of replacement windows and therefore, is not permitted.


  • When installing a new door or replacing a window with a door, a landing and or steps may be required at exterior of door. Provide plans to show a landing that is not less than the width of the door and no less than 36" in length in the direction of travel.


  • Voids between new and old frames or rough frames shall filled with insulation.

Rough Frame

  • A Rough Frame inspection is required for ALL windows and door installations.
  • The frame inspection shall include; installation of retro-fit windows, alterations to header span and size, cripples, insulation, support cables, corbels, and the roof section of bay windows. Windows and doors should be in place with no interior trim installed. Insulation shall be installed at time of rough frame. If stucco or siding has been removed, flashing shall also be in place.
  • Note: Some windows and doors will require the manufacturer’s installation instructions (bay windows, sliders, etc.)


  • Windows and doors will be caulked on all sides inside and outside to reduce water entry and air infiltration.
  • Exposed wood shall be painted if not resistant to decay

If there are any questions regarding windows and their installation, please call and talk with an inspector.



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