Just a quick general question for the pros. Generally speaking, is it common or acceptable to have a window cut out of step footings on a home on a sloped lot. I don’t have anymore information other than an average sized window was cut out of the top corner of the highest step footing of a home. I assume it would be okay, I couldn’t find anything that would indicate otherwise, and there is no real evidence of damage directly above.
Just for clarity of the terminology, I understand some people refer to them as step footings some say step foundation, I know the difference between the terms footing and foundation, but in this context I understand them to be the same
Step foundations on walk-out basements have a tendency to crack at the step-down for two reasons (with or without windows). One, it’s an area where stress concentrates when the concrete shrinks or the the footing settles. Two, the fill portion of the walk-out basement excavation is seldom compacted properly, so settlement is almost guaranteed. Cutting out a window after the foundation was poured, IMO will likely crack at one or more corners, because reinforcement to resist cracking at window corners was not put in. Also its difficult to saw cut out a window without the concrete saw over-cutting the corners, which creates a weak spot for a crack to start.
My response will be delayed due to the approval system for non-members. With that said, thanks for the response, I think, if I understand correctly, the answer to my question is that it is acceptable to have a window cut out of the step foundation. I do understand the inherited risks with “cut and fill” or sloped lots. The window does not display the diagonal cracks that are commonly associated with openings like windows and doors that are not adequately supported. So my only concern was if the concept of putting in a window itself into a step foundation was acceptable if there are no signs of concern around the window? as I personally haven’t noticed this before, i’m used to seeing them above the foundation cut out of the brick veneer wall for example.