The Housing & Development Board (HDB) in Singapore has made efforts to ensure that windows installed in houses or HDB flats meet safety requirements. This move has ensured that all windows are secure and built in line with the safety standards in Singapore. A safer living environment has therefore been created for everyone. HDB has therefore come up with rules and guidelines to be adhered to by owners of flats or houses regarding to how windows should be installed or renovated. The rules and guidelines are exclusive to the respective types of building works.
HDB has also set specifications of window parts and their requirements during installation and renovation. Without a doubt, the specifications make it easy for the building to be completed in line with the recommended safety standards. These are also exclusive to the respective types of buildings that are constructed in different parts of Singapore.
The following are 6 rules of installing window grilles as recommended by HDB:
1. Installing Grilles at Service Yard or Balcony Parapet
HDB requires that you get a permit before installing window grilles at service yard or balcony parapets (if there are any). In cases of flats handed over from the 1st of July 2007, the window grilles installed have got to have designs approved by HDB. Guidelines are available for the installation of such on the official HDB website. Also present are the various designed approved.
2. Replacing or Removing Rail on Top of Balcony Wall
You do not need a permit to go through with this process. This rule only applies to the mild steel or stainless steel rail on top of the reinforced concrete parapet. From the level of a finished floor, the height of the balcony parapet wall has got to be no less than 1,000mm. The steel bars that are exposed have got to be prevented from rusting by applying two coats of rust inhibitor. This application has got to be done before any finishing work is done.
3. Installation of Other Metal Grill designs at Balcony Interaction
You do not need any permit from the HDB to get this done. The metal grilles must however not be higher than the unit. The HDB further forbids the storing of combustible material on the balcony. It is one of the safety precautions that have to be followed when constructing buildings in Singapore.
4. Installing Metal Grilles at Double Storey End of Executive Maisonette’s Balconies
You do not need any HDB permit to get this done. The metal grilles must however not protrude from the building façade and they have to be fixed from the inside. This also applies to the installation of internal metal grilles of any design at an executive maisonette’s double-storey balcony, at a window, or at a balcony parapet.
5. Replacing or Installing a Window on Parapet
HDB requires that you acquire a permit in order to go through with this process. This does not however affect DBSS projects and flats handed over from 1st July 2007. Open balconies or pure planter boxes are provided in these options. Window panels have got to take on certain specific measurements as required by HDB. The casement window has got to be 500mm to 700mm wide while the sliding window has got to be 500mm to 1,200mm. The colour scheme, proportion and type of replaced or installed windows of flats handed over from the 1st July 2007 must be the same as those provided by HDB.
6. Internal Installing of Bamboo Chicks, Curtain Rails or Venetian Blinds
HDB does not insist on the acquisition of permits before the internal installation of Venetian blinds, curtain rails or bamboo chicks.
Renovation guidelines for window grilles are also available on the HDB website. Examples of all of the various cases of installation or replacement are also fully provided and described on this website. Replacement of full height windows is totally forbidden by HDB and this is a rule that one must never overlook or ignore. One can only be allowed to go through with this when he/ she has valid reasons; for instance, if the frame has been badly damaged so that a total change of windows is required.
The Building and Construction Authority approves contractors in Singapore. Owners of flats have got to engage contractors of windows who are BCA approved and registered with HDB.